Erik Brynjolfsson

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Erik Brynjolfsson

Erik Brynjolfsson  is Director of MIT’s Initiative on the Digital Economy, Professor at MIT Sloan School, and Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research. His research examines effects of information technologies on business strategy, productivity and performance, digital commerce, pricing models, and intangible assets. Brynjolfsson was among the first researchers to measure productivity contributions of IT and complementary roles of organizational capital and other intangibles. At MIT, he teaches courses on Economics of Information and the Analytics Lab. Author of several books including, with co-author Andrew McAfee, NYTimes best-seller The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies (2014) and Machine, Platform, Crowd: Harnessing Our Digital Future (2017), Brynjolfsson is editor of SSRN’s Information System Network and has served on numerous editorial boards. He holds Bachelors and Masters degrees from Harvard and a PhD from MIT. His papers can be found at     

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Brynjolfsson Curriculum Vitae

Follow Erik on Twitter

The Economics of Information Blog

Review of “The Second Machine Age” in Industrial and Labor Relations Review

Review of “Wired for Innovation” in Nature

Supply Chain Management

Review Profile Informationweek Profile

CIO Insight Interview

Businessweek 25 Profile

The Gartner Fellows Interview

MIT News Interview


Professor Brynjolfsson’s research and teaching focuses on three questions:

  • How can information technology transform the structures of markets and firms?

  • What is the impact of information technology investments on productivity and business value?

  • How does the Internet affect commerce in general and information goods in particular?

Research Publications
Research Publications

Informationweek articles


Erik Brynjolfsson is on sabbatical for the acaedmic year 2018-2019.


Professor Brynjolfsson regularly teaches at MIT Sloan School of Management

15.567 - The Economics of Information 

Instructor Fall 2018:  Andrew McAfee   

15.567: The Economics of Information provides an analysis of the underlying economics of information with management implications. It studies the effects of digitization and technology on industry, organizational structure, and business strategy The course considers the managerial implications of data-driven decision-making, AI and machine learning, platforms, crowdsourcing, the blockchain, digital experimentation and other important changes in the economy.


15.572 - Analytics Lab (A-Lab) 

Instructor Fall 2018: Sinan Aral      Course Coordinator: Susan Young

The growing use of “big data” and analytics is creating opportunities for strategic business change and innovation and also strong demand for skills and experience applying machine learning and related techniques to business problems.  In this seminar, student teams design and deliver a project on the use of analytics, machine learning, large data sets and/or other digital innovations to create or transform a business, organization, process or decision-making practice.  A set of organizations, including sponsors of the MIT Center for Digital Business and Initiative on the Digital Economy will be offering projects for teams to work on.  Industries covered include high tech consumer services and distribution, healthcare, and financial services, among others.  Students may also propose their own ideas and sites.  The course culminates with presentations of final project results to an audience including experts, entrepreneurs and executives.

The seminar is open by permission to MBA and Executive MBA students, and to students in other MIT graduate programs.  Interested students are asked to complete a questionnaire and submit it with their resume for consideration.  They will be notified in mid-May, well in advance of the final course registration deadline for the fall semester. No bidding for 15.572 is necessary.


15.575 - Economics of Information and Technology (PhD seminar)

Taught in alternate years.  Not offered in 2018-19 year.   

Business organizations and markets use a wide variety of structures to coordinate the productive activities of their stakeholders. Dramatic changes in information technology and the nature of economic competition are forcing firms to come up with new ways of organizing work. In particular, recent advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning have the potential to reshape work profoundly. This course uses economic theory to investigate the roles of information and technology in the existing diversity of organizations and markets and in enabling the creating of new organizational forms.

The class is designed for Ph.D students in management, economics, computer science, information technology, organizational behavior and related disciplines. For economists, this class offers the opportunity to apply economic tools to understand how information technology and information in general affect organizations and markets. For noneconomists, this class offers an exposure to fundamental ideas in the economics of information, organizations, and markets. The main goal is to prepare Ph.D. students to produce publication-quality research using tools from information economics


Erik Brynjolfsson: Teaching-oriented web sites:

  • The Matrix of Change, a techique for managing business process change and managing interdependencies, with accompanying software.
  • Personalization issues on the Internet, two case studies (Firefly Networks and Broadvision, Inc) and accompanying technology notes (Collaborative Filtering, and Rule-based Systems), with video clips and links to related materials.  Also available from Harvard Business School publishing.

For inquiries about speaking engagements for Erik Brynjolfsson, please contact Danny Stern at Stern Speakers:

Erik speaks about:

  • The AI Awakening
  • Machine, Platform, Crowd: Harnessing our Digital Future
  • The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies  
  • Big Data and Data Driven Decision Making

Speaking engagements include

  • Gartner 2014 Symposium/ITxpo (Orlando, FL - October 2014), Keynote
  • MarTech 2014: The Marketing Technology Conference (Boston, MA - August 2014), Keynote
  • JP Morgan (New York, NY - June 2014), Keynote
  • SAP (Orlando, FL - June 2014), Keynote and panelist
  • National Science Foundation (Arlington, CA - May 2014), Keynote
  • De Tijd & L'Echo New Insights in Business and Finance, Are you ready for the Second Machine Age? (Brussels, Belgium - May 2014), Keynote
  • Goldman Sachs (New York City - March 2014), Keynote
  • Prudential (Phoenix, AZ and Palm Springs, CA - February 2014), Keynote
  • Council on Foreign Relations, The Road Ahead for Autonomous Vehicles (New York City - February 2014), Panelist

  • World Economic Forum Annual Meeting (Davos, Switzerland - January 2013, 2014), Panelist, Contributor
  • Gartner (Chicago, IL - June 2012), Keynote


"An electrifying keynote [at Gartner Symposium] by MIT Sloan professor and author Erik Brynjolfsson. Brynjolfsson had a huge audience in the palm of his hand as he described what he termed the 'second machine age'."    - Jim Love, Gartner symposium asks the big questions about world's technological future, IT Business, October 6, 2014

"Thank you so much for coming to MarTech to tell the story of The Second Machine Age. You delivered an electrifying presentation. The feedback I've heard from attendees has been nothing short of 'that was amazing!'"   - Scott Brinker, Program Chair, MarTech 2014

"Your presentation on "Automation's Impact on the Knowledge Worker" was exactly what we needed to launch the discussion. It was powerful, insightful, and was thought provoking for all in the room. We have had nothing but positive feedback."   Frank Casale, CEO, The Outsourcing Institute

"Insightful and empirical information about the impact of digital technology on business. Entertainingly and convincingly presented. Erik is generous with his time and his expertise, and presents with authority and humor."   - Neil Jacobsohn, FutureWorld

"Very engaging topic that fit well with our retail model and desire to innovate. Not too cerebral for the mixed audience. Kept everyone entertained. Thought provoking. A lot of good post presentation feedback."   - Kelly Abney, Walmart

Contact Information

Professor Erik Brynjolfsson
MIT Sloan School of Management
100 Main Street, E62-414
Cambridge, MA  02142
        phone: +1-617-253-4319

Assistant: Naomi Stephen
        phone: +1-617-324-7328

Twitter:  @erikbryn