Economic development and social prosperity are inextricably linked. Politicians also know this and are fighting over the right economic policy. The next big challenge: industrial intelligence.
"The economy, stupid." James Carville wrote history with this sentence in 1992. As a strategist for US presidential candidate Bill Clinton, he reminded his employees during the election campaign that the economic situation was decisive for the citizens' decision to vote. The succinct phrase became their most popular slogan during the campaign. Bill Clinton eventually won the election and became the 42nd President of the United States. That was almost 30 years ago. James Carville's statement is still relevant: Even today, the economic situation of a country influences the outcome of elections. If the economy is booming, the voters are often well disposed towards the government. And if that's not the case, then the head of government should tend to hold on to his chair a little more. There is a simple reason for the connection between the economic situation and the election decision: economy and society are inextricably linked. Economic developments condition social developments - and vice versa.
Industry is now facing a huge upheaval again
So, it is clear that German politicians are also constantly arguing about the right economic policy. The discussions often focus on the industrial sector. No other economic sector contributes so much to Germany's gross domestic product - around 30 percent in 2017. This success is the result of companies constantly adapting to new technologies and developments. And after steam engines, mass production and computers, industry is now facing a huge upheaval again. With the "fourth industrial revolution", digitization is entering the economy at full speed. It permeates production planning, manufacturing and logistics. Even today, there are completely networked factories that work all by themselves. The decisive factor here is the use of artificial intelligence (AI). For example, it detects defects in machines before they affect production. It coordinates the transport of materials from A to B. It analyses data to perfect the manufacturing process down to the last detail. The use of AI in industry is called Industrial Intelligence.
Industrial intelligence: How digitalization is turning production upside down
Industrial intelligence increases the efficiency of work processes. And it automatically leads to greater profits for companies. Numerous studies confirm this. For example, a study commissioned by the Federal Ministry of Economics. It says that the use of artificial intelligence in production will increase value creation enormously. In the coming years by about 30 billion euros. The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) assesses the potential in a similar way. According to BCG, the fourth industrial revolution will increase productivity in the German production sector by 90 to 150 billion euros. And this will happen within the next five to ten years.
The crucial point is that a healthy economy not only serves the ever-increasing profits of companies. A healthy economy is the basis for a prosperous society. A healthy economy provides good working conditions. These include, among other things, higher wages and more flexible working hours. All these factors increase people's quality of life. And they increase social prosperity. A healthy economy can keep pace with China and the USA and thus secure jobs here in Germany. In the best case scenario, it even creates more of them. In addition, the efficient manufacture of products saves energy and resources and protects the environment. In this way, it also contributes to the standard of living of future generations.
A successful economy does society good - but it has to be shaped
The federal government has recognized that. At the end of 2018, it adopted a strategy for the use of AI. And since 2013 it has been promoting activities of the “Plattform Industrie 4.0”. To make Industry 4.0 a success for Germany, binding rules must be developed. These must apply to German companies. But also to international competitors. A high standard of data protection must be the core of these rules. Because data security is the basis for the great trust in Industry 4.0. Companies and individuals must be secure: Your data is protected. Uniform standards for data communication are also important. It is only these standards that enable problem-free networking. Industry 4.0 does not only present companies with challenges. After all, economic developments condition social developments. The automation of production processes is changing the job world. Many of today's activities will no longer exist tomorrow. At the same time, new fields of work are emerging. Employees will therefore have to change jobs and learn new skills. Lifelong learning is the lever to deal with this challenge.
Hanover Fair: Telekom presents digital industry solutions
This topic is also important for Deutsche Telekom. Our goal is for companies to experience the benefits of digitization up close - in all areas of their day-to-day business. This is exactly why we #TAKEPART at this year’s Hannover Messe. In hall 5 we show numerous Industry 4.0 solutions. Solutions based on industrial intelligence. Solutions that contribute to efficient production planning and logistics. Among them campus networks and data glasses. Smart displays and drones. In other words, solutions that contribute to the fact that the German economy will continue to influence society in the future. And in the very best sense of the word.