Luohan Academy

Event Recap

Understanding Big Data: Data Calculus in the Digital Age

Speakers : Patrick Bolton, James Dempsey, Jason Furman, Bengt Holmström, Eric Maskin, Christopher Pissarides, Thomas Sargent, Michael Spence, Steve Tadelis, Long Chen
Hangzhou, China

Event Highlight

The pervasive use of digitized information has reached a new height in what we call the era of big data. While this revolution has led to unprecedented societal cooperation, it has also deepened three major concerns: How can we properly protect personal privacy in the age of big data? How shall we understand the ownership and distribution of benefits and risks that arise from the use of data? Will the use of big data lead to a situation of "winner-take-all" markets that undermine competition to the detriment of consumers and society?

Luohan Academy introduced a report titled "Understanding Big Data: Data Calculus in the Digital Era" at this frontier dialogue. In this report, we intend to address some aspects of the above questions. We focus on analyzing concrete evidence using big data to draw conclusions on its impact. The author team consists of multiple prominent economists from Luohan's community, including, among others, Patrick Bolton, Bengt Holmström, Eric Maskin, Christopher Pissarides, Michael Spence, Tao Sun, Tianshu Sun, Wei Xiong, and Liyan Yang, and Luohan's internal economists.

The goal of our dialogue series is to bring together prominent minds to share frontier research, address critical issues, and provoke discussions that matter. We sincerely invite you to join us in the continuing discussion of these important issues.

To download the full report click here: Understanding Big Data: Data Calculus in the Digital Era


Event Agenda


1.Opening and the Report

Michael Spence: The Impact of Big Data on the Informational Structure of Markets and Market Performance

Long Chen: Understanding Big Data: Data Calculus in the Digital Age

2.Value and Data

Bengt Holmström: Value and Data

Christopher Pissarides: The Value of Private Information in Searching

3.Rights and Ownership

Patrick Bolton: On the Rights and Protection of Privacy

James Dempsey: Data and Privacy from a Legal Perspective


Thomas Sargent: Statistical Approaches to Privacy

Eric Maskin: Privacy and Mechanism Design


Jason Furman: Unlocking Digital Competition

*: panelists are listed by speaking order



Steve Tadelis, Professor of Economics, UC Berkeley


Working Group

Bengt Holmström, Professor of Economics, MIT

Christopher Pissarides, Professor of Economics, LSE

Michael Spence, Professor of Economics, Stanford University

Long Chen, Director of Luohan Academy

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