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'Digerati' will drive creativity, innovation: German expert

Posted on Jan 24 2014 | IANS

New Delhi Jan 24 : Countries may have to forgo the advantages of a large young workforce by yielding to a wave of creativity, innovation and knowledge, driven by the "digerati", in the virtual world, predicted Peter Sachsenmeier.

This tectonic shift in industry would amount to de-nationalising "war for talent", said Sachsenmeier, who was addressing the two-day Indo-German Technology Workshop on Advanced Manufacturing here Friday.

The professor from the German National Academy of Science and Engineering (Acatech) said the digerati, being in "always on" mode, will eliminate the distinction between work and private life.

Digerati is a combination of "digital" and "literati", and refers to people with expertise or professional involvement in information technology, which includes computer whizkids, tech magazine writers and well-known bloggers.

These digital natives, starting their careers now, will shift their loyalty from employer to networks based on intelligent and fair collaboration, Sachsenmeier was quoted as saying in a press release by the Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE).

The changes, catalysed by the "Internet of Things and Services", ushering in the fourth industrial revolution, known as 4.0, will continue to leverage the productivity potential of information and communication technology and globalisation, Sachsenmeier added.

The first three industrial revolutions were a result of mechanisation, electricity and information technology.

Kota Harinarayana, from the Aeronautical Development Establishment, said those in power should shed control, even though it called for deep attitudinal change.

By donning the role of facilitators, power holders could play a much bigger role in improving society's well being, added Harinarayana, who designed the light combat aircraft.

Fritz Klocke, professor at the RWTH Aachen University, Germany, said: "The Smart Factory has to have adaptability, resilience and productivity."

Klocke, who is developing smart devices, is planning to take the "Smart Factory" concept to research fraternity to help in bringing them on a common platform to solve problems.

P. Nandakumar, vice president, Mahindra and Mahindra, emphasised integration of labour union with the company to help productivity and creation of grey collar workforce, which combines the agility and wisdom of both white collar and blue collar workers.

The panelists at the valedictory session included Baldev Raj, former director, Indira Gandhi Centre of Atomic Research, A. Chakraborty from the Indian National Academy of Engineering, and Otthein Herzog and Fritz Klocke from Acatech.

The workshop was organised under the auspices of INAE and Acatech.

INAE, founded in 1987, is an apex body of Indian engineering and science which promotes technology and its application in India.

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