Athens, November 26, 2021 – People are the most critical resource for Greece’s technological development, Minister of Digital Governance, Kyriakos Pierrakakis, noted during the Fortune Greece CEO Initiative 2021 event held in Athens this week.
During a panel discussion Upstream CEO, Dimitris Maniatis, asked Minister Pierrakakis regarding the government’s plans to address the world-wide issue of talent, and what would be required to see young Greeks become developers of technology – not just users. The Minister responded with a commitment to encouraging ‘algorithmic’ skills among students; to involve business in tech training initiatives; and using Greece’s Recovery Fund to ‘reskill’ specific population groups.
The main topic of conversation on the session – titled ‘Tech That Works for Everyone’ – was the role of digital transformation in the evolution of society in the post-COVID-19 era.
During his keynote address, Pierrakakis outlined how the Greek government was embracing digital technologies that both benefit citizens and are able to replace time-consuming and inefficient bureaucratic processes of the past. He noted the around 1.3k digital services that were now available to citizens via Gov.gr – a number that was growing rapidly. He also said that Greece was close to unveiling a national strategy for artificial intelligence.
Dimitris Maniatis praised the progress being made, “one enjoyed by the citizens”, before quizzing the Minister on how Greece was transforming its education system and workforce to meet the demands of the world’s so-called ‘4th industrial revolution’. “We want to use the recovery fund for some ‘reskilling’ programs, which will target specific sections of the population for specific purposes,” Pierrakakis noted.
Dimitris Maniatis was also asked during the session about Upstream’s activity in emerging markets – regions where Upstream’s innovative mobile marketing platform is enabling brands to connect to customers via their mobile devices.
The Upstream CEO replied that in most countries where the company operates, the percentage of digitally integrated citizens is much lower than in Greece. But he added that the situation is changing rapidly around the world with “internet access becoming an inalienable social right” and transforming lives and economies.
In addition to Dimitris Maniatis, the panel also featured Evangelos Gizelis, CEO of Gizelis Robotics; Nikos Dimakos, Head of Consulting of KPMG; and Konstantinos Stroumbakis, CEO of Apifon.
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