Drivin’ that TRAN(E)

The opportunities revealed by the Knowledge Value Chain derive mainly from taking data, enriching it, and applying it to support decision making in more innovative and value-enhancing ways.

But are there inherent characteristics of certain data that make it more valuable than other data? Absolutely.

two locomotives

Five factors come to mind as distinguishing one set of data from other, even before considering what further processing it has undergone:  timeliness, relevance, accuracy, novelty, and exclusivity.  In order more of mnemonic expediency than importance, we’ll call these TRAN(E).


Like radioactive atoms, all data have a “half-life” — a period beyond which their usefulness becomes progressively much more limited. They say that yesterday’s newspaper is good only for wrapping fish — because the “news” it contains is no longer “new”. As conditions change, informational descriptions of such conditions must change at a corresponding rate — or lose their potency.

If you’re a stock trader, stock pricing data is essentially useless by the time it’s published “for the rest of us” 20 minutes after the fact. By that time, any market-moving information is already reflected in the stock price. You’re too late to push the button.

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    COMPETING IN THE KNOWLEDGE ECONOMY is written by Timothy Powell, an independent researcher and consultant in knowledge strategy. Tim is president of The Knowledge Agency® (TKA) and serves on the faculty of Columbia University's Information and Knowledge Strategy (IKNS) graduate program.


    "During my more than three decades in business, I have served more than 100 organizations, ranging from Fortune 500s to government agencies to start-ups. I document my observations here with the intention that they may help you achieve your goals, both professional and personal.

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