Frau mit VR-Brille © David Goltz

Hamburg's universities and colleges promote digital revolution

Economic survival goes hand in hand with digitalisation - third-level institutions offer help

Digital change is unstoppable and will be sweeping, experts agree. Commenting in a publication by the Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI) in August, Professor Henning Vöpel stressed: “Digitalisation means completing the transition from the industrial world to a digitalised future and it will be swift, comprehensive and disruptive. Any kind of passive or defensive attitude means losing time to develop and will put sustainability at risk.” To guarantee sustainability in future, the Hamburg School of Business Administration has launched a digital toolbox and offers seminars for founders, managing directors, freaks and techies, experts and newcomers as well as students and former students. “By targeting all those in our increasingly digitalised society, we have come up with an attractive mix that lends its support to new perspectives and ways of thinking,” stressed Dr. Uve Samuels, Managing Director of HSBA. The modular system and digital toolbox also helps find ways of solving individual problems.

HSBA Digital Innovation LAB

Last year, HSBA opened the HSBA Digital Innovation LAB (DI-LAB) in a bid to shape digital change. The DI-Lab considers itself a spin-in centre for new business models and prepares companies for the challenges of competition driven by innovation. Professors and mentors will be on hand to offer support with new technologies such as 3D printing, virtual reality or robotics or prototype testing in the lab.

Potential of big data, artificial intelligence and design thinking

Big data, artificial intelligence and design thinking hold huge potential and can help transfer know-how from science to commerce. This minimizes friction at interfaces between stakeholders and without harming creativity. HSBA’s digital toolbox supports companies en route to digital transformation. Introductory lectures will be held on December 13, 2017 and on January 24, 2018. A seminar called “INTRAPRENEUR“ among others will focus on lean start-ups or agile management, while another called “Digital Strategy” will highlight the multiplicity of those driving change or topics chosen by contemporary means of communication faced with social media and digitalised surroundings.

Sovereign brands – ways of fighting loss of digital control

The Hamburg Media School is offering a seminar called “Sovereign brands – ways of fighting loss of digital control”. The more users who point to brands on social media, the less control companies have over their brands’ market presence. “So big brands are becoming extras instead of protagonists on the internet,” said Ulrike Dobelstein-Lüthe, Manager of Further Education at HMS. Gerald Hensel, Partner Digital Leadership at PLOT, will give a seminar on November 30, 2017 to highlight strategies and ways of tackling brand hijackings and safety. The seminar has been developed jointly with Dr. Nikolas Hill, who also stressed the need to protect brands. “It has never been easier to attack brands and the underlying business models. So in the digital era, it’s important for companies to arm themselves for the loss of digital control and to safeguard the sovereignty of their own brands with a brand safety strategy.” Hill, a former state councillor in the Ministry of Justice and Equality, is the Managing Director of PLOT, an agency that helps to create and lead organisations with clarity and give them orientation.

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