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A Digital Transformation Course

The Digital Transformation has become the talk of the town. This image is taken from the announcement of the second edition of the Digital Transformation Day in Milan on April 16, 2019

So, the Digital Transformation is already happening. Different industries and different organisations have been involved each one in its own way. Some might even have been spared so far by the wave that is getting wider and bigger. But even those will not be safe for ever. Now, why should I use the word safe? Isn’t the Digital Transformation a good thing?
Yes of course it is, like the invention of the car was a good thing if we take a broad view. At the same time that invention relegated horses and carriages to the side lines, many businesses disappeared, some reinvented themselves and manage to thrive even more than in the past and many new businesses sprung up.
Affordable private transportation changed the way people lived, it provided a sense of freedom and at the same time opened up businesses that no-one suspected might exist. It stimulated inclusion of rural areas, made possible to visit relatives and made new friends.
Yet, it also created accidents (there were quite a few also at the time of horse drawn carriages) but their number increased. Curiously, looking at statistics, they did not increase because of cars higher speed, rather because many more people used personal locomotion!
We can expect very similar challenges ahead brought by the Digital Transformation. They will affect us all, whether we are steering the wave, we are being swept away or we are, for a while, on the side lines.
Knowing what’s brewing is crucial, and knowing how to become active players rather than passive bystanders can make the different between reaping the benefits of the Digital Transformation or suffering its downsides.
I am involved in the preparation of a course on Digital Transformation (yes I know, there are already a few around) fostered by EIT Digital and IEEE FDC, targeting professionals and I have started yesterday the second phase of a pilot with some 70 people working in Trento Public Administrations, organised by TSM. These are bright people, recently hired, to support the transformation process. It was nice to see how interested these people are and to acknowledge the effort of the local public administration to invest in education as a key component of the transformation.
In the lessons I covered both the opportunities and the downsides. Most of the times newspapers, and politicians, focus on the bright sides, save turning blue when some crises emerge. You need to be abreast of the whole to steer your boat towards success in a world that is providing more and more opportunities to more and more people. Which means you need to fight much more competition than in the past!
That is why getting an edge is so important and this is spirit of the course we are preparing. It will be available on line, over 100 modules that can be combined and customised as needed, each one with take aways and small assignment to nail the key concepts. Plus, a two day face to face session will ensure that the concepts can be turned into execution in the specific area of interest. We are interested in including small “pills” of practical experience provided by people in the industry. If you are interested in contributing let me know!

I’ll keep you posted once the course will become available.

About Roberto Saracco

Roberto Saracco fell in love with technology and its implications long time ago. His background is in math and computer science. Until April 2017 he led the EIT Digital Italian Node and then was head of the Industrial Doctoral School of EIT Digital up to September 2018. Previously, up to December 2011 he was the Director of the Telecom Italia Future Centre in Venice, looking at the interplay of technology evolution, economics and society. At the turn of the century he led a World Bank-Infodev project to stimulate entrepreneurship in Latin America. He is a senior member of IEEE where he leads the Industry Advisory Board within the Future Directions Committee and co-chairs the Digital Reality Initiative. He teaches a Master course on Technology Forecasting and Market impact at the University of Trento. He has published over 100 papers in journals and magazines and 14 books.