David S. Evans

@david_evans1
an economist, business advisor and Founder of Market Platform Dynamics

David S. Evans, is an economist, business advisor and Founder of Market Platform Dynamics. He is a recognized global authority on the design and implementation of platform business strategies, a body of work that he pioneered and that was captured in Invisible Engines: How Software Platforms Drive Innovation and Transform Industries, a 2006 American Publishers Association best business book award winner. David has consulted with many of the leading companies in the world and has served as an advisor to their CEOs and Boards of Directors. A frequent keynote speaker, David is often called upon to lead thought provoking industry discussions and to share his insights on the success and failure of platform businesses worldwide. David is also an advisor to and investor in many emerging ventures.

Publications and Research

David is the author of seven books and more than 100 articles and book chapters. These include three books (co-authored with Richard Schmalensee) that analyze platform strategies in a variety of industries:

Catalyst Code: The Strategies Behind the World's Most Dynamic Companies: which Bill Gates said was “…an important book for anyone interested in understanding how breakthrough businesses can be built in today’s economy.”

Invisible Engines: How Software Platforms Drive Innovation and Transform Industries: which the Wall St. Journal said, “[a]ny executive looking to turn his company's product into an engine of growth will want to consult.

Paying with Plastic: The Digital Revolution in Buying and Borrowing: which has been referred to as the “definitive source” on the payment card business.

David’s recent work has focused on help new platform businesses solve the “ignition problem” which involves securing a critical mass of customers to generate sustainable growth through positive-feedback effects. This includes:

How Catalysts Ignite: The Economics of Platform-Based Startups

Consulting and Advisory Work

David has advised and has led major consulting projects for many of the leading companies in the world over the last 25 years. While his work has spanned a number of industries he has particularly deep experience in financial services, internet-based, online advertising, online and traditional media, payment cards, software platforms, and telecommunications industries. Many of the projects he has led have involved advanced quantitative, financial modeling, and survey work.

He has served as a C-Suite advisor to a number of the world’s largest corporations. He has also frequently been asked to address Boards of Directors and senior management teams at large corporations.

In addition to his work for large incumbents David has served as an advisor to more than 20 startups and is a member of the Board of Directors of several, including PYMNTS.com which is a joint venture between Market Platform Dynamics and Berkshire Hathaway’s Business Wire.

In the last several years, David’s consulting work has focused on advising companies on innovation and ignition strategies for new products and services. Much of his work has focused on advising companies that are part of a platform-based ecosystem.

Education and Academic Positions

David has a BA, MA, and Ph.D., all in economics, from the University of Chicago. He is ranked among the top 3 percent of economists in the world. He teaches part time at the University of Chicago and the University College London.

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