Jan van Houtte is the Vice President for Barco’s Learning Experience business unit. He works towards helping enterprises, business schools, and universities with the digitalisation and transformation of their training and education programmes. Jan believes in the power of technology to help faculty and trainers to increase engagement in their courses and training and to enable new and transformational use cases. Before leading the Learning Experience business unit, Jan held multiple product management positions in Barco and Philips.
As lifelong learning becomes more and more important for working adults who want to succeed in today´s ever-changing, competitive world, business schools must adapt their way of teaching to fulfil learners’ needs. Jan listed below some key considerations to reflect on, on the journey to designing optimal lifelong learning environments for adult learners.
“Lifelong learning, as stated in one of our previous articles, complements traditional formal education. It refers to the self-development of an individual and the accumulation of new knowledge and skills on a continuous basis. It can be an initiative for personal development, such as exploring a new hobby or for professional development – a key component of accelerating or changing one´s career trajectory.”
“When talking about lifelong learning in a formal context, we talk about adult learning which differs from the classic child-teacher interaction in learning. Andragogy, or adult learning theory, is the term we use to refer to the methods and principles used in adult education and is based on the premise that adults learn differently than children. Hence, adult learners have their own specific needs, which should be considered when developing programmes,” said Jan.
Jan also advocates using technology as a tool powering pedagogy, driven by learning objectives and desired outcomes. It is about being open, innovative and thinking of new, better ways of learning. The modern times we are living and working in require methods to adapt and be more flexible, more varied, easily accessible and interactive.
Learn by doing
Rather than listening to lectures and memorising theoretical content, adult learners require a different kind of learning environment. They need to be involved in direct experiences through active participation and engagement. According to the adult learning theory, adults learn best by doing. They benefit most from experiential learning strategies, like case studies and simulations. These offer them the opportunity to step away from abstract concepts and gain the problem-solving knowledge and skills to deal with real-life cases.
Time and resources
Adults often have neither the time nor the need to engage in extended formal learning experiences. They have jobs, families and a long list of responsibilities and obligations. For them, education is preferably an activity that they can easily fit into their hectic schedules. That’s why flexible, virtual, hybrid or blended learning are modes that work best for this category of learners. Additionally, a user-friendly uncomplicated learning environment is preferable.
No tabula rasa
For adults, it is important to be recognised for who they are: individual human beings with a lifetime of experiences and a vast array of acquired skills and talents to draw on. No tabula rasa. It means that instruction should consider this wide range of backgrounds and multiple learning styles. Effective learning for adults recognises and capitalises on the knowledge they bring to the table. How? Via interactivity, active participation and autonomy. Therefore, teaching methods must be adapted.
The future of lifelong learning is increasingly flexible and digital
Added to the complexities of adult learning is the digital acceleration because of the COVID-19 pandemic, which had a subsequent impact on the delivery and format of learning. Participants have now seen that learning can take place just as well outside the traditional classroom, standard hours or usual content formats.
In a 2020 journal article Bodo Schlegelmilch (Marketing Professor at WU Vienna and Chair at AMBA & BGA) states that ´we are witnessing a digital paradigm shift, which has vastly increased knowledge about the requirements of potential students, enabled the development of highly customised content, and widened the options for delivering learning material to students´.
He continues, adding that individuals ´want to learn wherever (e.g., on board a plane), however (e.g., by playing a business game), and whenever (e.g., at 2 a.m.) it best fits their individual needs. They also want to learn to be a stimulating and enjoyable experience. Commuting to a business school located somewhere in a city, struggling to find a parking space, and listening to a traditional lecture hardly fit this picture, said Bodo Schlegelmilch.
Considering the specific needs of adult learners and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on education, business schools must adapt their offering and facilitate lifelong learning in a flexible and digital learning environment.
How can business schools facilitate lifelong learning?
Business schools can successfully facilitate lifelong learning by designing flexible and varied learning paths alongside the traditional MBA and master’s programmes, paths that adults enrolling into programmes beyond their student years can realistically attend.
“At Barco, we consider the best option to be blended learning programmes. Blended learning means combining live-virtual sessions, in-class sessions and self-paced learning tools – multimedia or analog. There are two important aspects coming into view: flexibility and variety. For lifelong learners, the live sessions, whether virtual or onsite, should have a flexible schedule, from lunch-break sessions to evenings or weekends. Overall, learning should be varied in terms of activities and content: live discussions, quizzes and polls, live group work, short videos, slides or e-books – the possibilities are endless,” adds Jan.
Offering varied delivery and content methods in a structured manner can improve attention and retention for the participants. But such paths not only have a positive impact on the learner but also on the schools.
The advantages of integrating virtual solutions in lifelong learning programmes
There are many advantages to initiatives that drive flexible and diverse lifelong learning programmes in business schools, giving way to a wealth of possibilities.
- Diverse pool of students
Thanks to education technology solutions, business schools are able to expand farther than ever, teaching to a global pool of students and giving access to new segments of learners. It will no longer matter where a student is geographically, but academically. It will help bring together into one virtual classroom the best talents worldwide.
As learning keeps transcending more borders, the location of business schools will matter less. Their brand and reputation will have to precede it to stay ahead of the competition. Offering flexible and varied programmes directed at adult learners will present them as innovative institutions and increase their chances of a thriving future.
The ability to collect data from education technology tools will help teachers understand how well a course is being assimilated by participants. Gathering data opens the door to a more personalised learning journey and engagement analytics can improve students’ performance, the teachers’ efficiency, and the overall learning experience.
- Sustainability & social responsibility
Enabling virtual methods for lifelong adult learners supports sustainability and social responsibility – two important values in modern society. Virtual methods will lower the carbon footprint of the schools, decrease costs for schools and learners, and make learning more inclusive due to its improved availability.
Barco weConnect supports business schools in their lifelong learning strategy
Barco supports the initiative of business schools to offer successful lifelong learning programmes in an optimal learning environment. The Barco weConnect virtual classroom solution is suitable for both distance and hybrid teaching and learning, hence perfect for the flexible approach required by today´s adult learners. It offers a front-row experience to every participant, enabling fast and effective information acquirement. Participants can share content, break out into working groups, vote in polls and respond to quizzes. They will enjoy an engaging, interactive experience, across any device.
Jan states that one of the main advantages Barco is particularly proud of is that weConnect enables two-way engagement. The solution enables open-line discussions in a moderated, controlled and meaningful way. The healthcare market is extremely demanding, and the selection of weConnect shows the robustness of the Barco solution. In general, he notices an increased interest in Barco’s weConnect. These changing times are an accelerator for virtual classrooms.
“The data and analytics provided by Barco WeConnect will help adjust pedagogical methods, optimise future classes and overall enhance learning outcomes,” concludes Jan.
Join one of BARCO’s demo sessions or read more about how the Barco weConnect solution can enable successful learning experiences in your business school.
The Joint Committee Meeting (JCM) on Information and Communications Co-operation between the Government of the Republic of Singapore and the Government of Malaysia had a strong digital theme. Both countries discussed digital transformation efforts and explored areas where bilateral digital cooperation could advance post-pandemic recovery.
Both parties discussed issues relating to enabling trusted data flows between the two countries, and to better connecting the respective innovation and technology ecosystems to support businesses and start-ups. In addition, both are committed to implementing projects to demonstrate the benefits of cooperation in this rapidly developing digital domain to support the recovery of our respective economies.
In addition, the JCM also discussed how media production, distribution and consumption are being disrupted by technologies and online platforms, including growing volumes of information and the rapid spread of falsehoods.
The JCM is a platform of increasing importance, to deepen the bilateral cooperation between Singapore and Malaysia. The pandemic has driven many companies to digitally transform and seize new opportunities. Through the JCM, we have initiated meaningful digital cooperation projects to increase the adoption and interoperability of digital technologies in both countries. Our collaboration will serve as a springboard to enhance connectivity between our businesses and people and to support our recovery from the pandemic.
– Yong Ying-I, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Communications and Information of Singapore
Malaysia continues to embrace digital technology and develop unique technologies and business models to assist the country in establishing new development engines. With the growth of the digital economy, the Fourth Industrial Revolution, and ever-evolving technology, Malaysia looks forward to exploring potential collaboration in this sector in the future. Malaysia is stepping up efforts to assist Micro, Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSMEs) and business owners in adopting digital technology, and will continue to advance plans to establish an inclusive and progressive digital economy for all.
Malaysia has a sustainable and solid economic foundation, comprehensive business-ready environment and dynamic skilled workforce. As an attractive cost-competitive investment location in the region, she is fast becoming a preferred centre for shared services and leading technology industries. Singaporean companies who are looking to expand into Malaysia should pay attention to the launch of the Future 5 Strategy, and evaluate how their businesses can fit into this plan in order to anchor a foothold into the market.
The five industry sectors that have been identified as key drivers are AgTech, HealthTech, Islamic Digital Economy and FinTech, CleanTech and EduTech. These industries are based on the strategic national industries for digitalisation and have also been mapped to Malaysia’s national priority sectors.
As reported by OpenGov Asia, Singapore and the Republic of Korea (ROK) have also launched negotiations on a new Korea-Singapore Digital Partnership Agreement (KSDPA) last year. The agreement seeks to deepen bilateral cooperation in new emerging digital areas, such as in personal data protection and cross-border data flows, digital identities, fintech, as well as Artificial Intelligence (AI) governance frameworks. It also aims to support and foster greater collaboration between both countries’ SME communities in the digital economy.
Recently, Singapore and ROK have concluded negotiations on the Korea-Singapore Digital Partnership Agreement (KSDPA). The KSDPA will be Singapore’s fourth Digital Economy Agreement (DEA), and the first with an Asian country. The agreement will deepen bilateral cooperation in the digital economy between both countries, by establishing forward-looking digital trade rules and norms to promote interoperability between digital systems. This will enable more seamless cross-border data flows and build a trusted and secure digital environment for our businesses and consumers.
The KSDPA is part of a series of DEAs that Singapore has embarked upon. These agreements are an inter-agency effort led by the Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ministry of Communications and Information, and the Infocomm Media Development Authority, to advance collaboration in the digital economy and enhance digital connectivity.
Cross-border e-commerce has become an important driving force for stabilising China’s foreign trade and played a positive role in helping small and medium-sized enterprises hedge against the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The import and export volume of China’s cross-border e-commerce totalled Yuan 1.98 trillion (US$ 311.5 billion) in 2021, up 15% year-on-year. E-commerce exports stood at Yuan 1.44 trillion, an increase of 24.5% on a yearly basis. As a new form of foreign trade, cross-border e-commerce has witnessed rapid growth in China by making full use of its advantages in online trading and contactless delivery since the pandemic outbreak.
Digital transformation has emerged as a key pathway to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on traditional trade. More enterprises have attached great importance to cross-border e-commerce as it becomes a vital channel for foreign trade enterprises to open up new markets. Cross-border e-commerce breaks time and geographical barriers and enhances the digital management capacities of enterprises.
Digital tools and digital transformation are the key factors for global micro, small and medium-sized enterprises or MSMEs to survive and thrive in the unpredictable COVID-19 era. Relying on the resiliency of China’s supply chain, a leading Chinese cross-border B2B e-commerce platform has empowered global MSMEs with some capabilities like more data flow, a deeper understanding of customer demand as well as a more tailor-made product portfolio to help them succeed in the challenging business environment.
Relying on the resiliency of China’s supply chain, the platform has empowered global MSMEs with some capabilities like more data flow, a deeper understanding of customer demand as well as a more tailor-made product portfolio to help them succeed in the challenging business environment.
Cross-border e-commerce has become an important channel for China’s foreign trade during the pandemic period and accelerated the innovative development of foreign trade. The outbreak has posed a challenge to logistics and distribution. China’s cross-border e-commerce logistics companies have made efforts to ensure the timely delivery of commodities through charter flights and overseas warehouses.
Shopping via overseas live streaming services could offer detailed information about products to domestic consumers. Such services have gained wide popularity among the younger generation. There is an inevitable trend that more cross-border online retailers will cooperate with live streaming platforms.
New business forms and models, especially cross-border e-commerce, have become a vibrant force driving China’s foreign trade. They also represent an important trend in the development of international trade. China’s cross-border e-commerce has grown by nearly 10 times over the past five years. By both exports and imports, cross-border e-commerce has been expanding much faster than overall foreign trade, and its share in overall foreign trade has gone up significantly.
As reported by OpenGov Asia, Chinese President Xi Jinping pledged to support the development of key technologies while strengthening the regulation of the country’s tech giants as part of his strategy to expand the digital economy. The country needs to boost innovation in core technologies and step up research capabilities to achieve self-sufficiency as soon as possible. China also called for an acceleration in the development of high-speed, secure smart infrastructure that can connect all aspects of the online economy as well as for breakthroughs in key software technologies.
China has identified the digital economy as a key driver for growth over the next few decades and made achieving tech self-sufficiency a top national priority. To support that growth, Beijing has doubled down on funding for strategically important industries such as semiconductors and AI, while rolling out new legislation covering everything from data security to fair competition as part of efforts to bring the country’s once free-wheeling internet giants in line with the national agenda.
When it comes to digital democracy, democracy is the main idea, and digital is just an objective to assist democracy. Around the world, there is the other way of ideas that somehow democracy must give way to the public health measures, to counter disinformation measures. However, technology needs to adapt to the people’s will and the people’s norms, and people’s co-creation and real needs.
In authoritarian uses of technology, the main difficulty would be because of the lack of symmetrical communication. The real-time feedback of what is really going on is hampered. For example, if you can only download, it is more like television. If you can only download but there’s no way to upload, then emerging issues do not tend to get notified in time.
– Audrey Tang, Digital Minister of Taiwan
In Taiwan, the system has been successful in hearing younger people. A lot of the most impactful ideas came from very young people. To shorten the time that a genuinely good idea gets thought by a teenager or young people, and the time that it is understood by the senior people and implemented, is key to moving democracy forward. The younger people, because they are digital natives, they do not think that once every four years is sufficient to upload bandwidth, the latency is too high, they prefer to collaborate on a day-to-day basis.
When the coronavirus began spreading, Taiwan quickly established a mask map system that let people know if they could obtain masks if they went to certain pharmacies. The mask availability map was an idea from the civic technologists, not the government’s idea.
First, they already have a lot of experience building maps of this kind. All sorts of disaster response experiences, including earthquakes, typhoons, gas explosions, occupying of departments, various disasters, were met with this kind of real-time, map-based response by the civic tech people. The second reason is that people are very much willing to participate, because in Taiwan broadband is a human right. So, participating online does not cost any extra connectivity, money, for people.
In Taiwan, when people check-in the public venues, everyone chooses either to scan the QR code and send an SMS to 1922 (Taiwan’s 24-hour communicable disease reporting hotline), which is stored in their telecommunications carrier. But the venue owner learns nothing about their phone number. And the telecom carrier learns nothing about the venue code. de-centralized storage makes sure that nobody’s privacy gets compromised because the telecoms do not know what those digits mean.
There are two main reasons why Taiwan has changed from a very conservative to a democratic society. One is that the public service is really committed to working with the civil society leaders when it comes to gender mainstreaming in the gender equality committee to build the impact assessment, evidence-based projects together. And the civil society leaders always have one more vote than the ministers in the Gender Equality Committee.
The second reason is that the statistics, the dashboard, the gender impact dashboard just keep running. So even after the budgeted project runs its course, the gender impact it created is still being monitored for more than a decade for some projects now. Civil society is not just demonstrating against or protesting against something, it is demonstrating for something, demonstrating something works, and working with the people.
As reported by OpenGov Asia, Taiwan encouraged other nations to consider Taiwan’s example of open digital development and privacy safeguards in countering digital authoritarianism and affirming democratic values. To elaborate on the tools Taiwan has used to foster transparency and public trust, the key is to work not only for the people but with the people.
When it comes to remote learning, students often feel they are struggling alone. Studying in a community can address this, but it is not easy to create a sense of togetherness in a remote learning environment. Hence, the Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) has introduced an innovative approach to help students find belonging amidst the pandemic.
Every individual has their own approach to learning. A surface learner, for example, mainly cares about achieving a grade or impressing someone, not about educational growth. The university can then provide personalised materials based on their learning profile to help them develop learning approaches suitable for higher education. For example, these could help a surface learner look past material achievements and learn for their personal growth.
Students at SIT have to complete the Freshmen Survey when joining the university to find out what kind of learner they are through a gamified platform named AdventureLEARN. Personalising the recommendation of educational content to a student’s profile and needs helps them to learn more effectively. Students have a limited attention span, so this window of time should be spent focusing on key areas.
– Associate Professor May Lim, Director, Centre for Learning Environment and Assessment Development, SIT
A learning community can be built while personalising online learning. A good example is QUEST – a platform featuring adaptive online courses. The platform helps SIT students get up to speed in core competencies such as Math, Physics, and Chemistry in preparation for university courses.
QUEST helps students through hints and advice indicated in pop-ups while they are answering questions. Learning with real-time feedback is a new method of education, complementing traditional methods such as watching short video lectures. Students are also provided with an online collaborative space to learn from one another. Working together can help reduce procrastination, which is a common challenge in remote learning.
Technology offers a range of other benefits on top of collaborative work and personalised information. Through AdventureLEARN, students earn virtual coins by completing assignments. Students can take part in team challenges as well, in which four to five students work as a group. Together, they can watch videos, collaborate to create learning resources or provide useful tips for well-being to earn more virtual coins.
applying ‘high tech’ alone is insufficient to transform education in this current climate. ‘High touch’ is needed for students to feel connected and supported. SIT believes in building a culture and an ecosystem where academic staff are equipped with skills to coach students effectively. While the e-learning platforms can help students personalise their learning and learn new concepts, the ‘high touch’ from academic staff is vital for supporting students who may be at-risk or struggling.
Analytics from e-learning platforms can help spot students who are struggling. By identifying coachable moments, SIT educators can reach out to such students to coach them on goals such as effective time management, improving group dynamics or better learning approaches. With high tech and high touch, a learning community can be built to facilitate effective learning for the future.
As reported by OpenGov Asia, students enrolling in the Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) can now sign up for two new courses in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and digital supply chain. The Bachelor of Science in Applied Artificial Intelligence (AAI) and Digital Supply Chain (DSC) being launched in the new academic year are three-year direct honours programmes. AAI emphasises implementing artificial intelligence (AI) within software systems, while DSC focuses on emerging technologies in the digital transformation of the logistics and supply chain sector.
The digital economy is expected to play a bigger role in bolstering China’s high-quality development and accelerating digital transformation and upgrading traditional industries. Innovative digital technologies like big data, cloud computing and Artificial Intelligence are increasingly being integrated into all other sectors of economic and social development. This trend is injecting new impetus into global economic recovery as well.
By 2025, China will establish a market system for data elements and see the digital transformation of industries reach a new level. Moreover, digital public services will become more inclusive and a sound governance system for the digital economy will be established.
Facilitating the growth of the digital economy is of vital importance to cultivate new driving forces, boost high-quality and innovation-driven development and effectively address the unbalanced development in society. Technologies like big data, cloud computing, AI and the internet of things are evolving fast and finding a wide range of applications across industries and other economic sectors, speeding up their integration with the real economy
– Long Haibo, Senior Researcher, Development Research Center, State Council
China also needs more efforts to make breakthroughs in core and basic technologies, expand the industrial application scenarios of leading technologies as well as strengthen the protection of data security and personal information. China’s digital economy was worth nearly $5.4 trillion in 2020, up 9.6% year-on-year, ranking second in the world.
Moreover, the plan details key tasks in eight areas, including optimising and upgrading digital infrastructure, pushing forward the digital shift of enterprises and expanding international cooperation on the digital economy. It stresses enhancing innovation of key technologies in strategic and forward-looking fields like quantum information, network communications, integrated circuits, key software, big data, Artificial Intelligence (AI), blockchain and new materials, as well as fostering new business forms and models.
The emerging digital technologies represented by 5G, big data and AI have played a critical role in enhancing operational efficiency, cutting costs and improving the core competitiveness of traditional industries amid economic downward pressure. China’s intensified efforts to develop the digital economy will inject fresh impetus into the country’s economic growth and speed up digital and intelligent upgrades in enterprises. The in-depth integration of digital technologies with the real economy will further reinforce China’s advantages in global supply chains.
The digital economy has become a major driver of economic recovery amid the COVID-19 pandemic and network security provides a good foundation for boosting the digital economy. internet-driven companies should collaborate with traditional industries, and leverage their advantages in technologies, talent and capital to support the latter’s digital transformation.
As reported by OpenGov Asia, China will further promote the development of a digital economy during the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-25) period, according to a circular issued by the General Office of the State Council. By 2025, the digital economy should be in full expansion mode, with the added value of core industries in the digital economy accounting for 10% of GDP.
According to the plan, efforts will be made to accelerate the construction of the information network infrastructure, and a national-level integrated big data centre system coordinating computing power, algorithms, data, and application resources. High-quality data elements will be provided.
The plan also emphasised industrial digital transformation. To accelerate digital transformation and upgrading in enterprises, qualified large-scale enterprises will be encouraged to build integrated digital platforms. Efforts will also be made to deepen comprehensive digital transformation in key industries, including the all-around and full-chain digital transformation of traditional industries and higher digitisation level in the agricultural industry.
While data is an important factor in the digital economy, more effort should be made to bridge the digital divide to benefit more user groups. To be specific, we need to improve infrastructure construction and the sharing of computing power from leading companies to smaller ones
Vietnam Airline officially launched two e-commerce platforms VNAMAZING, VNAMALL as well as its Vietnam Airlines Gift Card. The services were unveiled on 7 January and are the first of their kind in the domestic aviation sector. VNAMAZING offers online tourism services including tour and accommodation bookings. VNAMALL provides a wide range of aviation and non-aviation goods and services. As these are the first e-commerce platforms run by an airline in Vietnam, they have significant advantages for the carrier’s air logistics and partner networks worldwide.
According to a report, the Vietnam Airlines Gift Card is a product available on VNAMALL, which can be used to exchange airline tickets or avail of business class upgrade benefits on flights operated by Vietnam Airlines, Pacific Airlines, and VASCO. The General Director of Vietnam Airlines, Le Hong Ha, noted that as the carrier aims to become a digital airline, it considers e-commerce development one of its top priorities.
Vietnam’s digital economy has been growing at the fastest pace in ASEAN, about 38% annually compared to the region’s average of 33% since 2015. The country expects the digital economy will make up 20% of its GDP and at least 10% in each sector. Recently, the Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade, Nguyen Sinh Nhat Tan, informed that local e-commerce has been thriving, playing an important role in economic development. E-commerce development is an inevitable trend in the country, and the COVID-19 pandemic has catalysed it.
As per the Vietnam E-commerce White Book, e-commerce expanded by 18% in 2020, reaching US$11.8 billion, making the country the only one in Southeast Asia to post a double-digit growth rate in this regard. Estimates by some major businesses indicate that the digital economy of Vietnam is likely to top US$52 billion, which would place the country third in ASEAN by 2025.
Amid the resurgence of COVID-19 in 2021, e-commerce proved to be an increasingly useful tool for enterprises. Local consumers are rapidly moving from traditional in-person shopping to online platforms. A survey by the Ministry of Industry and Trade showed that Vietnam had 49.3 million online shoppers in 2020, compared to 32.7 million in 2016. Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City are among the largest cities in terms of digital economic development in the region. In HCM City alone, there are currently 567 e-commerce platforms, over 20,680 websites, and 134 apps. Although the lingering COVID-19 pandemic has hindered the flow of goods, many e-commerce platforms and websites still posted fast growth.
Engagement in the online export-import system and stages of transboundary e-commerce will generate opportunities for Vietnamese firms to increase product quality, improve capacity, and make Vietnamese brands popular among consumers around the world. To help boost the sale of Vietnamese goods internationally, the Vietnam E-commerce and Digital Economy Agency (iDEA) has launched the Vietnam National Pavilion, a worldwide e-commerce platform. It has several industry partners and has formulated policies related to marketing, transport, and lending interest rates to support Vietnamese manufacturers that are carrying out the programme. The Ministry of Industry and Trade has been developing and applying an array of measures such as a certified e-contract authority, guaranteed payment infrastructure for e-commerce, and a platform for managing the e-commerce product flow.
Last November, the Prime Minister approved a plan to step up the application of IT and the development of digital transformation in trade promotion. Further, to create a legal framework for protecting consumers in the e-commerce market, the government issued a decree that amended and supplemented another on e-commerce released in 2013. According to the new decree, sellers must publicise information about products as well as business licences and related certificates when doing business on e-commerce platforms.
Apart from that, business activities on major social networks were also placed under management. The ASEAN Agreement on Electronic Commerce, which was signed in Hanoi in January 2019 and took effect in December 2021, set up common principles and rules for facilitating e-commerce development in the region and enhancing the rule enforcement capacity.
Aviation students at the University of South Australia will be training in cockpits of the two most popular jetliners in the world going forward. UniSA is due to take delivery of its second simulator this year – the Airbus A320 – allowing budding pilots to learn their way around a new cockpit, alongside the existing 737 flight simulator which is used for training undergraduate aviation students.
Bachelor of Aviation Program Director stated that the state-of-the-art Airbus A320 simulator, manufactured by a New Zealand firm, should be in place by mid-2022. He noted that for students to be able to train on both the Boeing 737 and Airbus 320 simulators is a very rare opportunity. To his knowledge, UniSA will be the only university in Australia offering both Boeing and Airbus based flight simulators as part of its undergraduate aviation experience.
The exposure to two very different simulators will give UniSA’s aviation graduates a competitive edge by aligning their competencies with the industry requirements. While flying these planes may only happen later in their career, the fact they have been trained in two different cockpit environments will give them a definite advantage.
Apart from training students to fly, the new simulator will also be used for research purposes, investigating how fatigue, lack of movement, and other aspects of human factors affect pilot performance.
UniSA also hopes to incorporate virtual and augmented reality into the simulator training. The software components of the new simulator are similar to the Boeing 737, but the hardware is a fully enclosed shell structure with a 180-degree visual range.
Approximately 100 Bachelor of Aviation (Pilot) students use the simulator in their third year, putting into practice the theory they have learned up to that point in aircraft systems, flight plans, aerodynamics and navigation. The simulators allow students to work as a crew, giving them exposure to abnormal procedures, including engine failures, tricky weather conditions, and other scenarios that might not be suited for actual flight.
Simulators save lives and training costs, and with the addition of a second simulator, they will also give the university’s students a broader range of aviation experience that will serve them well in the real world. The idea that 100 pilots a year could walk out of university at a much higher bar, is great for the Australian flying community, the Program Director said. While COVID-19 has grounded many pilots temporarily and forced some into early retirement, the airline crisis has a silver lining for new students, he added. Most pilots who stood down or were made redundant during the height of the pandemic will not return, he predicts, providing plenty of job opportunities for newly trained pilots in the next few years.
According to a recent paper released by the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development, aviation is central to Australia’s economy and quality of life. Aviation underpins Australian business: transporting workers, tourists and high-value freight. The sector directly employed over 90,000 people and contributed $20 billion to the economy before COVID-19. Furthermore, the sector indirectly enables the tourism, mining, manufacturing and higher education sectors.
Aviation plays an important role in servicing the needs of regional and remote communities across Australia by providing and maintaining access to air services that include transport and freight, medical, search and rescue, social and law enforcement, and business/tourism travel.
Aviation is key to the tourism sector which accounts for around six per cent of GDP and is Australia’s fourth-largest export industry. Total international passenger traffic increased by around 75 per cent over the past 10 years to 2019.
The aviation sector acts as a crucial enabler across mining, construction, manufacturing and higher education. More than 60,000 people work more than 350 kilometres from their usual place of residence, the vast majority are likely to travel by air. Thousands of fly-in-fly-out (FIFO) workers serve the mining, construction, and oil and gas industry. A large majority (about 86%) of FIFO workers work in remote or very remote areas. Thus, training the pilots of Australia’s future is a necessary and important task.