On Monday evening, the American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM) in Luxembourg held a conference dedicated to the “Digital Transformation Journey” in the historic building of the Banque et Caisse d'Epargne de l'Etat (BCEE) on Avenue de la Liberté in Luxembourg-ville.
Following an introduction by AMCHAM chairman and CEO Paul Schonenberg, the delegate Minister for Digitalisation, Marc Hansen, took the stage. Minister Hansen emphasised the efforts of the new Ministry for Digitalisation (created in 2018) and both the challenges and opportunities associated with the “digital transformation” of the Grand Duchy. He particularly highlighted the need to involve all parts of society in order for this transition to “bear fruits”.
Minister Hansen's opening speech was followed by a presentation by special guest David Goldsmith. Based in New York and Hong Kong, David is an entrepreneur, professor and author of the successful book “Paid to Think”, who works across the globe. He began his presentation by stressing that despite the great efforts put into digitalisation by Luxembourg, the country should focus on digitising a few priority areas rather than attempting to digitise everything. In this context, he suggested a re-definition of the question to find the desired outcomes of digitalisation.
Using the examples of the transformations of Barcelona and Berlin, New York and Hong Kong in recent years, David Goldsmith stressed the strength of competition facing Luxembourg in the field of digitalisation and “Smart Cities” and recommended that the Grand Duchy use its strengths to its advantages rather than copying other cities and countries. He notably highlighted its attractiveness as a place to work and its potential to become a European hub for short stays and weekend trips, arguing that Luxembourg "is designed to redefine life in Europe". In this regard, David reiterated the importance of focusing on digitising key areas and thus facilitating those parts of the country to which people are attracted.
Following a brief Q&A session, the conference ended with a networking cocktail.