The Berkeley Roundtable on the International Economy (BRIE), located on the University of California, Berkeley campus in the San Francisco Bay Area near Silicon Valley, was founded on the premise that there can be no long-term, low-tech prosperity for the American economy. Continued leadership in the development, production, and adoption of new technologies in the United States is the key to America’s economic health. BRIE research has shown that national comparative advantage is created not revealed, that high-tech trade patterns are massively influenced by domestic policies, that what a nation produces and trades – the composition of domestic production – matters mightily for growth and security. 


More recently, BRIE has turned its attention to the implications of what we termed the “Platform Economy”, which was driven by the rapid, pervasive spread of information technologies to work and competition, both domestically and globally. Although new forms of competition create dramatic potential for economic growth and job creation, they also threaten to generate new stresses in the uneasy relationship between industry, society, and government. Such findings are reflected in BRIE’s ongoing analyses of industrial and digital production and market competition in Asia, Europe, and the United States. For example, recent BRIE research includes assessments of the impacts of changing patterns of global trade and investment and the political and economic impacts of the development and deployment of new digital technologies on work, competition, and society.


All BRIE research is firmly grounded in a detailed, real-world understanding of technologies, markets, strategies, and policies. Our research typically starts from an examination of specific case studies of industries and institutions – who is doing what, who is winning and losing in the market, and why – before generalizing to hypotheses, which are then tested in a variety of ways. BRIE is dedicated to engaged scholarship that influences policy and strategy. Today, as a non-partisan, university-based organization, BRIE is a respected voice in business and policy circles in Silicon Valley, Washington, Europe, and Asia.

For our recent works and events on intelligent tools and systems, please visit wits.berkeley.edu


Technology Briefing: Will 5G be a catalyst for growth, or a financial burden?

September 8, 2019

Is 5G revolutionary? Will wireless technology not only update our network, but spark deep and widespread change across economies, industries, and the lives of consumers? 5G hype certainly abounds. But 5G may be difficult to put into practice.  Despite the drumbeat of hype, it is not clear how quickly 5G will be deployed, or how transformative it will be when it does arrive. Our first in a series of briefings on emerging technologies with implications for work and employment explores the promises and limitations of 5G through the lens of four critical issues.

Platforms, Work, Cheshire Cats, and Dependent Entrepreneurs: Recent Publications

April 16, 2019

"(W)e must proceed in a way that allows citizens, in their multiple roles as workers and consumers, to participate in shaping the future, not just allowing it to happen to them. It is not a matter of robots coming, but rather one of how to direct the evolution of platforms and the development and deployment of intelligent tools and systems."

Cite: Martin Kenney and John Zysman, Intereconomics

Richard Baldwin seminar held on 2/14/2019

April 3, 2019

On February 14, 2019, Professor Richard Baldwin joined a distinguished group of academics, technologists, entrepreneurs, and policymakers to discuss the implications of remote intelligence ("telemigrants") and advanced software ("white-collar robots") on the future of work. Professor Baldwin presented his book that was published in February of this year, The Globotics Upheaval: Globalization, Robotics, and the Future of Work.

Martin Kenney and John Zysman quoted in a February 3, 2019 article on Silicon Valley and Unicorns in The Guardian

April 2, 2019

Recently, BRIE directors Martin Kenney and John Zysman were quoted in The Guardian article "If Silicon Valley's unicorn bubble bursts, what legacy will it leave?" dated February 3, 2019. This article is written by John Naughton, a professor of the public understanding of technology at the Open University.  

Martin Kenney and John Zysman quoted in Financial Times article "Another tech bubble could be about to burst" January 27, 2019

February 11, 2019

Recently, BRIE directors Martin Kenney and John Zysman were quoted in the Financial Times article "Another tech bubble could be about to burst" dated January 27, 2019. This article is written by Rana Foroohar, an associate editor at the Financial Times.