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The Industrial Revolution remembers

Stephen Roulac (Roulac Global, Tiburon, California, USA)

Journal of Property Investment & Finance

ISSN: 1463-578X

Article publication date: 10 June 2019

Issue publication date: 10 June 2019




The purpose of this paper is to explore the significant structural forms and influencing factors that shape the adoption of technology advances and innovations in society, generally and the property sector specifically.


The paper uses action learning and interviews, literature review, thought experiment and comparative/conceptual/qualitative analysis.


For two centuries, the property sector was essentially “exempt from” and essentially a passive by standing in the industrialization and innovations that transformed the economy. In recent decades, the circumstances changed dramatically; the property sector is rapidly making up for the lost time.

Practical implications

The property market participants who long relied upon, while many property market participants prospered in relying upon long established practices – in some ways more reminiscent of a medieval guild than a contemporary long-standing practice with little attention to, or need to, be concerned about change forces – those circumstances have profoundly changed. Understanding the forces leading to that change and the implications of that change is essential for effective property involvements in the twenty-first century.

Social implications

Whereas the property sector largely was dominated by a product-focused supplier mentality, the major change forces are shifting more and more access, power to consumers. The result is that society shall have more robust and more user-oriented offerings of property goods and services.


This research distilling the results of the featured keynote address to the London 2000 Cutting Edge Conference provides, and is, the first thoughtful assessment, combining both rigor and relevance to address these profoundly important developments that are shaping and informing the property sector in the twenty-first century.



Roulac, S. (2019), "The Industrial Revolution remembers", Journal of Property Investment & Finance, Vol. 37 No. 4, pp. 380-397.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019, Stephen Roulac

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