New ICT applications and ICT-based innovations can influence the evolution of entire sectors and industries. There is absolutely no doubt that ICT applications act as engines, driving economic innovation, and as catalysts for future developments. But which industries will experience the strongest, most dramatic changes in the next few years due to the influence of ICT.
The experts at the think tank see great change coming in particular for the health sector,where they believe ICT is can make a decisive contribution to cutting costs and optimizing processes. While it will take a “good ten to twenty years” before the entire population benefits from full coverage with telemedicine, says Professor Arnold Picot, the demand for telemedicine is increasing steadily due to demographic change. Professor Jonas Schreyögg shares this opinion: “Developments like telemedicine or ICT-aided patient files will fundamentally change the health care system. I believe that this is a vast growth area.”
Changes are also expected for the automotive industry, manufacturing, the energy sector and in retail. Matthias Roggendorf, Associate Partner at McKinsey concretizes this: “Our research shows that industries like automotive, high tech, i.e. technology industries, from semiconductor manufacturer to aircraft construction, and retail will experience the greatest shifts in priorities due to major technology trends.” In particular the manufacturing segments, like the automotive industry, work in way that requires a lot of resources, which is why the biggest saving potentials can be unlocked here through the intelligent use of ICT, particularly in the sectors research and production.
In the energy sector,digitization and increasing administration through ICT systems will lead to massive changes. Christophe Châlons, Chief Analyst of the PAC Group says: “In the energy sector ICT will be an important topic, especially in the fields of new energy sources and smart grids.” Professor Arnold Picot adds: “ICT can make such a vast contribution to resource allocation, particularly with regard to energy through the digitization of the energy sector and, on the other, through energy-efficient ICT.”
The experts also expect significant changes to occur in the education sector: ICT will dramatically change processes and services in the education sector, if only to keep costs down, and these changes will reshape education “from kindergarten to school and university through to life long learning throughout one’s career,” believes Professor Claudia Loebbecke.
The ICT executives also expect noticeable changes to take place. More than half of the ICT executives surveyed anticipate great changes or even revolutions to take place in many industries in the next five years – across all the areas and sectors surveyed in the study. The biggest changes will affect the public security sector (55%), the education sector (54%), the automotive and transport industries (54%) and the financial sector (53%). Half of all executives surveyed (50%) also expect noticeable changes to occur on the public administration sector, e.g. through eGovernment or online elections (see Figure 7-1).
At first glance, it appears that all industries and sectors will be equally affected by new ICT solutions. However, a detailed comparison between the countries surveyed reveals an interesting and very telling difference: German ICT executives expect the biggest changes to take place in the automotive and transport sector (55% in the top 2 boxes); French executives believe that the greatest changes will occur in the finance sector (60%); in the United Kingdom the biggest changes are expected to affect public security (53%). Executives in Spain expect the education sector to be most dramatically affected by new ICT technologies (64%). Executives in the United States, on the other hand, believe that it is the health care sector that will experience the greatest changes (57%). The results show that each country expects the biggest changes to take place in the sector of business or society that is currently in the focus of public debate or which is seen as facing the greatest challenges. It stands to reason that this can be read as further proof of the great overall economic and social significance of ICT.