A little over a week ago, I joined political and business leaders from 21 countries around the world in Danang, Vietnam for the annual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) CEO Summit aka Asia Pacific’s version of Davos. The star-studded speaker list included the likes of China's President Xi Jinping, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and many others. In total, over 1,500 delegates congregated in this beachside town in central Vietnam to advance solutions to ensure more equitable growth across the region, in particular through collaboration in fair trade, education and skills development as well as public health and science.
Wiley was invited not just as a participant but as a convener of government, academia and industry and a leading voice on education and science in APEC over the past decade. I started the week with a prominent group of leaders at the inaugural APEC University Leaders’ Forum. Organized by the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU) and co-sponsored by Wiley, this gathering of over a dozen top universities across the Asia Pacific featured a wide ranging discussion on how educational institutions and the private sector can work together to address the challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
Wiley chief marketing officer Clay Stobaugh sharing Wiley’s experience working in APEC (left to right: CEO and President of C&M International Ambassador Robert Holleyman; Clay Stobaugh; President of Hong Kong University of Science and Technology Tony Chan; Founder & CEO of Malong Technologies Huang Dinglong; President of Korea University Jaeho Yeom; PwC China and Hong Kong China lead Frank Lyn)
Today, the Fourth Industrial Revolution is changing the way we live and work through digital technology— from big data and artificial intelligence to machine learning. And while the Fourth Industrial Revolution offers huge potential benefits, it also poses challenges as companies, governments, educational institutions and society at large adapt to sometimes painful disruption.
I was able to share Wiley’s experience in addressing one of the challenges in the Fourth Industrial Revolution – the shortage of skilled employees, especially in the area of data science and analytics (DSA). In recent years the world has seen an immense growth in demand for DSA-skilled workers. A 2015 survey of more than 400 companies in 10 countries revealed that approximately 43% of DSA vacancies remain unfilled. A study from Teradata this year shows that the shortage of data scientists amounts to around 1 million in the Asia-Pacific, which risks seriously constraining economic growth.
In particular, I shared our work and learnings over the past year in launching Project DARE (Data Analytics Raising Employment) in APEC with the U.S. Department of Labor and the Business-Higher EDUCATION Forum. The concept of DARE is simple: bring employers from the region together to directly meet with university leaders and policymakers who are trying to develop DSA curricula, programs, and degrees, and launch a dialogue on what competencies are most critical to industry’s current and future needs. Fifty experts from Google, PwC, IBM, leading universities and many other stakeholders met in Singapore in May to develop a set of ten “Recommended APEC Data Science and analytics Competencies” which today are being adopted and leveraged by educational institutions as they build their curricula and programs to equip students with some of the most sought-after skills in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
APRU announcing commitments to partner with Project DARE and others
(left to right: APEC Education Network Coordinator Wang Yan; Wiley Chief Marketing Officer Clay Stobaugh; APRU Secretary General Chris Tremewan; Chairman of Elsevier Youngsuk 'YS' Chi)
Other speakers at the University Leaders’ Forum shared their experiences in addressing challenges and harnessing opportunities in this new age, from identifying ways to leverage artificial intelligence, to using big data to come up with medical diagnoses for patients.
As part of the program, Andrew Grant, a Wiley Network speaker and co-author of The Innovation Race: How to change a culture to change the game and international bestseller Who Killed Creativity?... And How Can We Get It Back? gave a keynote address on the different perspectives we can use to look at the “innovation race” and how that shapes our thinking and work culture.
Andrew Grant, a Wiley Network speaker and co-author of The Innovation Race: How to change a culture to change the game along and international bestseller Who Killed Creativity?... And How Can We Get It Back? gives a keynote address on the different perspectives we can use to look at the “innovation race” and how that shapes our thinking and work culture.
The host of the forum, the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU), a network of leading universities in the APEC economies, concluded the event by announcing a series of commitments, including partnering with APEC’s Project DARE to “bridge the looming skills gap in Data Science & Analytics (DSA).”Thanks to the enthusiasm generated in Danang, more activities can be expected in 2018 as universities and businesses seek to identify further ways to collaborate and ensure the Asia Pacific workforce is as prepared as ever to thrive in this new digital age.
Image Credit: Tracey Huang