The Task Ahead of Us - Transforming the Global Economy With Connectivity, Automation, and Intelligence
Economies are complex production systems with myriad subcomponent production systems—that is, industries—from manufacturing to health care to retail. What and how these production systems produce is grounded in technology. So, as technologies change, production systems change—around the world. Today, the most important and widely shared technologies are digital information technologies that have evolved from the mainframe and mini-computing systems of the 1960s and 70s. They include an array of personal computing devices, back-office servers, IT-embedded machines, and cloud-based services that are connected or dynamically provisioned to users over private networks or the Internet. But the world is now beginning to transform into a new kind of digital system, one that will not only build on existing devices and systems, but also increasingly will incorporate emerging technologies such as sensors, robotics, and artificial intelligence as they improve in price and performance. This next digital economy will be significantly more connected (with many more things, and many more types of things networked, including in more advanced wireless, satellite, and wireline networks), more automated (as devices and systems enable more work to be done by machines), and smarter (as algorithms play increasingly important roles in sensing—and making sense of—all this).
ORBIS is powered by ESPAS, the European Strategy and Policy Analysis System, a unique inter-institutional project aimed at strengthening the EU's efforts in the crucial area of forward planning. ESPAS brings together the European Commission, the European Parliament, the Secretariat General of the Council of the European Union and the European External Action Service to strengthen the Union's collective administrative capacity to identify and analyse the key trends and challenges, and the resulting policy choices, which are likely to confront Europe and the wider world in the decades ahead.