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Skip to 0 minutes and 4 seconds Hello, everyone. My name is Vicky Li, and I am a lecturer in Business Informatics. Before I introduce Digital Leadership in China, I would like to say some figures. There are more than 700 million internet users in China. And according to a larger social media platform, WeChat, there are already more than 500 million who use a mobile phone to connect each other. So this is a big market of technology. If we could make use of the technology with a related industry, like transportation, like agriculture, and also finance and health care, there will be a huge potential for us to boost our economy. The Chinese government actually is a very good example of a digital leader in the current digital economy.

Skip to 0 minutes and 51 seconds So, this year, the Chinese government has approved a strategy called Internet Plus action. So this is actually a strategy for the next five years. The government has put the priority of using technology. So this Internet Plus action is about the new model of the industry based on the evolution of the ICT technology. The main idea and purpose is to integrate the internet and digital technology into the traditional industry, for example, energy, agriculture, logistics, and finance, as well as health care and et cetera, more traditional industries, trying to upgrade them by marrying them with the new technologies.

Skip to 1 minute and 41 seconds That means the technology has to penetrate not only the service industry, but also the first and the secondary industry, like raw material industry and also manufacturing industry. However, this action plan is not just simply add the internet into the traditional industry. It is actually trying to make a chemistry process for the new business model and new application and the new technologies. So the government has been trying to build the ecosystem for the digital innovation across the whole country. So there are several specific steps for the Chinese government. The first thing they’re trying to do is to lower the barriers of the digital innovation of the products into the market.

Skip to 2 minutes and 32 seconds And also they have linked the closer corporations with the universities and the research institutions and also trying to accelerate the transformation to the knowledge of that digital innovation into the market, into a real product. We have like increased the R&D investment as well. So in the past five years, the R&D investment has been doubled. So now it is more than $300 billion of R&D in the whole country. So all of the investment and the capital have already stimulated a lot of innovation, especially digital innovation in China. So nowadays, if you go to China, you will see that this technology has penetrated in every single corner of the country.

Skip to 3 minutes and 23 seconds So, for example, if you go to even a very small grocery store, or if you want to buy a bottle of water from a vending machine, you don’t have to insert coins or cash in the vending machine. You can just as simply scan the QR code on your mobile phone and then you could pay it. So we can say this is how the technology has penetrated to every single part of life of the people and also the working processes in China. The main purpose of the Internet Plus action plan, is to make the industry better meet the market needs.

Skip to 4 minutes and 0 seconds So in China, the digital technology has been used actually like a strategic weapon to use digital technology to boost the economy. And I believe this will have also a good positive impact on the global economy. So you will see the whole country is going digital and the way of working, the way of doing business, is going smarter and this is how digital leadership helps to transform the new way of working, living, and communicating across China.

An international perspective

In this video, Vicky Weizi Li, describes the digital landscape in China and the potential this offers for national economic growth and development. Vicky gives an overview of the Government scheme ‘Internet plus action’; a 5 year strategy prioritising the utilisation of new technologies in traditional industries.

Now that you’ve heard more about the digital leadership in China, can you think of any large scale schemes to promote digital leadership in other countries across the world? Share these examples in the comment section below.

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This video is from the free online course:

Digital Leadership: Creating Value Through Technology

University of Reading