With total digitalisation, our civilisation is approaching the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

In Greek mythology, Prometheus has already shown the way. By stealing the sacred fire of Olympus from Hephaestus’ forge, and giving it to men, Prometheus paved the way to the development of human civilisation through the mastery of technology. By mastering fire first, humans were able to move on to metallurgy and, with metal tools, they developed agriculture.

The First Industrial Revolution arrived in Europe in the late 18 th century, brought on by steam and coal technologies. In the mid-19 th century, the Second Industrial Revolution introduced the world to the wonders of electricity. And since the end of the 20th century, the increasing development of electronics and information technologies has enabled the Third Industrial Revolution to take its course. Today, unprecedented waves are about to break on the shores of humanity.

The Fourth Industrial Revolution is coming. Exponential acceleration and the fusion of technologies are pushing our society towards new disruptive business models. The Fourth Industrial Revolution will be a real tsunami of parallel technological revolutions: information technology, robotics, cognitive sciences, biotechnology, nanotechnology, and so on.

A new era has begun.


While Prometheus certainly paved the way, he also provoked the wrath of the gods. Zeus chained him to a rock in the Caucasus. And henceforth every day an eagle devoured his liver. The current Promethean digital dream could end up overreaching as well (the Greek concept of hubris) and ultimately become a nightmare for men.

Has not Technology already become an autonomous system guiding the world? This technological hegemony is still in its infancy. Future generations will inherit the consequences of our current actions, be they positive or negative, planned or unforeseen, like the potential fusion of man and machine. Technological ideology will profoundly change our social, economic, cultural, ethical, philosophical and human models. Trust is the key to digital development. EBRC – the European Business Reliance Centre – a key digital player, is aware of these issues and of its social responsibility. EBRC’s mission is to support its clients, partners and stakeholders in this new information age, this digital revolution fraught with uncertainties, ripe with tremendous opportunities but flanked by increasing threats.

To cope with these uncertainties, use the opportunities, and counter the threats, it is vital and critical to become aware of two inseparable facets of this digital revolution. We wish to contribute to building this digital ecosystem of trust together, through our own mission, which is to become “a European centre of excellence in the management of sensitive information”.

Yves Reding





The full white paper can be downloaded here.




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