Data is the worlds most valuable resource

The world’s most valuable resource is no longer oil, but data. So said this article in The Economist on the 6th May.

The value of data; the worlds most valuable resource

As I read that position, I began to wonder how many organisations think about their data in that way? The article makes reference the to the giants of the technology space that everyone is familiar with; Facebook, Google, Amazon, Apple and Microsoft. Newer organisations such as Tesla, who are generating massive amounts of new data from their vehicles are also mentioned, as is the impact of Artificial Intelligence and Big Data on organisations such as GE and Siemens.

What isn’t really referred to are the millions of smaller businesses across the globe who can also take advantage of this new awareness of the value of their information assets. Google etc. know that information is their lifeblood and it is information that drives their revenue as they develop new services and products on the back of the knowledge they manufacture from the data they collect.

What needs to happen to help all businesses know that this is also something that is a potential for them? How does the emerging digital economy benefit everyone, not just the giants?

The conversation remains stilted; almost an exclusive club of people who are in the know, rather than generally available information for anyone to take advantage of. Gartner have started to do something about it. Some of their latest research is about how and most importantly, why, organisations should care about valuing their information assets. The conversation is also extending to Information as a Second Language, which is the vehicle to increasing data literacy – a vital component of truly understanding the value of information.

Data Information Knowledge Wisdom

As we engage with organisations and discuss how discovering the value of their information assets provides the knowledge needed to be different and develop new ways of generating revenue, all of the points this article raises come up;

  • how raw data turned into information drives knowledge which justifies decisions through wisdom;
  • how data collected over many years can be used to find patterns which lead to the development of new opportunities for services, products and applications that meet peoples needs;
  • how this protects against start-ups without the legacy of systems, integrations, processes and people who are trying to eat their lunch;
  • that understanding the value of the data and information assets, should impact the valuation of a business;
  • that finally understanding the cost of enabling business outcomes from an information perspective, rather than only a system perspective can drive new efficiency which impacts the bottom line and re-engages your people by focusing on the most valuable aspects of what you do;

and so forth.


We are one organisation, based in Wellington, New Zealand, trying to change the world by enabling businesses to take advantage of the new opportunities that insights about their Information Supply Chains brings. We need a greater number of people to engage in this conversation so that more and more business, whatever their size, wherever they are in their journey and whatever their aspirations are, can benefit from this new information centric age we are all living in and succeed in today’s digital economy.