Final remarks – John Frank

John Frank, Microsoft’s Vice President, EU Government Affairs.

 

Thank you for the opportunity to be part of the conference today.
It is clear from the paper and the discussions the internet is going to get smarter, it’s going to connect everyone to an incredibly advanced set of technologies that will power the digital transformation of our businesses, our government services, and our personal lives.
There’s never been a better time to be doing city government, trying to think about how to rebuild and reinvent Civic services. While for a small and medium business to engage in leapfrog to the very cutting-edge of Information Technology. Because the power of cloud computing and digital insights is available to everyone with the curiosity and courage to apply data science to all problems and new opportunities. 
There’s never been a better time to apply technology to healthcare. With the cost of DNA sequencing of cancer cells coming down every year to where it’s affordable to sequence the particular cancer of a patient. To understand the DNA and to target medical treatment to the particular cancer cells in a new profound way. Because of digital insights that’s becoming a reality. The opportunities are exciting but they do bring as reflected in the paper anxiety and concern about people’s future people are worried that in order to have a job you have to be cheaper or faster than a robot at a time when robots are getting cheaper and faster, it’s a scary race to be trying to run. But that isn’t the future that we will create for ourselves. 
But it is important to listen to the concerns and to think about how we address the stresses and anxieties of our societies and public. I mean the past decade of economic challenges is reshaping and has reshaped the political landscape and the consumer landscape that both political people and business people face. 
And so, it is important that we think carefully about the kind of future we want to create and to ensure that it is inclusive. That the benefits of digital transformation are shared widely in society and that we rethink how we educate people not just once at the beginning of adulthood and then you just keep going, but in fact realizing that we will need to skill people and re-skill people and in fact each of us will be responsible for to continued re-skilling our people.
As many people here in Brussels have done, are on their second or third or fourth careers doing things. We re-skill. That will be the keystone of a part of the future is ensuring people that we will be there for them when it’s time to re-skill. 
But if we start with the reminder in business we say people will not use technologies they don’t trust. And in the political circles I suppose people will not embrace change that creates risk to their families’ financial future. 
We need to create a future where there is change with people having confidence that we’re managing the risks in ways that they can feel good about and so from both a business point of view and the political point-of-view, shaping a future where technology – digital transformation is going to happen but we need to make sure that it is responsible, that it’s trusted and it’s inclusive. 
So, with that I think turn it over and we will come back to other discussion. 

Day 2