W. BRIAN ARTHUR is Citibank Professor at the Santa Fe Institute. From 1982 to 1996 he held the Morrison Chair in Economics and Population Studies at Stanford University. Arthur pioneered the study of positive feedbacks or increasing returns in the economy — in particular their role in magnifying small, random events in the economy.
His ideas have received a great deal of attention with the recent legal case of the US Department of Justice vs. Microsoft. Arthur is also one of the pioneers of the new science of complexity. His main interests are the economics of high technology, the "new economy," and how business evolves in an era of high tech. He is the author of The Nature of Technology: What It Is and How It Evolves.