Fortunately, the Internet of Things community is moving away from the hype towards addressing issues that make IoT strategies and IoT solutions able to face business issues and solve operational problems. There are a variety of challenges, technological ones, business model ones, but also organisational ones. The multidisciplinary nature of the IoT affects the entire company structure. It introduces new tools and new modi operandi. Those require new professional profiles and new skills. The latter has been widely debated reaching the doors of governments, which, are trying to put in place strategies – educational and industrial – in order to enable the creation of those skills. That challenge is not addressable by a single stakeholder, but by the cooperation among academia, government, and companies. In innovation studies, the Triple Helix model is used to analyse the roots and the drivers of technological innovation. It is then used as a model for promoting innovation. A similar approach should be used for forming new skills in emerging technologies that are dramatically changing business systems and living environments. It is not an easy model to roll out, but, there are movements towards that. On Wednesday the 19th of January, I saw an example of a Triple Helix process coming through. I was invited at the Industrial Advisory Board at Birkbeck, University of London. The meeting is organised by the Department of Computer Science with the aim to share with the industry their teaching and research activities. But, the Department of Computer Science wants also to know if their activities reflect the needs of the industry. It was a good moment of interactions. And, it was refreshing to see how academia is responding to the need of the industry. In fact, the Department presented two new initiatives. The first one is the Birkbeck Institute for Data Analytics (BIDA) that aims to develop interdisciplinary research in Data Analytics and Data Science. The second announcement was the MSc in Data Science. Inspired by the UK government initiative in promoting new skill formation, BIDA is looking to collaborate with companies in order to engage MSc students with real problems, but also to promote research projects. If you want to know more and get involved, more info at https://www.dcs.bbk.ac.uk/research/research-groups/bida/ or contact Dr.Alessandro Provetti, Director of BIDA (https://www.dcs.bbk.ac.uk/about-us/people/academic-staff/alessandro/).

 

 

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