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50 Things That Made the Modern Economy

Shipping Container

08:58 | Nov 19th, 2016

2 echoes
The boom in global trade was caused by a simple steel box. Shipping goods around the world was – for many centuries – expensive, risky and time-consuming. But, as Tim Harford explains, 60 years ago the trucking entrepreneur Malcolm McLean changed all...Show More

epekilisSep 30th

Just found this podcast that tells the story of ordinary objects that punch above their weight in importance. This episode positions the shipping container as the catalyst for the global economy that is now under such severe attack. We are all hyper-aware of the impact that AI and constant tech improvements will have on job loss in retail, factory and, well, all of us. This story takes us back a few ripples in the water to the 1950s when the dock workers of 50 years ago lost their battle against job loss in the face of logistical efficiency. It’s a real conundrum. We all love the availability and cheapness of global goods while deploring the attendant job loss. There is no easy solution here.