THE GLOBAL MANUFACTURING & INDUSTRIALISATION SUMMIT
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Glocalisation: Towards Inclusive and Sustainable Global Value Chains

  • Welcome Address and Opening Ceremony

    Opening Keynotes

  • 09:30 -10:00 Welcome Address

  • 10:00 -10:45 The Keynote Panel: A trillion-dollar question: in an age of digital restoration, how are leaders repurposing our economies to deal with a post-crisis era?

    The pandemic crisis and its subsequent economic challenges presented a defining moment for companies worldwide. Businesses had the opportunity to emerge stronger and forge deeper relationships with customers and partners in order to build companies that are better adapted to tomorrow’s world. The crisis revealed to be unlike any previous situation, whereby traditional crisis-response approaches were not fit for purpose. As business leaders were thrust into situations requiring swift and effective action to ensure the survival of their organisations, many were left questioning whether their industries would be able to adapt to the new reality.

    What can CEOs anticipate in the post-crisis world? With the accelerated adoption of digital commerce as a result of the COVID19 pandemic, will consumers return to traditional retail behavioural patterns, or will the digital migration fundamentally alter the global economy?

    • In what is being termed ‘the great retooling’ (changing the infrastructure of a business), how can leading executives revamp their customer propositions and organisations for the long-term?
    • Given the contingency plans adopted during the pandemic to ensure production, how can companies capitalise on current learnings in order to better plan for the future?
    • What supply chain operational changes have been made and with what new safeguards?
    • How have travel patterns changed and what implications does this have for businesses?
    • What will be the future role of physical factories and other traditional forms of industrial manufacturing?
    • What will business strategies look like in the future? Are we expecting new definitions for resilience, sustainability, agility and risks?
    • With a new principle of power potentially in the making, what are the indicators of economic strength that will allow countries and businesses to lead in the new global
      environment?
  • 10:45 - 11:30 4IR for a more resilient manufacturing sector?

    The recent pandemic crisis has exposed the vulnerability of global supply chains to unprecedented shocks. Attention continues to be placed on the need for global businesses to accelerate their digital transformation and adopt smarter and risk-adjusted business models. As the past few months forced a progressive reduction in physical interaction – be it customer-facing or across operations – automation and digitalisation have become vital for businesses to ensure sustainability.

    Fortunately, new technologies have emerged that improve visibility across the supply chain and thus support a company’s resilience to such shocks.

    • What are some of the challenges currently facing the manufacturing sector? Which specific industries face a complicated transition to digitalisation, and how can this be tackled?
    • Which companies are leading across respective industries with digital transformation, and why? And what lessons can be learned?
    • What does business resilience mean in the context of developing countries? And what strategies are they deploying to support their manufacturing sector to cope with global disruptions such as the one created by the recent pandemic?
  • 11:30 -12:15 Glocalisation: from global to local?

    More than two thirds of world trade occur through Global Value Chains (GVCs) where production crosses borders before making it to final assembly lines. Digital developments are transforming these GVCs by creating a new digital thread, allowing for advanced systems of traceability and improved logistics and planning. Moreover, the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) and its technological advancements have the potential to overcome the physical barriers imposed by any crisis to give societies the digital freedom to achieve
    economic and social prosperity.

    • Will trading further consolidate into digital marketplaces as a result of the pandemic?
    • How is digitalisation altering specific steps in the value chain, and even optimising the makeup of the chain itself?
    • The online marketplace is seeing vibrant innovations in many specific areas; how can these unique solutions be integrated to help create an end-to-end digital value chain that fosters unparalleled business opportunities on a global scale?
    • Will the future of GVC’s be built around supply chain flexibility as opposed to supply chain efficiency?
    • Will GVC’s revolve around countries with younger populations?
    • What effects will the recession have on supply-chain resilience? As countries today begin to hoard supplies, what impact does this have on global trade?
  • 12:15 -13:00 The Policymakers’ Challenge: navigating through a recession

    The biggest fear during the crisis has been its impact on the global economy and the uncertainty as to when the world’s businesses would return to normality. Large-scale quarantines, travel restrictions, and social-distancing measures have driven a sharp fall in consumer and business spending, which has caused the global economy to barrel towards a recession. Furthermore, the crisis had underscored economic inequalities, including those around gender. Women are not only paid less than men, but they make up the majority of global healthcare workers. As our economies slowly begin to emerge with challenging business conditions and unemployment, the current recession can only prolong a global slump.

    • What will this mean for the manufacturing sector? And when can we expect the projection of the world economic recovery to begin?
    • Various countries around the world announced economic stimulus packages. Have manufacturers, tech companies and start-ups benefited?
    • Will the crisis indefinitely change our travel habits? What will be the implications for related industries, such as aviation?
    • How can women’s voices be better reflected at the decision-making table?
    • What policies do governments need to adopt in their countries to harness 4IR technology in manufacturing? How will robotics, big data and the internet of things impact workers around the world?
  • 13:00 - 14:00 Restoring prosperity in a post-pandemic world

    Innovation, creativity and necessity remain the driving forces behind the advancement of humanity and the acceleration of global good. The spike in demand for e-learning, seen during the pandemic, has encouraged new waves of education systems that are increasingly innovative, inclusive and sustainable. While digitisation offers opportunities to bridge the educational gap by providing cheaper and more accessible ways to learn, the recent crisis exposed the widening digital divide between developed and developing countries.

    • How can 4IR technology achieve prosperity for populations in less developed countries that might be affected by a crisis?
    • How can the international community provide support and what tools are needed for this to happen?
    • What are the challenges and how can these be overcome?
    • How can we bridge the digital gap to enable access to e-learning in developing countries?
    • What does this mean for women? And, what are the challenges in educating women in developing countries?
  • 14:00 -14:45 Panel Discussion: rise of the machines: robots in a post-pandemic world

    Over the last few months, the pandemic led to a growing concern about technology’s impact on the future of work, as this could accelerate the perceived “rise of the robots” and the threat to employment. Given that most factory floors had significantly shutdown, we witnessed a spike in automation and introduction of new business models, meaning some of the jobs lost during the crisis may never return as companies restructure their operations to rely more on machines. The industries where the workforce has most been affected are food and beverage, transportation and manufacturing. However, even big tech companies realise that heavily automated industries still rely on humans for essential tasks, and we are still far away from revamping factories to adopt full automation. Even during the outset of the crisis, where the need for automation became more apparent, economies still faltered without human workers, as machines still lack human intelligence and adaptability. What is important for the workforce is to leverage the educational strategies and policies which are required to keep up with the fast-changing employment needs of the industrial sector.

    Educational systems need to change towards new curricula and new means of delivery with the goal of improved quality of education (SDG4).

    Related issues include the following:

    • How are industries responding to the growing need of upskilling and reskilling the workforce with the intention of adopting 4IR technologies?
    • What educational reforms are required to align education systems with the needs of the advanced manufacturing sector in light of the disruption associated with the adoption of 4IR technologies?
    • What are strategies for 4IR technology adoption in the context of an ageing workforce and migration?
    • Automation will spur the growth of new jobs and job categories; how can this job transformation positively affect the workforce of the future? How will the model of employment change?
  • 14:45 -15:30 Pushing the limits in the healthcare, telecoms and education sectors: bent, but not broken?

    The pandemic placed a strain on vital industries including healthcare, education and telecommunications, where companies within these sectors had to face new realities that went beyond addressing the virus itself. The healthcare industry recognised the importance of technology to accelerate scientific research on sustainable solutions for future emergence of pathogens, drug development and more, by leveraging big and real-time data to guide operational decisions. Likewise, the shift of the global workforce towards remote-work caused unprecedented demand on telecommunications infrastructure and connectivity.

    Cancelled domestic and global business travel further impacted the networks with increased reliance on videoconferencing and mobile communications. However, the opportunity to accelerate the adoption of technologies and leverage them to drive production during the crisis, when labour was for the most part unavailable, proved to be successful. We have witnessed a radical shift in traditional business models, where most companies have reimagined the ‘office’ workspace through virtual conferencing tools.

    • How could specific technologies like blockchain and augmented reality (AR) be used to support the healthcare sector to enable it to better handle future pandemics?
    • Are public networks operated by telecommunication service providers geared to the infrastructural needs of industrial users? What steps are needed to ensure the continued provision of critical infrastructure
    • Rethinking behavioural protocols: what new rules and behaviours were adopted to cope with remote lifestyles to successfully run a business? Were they successful? What needs to be done to enhance these protocols?
    • How can mobile solutions and local data networks support developing countries through an economic recovery?
    • Creating new norms and educating employees: how have companies ensured a company culture is built virtually? How do they tackle issues of transparency and engagement from leadership to team members? What should be done better to ensure this?
  • 15:30 -16:15 Standardisation: adapting digital standardisation rules to match a post-crisis world

    The vast variety of the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) technologies make it difficult for companies to choose technologies relevant for them. It is argued that standardisation of these technologies could help companies decide which ones are useful. This session will review the current trends in absorbing digital technologies worldwide, and evaluate the opportunities to create transparency and standards through international institutions.

    Furthermore, the recent pandemic has shown that policymakers need to act quickly to strategically formulate a relevant set of standards, as there is a greater shift towards digital adoption.

    • Why is it important to have internationally recognised standards for 4IR technologies and how can they be applied in manufacturing?
    • Can the great variety of digital technological solutions be adequately categorised and standardised? How does the international standardisation landscape look like?
    • How far have the national and international standards bodies, research institutions and the relevant political spheres reached?
    • How can the multitude of international bodies relevant to 4IR standardisation work together to achieve international standardisation of 4IR technologies?
    • What are the regulatory challenges that may affect the dissemination and application of international standards in a post-crisis situation?
  • 16:15 -17:00 Energies of the future: the time for clean energy is now

    The recent pandemic gripped the global economy and had forced clean energy efforts to significantly slow down, as it undermined the importance to combat climate change.

    Furthermore, the considerable drop in oil prices has also affected the global movement towards adopting renewable energy. The manufacturing industry faces challenges in reducing carbon emissions from energy-intensive sectors such as aviation, shipping, trucking and heavy industry.

    Decarbonising these sectors with today’s innovative technology is both doable and affordable, and as governments have devised unprecedented economic stimulus packages to help assist their economies emerge, it is important to encourage efforts to drive climate action and invest in low-carbon solutions to achieve the Sustainable Development
    Goals.

    Despite the impact of the pandemic, many countries have commitments to move towards a carbon-neutral future and have significant reduction plans in place.

     

    • Will these carbon reduction plans continue or change? Can the pandemic be deemed as a warning of what is to come if we continue to delay concrete action on climate change?
    • How can the 4IR technologies help ensure sustainable practices are maintained going forward?
    • How can countries work towards cleaner energy given the disruption of the global supply
      chain?
    • What are the lessons learnt from the recent pandemic that can be used to mitigate greater risks from natural disasters that can take the world by surprise? How can we learn from this experience to accelerate global action against climate change? And, how could the energy sector facilitate?
  • 17:00 -17:30 Legacy initiative

  • 18:00 CLOSE OF THE GLOBAL MANUFACTURING AND INDUSTRIALISATION SUMMIT 2020

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