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This is a great example of how a business is using technology to create a more interactive experience for attendees both during, before, and after the visit. I am particularly excited about how the Zoo uses YouTube and their PandaCam (!!) to engage audiences at home. This helps to build excitement, traffic, and social media marketing for the zoo. While not the same per se, this really reminds me of the use of RFID at events and concerts. RFID enables technology-forward wristbands that allow attendees to have a more connected experience. For example, attendees can check-into booths, post photos through social media, and pay for food and drinks while at the event. It is interesting how technology in both scenarios is enhancing a connected attendee experience. Technology also allows the businesses to capture more data on the attendees, allowing them to streamline their operations and hopefully to be more profitable in doing so.

On November 20, 2016, anon commented on e-Finding Your Valentine :

Really interesting article! Agree that it is fascinating to see the data behind match-making and how online is becoming much more of a norm. What really stood out to me was the severe decline in meeting people through friends. I wonder if there is an opportunity for online or app data to merge these two, and use friends / technology to promote dating connections. Another related piece that you might find interesting, is a Ted Talk from a few years ago ( where one woman hacked online dating through math and strategic analysis. I wonder if this will extend and we will see second-derivative apps that allow users to hack dating apps into achieving better results.

On November 20, 2016, anon commented on AccorHotels: Battling against Online Travel Agents :

This is an amazing example of how the hotel industry is using technology to manage its operating processes and business models. There is clearly a great benefit to technology in the space, as is evidenced by the rise of hotel startups. One example is Hotel Tonight, a San Francisco-based company that allows patrons to book hotel rooms via an app from one-day to one-week in advance. Here, technology allows Hotels to get rid of stale inventory that may not be sold in other scenarios. In addition, there is a robust technology platform that allows the hotels to understand pricing dynamics and demand trends. It will be interesting to see how companies like Hotel Tonight fare versus actual hotel groups as both use technology to compete in a crowded space.

On November 20, 2016, anon commented on Greetings from Hallmark :

Great post, thanks for sharing! It is interesting to see how Hallmark has leveraged technology to improve their supply chain. This is a great example of how a traditional company is improving its operating model as technology progresses. Another example of a company in the space is Lovepop ( Like Hallmark, they make cards, but instead, Lovepop built its business using innovative technology and cutting edge software to build design-forward cards. Take a look! They are also Harvard i-lab alums. It will be interesting to see how the greeting card interesting develops as technology becomes even more important in business. Maybe Hallmark will even create or acquire business units like Lovepop in the future?

Interesting article – I think this is a great example of how technology can give rise to new business models, but also how sustainability of these businesses is at risk. You highlighted many interesting lessons from Gilt Groupe. Another interesting perspective from Gilt Group is emphasized here ( With the popularity of technology-based businesses, many employees are relying on their options as an important source of compensation. Another lesson from the Gilt Group story for us to remember is that options are a financial instrument that may or may not have value, and can even be worth less than the original investment for an employee.

Extremely interesting, and certainly an important business issue to consider. I am curious on your point regarding more accurate premiums. In a world where we expect higher premiums, I would expect flood insurance would be less attractive for the end consumer. It will certainly be an interesting social dynamic to see how populations move throughout the world based on projected weather impacts. Your work also has interesting parallels to the market for earthquake insurance. I would be interested to see how many of these outcomes overlap for that market, though would expect that it would be similar in many ways.

I think you highlight a very important issue. So much of the climate change risk is out of the hands of the NYC transportation agency, and therefore recognizing and optimizing resource deployment will be critical in their ability to combat these risks. I wonder, as well, how the agency can continue to use green methods to reduce transportation costs, while partnering with for-profit organizations to achieve superior results for the city.

On November 7, 2016, anon commented on Challenged Chocolate: The Cocoa Industry and Climate Change :

This is a great piece. It reminds me of the IKEA case we read and how they are considering alternative sources for their lumber. I wonder if it would be feasible for Hershey to source other areas for the cocoa plant to diversify their risk, or if they are limited to the current suppliers. If possible, this would be an important measure for the company to take. They could perhaps even use vertical integration as a way of minimizing these headline risks. Shows how this can be a significant cost to the company.

On November 7, 2016, anon commented on Hyatt: Environmental Sustainability in Hospitality Industry :

Very interesting post. I agree that climate change will affect the hospitality industries in many ways and was curious that you highlighted rising sea levels as one of the main risks. While I agree that this may affect the hotels that are on the water, is this the main environmental risk for the full Hyatt portfolio? I am excited to see that Hyatt is implementing “targets to reduce water use per guest night by 25% from 2006 and 30% in water-stressed areas,” but would hope this is a practice they implement more broadly. As you mention in the post, certain consumers care more about the environmental impact of their hotel choice. As climate change progresses and continues to impact consumers, I hope Hyatt can continue to use innovative practices to lower costs and promote green policies for its consumer base and be a leader in this space!

Great post! I love that you highlighted a company which has historically been very socially responsible. It is always nice to reinforce businesses that focus not just on profits, but also the impacts its product has on the world / end consumer. While I was not surprised by the positive PR impact that climate change action would have for Ben and Jerry’s, I am surprised that as you state, “66% of global consumers say they are willing to pay more for products that come from companies that are committed to positive social and environmental impact, up from 50% in 2013.” I would love to see this quantified, however. Is it just that consumers want to support a great cause, but would actually change their behavior in response to higher prices? I know we don’t have it, but I would be curious to see the elasticity of demand for Ben and Jerry’s customers. This would have very important implications for the team at Ben and Jerry’s!