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The Fourth Industrial Revolution is upon us. New digital technologies are fast transforming how companies interact with customers, innovate new products and services, and compete in today’s fast-changing business environment.

And the stakes are high: It is estimated that companies in the industrial sector alone will invest $907 billion annually in digitization initiatives through 2020.1

To gain perspective on the coming transformation and how it will affect business and investment decisions around the world, Barclays hosted the Women in Business Forum in November.

Called “Future Forward,” the forum, held in New York City, featured leading economists, technologists, company leaders and investors discussing a range of issues central to the rapid shift toward increasingly digital business models  – some of whom expanded on their thinking in video interviews during the event.

Beth Comstock on keeping your company agile

Beth Comstock, former Vice Chair of GE, offered thoughts on how to create agile companies: “Start small, experiment, de-risk your capabilities and then you'll feel much more confident leaning into the change that you need to make happen.”

Adena Friedman on the market’s high tech future

Nasdaq’s President and CEO discussed how several new technologies – including artificial intelligence and blockchain – will define the future of capital markets, warning, “We have to make sure we are always relying on both man and machine to create investment decisions.”

Megan Smith on nurturing innovation

The former United States CTO argued for nourishing a tech-savvy workforce to support both the public and private sectors: “It's very important that those in the legislative branch have digitally fluent people in the room with them.”

Industry 4.0: Building the Digital Enterprise,” PwC, 2016 (PDF, 3.1MB) 

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