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BEYOND 4.0: Inclusive Futures for Europe BEYOND the impacts of Industrie 4.0 and Digital Disruption

Keywords: education, european dimension

Project duration: 01.01.2019 - 31.12.2022

In purple oval circle in white capital letters written "Beyond 4.0". On the right above the "O" a small circle.
EU logo on red background © Quelle: sfs

EU Horizon 2020

BEYOND4.0 aims to help deliver an inclusive European future by examining the impact of the new technologies on the future of jobs, business models and welfare. We use a multidisciplinary research approach.

  • Nederlandse Organisatie Voor Toegepast Natuurwetenschappelijk Onderzoek (TNO - Coordination)
  • University of Warwick
  • Institute for the Study of Societies and Knowledge (Bulgaria)
  • University College London (UK)
  • University of Turku (Finland)
  • Conservatoire National Des Arts Et Metiers (France)
  • Helsingin Yliopisto (Finland)
  • Universidad Del Pais Vasco (Spain

The aim of BEYOND4.0 is to thoroughly examine the impact of the new technologies on the future of jobs, business models and welfare in the EU, using a multidisciplinary and innovative research approach, and to help direct an inclusive future.

BEYOND4.0 aims to help deliver an inclusive European future by examining the impact of the new technologies on the future of jobs, business models and welfare. We use a multidisciplinary research approach undertaken by a top-tier consortium with stakeholder engagement throughout the project.

BEYOND4.0 has five objectives:

  1. Provide new, scientific insight into technological transformation
  2. Provide new, scientific insight into company strategies dealing with technological transformation
  3. Examine the impact of technological transformation on: a. quality, content, and distribution of work; b. skill needs; c. education and training; d. value creation by companies
  4. Identify policy options for: a. fiscal policy (e.g. robot taxes); b. welfare policy (e.g. basic income)
  5. Identify social investment approaches and tools for inclusive growth.

BEYOND4.0 generates this by:

  1. Building on state-of-the-art research and other EU projects
  2. Using innovative methods, and
  3. Combining historical, EU-wide, regional and company level data. We generate three new outcomes: 1. Scientific understanding of new technology impact; 2. Diagnostic and developmental tools to lever technological opportunities; 3. Evidence-based support for social and competitive EU policy strategy.

BEYOND4.0 carefully disseminates and valorizes results.

BEYOND4.0 addresses the general priorities of the H2020 Work Programme (2018-2020) ‘Europe in a changing world - Inclusive, innovative and reflective societies’.

We will:

  1. Better address challenges of the 4th Industrial Revolution in context of digitization by providing alternative policy options
  2. Contribute to equitable, sustainable prosperity through scientific evaluations, co-creation and bottom-up solutions
  3. Contribute to UN’s Sustainable Development Goals 1, 2, 5, 8 and 9. In conclusion, we provide insights and measures that help address poverty, equality, decent work, informulating an alternative for a low road Industry 4.0. approach.

We aim to achieve the main research objectives and deliver impact in five steps:

Step 1: We start with developing common starting points for our research. Because we are combining historical, data-driven and socio-economic approaches, our research language, methods and analysis needs to be fully aligned.

Step 2: We collect research information from three main sources: 2a. Historical data on previous techno-logical transformation to learn about policy and societal reactions to change; 2b. Integrating and enriching existing major data-collection at EU-level, to be used in the analytical part; 2c. Completing data from the past and current date, with insights of fore-runner countries, regions and companies to learn about the practices of those agents at the ‘edge’ of techno-logical transformation. These three sources inform our analytical approach in Step 3.

Step 3: First, 3a. analyses the cross-cutting topics such as the meaning of tech-nological transformation for employ-ment, labour market, OSH, at the developments in the platform economy, with the gender issue and with the skills issue. For generating under-standing, we use quantitative and qualitative approaches. An important in this analysis is 3b using stake-holder knowledge. We have different foresight and network approaches aligned for this.

Step 4: In step 4 we examine possible social policy approaches for dealing with technological impacts. All the topics in the current debates (robot tax, basic income, dealing with mass unemployment) are investigated from the results of the separate analyses, sketches are made of what an inclusive future for Europe.

Step 5: All steps are integrated in step 5, in which we start with a foresight/forecasting exercise on what the future of work will be, assessing the outcomes of this discussion with all the research findings in mind, and translating all into (social) policy recommendations for different stakeholder groups. The stepwise approach allows us to build sound foundations for our final results.

Methodological considerations:

  • Historical approach: meta-analysis of the existing work on socio-economic impacts of technological transformations, critical literature review, studying employment databases and qualitative sources to assess the impact on job creation and income equality of systemic change
  • Mapping the data: integrating various European datasets, creating new and more accurate data
  • Mapping regional experiences (case studies): insights into strategies developed at regional level to understand how actors approach, treat and (co)create technological transformation and deal with its impact
  • Mapping the company experience: getting insight into company strategies and practices how to deal with the digital transformation
  • Mapping the future: discussion on the impacts of technological transformation started with pre-dictions based on econometric assessments of changes in occupations

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Location & approach

Exit 13 (Kreuz Dortmund Nord-Ost), direction Derne/Schwerte (B236), 1st exit direction Dortmund-Eving, next traffic lights turn right (Kemminghauser Str.), after 2.7km turn left (Evinger Str./B 54), after 1.1km traffic lights turn left (Deutsche Straße), after 500m on the left is the Evinger Platz.

From the Bundesstraße 1 (extension A40 or A44) to the intersection B1/B236 direction Lünen, 3rd exit direction Dortmund-Eving.

Exit Dortmund Hafen, turn left until the intersection Münsterstraße (B54), direction Eving, after about three kilometers turn into Deutsche Straße.

You can download an enlarged general map here

From Dortmund Airport, it takes just about 20 minutes to get to Dortmund Central Station by AirportExpress and from there to the university by subway (U-Bahn) 41. The stop is "Zeche Minister Stein". A wider range of international flight connections is offered by Düsseldorf Airport, about 60 kilometers away, which can be reached directly by S-Bahn from the university station. From there, you can get directly to Dortmund Central Station.

From Dortmund Central Station, take the U 41 light rail (direction Brambauer / Brechten). The stop is "Zeche Minister Stein". The Minister Stein Center is located on the right in the direction of travel of the streetcar.

You can find an overview map here.