04/17/2020

Digital production - publication on benefit promises, solutions and social consequences

Both the world of production and the world of work are increasingly digital. An anthology edited by Professors Alexander Klein and Torsten Niechoj (Rhine-Waal University) presents digital applications and approaches, but also sheds light on the social prerequisites and consequences of digitisation.

Paperless communication in administration and the processing of production orders by means of electronic workflows and document management systems are just as much a part of digitization as the use of cyber physical production systems. People and "collaborative" robots are cooperating closer than ever, and in many different areas "bots" and cognitive systems are increasingly taking over tasks that were previously reserved for humans.

How can digitized systems and industrial 4.0 factories be designed and implemented? What exactly is the net benefit of digitised production taking the effort required to set up the systems into account? How can companies master the challenges? What risks does the new digital production world hold for companies, for the economy, but also and especially for society and the individual?

A conference at Rhine-Waal University at the end of 2018 was dedicated to these questions - the results are now available in form of an updated book. Edited by Alexander Klein and Torsten Niechoj, professors at the Faculty of Technology and Bionics and Communication and Environment, 31 authors in twelve contributions provide an interdisciplinary view of technical solutions and their socio-cultural prerequisites as well as the consequences for society.

The cover has been designed in the scope of a student competition, supervised by Christian Stindl at the Faculty of Communication and Environment. Robine Gillen, Information and Communication Design student, took first place. For her cover she used a variety of similar elements, which can also be seen as a symbol for individualized mass production. Copper, as one of the most conductive elements, symbolizes speed - also a characteristic of modern, digital production.

The volume "Digital Production. Nutzenversprechen, Lösungsansätze, Soziale Fragen" (ISBN 978-3-7316-1413-5), edited by Alexander Klein and Torsten Niechoj, can now be purchased in bookshops or directly from the publisher at a price of EUR 29.80.