Michael Anthony C. Vasco, PhD
For the past 18 months, the world order has been changed dramatically and drastically by the Covid-19 pandemic. It has practically changed and altered our daily routines and work practices. The new normal has posed challenges to education, health care, commerce and trade and the economy. And as we shift to industry 4.0 in the midst of the pandemic, the challenges and issues have become more pronounced, doubly difficult to address. While the pandemic continued to wreak havoc in our health care system and the various social political and cultural domains, and it has also posed great impact to our educational and economic systems, we need to think, to calibrate our strategies to address these challenges. In a recent article published by Bloomberg, as regards the scenario of the pandemic in the next six months and beyond, it was noted that the development and outcome of the pandemic depends much on the level of preparedness and continued sustainability of strategies and solutions to resolve and mitigate the impact of the pandemic. It highlighted strategies for the health care system to cope with the possible surges so that we can slowly open our economic system and gradually return to our normal work systems in the new normal. The strategies employed by the great economic states proved to be effective. It was achieved through a calibrated opening of their economic and educational systems vis-a-vis the effective calibration of strategies employed in their health systems. It is heartwarming to note that people from countries in Europe, North America and East Asia are beginning to experience their usual work and daily routines in the new normal. People are slowly allowed to attend to their usual functions at work or at school and even attend religious and cultural gatherings. Notable of which was the great cultural gathering at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York to commemorate the 911 event and even the return of Broadway performances to the greater public. More and more countries have allowed some of their students to return to their schools in calibrated manner. In other words, we can already see the light at the end of the tunnel. We are already going there; it is just a question of time when to reach that goal. With the united efforts of institutions of government and the private sector, I am very sure that we will soon join other countries to perform our usual normal routines in the various domains of work in the new normal. What is important at the moment is to strike a balance between the strategies and solutions we offer to address the problems and issues posed by the pandemic with its possible impact and outcomes. It is in this spirit that i welcome all of you in this morning’s Multisectoral Summit for Educational Transformation webinar part 2, titled Industry 4.0 Disruptions, disturbances and disorders. Thank you and good morning.