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We must work together on cyber security and data flows, Hancock? tells G7 ICT ministers  

Matteo Natalucci Published 26 September 2017

Summit’s goal is to lay foundations for a joint commitment of the G7 countries towards ever closer coordination of national policies on ICT and innovation


Yesterday, the G7 Innovation Week opened in Turin to discuss the transformation enabled by digital technologies, advanced robotics and data-driven production processes.

At the conference, UK digital minister Matt Hancock outlined UK’s position toward digital innovation and economy, supporting cooperation “among likeminded countries” on cyber security and the free flow of data.

Hancock said today at the joint press conference. “Together we need to work to put in place the tools to allow (digital innovation) to happen. How we measure the digital economy, how we think about the digital economy. Because the change ultimately is due to a collapse in the cost of storing and transmitting information that we haven’t seen since the invention of the printing press.”

“Some of the areas where we made significant progress today I think will have an important impact on this goal that we share. We all agree that we can best harvest technology through the rigorous protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights through minimising the data localisation requirement through regulation and through the promotion of standards online”, Hancock said.

“As we negotiate the withdrawal from the EU, the continuous free flow of data will be paramount, both to the success of the UK and the success of the rest of the EU,” he said.

“So I hope that the commitment of today can lead the ground work for an unhinged flow of data among likeminded countries,” he added.

The conference saw ministers for digital from Canada, the EU, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, UK and USA focus their discussion on the transformation enabled by digital technologies, advanced robotics and data-driven production processes.

They also discussed how to deal with the big changes triggered by the Next Production Revolution. NPR discusses a revolution affecting production, education and labour, which thanks to advances in robotics, application of artificial intelligence (AI) to production processes, the increasingly sophisticated use of big data and the introduction of modern digital, energy and logistics infrastructures, is expected to generate a significant impact on productivity and growth, as well as on socio-economic relations.

The goal of the summit is to adopt pragmatic and far-sighted policies, from industrial policies to those related to enabling factors, from measures to support research and education to social and labour-related policies, which should aim to ensure that all citizens can benefit from the ongoing technological and digital revolution.

In this context, the summit attempts to address the changes caused by digitalisation and automation on the organisation of work and welfare, with specific focus on the quantity and quality of work, the new essential skills and the training programs. The availability of a skilled workforce enables organisations to adopt new technologies and exploit their productive potential.

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