Science & Technology

Digital technology is the future, but new reports show that Australia’s risks remain in the past

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Digital technology is now at the heart of our daily lives, as anyone who has replaced an office with a video conferencing screen or downloaded a contact tracking app is familiar with it.

This trend will continue Even in the post-COVID world..Australia is at a crossroads of development Strong digital economy To face this changing world head-on.

Computing pioneer Alan Kay said:The best way to predict the future is to create it“. Australia also needs to seize the opportunity to leverage its R & D strengths in new digital technologies, expand growth opportunities in this important sector, and create a’digital future’by strengthening sovereign capabilities. .. But Australia lags behind many other countries in shaping this digital future.

so New report released today, NS Australian Academy of Science And that Australian Academy of Technology Engineering Jointly calls for urgent action and urges government and industry to recognize the importance of new digital technologies.

The report has some important recommendations.

  1. Raise new digital technology as a national science and innovation priority
  2. 2021 Research Infrastructure Roadmap Includes Research and Innovation in New Digital Technologies
  3. Recognize new digital technology as an independent growth sector.

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What techniques do you need to encourage?

The report focuses on new digital technologies such as: Artificial intelligence (AI), NS Internet of Things (IoT), Augmented reality and virtual reality, Blockchain When 5G network..

These innovations have already begun to transform industries such as manufacturing, agriculture, waste management, transportation, finance, education and health. But still “New technologyUnlike more established technologies such as 3D printing, mobile computing and GPS, they have not yet realized full commercial potential.

The next wave of new digital technologies such as self-driving cars and smart microgrids 6G network When Quantum computing, Further disrupt and transform many sectors of the economy.

Of course, it is difficult to accurately predict what kind of innovation will occur in the future. But by focusing on basic science and engineering in this rapidly evolving field, Australia can be assured that it will stay ahead of its time, no matter what the future holds.

What are other countries doing?

The problem is that Australia is currently doing the opposite.It lags behind the following countries America, England, France, Canada When ChinaAll of these prioritize digital technology as a strategy to strengthen their global competitiveness.

Digital innovation accounts for only 7.4% of Australia’s gross domestic product (GDP). OECD average 11.2%..

read more:
Australia’s digital competitiveness is declining.Here’s how to catch up

New digital technology applications continue to diversify and grow. Research and innovation in new digital technologies should not be artificially tied to a particular application area or over-focused on today’s needs. Failure to do so limits the potential for innovation that can create entirely new industries and jobs.

At the same time, new digital technologies continue to exceed social expectations and regulatory frameworks. Australia’s digital divide continues to grow, with low-income, employment and poorly educated individuals lagging behind.This challenge can exacerbate our oncoming ones Lack of digital skills Increase workers and existing inequality.

Achievement Digital literacy and inclusion Through education and workforce development, Australia is essential to fulfilling its commitment to the United Nations. Sustainable Development GoalsAnd to ensure the development of a workforce with high digital literacy skills.

Australians are early adopters and enthusiastic users of technology. This trend is being accelerated by the COVID pandemic.And the federal government Digital economy strategy Has already invested A $ 1.2 billion in key digital features such as artificial intelligence and drone technology.

While this investment is welcome, governments must clearly recognize the importance of building scientific and engineering capabilities in a way that underpins the digital economy as a whole, not just specific technologies.

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Raising new digital technologies as a national science priority will increase their importance. investment In the story, it develops R & D strengths, provides critical research infrastructure, and catalyzes the creation of new technology businesses and support for existing businesses through enhanced links between research and industry. increase. Through awareness of the growth sector, it helps to attract talent and address the country’s future skills needs.

Highly digitized societies demand world-class leadership in the development of digital technology and reduce reliance on foreign technology and expertise. The coordinated strategic support of this important sector of our economy will help create Australia’s digital future in line with our social and economic aspirations.


Shazia Sadiq is funded by the Australian Research Council and other funding schemes of the Australian Government and industry. She is the chair of the National Commission for Information and Communication Sciences of the Australian Academy of Sciences and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering. Shazia is also the director of the ARC Training Center for Information Resilience (, which has many industry and government partners.

Thas Ampalavanapillai Nirmalathas is currently funded by the Australian Research Council, Defense Science and Technology Group, and industry partners such as InstaWireless and Jarvis. He has previously been funded by partners such as Google, Nokia Networks, Transurban, Digital Falcon and the Victoria State Government.

This article is based on his role as Co-Chair of the National Committee for Information and Communication Sciences of the Academy of Sciences of Australia, with contributions from other members of the Commission and members of the Australian Technology and Digital Future Commission. Reflects.Engineering Science (Professor Shazia Sadiq)
Professor Rod Tucker,
Professor Benjamin Rubinstein, Professor Sveta Bencatesh,
Professor Andy Colonios,
Professor Deborah Bunker,
Professor Ian Callings,
Professor Mike Miller Professor Mary Ann Williams
David Today,
Dr. Craig Madge, Professor Glenn Wightwick)

originally conversation..

Digital technology is the future, but new reports show that Australia’s risks remain in the past Digital technology is the future, but new reports show that Australia’s risks remain in the past

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