As someone who researches how firms use history, I was fascinated to read the post by historians Edmond Smith and Will Pettigrew (both of University of Kent) on the Insurance Times blog. The post discusses how financial services can use history to think about the challenges they are facing. I see that the authors use the concept of “the fourth industrial revolution”. I’m not crazy about the widespread use of this term, as I remain to be convinced that the concept of a Fourth Industrial Revolution is helpful to either academics or to business people struggling to make sense of current economic trends. I’ve suggested in a previous blog post the concept is basically a marketing gimmick developed by the WEF to give coherence to the hodgepodge of interesting topics discussed at the last Davos meeting. Perhaps I was being a bit too harsh there. Anyway, I think that Smith and Pettigrew do make effective use of the concept in their excellent post.