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DIGITAL & TECHNOLOGY ECONOMY, BUSINESS & COMMERCE FUTURE & HUMANITY STRATEGY, INNOVATION & CREATIVITY

5th Industrial Revolution

2024 will signify the beginning of the ‘5th Industrial Revolution’ and the beginning of an explosive age that catapults production, business growth and scientific advancement through Artificial Intelligence.

According to leading organizations, Artificial Intelligence will contribute over 15-trillion US dollars to the global economy by 2030, but are businesses leveraging this modern-day gold rush? Do they have the know-how to have the competitive-edge or keep up with their competitors? Are they innovating?

Investment in innovation, entrepreneurship, technical and non-technical skills are critical to boosting economies by growing nations’ GDP and driving citizen prosperity. Business sustainability is vital in turbulent economic times, but the 5th Industrial Revolution, means businesses have the potential to grow at rate not witnessed in modern times.

Productivity and growth can be supported by enabling access to information and skills in ‘Generative AI’, across even non-technical roles in organizations.  Our augmented future will include AI-augmented development of intelligent applications, along with a connected workforce augmented with wearable AI-powered devices. 

Artificial intelligence will further speed scientific advancements in health, engineering and manufacturing, as well as enabling business growth through AI powered content and media production, marketing, reporting, problem-solving and data analysis. In addition, the implementation of sustainably produced and powered technologies, will drive ethical and green initiatives for businesses.

Businesses not participating in the 5th Industrial Revolution, are missing out on a golden opportunity to boost their revenue and growth, and survive during tough economic times.

About the Author

Deborah Collier is an influential strategic & ‘Futurist Leader’ with 30-years’ experience working across digital, technology, marketing and business. A digital, media and technology entrepreneur, described as a ‘global economic force’ as founder and president of industry’s global awarding body Digital Skills Authority. She is also a media CEO, and former non-executive director.

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DIGITAL & TECHNOLOGY FUTURE & HUMANITY LEADERSHIP & GOVERNANCE

Governing the Unthinkable

It is not Artificial Intelligence we should fear, but those who control it. Safety must be about ensuring AI leverages the best of humanity and not humanity’s greed and cruelty. Governance of technologies, data and communications by the right people, is absolutely critical to the well-being and future of humanity. Our thinking, planning and action must go beyond artificial intelligence. The greatest assets can pose the biggest threats. As beings with free will, implantable devices, particularly those developed for the human brain, pose the greatest threat to our existence. Will we continue to let developers, financiers and politicians dominate and control technology, data and communications, or will we explore a democratic digital government of wise men and women? In 2024, there will be a significant shift in governance, which will include not only how we govern, but who will govern the formidable trio of digital, communications and technologies. (Extract 2024 Digital World Predictions)

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About the Author

Deborah Collier is an influential strategic & ‘Futurist Leader’ with 30-years’ experience working across digital, technology, marketing and business. A digital, media and technology entrepreneur, described as a ‘global economic force’ as founder and president of industry’s global awarding body Digital Skills Authority. She is also a media CEO, and former non-executive director, and Chair of CXO Congress.

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DIGITAL & TECHNOLOGY FUTURE & HUMANITY

Inspiring Digital Peace

The world today feels ever more turbulent. While human-connectedness enabled by social networks and ‘Content Social Symbiosis’ are nurturing compassion and empathy, we are navigating one crisis after another. After a decade of multiple recessions and a global pandemic, the world faces threats of war, including traditional, cyber and information warfare. However as nations fight for power, land and wealth, others strive for honour, integrity and a better world. Digital with a human heart, has the ability to drive peace. Data, digital communications and networking technologies can be used to stop disinformation, fake news, prejudice, hate and incitement of violence, that lead to war and other forms of conflict. In 2024, it is for humanity to rise to the challenge with positive, purposeful digital media and communications that inspire world peace.

Extract: 2024 Digital World Predictions

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Subscribe to Futurist Leader (Deborah’s channel)

About the Author

Deborah Collier is an influential strategic & ‘Futurist Leader’ with 30-years’ experience working across digital, technology, marketing and business. A digital, media and technology entrepreneur, described as a ‘global economic force’ as founder and president of industry’s global awarding body Digital Skills Authority. She is also a media CEO, and former non-executive director.

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DIGITAL & TECHNOLOGY ECONOMY, BUSINESS & COMMERCE EDUCATION & INFORMATION STRATEGY FUTURE & HUMANITY STRATEGY, INNOVATION & CREATIVITY

Skills Evolution – Digital Skills to Human Skills

The future must be the perfect blend of humans, technology, digital and planet, but what does that mean for employment? How will we demonstrate our worth in a future world and where do we find our purpose?

Change has always been part of both evolution and revolution and the willingness and ability to adapt is what strengthens humanity. Digital skills should pair with human skills, not only in terms of human computer interaction, but in the way we continue to interface with each other. If the focus is not only on digital skills, but more vitally human skills and abilities such as caring, customer service, psychology, creativity and innovation, our future will be bright. The manual and functional roles will continue to be taken over by robots and artificial intelligence, freeing up time for humans to focus on cognitive, analytical, monitoring, management, caring, communications, strategic and creative work. In 2024 and beyond humans will learn both technical and digital skills relevant to their roles, while others focus on innovation and using technologies and digital business to either earn money or solve the world’s problems.

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Subscribe to Futurist Leader (Deborah’s channel)

About the Author

Deborah Collier is an influential strategic & ‘Futurist Leader’ with 30-years’ experience working across digital, technology, marketing and business. A digital, media and technology entrepreneur, described as a ‘global economic force’ as founder and president of industry’s global awarding body Digital Skills Authority. She is also a media CEO, and former non-executive director.

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DIGITAL & TECHNOLOGY FUTURE & HUMANITY

Digital Storytelling Ignites Climate Action

Have you ever wondered what will inspire people and organisations to contribute to climate action? Any good marketer, advertiser or influencer will tell you that any change is driven by impact, reward and emotion. For over a decade, remembering back to my French A-Level oral, in which I said “Je m’inquiète pour l’environnement, car on le détruit…”, I have campaigned though my articles, such as ‘Going Green’, on social media and within the COB Certified E-Business Manager and leader programs about green practices for business. Digital business helps to prevent deforestation through less paper usage, but to deploy responsibly organisations should move to renewable energy for hosting. It has taken more than a decade to finally see major hosting companies move to 100% renewable energy. However, what will motivate change by the everyday citizen? ‘Home’ is a basic human need, but what if one day we had to move home due to climate change? This is a real story for millions around the world and is causing a greater migratory shift than conflict. I predict that Digital Storytelling about these human stories, will be one of the major drivers for citizen commitment to climate action in 2023.

Extract
Top 5 2023 Digital World Predictions

About the Author
Deborah Collier is a strategic and futurist leader in digital, business, education and media. Widely regarding as an expert in digital business and marketing, she is founder and President of industry’s global awarding body Digital Skills Authority, and creator of it’s COB Certified E-Business Manager and Leader programs. As the Futurist Leader, she has developed strategy, led innovation and discussion around are the future of humanity and culture, with a focus on ethical implementation of technology for humanity. She is passionate about economic, social and environmental sustainability and has created products, content and ventures to support this.

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ECONOMY, BUSINESS & COMMERCE

2023 Year of the Side Gig

The post-pandemic world this year features high inflation and cost of living challenges.  While governments and businesses battle strategic goals and the impact on people, global citizens focus on ensuring their incomes cover their spending and savings goals.  Digital innovation is at the heart of success in tough economic times. “Mater artium necessitas” – Necessity is the mother of invention in 2023.  The pandemic gave a further ignition and impetus for digital business, but the landscape has shifted from “How do we work and do business?”, to “How to we maintain our standard of living?”  Students and workers turn to side gigs for additional revenue, while approaching or existing retirees explore Internet businesses to support their pensions, which in several countries are dwindling.  Cross-border trade constraints posed by Brexit, delivery strikes and rising oil costs, have made international E-commerce more challenging. Innovation of platforms, digital products, services and business models are the high-impact lower risk alternative. However, with the plethora of online tools and platforms provided for the sale and delivery of video, audio and written content, as well as the ability to build audiences online, the barriers to Internet business are now largely limited to availability of time, quality of content and know-how.  2023 is the year for citizens to start a side gig, generating their income from the digital economy, which is becoming ever more accessible to all. 

Extract
2023 Top 5 Digital World Predictions

About the Author
Deborah Collier is a strategic and futurist leader in business, digital, media and education. An expert in digital business, she is founder and President of Digital Skills Authority and it’s flagship series of programs – The Certificate in Online Business Series. During her career she has developed successful e-business models, developed and monetized digital businesses, and has taught and advised leaders at blue-chip organisations and governments around the globe.

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DIGITAL & TECHNOLOGY ECONOMY, BUSINESS & COMMERCE EDUCATION & INFORMATION STRATEGY FUTURE & HUMANITY LEADERSHIP & GOVERNANCE STRATEGY, INNOVATION & CREATIVITY

Humanity Befriends Artificial Intelligence

Positive evidence and revolutionary progress of Artificial Intelligence is unfolding at hyper speed, and AI is quickly evolving as a co-pilot of choice. Increased productivity and solving complex problems, particularly in the fields of medicine and global sustainability, are at the forefront of aspirational AI.  Usability designers, programmers and experts look to make AI more human, to improve acceptance and collaboration, inspiring both philosophical and ethical questions around humans being replaced by AI. However, humanity can design and program AI to emulate empathy, but to have empathy and emotion would of course require the development of sentience (a distinct separation between humanity and machines).  This understanding and delicate handling are particularly key for work in mental health, any form of social care, as well as customer-service. Governments in countries such as Estonia and Finland have employed AI to support civilians with using their online services, (an additional tool in customer service), which if deployed effectively could ultimately reduce taxation needs or boost innovation in other areas such as health and education. In 2022, industry experienced a revolution in Artificial Intelligence, a large AI model and ‘Codex’ that can translate natural languages into several programming languages. Programming co-pilots, such as ‘GitHub Co-pilot’ which uses this technology, increases productivity by freeing up developers to focus on innovation and more complex cognitive activities.  In 2023 and beyond, invigorated by the progress and adoption of AI in society, my model for evolving and future skills ‘Diversity-of-Things’ DoT’, becomes ever more apparent. As always with evolving technology, careful monitoring, moderation and regulation are vital. However, governments which have been behind in keeping up with industry and humanity’s needs as a result of bureaucracy, political goals, lack of awareness or foresight, cannot risk lack of planning and action ahead and alongside innovation, rather than behind it.

Extract
2023 Top 5 World Predictions

Of Further Interest
Diversity-of-Things (DoT)
What are the skills of the future?

About the Author
Deborah Collier is a senior strategic, futurist and foresight leader with over 30-years experience working in digital, business, media and education. She is the founder and President of industry’s global awarding body for digital and digital business skills, the CEO of Future Knowledge Group, a keynote speaker and author of a number of digital leadership programs and insights.

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DIGITAL & TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION & INFORMATION STRATEGY FUTURE & HUMANITY LEADERSHIP & GOVERNANCE

Social Media Comes of Age

What’s the Future of Social Networks?

Governments who have typically been behind industry and civilian needs with digital and technological governance, are now progressing with debate, cultural alignment and implementation of laws to regulate the handling of user-generated content by Social Networks and other platforms.  Indeed, the ethical balance between free speech and preventing harmful content, such as inciting violence, defamation and online harms leading to abuse, safety issues or loss of life, is key.  In August 2018, on Channel 4 news, I talked about the need for both policies and regulations, in light of events with Infowars, which included a defamation case later won by families of the ‘Sandy Hook’ tragedy.  There has to be a cultural shift, in what civilians accept as harmful content, while enabling us all to speak freely about political and religious views.  The success of this is largely enabled through education. Such education along with regulation, may come in the form of leading by example. That is, demonstrating punitive actions for individuals who put lives at risk, alongside enabling debate around whether individuals should be banned from platforms.  The recent Elon Musk ‘Doxing’ incident on Twitter, is an example of a seemingly open stalking account, and the reporting of the story by journalists. The suspending of those accounts by Elon Musk, enabled a debate.  Clearly the suspension of the journalists accounts wasn’t the right choice, but the suspension of the doxing account was.  At the same time, offensive content isn’t amplified by the social network, essentially allowing individuals to express themselves but without the amplification, which is where the danger lies.  This is an example of the fine tuning of social media which will eventually lead to it coming of age. For this to occur however, we need to ensure that rules and standards are not a case ‘of one rule for one, and another rule for another’. It cannot be a rule that suits social network owners, or single-sided political motivations and alliances, but must be judged and led with independence, commitment, and impartiality.

Extract
2023 Top 5 Digital World Predictions

Of Interest
Digital Governance Fast Forward
Infowars should it have been banned? Channel 4 News Panel Debate

About the Author

Deborah Collier is a senior strategic and futurist leader in business, digital and education. She is a media group CEO, Non-Executive Director and President of Digital Skills Authority. She developed a ‘Digital Governance Framework‘ which is delivered throughout the organisation’s management and leadership programs, and used by boards and leadership teams at governments and blue-chips organisations around the globe.

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DIGITAL & TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION & INFORMATION STRATEGY FUTURE & HUMANITY STRATEGY, INNOVATION & CREATIVITY

Mixed Reality not Metaverse

In 2022 the Metaverse was the prominent discussion topic around user experience and virtual interaction for entertainment, the workplace and education. However, behind the hype of a technological ‘buzzword’, born from established gaming, virtual reality and long-established virtual worlds, such as ‘SecondLife’, a more powerful and palatable concept and it’s technologies will come to the forefront. The future is hybrid, whether in terms of hybrid working, blended education (mixed media, live and classroom); hybrid events (live online, virtual, multimedia and in-person; and retail (e-commerce, omni-channel, and in-store). What is powering this? Firstly, consumer lifestyle and choice, and secondly business needs (cost reduction and efficiency) coupled with technological opportunity and innovation. So what is mixed reality? Mixed reality enables us all to exist in our current worlds, but have the choice and control to enhance our view of objects, people, information and content through a lens. The lens, of course is glasses or other devices such as tablets or phones. Both industry and consumers eagerly await new innovations in the field of headsets and eyewear.

Extract
2023 Digital World Predictions

Of further interest
Colliding Worlds – Experiential on Steroids (Prediction 2022)

About the Author
Deborah Collier is a strategic and futurist leader in business, digital, media and education. She is founder and President at Digital Skills Authority, a Non-Executive Director and media group CEO. She has delivered digital world and digital business predictions annually for 14-years, which have been featured in a number of national and industry publications.

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ECONOMY, BUSINESS & COMMERCE FUTURE & HUMANITY LEADERSHIP & GOVERNANCE STRATEGY, INNOVATION & CREATIVITY

Competence and Collaboration Culture – Into the Future

The image selected for this post is somewhat controversial, which is intentional as it potentially brought you here, and of course it opens a broader dialogue on ethics and the future. Don’t worry the future is human – we need humanity more than ever, but will we be collaborating with robots? Most likely. Robots and artificial intelligence will have differing roles to humans. As I said in my keynote speech Diversity-of-Things (DoT), “The future is humans + technology + digital + planet”, “Our roles are now changing.” We all need human faces, caring and customer service, and those roles are vitally important. However the manual and functional roles will continue to be taken over by robots, freeing up time for humans to focus on analytical, monitoring, management, caring, communications, strategic and creative skills. Those are the skills of the future.

I’m particulary interested in the human aspect of collaboration, competence and working, and have always been firmly against autocracy, while effective decision-making in leadership remains vital. In 2002, I conducted a piece of original research with the University of London, PriceWaterhouseCoopers and some SMEs. I assessed that my research needed a question on what the optimal culture should be for digitally transformed organisations to be successful. My cross-organisational research concluded that an organisational culture which was predominantly a collaboration and competence culture (value and authority based on subject-matter knowledge and experience) was needed, while also blending some elements of a ‘control culture’ where employee roles and seniority are clearly defined and adhered, with a cultivation and innovation culture where members can produce their own ideas. I believe this rationale is still valid today and will continue into the future. Therefore, Future Culture = Collaboration + Competence + Innovation + Ethical Governance

About the Author

Deborah Collier M.Sc. FRSA is an influential strategic, foresight and futurist leader in business, digital, education and media working on boards in the UK and North America. Described by academics and leaders as an ‘original thinker’, ‘thought-leader’, and ‘economic force’, she is an author and professional keynote speaker with a global audience, major brand following, network and readership of C-Suite leaders and professionals in business, academia, government, media and entertainment. A digital, technology and media entrepreneur, achieving global impact, she developed and implemented a three-pillared model, plan and solution for sustainability (Economy, Social and Environment), a digital governance framework, scalable brands, methodologies for strategic planning and leadership and management programs used by blue-chip organisations around the globe.  A media group CEO, Chair and Non-Executive Director, she is a digital education pioneer, founder and president of industry’s global awarding body Digital Skills Authority.