“Hinay hinay pero kanunay”: Dr. Bernardo M. Villegas on not rushing the fourth industrial revolution in the Philippines.

“I have toned down the enthusiasm about the coming of the Industrial Revolution 4.0 (IR4) because the Philippines still has to complete the first three stages of the industrial revolution, especially so that we can attain in the next decade or so not only sustainable growth, but, more importantly, inclusive growth where no one is left behind.”

“There is so much we can still derive from the ages of mechanization (1760-1820), electrification (1871-1914) and digitalization (the late 20th century) that it may be counterproductive to devote too much attention and resources to such technologies as cyber-physical systems, internet of things (IoT), on-demand availability of computer system resources, and cognitive computing.”

“It may not make economic sense to rush the introduction of robots into manufacturing and services when we still have more than 10 million of our workers either unemployed or underemployed. In fact, I just read an advertisement for the Apple car, which is electric and autonomous, that will be ready for the market in 2022. Guess how much it will cost? Only $75,000! No need to rush IR4. As they say in Cebuano, “hinay-hinay pero kanunay” – “slowly but surely.”

In his regular column for BusinessWorld, CRC Research Director Dr. Bernardo Villegas explained the Philippines need not rush to invest in the much-ballyhooed “Fourth industrial Revolution,” saying that the country still has much to derive from catching Filipinos up with the benefits of first three “industrial revolutions” – mechanization, electrification, and digitization.

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