economyInnovation in the times of Coronavirus

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Not all storms come to destroy your life. Some come to clear your path. Seneca

These are the times of Coronavirus. Bulletins about the number of cases make you shudder. It’s no longer just about China, it’s the whole world. For almost a month now, our whole lives have changed. Every activity that seemed so routine, like going out, dinner with friends, or grabbing a coffee have now become impossible. We have to stay home to stop and limit the spread.

Faced with a health and human emergency like this one, we could pretend that the situation isn’t so bad, or we could go to great lengths to joke about it even when it honestly seems a bit forced. Or, we could start thinking about this as an opportunity—a unique chance to make way for change. After all, the most important evolutions have always started with a difficult moment. As Rita Levi Montalcini said, “Don’t fear difficult moments. The best comes from them.” And we should start thinking that we’re not just living through a public health emergency, we’re also facing a human urgency. We need to reconsider our lifestyles in light of completely disastrous climatic conditions, new epidemics and alternative ways of forming relationships.

These unforeseen events can turn our very existence, our relationships and our dreams on their heads, but they can also grant us a much needed change. For things that we would have never had the courage to undertake, a sudden blow this like can become an amazing launch pad… 

Finally, a push for digital 

These days, the Covid-19 emergency is spreading uncertainty, fear and anxiety, but also and above all, a need for change. The public and private sectors, corporations, small businesses—they’re all doing some serious reflection right now, about distance learning, broadband, public health information, and visibility for products through technological solutions. As Paola Pisano, Minister for Technological Innovation, has highlighted, this can be a huge opportunity to push Italy towards digital

“Opportunities multiply as they are seized.”

SUN TZU

Many people might ask themselves why it’s important to look for opportunities while we’re going through a health crisis like Coronavirus. We have to admit it! To incentivize a transformation that can truly involve everyone, we need to be forced to change our habits. It’s in these most critical moments that we’re more willing to roll up our sleeves, and start experimenting in ways that we would have otherwise kept putting off. A moment of pause like this one is useful to clear out space and abandon every form of resistance. And it’s useful in getting us to think about technology in our lives, as a means of improvement and of enhancing how we express ourselves and relate to others.

Is immersive technology the answer?

When I say technology, I’m not just talking about broadband or systems for distance learning, but also about immersiveness. Why is it important now to consider and plan for immersive solutions? Virtual reality amplifies the effectiveness of the learning process, memorization, sensitization and engagement, and this goes well beyond virtual tours or promotional videos. It’s a redefining of the whole interactive system. We need to start thinking from an immersive perspective. That is, we need to imagine innovative paths within our companies, our schools, and our public offices that don’t just use technology, they actually include it in their planning. Let’s set up paths that bring value to virtual interactions and connections between objects (the internet of things), that go beyond single opportunities. Let’s interact with people and places even when we can’t physically be there, so that we don’t interrupt our activities—and in fact, we might even breathe new life into them. This is the time to build technological innovation into our companies, because it’s only in this way that we can be ready tomorrow, and reduce any losses and slowdowns in our businesses. 

 

Michela Di Nuzzo

Michela Di Nuzzo

« Se scrivo ciò che sento è perché così facendo abbasso la febbre di sentire». - Fernando Pessoa Giornalista e co-founder, vivo il digital come imprenditrice e appassionata. Percepisco il cambiamento come un'opportunitá mai una minaccia. Occhi spalancati e orecchie aperte, sempre pronta alla condivisione, la chiave di ogni evoluzione.

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