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Get insight into the digital transformation around the World

Digital technologies are changing the global business landscape, competition is fierce, and organizations must evolve at an increasing pace. As the covid-19 crisis has underlined, digital transformation has become imperative. Silicon Valley and other tech hubs provide important learnings that can bring Danish executives a step ahead.

The influence of Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, IoT, Big Data, and related technologies will not be limited to the tech Industry. Digital Technologies are everywhere, and their impact is present in all industries.

Therefore, Innovation Centre Denmark assisted the Danish IT University in developing a proprietary learning program to empower Danish leaders with global perspectives on digital transformation. As part of an ITU accredited course, leaders and managers from well-established Danish companies and the public sector were offered a 4-day – around the globe virtual program at the IT University of Copenhagen, enabling participants to prepare an action plan for approaching digital transformation within their organization.

Digital opportunities and threats were illustrated by academics from UC Berkeley and Stanford, while thought and industry leaders from all over the world presented their perspectives on digital transformation. The course included presentations from Amazon, Chinese digital challengers such as TikTok, Indian IT giant Infosys with 242,000 employees, and Israeli experts providing insights about the latest developments in cybersecurity.

Both speakers and participants of the program joined the discussion of questions like what will the future look like? Where will the future value be captured? How will the pandemic influence the business landscape of today and tomorrow?

Augmentation is about how to use humans for what they are good at. Companies who really crack the augmentation code are those who can assign repetitive tasks to machines or AI and then use humans for what we are good at - being empathetic and creative, things that machines are not very good at.

Anders Christjansen, Senior Advisor Innovation Centre Denmark Sillicon Valley

Venture Capitalists are still investing in new technologies

A good indicator of where technologies and trends are heading is to look at venture capitalists’ behavior. Anders Christjansen, Senior Advisor at the Innovation Centre Denmark in Silicon Valley, utilizes such signals in his day-to-day work.

“The way we work is to identify signals and signals are often associated with where VCs invest their money.”

These so-called signals can be of great value when mapping out the business landscape of today and the future – especially during the volatile, uncertain, and complex environment that the pandemic has provided.

Read more about the VC landscape in Silicon Valley in our article: COVID-19 has not decreased the appetite of venture capitalists

Despite a year that has been turned upside down by the pandemic, senior innovation consultant at the innovation Centre Denmark in Tel Aviv, Samuel Gideon Scheer, observes an increase in startup funding in Israel.

“In Israel, the investment amount for startups has actually gone up. If you look at Q1 and Q2 of 2020 funding, where COVID started around march, it actually went up substantially compared to the previous year and it's on track to be a record year.”

It might seem counterintuitive that startup funding is on the rise in amidst a global crisis, however the flow of VC capital is channelled towards a specific sort of offering – technology.

Anders Christjansen also recognizes this trend and observes that capital funding is especially prevalent in tech areas such as “digital health, fintech, artificial intelligence, medical devices, and cybersecurity.” The development of such technologies and innovations are somewhat shaped and influenced by innovative ecosystems and networks that disrupt and trigger organizational responses to follow and comply with the digital evolution and transformation.

General Partner at Sweetwood Ventures, Amit Kurz, notes: “As economies, especially western economies, become more reliant on innovation, building ecosystems becomes extremely critical. If you look at the main value drivers today of the financial world, we can see there is a big shift towards technology. Technology is taking a larger role in our lives.”

Technology and digitalization are changing organizations and the need for more flexible organizations has been tremendously accelerated by COVID: video conferencing, working from home, and rethinking former ‘ordinary’ business activities infiltrate the agenda of today. 

Cracking the code of augmentation

Some key questions revolve around the future of work: Who cannot be replaced by robots? How will the process of replacing humans with hardware and software through automation continue to influence the business landscape of today and tomorrow?

"A way to look at that is to look at the tension from automation to augmentation of activities and jobs. Augmentation is about how to use humans for what they are good at. Companies who really crack the augmentation code are those who can assign repetitive tasks to machines or AI and then use humans for what we are good at - being empathetic and creative, things that machines are not very good at,” Anders Christjansen says – “This is not really new, we have always used tools as humans and now we are just using AI and other digital means.”

Although the digital transformation with all its technological innovations has created an abundance of value, Johan Jessen, director of product design at Lyft, yearns for ‘real-life’ innovations in the physical world as well.

“I actually do not believe we have innovated that much in the real world. I think we have managed to innovate a lot in the digital world, our YouTube, Facebook, Wikipedia, gaming worlds, mobile phones, etc. But we have kind of stagnated a bit in the physical world - and that is what I want to pursue and inspire people to - think big and think in the physical world.”

Technological innovations and digital transformation have drastically altered the world we live in, but are we forgetting the ‘real’ physical world? “Real-world problems are important; we must go out and actually invent the world we live in - the physical world is important. There has been a huge growth in the digital and now we have to see it in the real world,” Johan Jessen says.

Innovation Centre Denmark Silicon Valley follows the newest trends and technologies, and can help your organization to keep up to date and provide valuable insights. 

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