From Darwinomics For India To Gross Domestic Knowledge Of India – OpEd


“Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life — think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Be full of that idea. This is the way to success.” — Swami Vivekananda.

I want to start quoting such a great thinker because, following Vivekananda’s suggestion, I have concentrated all my scientific energy of the last years with the goal of developing the Gross Domestic Knowledge product of India. Therefore, to be able to present it in this center seems to me the arrival to the best possible shore.

Dr. Arvind Gupta, thank you very much for your invitation to share with such an important audience in such an outstanding foundation some modest thoughts on which is based my book Darwinomics. I will close my remarks making a reference to one your observation in your previous speech, Dr. Gupta, extremely relevant for what we discuss today. And thanks a lot to Ambassador Shetty and Ambassasor Fabian who made this meeting possible, and special thanks to the Chair Dr. Rajiv Kumar who was the first supporter in India of this idea, and after of our first meeting, with typical pragmatically constructive American approach, that having just arrived from LA, I would appreciate it very much, he said ”Let’s do it”. If GDKP India 2018 as I hope after this meeting will become a reality, the reference will be to my model, which on the road has been defined and improved thanks to the unparalleled knowledge of Indian economy of Dr. Rajiv Kumar.

I started my talk with a quote of Vivekananda because I used to read Vivekananda texts a lot before this pleasant event. Ever since a long time ago I have loved Indian culture, art, music and I am often immersed in the philosophical books that this splendid country has produced over centuries, I should say millennia. In the special shelves of my library, Indian philosophic writers live together with Greek philosophic writers. Books of Plato, Aristotle, Parmenides, Diogenes, Zenon are together with books of Kapila, Kanada, Pantajali, Shankaraya, my favoured Abinavagupta, Ramakrishna. And Vivekananda has always had a special place. Since it is not fair to forget some names, I want to mention two authors of history of Western and Indian philosophy who pay proper homage, to all of them. For the history of Western philosophy I recall Bertrand Russell — a genius of philosophical intellectual life for decent values — and for the history of Indian philosophy I want to remember Surendranath Dasgupta, a man who dictated to his friends the last paragraph of his book a few hours before his death, that he knowingly expected, while talking with them, just like Socrates.

I make this initial reference to crossed Greek and Indian philosophy because both are the real foundations of Darwinomics, a word that connects two fundamental elements of humankind: Economics and Evolution. Darwinomics is intended to indicate with this combination a new horizon not just for economics, but for a specific type of economics, which could be a factor for human evolution in Darwinian terms.

Let’s then start with economic part of the word. In Darwinomics the assumption is that we need a total new model of economics linked to the Darwin vision of evolution if humankind is to survive  — and that model we have to elaborate quite fast because we are heading towards dramatic world disasters.

We live in wonderful times for innovation and science. We are able to send probes outside the solar system and manage to move from here on earth some man-made machine to land on Mars or on some part of a comet when no more then a couple of centuries ago comets were still considered to be an “omen” event coming with bad news from distant worlds. At the same time biology has been able to identify — and finally declare behind any doubt — the absolute common human biological structure, getting rid of any idea of race predominance or distinction, and pharmacological innovation is saving us from disastrous infectious deceases that swept the world causing millions of deaths.

All that is wonderful, but the most revolutionary change on human life in our age is in the area of communication because it refers and impacts literally daily all human beings.

Never in history before could we even think of being able to making an instantaneous person-to-person communication across thousands of miles, or viewing simultaneously the same event on the entire planet, or enabling a single person to communicate instantaneously to millions of people, be that a politician or a very common person.

These are extraordinary scientific and social advances that have a most dramatic impact on the economy, but quite surprisingly the economy has not yet fully taken care of it. We do live in wonderful times, but with enormous economic disparities, because not all people in the world share the benefits of economic progress. This has happened always in human history, but today there is a revolutionary element to be considered that could endanger the life of all of us. That disparity, by means of TV, internet, satellite programs, is clear to everybody and through digital connections could easily provoke rebellions, destruction, fights managed from outside, violence and upheavals engineered on a world scale from far distant places, that could degenerate in uncontrolled mass violence and end up in global wars. This is a security reason why the consideration of human disparities, should give rise to new economic models which should mix development with global communication.

On the contrary, in these wonderful times, the existing economic models not only are missing wonderful opportunities that science could afford to fight famine, to improve basic living standards for billions of people, avoid climate disruption and halt the poisoning air and sea, not only they miss such wonderful opportunities but they insist on promoting models of development based on use of scarce resources and forcible acquisition of them from other countries.

Those old fashioned economic models are a zero sum game where an increase of one country’s raw material has to be obtained to the detriment of raw materials of other countries, spontaneously or forcibly, with trade agreements or with wars, which with the mass communication today existing, leads to disastrous events. Let’s not forget that we live in a world where violence can erupt in any place and the fact that is instantaneously viewed all over the world will instigate and spread further rebellion.

Obviously we need new economic models to take care of the scarcity of raw material and to better use them, and these models must take care of the amazing communication frontiers that have never existed before. We economists (I feel to be part of that family even though I criticise some of its members) invented wonderful financial tools, stock markets, trade agreements, we reduced trade barriers, we brought the circulation of money to extraordinary velocity, let’s face it, we did wonderful job, but at the end of XX Century, we failed to understand that the communication revolution would put a most dramatic challenge in terms of economics mixed with security. Why economists do not take it into consideration and continue to deal with acquisition from everywhere of scarce raw materials?

The reason, in my mind, lays on a lack of philosophical education in those who practice the field of economics. They say that at the door of Plato’s school was written: “no entrance for those who ignore mathematics”, in my view at the door of the economics school it should be written “no entrance for those who ignore communication”. In the Western world we use to detect an event of time along a distinction Before or After Christ. In the world’s economy, we need start thinking in terms of Before and After the Internet. But what should be the pillars of a new economic model?

Darwinomics wants to promote an economic model able to catch what is the combination of the IT revolution with what is by far the most significant raw human kind material: knowledge. Since knowledge is the most important man-made raw material and the IT revolution makes it possible its circulation among all Human beings, Darwinomics promotes a new economic model based on quantitative production and circulation of Knowledge produced everywhere, and by everyone, and circulating everywhere and with everyone, on the assumption that increase of knowledge production will greatly increase the GDP level of a country, maximizing the use of raw material for every country and at the same time reducing disparities and conflicts.

And if Darwinomics promotes an economic model based on communication and knowledge then what country in the world is better suited to promote it than India, with its fantastic history of philosophical and applied knowledge. A country where knowledge in all its infinite varieties is so much important that its wonderful sacred books are named Veda, that means Knowledge.

We embark therefore on the difficult journey of trying to explore theoretical benefits of quantifying the wealth of nation in terms of knowledge, but before let’s spend a few words of the first part of the word Darwinomics

In what has become the recognised key law of evolution, Darwin states that those species that will survive are those who adjust better to change. What happens to species that do not adapt to change? Obviously they disappear. Darwin is referring his principle to species. But mankind is a species, and therefore that principle will apply to humanity as well, with one very peculiar and frightening specification: this is going to be the first self made disappearance.

A famous biologist, Myers, proved in his work that on a theoretical ledger of intelligence, the most intelligent species last less time. Bacteria have existed since millions of years, much longer than the scarce few hundred thousands years we exist, but they are going to last much longer after the disappearance of human species. The ominous signs of Myers predictions are everywhere available: the huge massive destructive weapons burgeoning instead of diminishing; the climate change produced by uncontrolled production or destruction (Amazon); the poisoning of land and sea by means of no biodegradable garbage, all seem to make the terrible forecast made by a great biologist to be true. When we think of 50 thousand nuclear weapons produced where ten or fifteen of them would suffice to erase any civilisation on earth we tend to agree with Myers’ assumption. And the question all scientists should ask themselves is: what level of questionable intelligence is reached when we put in danger our own existence?

Roaches seem, according to the great biologist, well equipped with sufficient scarce intelligence to survive human species. On this point we might ask ourselves if in time of genetic manipulation we prefer for our descendants to be humans or making them become roaches?
The theoretical premise of Darwinomics is that we don’t want our kids to become roaches in order to survive. Individuals not only want to survive but they want to remain the species they are and want to live well, but in the age of Post Internet, we can do that only with new model of economy linked to mass production of knowledge and mass distribution of it which we want to do with our model.

Let’s then enter into more specific aspects of GDKP India, which I call a cockpit to be given to your visionary PM Leader Modi who wants to lead India into the digital age and make it a modern country for all future generation ready to compete at world’s highest level

GDKP As Cockpit For Indian Government’s Navigation

The Cockpit is a space, usually enclosed, in the forward fuselage of an airplane, containing the flying controls, instrument panel, and seats for the pilot and co-pilot or flight crew.

The GDKP is a cockpit for a Knowledge driven nation that contains FLIGHT CONTROL STRATEGICAL REFERENCES (basically: CKPM, CKUM, Cost of Learning)
INSTRUMENT PANEL (see later the six special tools for a Knowledge driven economy)
SEATS FOR THE PILOT (PM decision making in budgeting to enhance GDP, in social policy, to improve social equality, but also market decisions for private investors risk analysis, stock Knowledge/Price ratio, optimal capital formation balance, special over the counter knowledge market).

I don’t want to bother this audience with complex technical aspects of GDKP but it is useful to share some specifications I made to create the model.

A. GDKP had to be a quantitative economic notion like GDP, and not just a collection of relevant data. In other words it had to end up in a number!

B.That number has to be comparable to the GDP and permit the ratio GDP/GDKP, for assessing the K factor of the nation, that is to say the Knowledge Multiplier in terms of GDP of investing in Knowledge.

C. That number has to be comparable with GDKP of other 
countries, as it is GDP, but it has to have its own specifications. In other words not only we have to have International Standrd GDKP but also National Cultural GDKP in order to protect and save the specific national knowledge contribution to the wealth of nation.

Given those assumptions, let’s make clear immediately what would make the model a specially powerful tool for India.

1. It will quantify the production, use and circulation of knowledge referring, as it does the GDP, to the WHOLE population of a country. As we measure in GDP the contribution of a worker on the assembly line of Tata’s motor, we have to measure in GDKP the contribution of a worker on the assembly line of Tata’s motor.

2. Since we want to upgrade the knowledge level of the whole country, GDKP reduces all knowledge to a common goods, or service, bought and sold on the market.

Here there is the key fundamental passage from usual traditional conception of knowledge as unquantifiable top level entity reserved to selected people and structures to a mass production vision of knowledge which really makes powerful the unique potentiality of India on world’s scale. In the GDKP model, knowledge is something traded, produced, bought and sold by all people, which is what gives India in economic terms a sort of monopolistic advantage to the enormous demographic potentiality.

Think of a Knowledge class of 50 million people, unthinkable elsewhere, to be developed on the basis of GDKP. That could be made within the policy of increasing knowledge of over billion of people. Besides the immense effect of GDP that could change the horizons of economic development of GDP far away higher than any other GDP of less populated countries or even higher of that of the most advanced economies and assure to India a most relevant role on world’s scale. In a K factor nation, as I call the knowledge driven economy of a country, the demographic effect of over a billion people can be astonishing. By the way the reason why I always wanted to apply the GDKP model to India or China is because these countries can move from demographic bomb to knowledge bomb: of course we mean peaceful bombs.

At this moment it is useful to indicate some aspects of the model which would provide PM Modi with new powerful tools of managing the country and taking it, as he desires in his visionary approach, to a modern digital economy.


1. The first reference we have in cockpit is the CKPM, Country Knowledge Producing Matrix, thanks to which the country has been visualised as texture of knowledge production. Here your PM will see through our model, the flow of production of knowledge: What knowledge is produced and by whom.

2. The second element we have is the CKUP, Country Knowledge User Matrix, which is intended to give the government the texture of users of Knowledge. Here the structure is exactly the same as in the CKPM except that here we catch the consume of knowledge: what of produced knowledge is used, and by whom.

3. The third fundamental element of the model is the construction of the Individual Cost of Learning. We have an Index of the Cost of Living; your PM has to have key information on Cost of learning in urban or rural areas, by age brackets and by sectors of employment.

Obviously there will be an economic innovation burden for the first country that moves from a theoretical model to its practical application in the country itself. And we are very lucky to have here Rajiv Kumar, a great economist of absolute international standing. His book “The many features of India” is fundamental for developing this country and his last book “Modi’s challenges” is the key reference for the adaptation of GDKP model to India. And I dare to say Rajiv that you will support the idea of calculating the GDKP India 2018: you have absolutely the unique competence for such a modern initiative.
But I want to mention also Ashish Kumar who as DG of Central Statistic office of India made an excellent preliminary calculation of GDKP India for two years and compared that to over 40 countries.

As I said those are preliminary calculation and lot of work still has to be done to get to the final results, but has the great merit of showing a workable relation with the National Accounting System. In attachment of this document you may find the letter that Ashish Kumar sent to this conference in case there was not possible a workable skype connection.


From the cockpit of GDKP he observes the flow of knowledge produced and consumed of India.
WATCHING THE DISPLAY he will be aware that he can take decisions in budgeting – maximising the multiplier impact of some specific economy sector- in favouring overall knowledge circulation-increasing the digital role of economy- and in social policy- favouring a better balance of individual access to knowledge; but he will also see a full set of private market opportunities promoting HIGHER ROLE OF KNOWLEDGE IN PRIVATE INVESTMENT TO INCREASE THE GDP and the wealth of individual companies, favouring the optimal capital formation balance, creating an over the counter knowledge company market based on KP ratios, and favouring a financial private investor risk analysis based on growth k investment.


He wants to increase GDP pushing high the K factor impact in one or more the indicated areas and he can properly introduce some crashing new instruments.

Here I will mention some of the new main potential instruments he may want to promote for making India a full fledged knowledge driven nation. I just mention them reserving perhaps for the discussion, or for further meetings some clarification. Here some of them:

1. Individual Educational Credit card, which I got adopted in Italy for two years

2. Educational family bonds, not redeemable tax favoured subscription bond usable only for educational payments as kids grow up

3. India’s knowledge national distant educational platform, created to get every individual producing knowledge to be able to sell it to all Indians and make a business out of his knowledge

4. India’s knowledge valleys. A physical space made in areas where special goods are made, where all knowledge connected items to that production can be conveyed to favour the selling abroad. Say for instance Sari’s Knowledge Valley of Benares. Etc.

5. India’s knowledge money. A special K money issued by the producers of Knowledge that can be spent in a knowledge market defined by the national or state’s government that has a special status in fiscal policy

6. India’s knowledge money central bank . The central institution that controls e defines the credibility of Knowledge money emission and the condition and rates upon which can be redeemed.

Please let me add that Knowledge Money and India’s Knowledge Money central bank could really become one of most modern innovation in international money market and attract a lot of foreign money.

We have been talking of GDKP INDIA as an instrument of economy, both to enhance the value of GDP and to assure a proper role to private investors in building a knowledge driven Indian economy. But there are some other aspects on which we should call proper attention for business, diplomacy and finally security.

Here I will just mention

And let’s not forget the powerful direct business benefits for India’s economy. I only mention software and business publishing.
Software is an enormous business opportunity to the Indian software houses to be first to elaborate the simulation model of GDKP which has to be applied to nation, to states and then abroad.

Business Publishing. Let’s not forget that the most important business newspaper, The Wall Street Journal, comes from the most important stock index Dow John Industrial Average. But it could promote as well the long term searched new vision of RISK ANALYSIS IN FINANCING, introducing the TRIPLE K IN ADDITION TO TRIPLE A the K/P ratio in addition to the P/E ratio and finally the GDKP INDEX at the level of DOW Index Knowledge/Price ration for all the stock listed.

And as originally for THE WSJ, DOW INDEX, a business journal of GDKP INDEX.

But before closing I would like to mention a recent CNN report: Facebook and Amazon have joined an exclusive club open to only the richest companies in the world: both crossed the half-a-trillion mark.

Facebook exceeded $500 billion in market value for the first time ever Thursday morning as Mark Zuckerberg’s company continued its rapid ascent. Amazon hit the $500 billion milestone for the first time not too long ago.

Only three companies, all in the tech industry, are worth more right now: Apple ($798 billion), Google parent company Alphabet ($667 billion) and Microsoft ($571 billion).
The meteoric rise of their stocks — each are up more than 40% this year alone — further enriches these companies’ visionary founders.
 Jeff Bezos, 53, started Amazon in 1995 and just surpassed Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates as the world’s richest person. Zuckerberg, who is just 33 years old and is a Harvard drop-out, is now worth more than $69 billion, according to Forbes.
Facebook’s $500 billion milestone looks stunning considering the social networking giant has only been public for five years. But today Facebook boasts more than 2 billion users.
 Amazon has altered the way people shop, creating enormous turmoil for retailers.

I wanted to mention these data because I have to ask to all of you one question: What prevents India to play a direct role in this market? Please notice that three of the five mentioned companies do not sell physical goods and the question is: what do they sell? They sell the most modern version of knowledge, which I call information/relation Knowledge: in my opinion this is the most relevant American revolution of the last decades, comparable to introduction of atomic weapons because it impacts daily with billions of people and it is not far away the day in which it will record daily interactions of 70% to 80% of world population, that is to say 5 or 6 billion people exchanging information/relation knowledge no matter which country these individuals are living in, or which age they have, or different sex or physical conditions.

And again, why India, with its extraordinary love for knowledge and with its phenomenal demographic potential is not taking a lead in this knowledge market evolution which has so powerful impacts in economy and so critical reflections in security? And with some considerations linked to this question I would like to close my talk.

WE MADE QUITE A JOURNEY from Darwinomics to GDKP India AND WE ARRIVED AT THE END of our conversation. The first day I arrived in this journey one person here sitting, Ambassador Fabian, strong supporter of GDKP India, made me notice that in his monumental work Toybin considered India origin of three civilization.

But as I said at the beginning here I would like to mention an extremely important speech Dr. Arvind Gupta gave some times ago asking why India Culture which is so important gets so little credit abroad and, he added, even even within the country. I found that talk extremely important for GDKP India much before I had the pleasure to meet him because for sure he raises a fundamental question everybody here should address to provide an answer. My suggestion is that India should learn how to promote its society’s enormous knowledge treasure and the wonderful capacity to produce more knowledge. And here there is an important initiative I would like to present here.

I have been thinking ever since long time to establish a Club Gandhi, Chomsky, Voltaire, which would represent top visionary people in the area of good knowledge. Presenting this idea here adding the name of Vivekananda is something that pleases me very much. Chomsky with whom I share often opinions, is one of the top world’s intellectual always fighting for the same decent approach to life that Vivekanda had and to get him involved here in connection also to the GDKP would be a terrific contribution.
 Dr. Gupta, it is my solid conviction that with GDKP India we will not only provide a wonderful tool to your visionary PM Modi to help him manage in a proper way an historical entering of India into a Knowledge driven economy, but will help also to overcome this strange limitation you were so clearly pointing out and to which everybody should try to offer some solution. It is my wish that the combination of Vivekananda Foundation and NITI, in two so remarkable persons here present, Dr. Arvind Gupta and Dr. Rajiv Kumar can make GDKP India 2018 become a reality. And let me close copying a famous statement of John Kennedy. When we talk of Knowledge not only I personally feel I am Indian, but I am convinced that everybody should feel they are Indians.
Thank you very much for your attention.

Conference at Vivekananda Centre, Dec.18, by Umberto Sulpasso, Senior Fellow of Centre for Digital Future, University of Southern California, Los Angeles. Director Dr. Arvind Gupta, Chairman, Dr. Rajiv Kumar, Vice Chancellor of NITI aayog

Umberto Sulpasso

Umberto Sulpasso, senior Fellow of Center for Digital Future Annenberg School of Communication, University of Southern California has a Degree in Economics in Italy and MBA from Columbia University. Has been teaching in different countries Economy of Knowledge, and publishing books and directing ecnclopedias. His most recent publication has been Darwinomics where for the first time the model of GDKP was announced.

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