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MCA to launch "Year of Digital" with heavyweight Annual Debate

David Willets

London: Over 200 of the nation's leading management consultants and their clients will gather this Thursday (7pm, 10th July) to debate the implications of the new digital economy with an expert panel, including Rt Hon David Willetts MP — the Minister for Universities and Science.

The MCA Annual Debate, Our Digital Future, marks the launch of the MCA's Year of Digital, a series of high profile events, research and Think Tank reports. Those attending the debate will also hear the results of an exclusive survey of Britain's boardrooms.

MCA commissioned research has found:

  • 94% of senior executives view digital as important or very important to their business
  • while 93% say they understand Digital very well or well, they have a very wide range of understandings of what it means
  • a fifth of business leaders report that the quality of digital skills amongst graduates is average to poor
  • well over a third say that they would welcome advisory support to understand Digital challenges in the future.

As well as David Willetts expert panellists in the debate will include Elizabeth Varley, Chief Executive of TechHub, William Perrin, Founder of Talk About Local, Rachel Barton of Accenture and Carlo Cagliardi from PwC.

Some of the debate questions posed on the night will include:

  • Whether businesses leaders 'get' Digital
  • Whether government needs to play a more active role
  • Whether Britain has the right skills and infrastructure for Digital

Paul Connolly, Director of the MCA Think Tank, said, "The rise of Digital is radical and crucial to the UK's success. Many commentators see it as the biggest economic development since the Industrial revolution. It is shattering the boundaries between sectors — so telephone, TV, internet, books and music are no longer separate industries, but delivered using the same coding, on the same handheld device.

"MCA management consultants are at the heart of this huge shift. The range of answers from business leaders about digital underlines the need for greater clarity and informed debate. Management consultants are ideal helpmates for businesses seeking to understand Digital and its challenges."

The rise in digital consulting was recently highlighted by MCA data that found that the rapidly growing Digital & Technology service line now accounts for a quarter of consulting revenues. Its market share rose by around 6 per cent in 2013, and the degree to which firms are investing in this new area is illustrated by a staggering 115 per cent rise to 8,000 digital management consultants — as a result of both recruitment and redeployment.

This invitation only debate will start at 7pm on 10th July at 1 Wimpole Street London (home of The Royal Society of Medicine).

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