Today I talked to Ming-Hui Huang about her book (coauthored with Roland T. Rust), The Feeling Economy: How Artificial Intelligence Is Creating the Era of Empathy (Palgrave MacMillan, 2021)
This episode covers the movement of the economy from brawn to brains to hearts. Put another way, the focus here is on the movement from the Physical Economy (farming, factories, etc.) to the Thinking Economy to now the dawning of the Feeling Economy. In the near-term future, artificial intelligence (AI) will handle the thinking tasks and humans on the job will focus on adding value through empathy and their interpersonal skills. The episode explores everything from workers re-skilling, cross-skilling and up-skilling to handle this change, to the impact of this change to being feeling-centric on our politics, educational practices, and the expectations of consumers. Of special note is that the new economic era may privilege female “soft” skills over the “hard” skills men are known by and often more comfortable with.
Ming-Hui Huang holds a number of posts. She’s a Distinguished Professor at National Taiwan University; a fellow of the European Marketing Academy (EMAC); an International Research Fellow of the Centre for Corporate Reputation, University of Oxford, UK; and a Distinguished Research Fellow of the Center for Excellence in Service, University of Maryland, USA. She is also the incoming Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Service Research.