Future of Public Sector Enterprises in the Metaverse

Future of Public Sector Enterprises in the Metaverse

DOI: 10.4018/978-1-6684-6366-6.ch009
(Individual Chapters)
No Current Special Offers


This chapter explores the future of public sector enterprises in the contemporary metaverse technological sphere. A literature review approach was adopted to explore customer expectations, sustainable governance forms, and innovations in the metaverse ecosystem. Findings indicate that most of the technologies that make up the metaverse's building blocks already exist or are in an advanced stage of development. Furthermore, there was a rise in the use of metaverse technology like virtual and augmented reality (AR), particularly in the healthcare sector during the pandemic. Digital currency adoption, including the use of cryptocurrencies and central bank digital currencies, was also noted. Public sector enterprises should rely on a variety of interdependent players rather than assuming they have a monopoly on knowledge or resources to govern. A process of co-evolution between non-government and governmental entities is a sine qua non for effective social innovation by public sector enterprises in the metaverse ecosystem.
Chapter Preview


Public sector enterprises, or “public enterprises,” are generally known as the business entities owned, run, and controlled by the federal, state, or local government. The term “public sector undertakings” also applies to these. Any business or industry that is owned and operated by the government with the goal of maximizing social welfare and upholding the public interest is considered a public sector enterprise. Public enterprises are state-owned institutions established for social welfare or to meet social needs. Examples include banks, life insurance companies, state-owned transport companies, hospitals, etcetera. State-owned companies may be as old as the state itself. A number of waves contributed to the development of the state-owned enterprise sector, and the motivations behind their establishment are as diverse as the emerging trends in public entrepreneurship in the West. According to Obinger, Herbert, Schmitt, and Traub (2016), fiscal monopolies, political and economic modernization, the need for a strong military, Marxist ideology, and natural monopolies have historically been the five main forces behind state ownership. The evolution of public services (public utilities) and personal social services in European countries came in four stages: the pre-welfare state of the late nineteenth century; the advanced welfare state that peaked in the 1970s; the neo-liberal policy phase since the early 1980s; and the recent phase since the mid-2000s (Hellmut, 2018). Public sector enterprises can have a significant impact on a country's GDP. In the United States, for example, public sector enterprises accounted for 4.6% of the country's GDP in 2019, according to data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In terms of employment, data from the International Labour Organization (ILO) indicates that the public sector employed around 22% of the global workforce in 2021, with significant variations across regions and countries. In some countries, such as Sweden and Norway, the public sector employs more than 30% of the workforce. Public sector enterprises are often responsible for investing in infrastructure and other public goods. In 2020, global public investment was estimated to be around 20% of GDP, according to data from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Public sector enterprises can also drive innovation, particularly in areas such as healthcare and energy. In 2020, the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded over $41 billion in medical research and development, while the US Department of Energy invested over $5 billion in energy innovation (Bernard et al., 2021).

Undeniably, the world has gone through several stages of technological revolution and advancement in its quest to increase productivity. These advancements have changed the ways and manners in which businesses are conducted. Water and steam were used to mechanize production during the first Industrial Revolution. The second produced goods in large quantities using electric power. The third automated production used electronics and information technology. The boundaries between physical, digital, and biological spaces will be blurred by a fusion of technologies that will mark the beginning of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (Klaus, 2016). The production, management, and governance of not only private sector businesses but also public sector enterprises or businesses may change simultaneously as a result of the anticipated changes in the Fourth Industrial Revolution and the post-pandemic era.

Complete Chapter List

Search this Book: