Laura Oller

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On December 1, 2017, Laura Oller commented on Re-inventing NYT: Impact of digitalization on news media :

Interesting article! And interesting to follow how NYT will respond to such a disruption in its industry! My guess is that they have to double down on their core competence, the production of content. If on one hand they now have less control over the means through which their content is shared and monetized, on the other fake news and the abundance of information, which makes it harder to understand which content is actually relevant, strengthen the power of their brand. I don’t see NYT becoming a hardware company to find space in people’s homes, and with the shared economy and spread of the digital world, I believe it will be harder and harder to prevent leakages from subscription models.

On December 1, 2017, Laura Oller commented on Smartmatic: the role of blockchain in enabling elections :

Very interesting! Clearly, there is a lot of room for improvement in the US VSC and blockchain sounds like a promising idea! One way to prevent privacy issues, devices mal-function, and the likes is to still hold elections at specific places, just like it is today, so that users vote from the same devices. I believe the civic act of going out to vote, instead of voting from the quietness and isolation of your own screen, can also have a positive impact in terms of social capital, so it would be great to keep it. I wonder if somehow blockchain could also be used to fight fake news, tracking sources and checking accuracy.

On December 1, 2017, Laura Oller commented on Navigating Tricky Terrain: Toyota In An Isolationist World :

Interesting piece! I find it interesting how in one hand Trump uses a big stick to bring a foreigner inside its borders and on the other uses another big stick to build a wall, and push other foreigners out. Not that many carrots in this Administration, and while some foreigners are craved, others are expelled. Given this context, I find it hard to believe that isolationism per se, closing completely in itself, will ever be the reality for the US. More than any moral value, the driver seems to be whatever brings more economic growth, job, wealth, and prosperity to America. In that sense, Toyota definitely has a carrot. Its carrot might not be big enough to face Trump’s stick on its own, but if all Japanese or even all Asian manufacturers get together the conversation might change drastically.

On December 1, 2017, Laura Oller commented on Arsenal Football Club: The Accidental Victim? :

Very interesting analysis of the impact of Brexit on Arsenal and English soccer in general. Are they now in a disadvantaged position to compete in the Champions League with other European clubs? Beyond having to adapt to this new reality, can Arsenal and other British teams be key players in fighting isolationism more broadly? By having not only Europeans but players from all over the world playing side by side, relying on each other, can’t they help demonstrate that regardless of nationalities, races, sexual orientation, religion, and any other characteristic, we are all equal? Soccer is a passion. Can’t it make an isolationist cheer for a Nigerian, a German, a Colombian? In that sense, can’t it help reduce the isolationism sentiment that pressures governments to adopt more and more extreme measures?

On December 1, 2017, Laura Oller commented on Climate change, food security, and General Mills :

Very interesting piece! Glad to read General Mills is committed to reducing emissions across its entire supply chain, from farm to landfill. I wonder, however, how the cost to develop and adopt more environmentally friendly technologies will be distributed across the chain. Through partnerships, General Mills might be able to provide access to information, tools, and best practices to suppliers, but will it also provide enough resources to bear a significant portion of this technology shift?

Regarding your question about companies being held to the same standards as nations when it comes to compliance with climate change, I believe companies should be held accountable to an even higher standard. Their activities have very significant environmental externalities for which companies need to be accountable and compensate for. Furthermore, they have much more control over emissions than governments do, so companies can take much more direct, targeted and efficient measures. It is up to governments, however, to provide the right incentives through regulation as to encourage companies who are more environmentally and socially responsible over those who are not.

On December 1, 2017, Laura Oller commented on NIKE: Is it the Sustainability Transformation of the Decade? :

Very interesting! Glad to read Nike is taking meaningful steps towards becoming a more sustainable company. I wonder however how much do these efforts represent of their overall activity; are they global initiatives being gradually implemented in all of their plants, business lines, and products? Based on your description, these measures seem to increase financial costs in the short-run (R&D, capex…), but to reduce consumption of raw materials and to improve efficiency leading to an increase in savings in the long-run. A cost-benefit analysis of each of those initiaves, identifying their return both in terms of profitability in the long run and environmental outcomes, could present evidence to incentivize other companies to adopt similar measures.