Study Tour

Study Tour: Virtual Elective

This year, we're undertaking a research project into The Industrialization of Technology. We use this term to mean the shift of a technology from a world of product competition to one of commodities and operational competition. This shift has a known set of impacts, including the co-evolution of practice that enables new needs to be met and new forms of industry, organization and behaviour to emerge. We've all seen this before with the advent of the world wide web evolving to the introduction of the cloud. There are many new waves heading towards us.

Of course, we also have other factors at play. COVID-19 is acting as a forcing function in many cases, forcing us to adapt, change and accelerate our plans for digital change. For LEF, this has meant a fundamental change to the way we run events and Study Tours. To explain, let’s illustrate this with a Wardley Map (Figure 1).

Figure 1 – A Map of Events

Figure 1 – A Map of Events

  • [A] We have users that want to attend events and businesses (such as LEF) that want to provide them. Those events typically utilize a physical space.
  • [B] For some time, we have had the ability to provide events in a more industrialized form i.e. a virtual space. However, we’ve had inertia to that change because of past success at running events, any assets that we have built up and our own beliefs in social needs [C] – the need to meet and greet, to shake hands.
  • [D] We’ve known for some time that eventually it would shift creating new practices, new ways of running events, a mix of augmented reality and different types of interaction. When it shifts, capital will flow to those new ways and we would have to shift as well.
  • [E] COVID-19 is acting as a forcing function, creating a need for physical isolation. It’s that which has shifted our attitude and our own inertia to change. It’s not that the technology is new, it’s simply we’ve needed to change our attitude towards it and how we execute events.

So, we are faced with two choices. We either stand still and hope that after the pandemic then everything will go back to how it was, or we adapt and change. Some time ago, we chose to adapt.

Originally scheduled for September 2020, we’ve delayed the Study Tour until 2021 because we believe that, circumstances allowing, it is important and unique to keep the physical aspects of this immersive experience, such as meeting exemplar companies and creating a tight-knit network of people who are learning together. We are working on the basis that travel restrictions due to the pandemic will have eased by then but will further adapt if appropriate.

LEF Study Tours are guided by our research, and in the run up to the tour we will augment the research by creating a Study Tour Virtual Elective, facilitating a series of working groups and virtual immersive sessions to cover the theme of industrialization.

Five working groups will address specific technologies we anticipate may industrialize further – robotics, space, immersion, sensors and manufacturing. Another five working groups will look into the impact on industries – healthcare, defence, government, automotive and finance. And an additional group will examine the impact of forcing functions, such as COVID-19, across all the groups. This won’t be our last crisis.

With the working groups and our Study Tour host companies, we will set the scene during the Virtual Elective, creating a set of interviews, discussions and panels running from September 2020 to February 2021.

We’ll kick off on Tuesday 1 September 2020 with Simon Wardley and Dave Reid giving an overview of the tour and an update on the research findings to date. This will be followed by a virtual session every two weeks, keeping up the pace by examining a new technology or industry in each session until our final panel discussion on 16 February 2021 which will look at the isolation economy and what’s next. At which point (fingers crossed), we will be ready to head off on the Study Tour.

This programme is designed for leaders who are responsible for strategy and steering the future within their organizations. This includes COOs, CIOs, CTOs and heads of strategy, as well as sourcing leaders responsible for technology acquisition.

The outcome of attending will be an understanding of the technologies and industries that are likely to industrialize over the next decade, what it means for your organization, decisions that will need to be made, and the knowledge to make them.

So, hold the dates and join us on this journey.

We’ll kick off on Tuesday 1 September 2020 with Simon Wardley and Dave Reid giving an overview of the tour and an update on the research findings to date. This will be followed by a virtual session every two weeks, keeping up the pace by examining a new technology or industry in each session until our final panel discussion on 16 February 2021 which will look at the isolation economy and what’s next. At which point (fingers crossed), we will be ready to head off on the Study Tour.

Tue
1 September 2020: Tour Introduction

Simon Wardley and Dave Reid, LEF.

Tue
29 September 2020: Tech Session - Manufacturing - MakerBot

MakerBot

Tue
27 October 2020: Tech Session - Sensors - BrainCo

BrainCo

Tue
10 November 2020: Tech session - Immersive - Sixense

SIxense

Tue
8 December 2020: Tech Session - Space - Planet Labs

More information to be posted shortly.

Tue
5 January 2021: Tech Session - Robotics - Amazon

Amazon

Tue
19 January 2021: Industry Session - Defense 

More information to be posted shortly.

Tue
2 February 2021: Industry Session - Automotive 

More information to be posted shortly.

Tue
9 February 2021: Industry Session - Financial Services

More information to be posted shortly.

Tue
16 February 2021: Industry Session – Healthcare

More information to be posted shortly.

Tue
23 February 2021: Industry Session – Government

More information to be posted shortly.

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