Writing in the Australian Financial Review, Garry Bowditch says jurisdictions that can adapt quickly to innovation and technology benefit their communities greatly with new jobs, a better investment environment, great universities and more resilient futures.
One hundred and fifty years ago next month, multiple time zones were implemented for the first time anywhere in the world. Then, the US railway system – through the great logic of Sir Sandford Fleming and the sheer power of logistical demands – divided the continent into four different zones, east to west, so every 15 degrees of longitude equalled one hour of difference.
Fleming’s time zones solved a very practical problem: national timetables could be written for the great east-west train journeys from Chicago to San Francisco. The new railroads demanded legislative changes to create time zones that allowed the full benefit of new technology to operate with efficiency and enabled the US to operate as a single coherent economy for the first time. The rest of the story is “modern” history.
Infrastructure and technology are very powerful forces of change.