Education and business in the Industry 4.0

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Abstract


Under the conditions of Industry 4.0, much attention is beginning to be paid to such trends of the modern economy development as competitiveness, innovation, labor productivity, knowledge economy, and the digital economy. The purpose of the study is to analyze and propose the most effective mechanisms of interaction between higher education institutions and companies that would allow achieving a synergistic effect. The scientific novelty of this study consists in examining the essence of economic processes currently operating in the world economy through the prism of the features of higher education, and in developing a number of recommendations, including on building intellectual capital and building close ties between education and business that would allow on the one hand, to increase the competitiveness of enterprises, and on the other, the competitiveness of higher education institutions in the world market. The paper presents the following research methods - systemic method, statistical method, graphical method, analogy method.


Full Text

I. Introduction

Nowadays, in the era of the fourth industrial revolution, when digital technologies have transformed entire industries, social networks platforms and streaming services have changed media and entertainment, and e-commerce giants have overtaken retailers, it is especially important for companies to become more sustainable and create new, high-tech well-paid and interesting workplaces.

Within the framework of Industry 4.0, not only the production process, but also the services sector that is related to manufactured products is fundamentally changing. At the same time, people are started to be seen not only as carriers of demand and creators (manufacturers) of goods and services, but also as the core of qualitative changes and transformations in the knowledge economy and the modern digital economy.

And if during the third industrial revolution 80% of the company's value was attributable to tangible assets, now more than 80% of the value of modern companies is occupied by intangible assets, which include intellectual property, brand value and company employees (human capital) [1].

Also, the development of modern digital technologies has led to the forefront of the interoperability of man and machine (makes possible to contact via the Internet; assures transparency of information and the ability of systems to create a virtual copy of the physical world) and technical assistance of machines to man (in combining large amounts of data and performing a number of unsafe tasks for humans; the ability of systems to make decisions independently and autonomously).

II. Materials and methods

Comparison of modern international leading companies can be carried out according to various parameters, among which are the volumes of revenue and profits, as well as market capitalization (Table I) [2, 3].

 

Table 1. Top-10 world companies by volume of revenue, profit and market capitalization, mln. usd, 2019

Company name

Country

Sector

Volume, mln. USD

BY REVENUE

Walmart

USA

Total sales

514 405,0

Sinopec Group

China

Energetics

414 649,9

Royal Dutch Shell

Netherlands

Energetics

396 556,0

China National Petroleum

China

Energetics

392 936,6

State Grid

China

Energetics

348 903,0

Saudi Aramco

Saudi Arabia

Energetics

355 905,0

BP

Great Britain

Energetics

303 738,0

Exxon Mobile

USA

Energetics

290 212,0

Volkswagen

Germany

Automotive

278 612,0

Toyota Motor

Japan

Automotive

272 612,0

VOLUME OF PROFIT

Saudi Aramco

Saudi Arabia

Energetics

110 974,5

Apple

USA

Technologies

59 531,0

Industrial & Commercial Bank of China

China

Finance

45 002,3

Samsung Electronics

South Korea

Technologies

39 895,2

China Construction Bank

China

Finance

38 498,4

J.P. Morgan Chase

USA

Finance

32 474,0

Alphabet

USA

Technologies

30 736,0

Agricultural Bank of China

China

Finance

30 656,5

Bank of America Corp.

USA

Finance

28 147,0

Bank of China

China

Finance

27 225,2

BY VOLUME OF MARKET CAPITALIZATION

Microsoft

USA

Technologies

905 000,00

Apple

USA

Technologies

896 000,00

Amazon.Com

USA

Consumer Services

875 000,00

Alphabet

USA

Technologies

817 000,00

Berkshire Hathaway

USA

Finance

494 000,00

Facebook

USA

Technologies

467 000,00

Alibaba

China

Consumer Services

472 000,00

Tencent Holdings

China

Technologies

438 000,00

Johnson & Johnson

USA

Healthcare

372 000,00

Exxon Mobile

USA

Energetics

342 000,00

 In the table, one can see that while the Top-10 companies in terms of revenue are mainly representatives of the energy and automotive sectors; the top 10 companies in terms of profit there are mainly representatives of the financial and technology sectors, then the Top-10 companies in terms of market capitalization are represented by digital high-tech companies, the most striking Industry 4.0 representatives. At the same time, there are a number of companies (Saudi Aramco, Exxon Mobile, Apple, Alphabet), which are presented in several ratings at once. At the same time, the leading rating companies are registered in the member countries and partners of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

The study also revealed the following pattern – the place of most countries and OECD partners in terms of gross domestic product (GDP) by the level of gross domestic product per capita is closely related to the level of innovation and the level of education, which indicates the dependence of these indicators. In cases where these values do not coincide, in general, the largest deviation arises in terms of GDP per capita, which is possible with a heterogeneous population in OECD countries and partners (Table II) [4–6].

 

Table 2. Dependence of the GDP level per capita of the population on the education level and the global innovation index

Country

Place of a country in ranking

GDP per capita

The level of education

Global Innovation Index

Australia

12

8

23

Austria

8

18

20

Belgium

13

15

27

United Kingdom

16

11

5

Hungary

30

31

39

Germany

11

9

9

Greece

31

35

44

Denmark

9

3

6

Israel

21

17

17

Ireland

2

12

10

Iceland

7

13

13

Spain

22

27

28

Italy

20

29

29

Canada

14

9

18

Korea

23

20

11

Latvia

32

29

33

Luxembourg

1

27

12

Mexico

35

61

58

Netherlands

6

8

3

New Zealand

19

7

21

Norway

4

5

19

Poland

29

28

38

Portugal

27

35

31

Slovakia

25

31

34

Slovenia

26

19

32

USA

5

6

4

Turkey

33

61

43

Finland

15

11

8

France

18

21

15

Czech Republic

24

22

24

Switzerland

3

8

1

Sweden

10

8

2

Estonia

28

18

25

Japan

17

19

14

Brazil

36

67

69

China

-

69

22

The Russian Federation

34

35

45

Moreover, if we consider the Top-3 clusters according to the Global Innovation Index, presented in patent and scientific activities, then of particular interest are the collaborations between clusters, universities and other companies that can achieve a synergistic effect (Table III) [7].

 

Table 3. Top-3 clusters by global innovation index version representated in patent and scientific activity, 2019.

Place

Name

Scientific publications

PCT procedure applications

Field

Share,

%

Partnership organization

Field

Share,

%

Partnership organization

1

Tokyo -Yokohama

Physics

9,22

University of Tokyo (13,82%)

Electricity and equipment

9,86

Mitsubishi Electric (7,83%)

2

 Shenzhen -Hong Kong

Engineering

10,81

University of Hong Kong (17,23%)

Digital communications

38,39

Huawei

(25,76%)

3

Seoul

Engineering

7,53

Seoul National University (16,10%)

Digital communications

16,63

LG

Electronics

(18,71%)

 

In this regard, for successful operation of companies in the era of Industry 4.0, it is necessary not only to follow the traditional methods of production and sale of goods and services, but also to carry out the following activities [8]:

  • to attract new talents and build the necessary skills and competencies for the company;
  • to get practice on working with integrated contracts, create joint innovative enterprises, including with higher education institutions;
  • to effectively introduce new approaches to innovation and to integrate new technologies into existing work processes;
  • to develop suitable options for using digital models, as well as to apply additional technologies that will be more financially attractive;
  • to study market changes and hedge risks to identify new products and services, as well as the most competitive market segments;
  • to include comprehensive change management programs, flexible organizational structures and flexible working methods in its activities.

It can also be noted that the role of education and universities is growing all over the world, which are also undergoing changes:

  • universities are more active in collaborating with high-tech companies, as they are forced to look for alternative sources of financing. In turn, enterprises thus reduce the volume of independent basic research in favor of cooperation with universities in the framework of projects that are important for their competitiveness;
  • to increase their competitive advantages, universities are becoming a platform for the concentration of world experience, including through the development of projects for the implementation and commercialization of the knowledge created;
  • to meet modern trends, universities integrate formal and non-formal education, create creative spaces and inter-university sites, and also use the project approach, personalization and digitalization in education;
  • universities are gradually moving from a functioning model 1.0 to a model 4.0 (Fig. 1) [9, 10].
  •  

Fig. 1. Model of transition from University 1.0 to University 4.0

 

III. Results of research

Due to the fact that at present it is possible to compare the duration of the technology life cycle and the duration of higher education, there is a threat of disappearance or partial changes in the professions for which training is currently being conducted. One of the problems preventing Russian universities from becoming leaders in world education is their strong conservatism, the rigidity of normative regulation of educational activities, as well as the practical lack of a student-centered approach in building curricula and personal educational routes. Among other things, there is low integration with industrial enterprises, with the exception of basic departments from enterprises that are located in a number of universities, including the Southern federal university.

In order to solve these problems, as well as for closer interaction between business and education in the era of Industry 4.0 and Russia's integration into the system of world economic relations, it is necessary to solve the following main tasks:

  • to improve the system of regulatory, organizational and informational mechanisms for the formation and implementation of such integration activities;
  • to create an integrated system of transition to the University 4.0 model based on interagency cooperation;
  • to provide the needs of enterprises with the necessary personnel through the joint work of enterprises and universities;
  • to prepare the professional development of personnel;
  • to implement measures for career guidance on the basis of socio-economic information about the prospects for the development of regional economies, which will also allow for the search, selection and development of talents.

In Russia, the interaction of the University 4.0 (meaning such a university that combines consortia and clusters between higher education institutions with enterprises of the real sector of the economy) and Industry 4.0 is possible through the inclusion of the National Technological Initiative, the Agency for Strategic Initiatives, national projects, as well as national programs (for example, Digital Economics and Digital Industry).

Thus, a synergistic effect can be achieved, which will allow to develop the competitive advantages of all interacting parties (Fig. 2).

 

Fig. 2. Interaction between University 4.0 and Industry 4.0

 

Also among the projects currently available in this direction, the following can be distinguished:

  1. The inclusion of the Russian Federation in an international organization that promotes vocational, technical and service-oriented education and training WorldSkills. Among the main projects, the following can be distinguished: holding championships for young specialists, creating specialized centers of competence, creating centers of advanced professional training.
  2. Implementation of the project “Professional training 2.0”, in this case the employers offer students to find solutions to real problems in various fields. Among them, in particular, business, tourism, education, medicine and other areas. Students, in turn, will be able to choose the direction of interest and write a scientific work. Those who successfully complete the proposed task will be invited to an internship or even to work.
  3. Creation of world-class scientific and educational centers. The union of educational institutions of higher education and scientific organizations, regardless of their departmental affiliation, with organizations of the real sector of the economy that conduct research of a world level, the result of which is the receipt of new competitive technologies and products and their commercialization, carrying out training of specialists for large-scale scientific and technological tasks in the interests of developing branches of science and technology according to the priorities of scientific and technological development of the Russian Federation.
  4. Intensification of interaction between institutions of higher education, scientific, commercial and non-profit enterprises. The idea of cooperation between commercial organizations and universities receives a large number of supporters, since it allows to solve many issues, including questions of the demand for graduates, which is also an important aspect when choosing an educational institution.

To train well-educated and qualified personnel for Industry 4.0, a developed system of vocational education is necessary, based on technology transfer and the exchange of innovative culture between universities and Companies through joint participation in clusters (for example, the Tourism Cluster of Rostov Region, “Southern Constellation” cluster with the participation of Southern Federal University), the joint use of intellectual property (through the participation in the activities of the Center for Collective Use of South Federal University), work in the framework of employer-sponsored education (including the provision of practical training and internships, the use of simulation training methods, the provision of practice-oriented cases, the participation of a company representatives in the educational process, professional accreditation of educational programs, etc.), the participation of companies in university events (including professional tournaments, Hackathons, Forums) [11].

IV. Conclusions

Thus, we can conclude that in the modern global and digital world, the competitive advantages associated with the abilities, capabilities and speed of self-development of countries, organizations and people come to the fore.

In the Industry 4.0 and the transition of higher education institutions to the University 4.0 model, the role of the university is being strengthened from the position of integrator of scientific, educational and industrial environments, the boundaries between professional and academic spheres become less obvious, as well as formal and non-formal education begin to blur while personalization of education strengthens. Thus, education and business should become inseparable for this period and unite efforts to train personnel for the modern economy.

About the authors

Elena K. Zashchitina

Southern Federal University

Author for correspondence.
Email: ekzashitina@sfedu.ru

Russian Federation, Rostov-on-Don

Pavel V. Pavlov

Southern Federal University

Email: ppavlov@sfedu.ru

Russian Federation, Rostov-on-Don

References

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  4. Humanitarian Technologies Analytical Portal - UNIVERSITAS 21: 2016 ranking of national higher education systems. Availiable at: http://gtmarket.ru/news/2016/08/25/7298 (Acsessed: 05.10.2019) (in Russian).
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  8. Future Scenarios and Implications for the Industry // Sait World Economic Worum. Availiable at: http://www3.weforum.org/docs/Future_Scenarios_Implications_Industry_report_2018.pdf (Acsessed: 06.10.2019).
  9. Pavel Pavlov, Elena Zashchitina, Sebastian Bakalarczyk. Successes and failures of modern companies in the Industry 4.0 // Wybrane problemy zarzadzania rozwojem organizacji w przemyśle 4.0 / Redakcja naukowa Stefan Lachiewicz I Sylwia Flaszewska / Monografie Politechniki Łódzkiej, Łódź, 2019. PP. 87-108.
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  11. Zashchitina E.K., Bondarev M.G., Pavlov P.V., Pavlov A.Y. Collaboration between universities and university-business cooperation as a factor of growth in education exports in the context of import substitution. 2017 IEEE VI Forum Strategic Partnership of Universities and Enterprises of Hi-Tech Branches (Science. Education. Innovations) (SPUE), 15-17 Nov. 2017. Pp. 185-188.

Supplementary files

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Fig. 1. Model of transition from University 1.0 to University 4.0

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Fig. 2. Interaction between University 4.0 and Industry 4.0

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