As  21st century homo sapiens, we all are living in ever more volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) times. Technology has become part of our daily lives, whether we are early adopters or laggards. Technology is driving every sector imaginable. It is a tech-obsessed world we live in.

We should seize the opportunity of information explosion, which is at our fingertips. Life is going digital. Every sector will have to adapt to the shift of economy from industrial to information. Our cognitive powers are ever more needed unlike physical power.

Machine learning, marrying with Big Data will only further disrupt many service industries and professions. Deep Learning technologies can have many applications. Medical diagnosis for billions of people will become more accurate.

Deep learning also will affect legal profession. Much of the time consuming routine works in law offices will become automated. Furthermore, Gig economy and cloud kitchen is already happening which has disrupted many sectors.

As you increasingly use the Internet, the data generated about us is machine-readable meaning this can be used to create a personal assistant that knows you in and out than anyone else. If you are living in 2035, you will be able to easily track where did you buy that gho or kira from in 2023. You wont forget anything; children will have their own personal tutors, partners in their journey of education.

Opportunities in accessing education will be immense and equal be it for wealthy or low-income families. New jobs, which require new skills, will be created. Automated AI systems will replace current skill sets.

For example, currently in South Korea and Singapore, robots are increasingly being used for daily activities due to COVID-19. For instance, if we had a strong culture of using Druk Trace App, how easy would it be for our government! It would have saved lot of resources.

Therefore, we can thrive in this VUCA world by being a lifelong learner. Now, we all understand that lockdowns will be part of our lives. Although we will be confined or locked in, we should keep learning and keep on investing in our own development. Old model of going to college for four years and then cost for the remaining life wont just work anymore. So even jobs may go away. All will be in better position if we keep learning. In future, people should keep learning all their life even after college from Internet like MOOCs and other openly available online resources.

Ask not what Bhutan can do for you. Ask what you can do for Bhutan, is timely. Let us all cooperate, stay home, stay safe and keep learning. Remember, in building ourselves, we are by default, building our nation.

As per World Economic Forum, COVID-19 has highlighted 5 global inequalities like access to healthcare, access to green space, access to Internet, ability to work remotely, and accessibility. In contrast, almost all Bhutanese enjoy these 5 facilities here in Bhutan. There is nothing much to ask for especially in times like this. Learning has no boundaries and age constraints.

Finally, please remember precious words of our Beloved King: “It is easy to lose material wealth-but not our capability and intelligence.”

So, keep learning!


Subash Sharma

Norbugang, Samtse