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Erik Brynjolfsson


Erik Brynjolfsson and Digital Fellows Honored at the 2021 Thinkers50 Awards

The Thinkers50 Awards shine a spotlight on the brightest minds shaping business and management thinking across the globe.

November 18, 2021
2-minute read

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This year’s Thinkers50 list is in. And for the fourth consecutive time, Erik Brynjolfsson appears on the biennial ranking that recognizes researchers and visionaries around the world who are leading the way in business and management thinking.

Brynjolfsson, who directs the Stanford Digital Economy Lab (S-DEL), is one of the most-cited authors on the economics of information. His research examines the effects of information technologies on business strategy, productivity and performance, digital commerce, and intangible assets. His other affiliations include the Jerry Yang and Akiko Yamazaki Professor and senior fellow at the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered AI (HAI), the Ralph Landau Senior Fellow at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research (SIEPR), and professor by courtesy at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and Stanford Department of Economics

Brynjolfsson was recognized alongside Andrew McAfee, a principal research scientist at the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy (IDE). Over the past decade, Brynjolfsson and McAfee have co-authored three books together, including The Second Machine Age and Race Against the Machine. Thinkers50 recognized the duo for shaping the conversation and vision for a digital future: “Their work continues to provide a roadmap for success in a digital economy.”

Two S-DEL digital fellows, Marshall Van Alstyne and Geoffrey Parker, also made the Thinkers50 list for their research on the digital economy. Van Alstyne, a professor of information systems at Questrom School of Business, and Parker, a professor at Dartmouth Engineering, are experts in the realms of platforms and network business models. Their 2016 book (with co-author Sangeet Paul Choudary), Platform Revolution, shows how businesses can thrive in an evolving era of platform technology.

Marshall Van Alstyne

Geoffrey Parker

Another S-DEL digital fellow, Matt Beane, made the shortlist for the Thinkers50 Digital Thinking Award, an honor that celebrates leaders who are transforming the digital revolution into management insights. Beane is an assistant professor of technology management at the University of California, Santa Barbara. His TedTalk titled “How do we work with intelligent machines?” has garnered more than 1.9 million views.

Visit for a full list of this year’s honorees.

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