On May 14 and 15, the first stop of "The Fourth Industrial Revolution Promotes Industry Support and Rural Revitalization" training was held in Lingshou, Hebei province. This event was supported by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) and Lingshou County government and co-organized by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization Investment and Technology Promotion Office (ITPO) Beijing (UNIDO ITPO Beijing) and Tencent Group.
At the Opening Ceremony, Mr. Feng Suwei, the deputy secretary of Lingshou County Party Committee, mayor of the county, said as the foundation of Lingshou’s digital economy is continuously strengthening, the digital empowerment training session held in Lingshou County has a vital guiding significance for better coping with the risks and challenges in the new development stage, while promoting industry-led support and rural revitalization. All training courses were closely related to vocational education, with solid operability and practicality.
Mr. Li Bin, first-class Counsel (DG-level) of Department of International Cooperation of NDRC, said in his speech that in order to continue to drive the achievements of poverty alleviation and rural revitalization, promote the industrial revitalization of counties with fixed-point assistance, improve the vocational skills and self-development ability of vulnerable rural groups, and deal with the challenges brought by the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the Department of International Cooperation of NDRC, UNIDO ITPO Beijing, and Tencent Group jointly organized “The Fourth Industrial Revolution Promotes Industry Support and Rural Revitalization” training in Lingshou, Hebei Province.
The event connects the advantageous resources from government agency, international organization, and technology company, reflecting the emphasis and help from the three parties to help Lingshou implement the rural revitalization plan. It is also another innovative measure taken by the Department of International Cooperation of NDRC and UNIDO to jointly implement the Memorandum of Understanding and Action Plan on Jointly Promoting the “Belt and Road Initiative”, and to serve the rural revitalization and pair assistance. At last, Li Bin offered trainees three expectations, i.e., cherishing the opportunity, studying diligently and practicing hard.
Mr. Wu Yabin, Head of UNIDO ITPO Beijing, said that we could see from China's experience in poverty alleviation, reducing poverty through the development of local industries is the most straightforward, effective, and long-term measure for China; Inclusive and sustainable poverty alleviation is an important goal and task of poverty alleviation; Education, especially vocational education, is the priority of poverty alleviation; digital economy is the most powerful tool to boost industrial development and rural revitalization. On the "highway" of digital economy, Lingshou does not lack "car" as the carrier of industry, nor does it lack "goods" of characteristic products. What it lacks are experienced "drivers", namely management talents. The purpose of this training is to cultivate digital talents who can effectively innovate on the digital highway, make full use of the existing local industry platform, and promote the development of local characteristics and competitive industries through digital empowerment. Digital technology in the Fourth Industrial Revolution has brought challenges to traditional industries and employment, but the new economy will create more employment opportunities while transforming traditional industries through digitization. The key is to use innovative digital tools such as social platforms, online classes, and smart retail to empower more people and bridge them across the "digital divide".
Yabin Wu, Head of UNIDO ITPO Beijing
Mr. Qin Chuan, Director of Public Relations at Tencent Group, said in his speech that while the global epidemic has accelerated the process of digitization in the recent two years, it has also brought new employment challenges to people in less developed areas with low educational levels. Facing the unstoppable digitization, Tencent is dedicated to helping users from different regions, bases and ages find new career opportunities in the digital ecosystem. This training integrates the resource of multiple business units such as WeChat, Tencent Class and Tencent Smart Retail, aiming to provide "hand in hand" and "face to face" employment guidance for the residents and potential entrepreneurs in Lingshou County, under which the benefits of digital economy are accessible to the employment population. “In the future”, said Qin, “Tencent will combine more business and product capabilities and open up more resources within the Tencent ecosystem to lower the threshold of digital training gradually, contributing to stabilizing employment stock, expanding employment increment and improving employment quality.”
Day 1 WeChat Digital Operation
Courses in the first day were themed "WeChat Digital Operation". The lecturers gave elaborate explanation on the operation of WeChat-Video Channels and WeChat mini shops. Zhang Bin, senior expert at WeChat Strategic Research Center, introduced WeChat-Video channels. Lv Kai, head of e-commerce training for farmers in Hubei, exemplified operational strategies of WeChat-Video Channels and WeChat mini shops. “Ms. Egg” Wang Sumei, an online video-maker, shared her daily rural life as well as video-creating experiences. All these have received active engagement.
Day 2 Employment Skills Enhancement
During the second day of training, four lecturers from various fields illustrated rich practical skills in employment. “Porcelain Doll" Wang Miao taught knitting through Tencent Class. Huang Qian from Zhisheng College and Peng Yali from OS Image Design Center gave professional instructions in terms of voice skills and professional image establishment respectively. Li Guogang from Lanren Med Exam shared basic knowledge of traditional Chinese medicine with trainees. The courses were quite intriguing and practical that trainees actively engaged in the discussions with lecturers.
The two-day event in Lingshou saw the participation of more than 500 trainees. Based on the valid questionnaires, UNIDO ITPO Beijing made the following analysis:
About 48% trainees are aged between 31 and 40, and nearly 35% are in the age of 18 to 30, which indicates to a certain extent that the young people have a high acceptance of the new economic platform and new career and are actively involved in relevant courses.
More than 50% of the participants are entrepreneurs, and nearly 7% of the them are unemployed. The trainees generally desire to explore new careers and new sources of income on the Internet.
Over 90% of the trainees affirmed the great value of this training to their life and work, and hoped to participate in such activities in the future.
About 57% of the students have opened their WeChat mini shops or WeChat-Video Channels after the courses, practicing the theoretical knowledge actively. In addition, the trainees continuously interact and exchange with the lecturers in the WeChat group.
Feedback from trainees
I have learned how to start a live show，the way to achieve value realization, and how to attract accurate fans.
From the course, I realize that creating and posting videos through WeChat-Video Channels could help make money.
The lecturers give detained guidance on setting up WeChat mini shop, the courses are full of practical information.
The professional instructions of voice skills might help us earn money on voice talent sites and APPs.
The training courses on live streaming, professional image establishment, voice skills and traditional Chinese medicine are all useful and practical.
In contemporary China, our mobile phones are new tools, the live broadcast seems like our new farm work and the data function as new agricultural resources. the courses are of great value!
The training inspires me a lot that we can make money through internet. I am looking forward to participating more activities like this.
The instructions have broadened my mind and horizons. There are various ways to increase income and what we need are extensive resources and professional skills.
I feel happy to know more about WeChat-Video Channels which provides a platform to sell our local specialty and field crops.
Thanks for this training providing “energy” for us.
The wrong direction has been corrected.
We should keep up with the pace of the times. With widely used communication tools, more chances are offered to increase our income. And I believe that everyone could achieve success once we stick to it.
I found my direction and became more confident.
Background and prospect
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) constitute the core of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and "No Poverty" is the first of the 17 goals. In 2019, it was pointed out at the 18th Session of UNIDO’s General Conference that the emerging technologies from the Fourth Industrial Revolution will help promote inclusive economic growth, reduce inequality as well as promote sustainable development, resilience, and people’s well-being. To this end, UNIDO ITPO Beijing, in partnership with Tencent Group, focus on vocational education through innovative training tools and methods such as virtual reality (VR), social networks, online classes, and smart retail to empower vulnerable groups such as young people as well as small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to help them acquire employment and re-employment skills, thus addressing the risks and challenges from the digital divide and COVID-19, and promoting industry-led support and rural revitalization.
The activity in Lingshou is the first stop of "The Fourth Industrial Revolution Promotes Industry Support and Rural Revitalization" training. In the future, UNIDO ITPO Beijing will hold the training activity in other regions in China such as Yan’an in Shannxi province, Yiwu in Zhejiang province, Dangshan in Anhui province and Dege in Sichuan province, etc. Besides, the training will be spread to other developing countries including Cambodia, Laos, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan, etc. The courses reflecting China's poverty alleviation experiences and best practices will be further shared on the internationally influential platforms. The efforts would help promote Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development (ISID) of less developed regions in developing countries to build a more equal, more inclusive, and more resilient employment ecological system in the world，ensuring that no one is left behind.