For many years, from luxury to automotive markets, I've been patiently nudging a few large western corporations to consider how Tier III and IV cities in China were the future of their market.
In her 2020 book, Blockchain Chicken Farm, American technologist Xiaowei Wang shed a sometimes harsh but always caring light on how rural China is dealing with the global economy. T is the end of the road of tech explosion, sprawling multinational e-commerce giants, and an unbound global supply chain.
You would only expect millions of villagers to hand-produce cheap plastic toys for the likes of Taobao (which they do). Y u also find rural pig farmers already using AI to optimize their farms or a remote-operated chicken farm blockchain-enabled (hence the title)? It is not a clash of civilizations but rather a cyberpunk story. H w cheap futuristic technology is used by the bottom of the economic pyramid without enthusiasm and skipping a bit. A d frequently too, with surprising efficiency and avidity.
This was 2020.
Now? I would love to have volume two on how the covid pandemic impacted this part of our global society. B cause if this book reminded me of something, it's that the future is not invented by think tanks, sociology researchers, futurists, designers, or politicians. Often, it's a messy, wildly surprising countryside back-of-the-shed process.
👋 Dear Xiaowei, care for an update?