Research Article

The impact of the fourth industrial revolution: a cross-country/region comparison

Liao, Yongxin; Loures, Eduardo Rocha; Deschamps, Fernando; Brezinski, Guilherme; Venâncio, André

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The fourth industrial revolution stimulates the advances of science and technology, in which the Internet of Things (IoT) and its supporting technologies serve as backbones for Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS) and smart machines are used as the promoters to optimize production chains. Such advancement goes beyond the organizational and territorial boundaries, comprising agility, intelligence, and networking. This scenario triggers governmental efforts that aim at defining guidelines and standards. The speed and complexity of the transition to the new digitalization era in a globalized environment, however, does not yet allow a common and coordinated understanding of the impacts of the actions undertaken in different countries and regions. The aim of this paper, therefore, is to bridge this gap through a systematic literature review that identifies the most influential public policies and evaluates their existing differences. This cross-country/region comparison provides a worldwide panorama of public policies' durations, main objectives, available funding, areas for action, focused manufacturing sectors, and prioritized technologies. Findings of this review can be used as the basis to analyse the position of a country against the existing challenges imposed towards its own industrial infrastructure and also to coordinate its public policies.


The fourth industrial revolution, Cross-country/region comparison, Systematic literature review, Qualitative analysis, Quantitative analysis.


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