BBC Radio 4, 2017
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Breakfast with the Disruptors

Tim Samuels examines how property, finance and death is facing up to technological change.

It was in the late 1990's that a Harvard academic Clay Christensen introduced a buzzword that has now become pervasive. He wanted to capture why established companies get driven out of their industries by young upstarts. It became known as disruptive innovation and has dramatically reshaped our business landscape.

Two-thirds of the companies on the Fortune 500 list in 1980 have disappeared. The balance has shifted from the incumbents to the challengers, from the old economy to the new. For some start-ups, the belief in disruption has taken on a near-religious edge. Forget rules, obligations and regulations - all that disrupts is good, all that stands in the way deserves to fail.

Journalist Tim Samuels investigates three industries facing change - property, finance and death - and invites a disruptor and a disruptee to breakfast.

Producer: Barney Rowntree
Researcher: Jessie Lawson