Industry 4.0 and Social Development in the Aspect of Sustainable Development: Relations in EC Countries
Purpose: The aim of this paper is to focus on the analysis and assessment of the level of development of Industry 4.0, the social development in the context of the implementation of the concept of sustainable development and to determine the relationship of these phenomena in EU countries. Design/Methodology/Approach: Due to the fact that both Industry 4.0 and social development are complex issues, the research uses taxonomic measures based on the TOPSIS method, which replace the multi-feature description of the studied objects by a single aggregate size, which greatly facilitates their analysis. For the purposes of this article, an attempt was made to construct a synthetic measure of the development of Industry 4.0, as well as a synthetic measure of social development in the context of implementing the concept of sustainable development based on a previously selected set of diagnostic variables. The research also used the so-called threshold method to classify EU countries into homogeneous typological groups. In addition, a correlation analysis was carried out in order to examine whether there is a correlation between the analysed phenomena. Findings: The results of the research indicate that there is a moderate variation in the level of social development in the EU countries in the context of implementing the concept of sustainable development and a significant variation in the level of development of Industry 4.0. The analysis showed that there is a very high positive correlation between the two. Practical Implications: Modern economies are faced with the need to meet the challenges resulting from the fourth industrial revolution, for which the emergence of Industry 4.0 is significant. The changes resulting from the implementation of the concept of Industry 4.0 concern not only industry and its enterprises, but also affect the overall shape of socio-economic processes. Originality/value: Social development considered in connection with the development of Industry 4.0 a relatively new economic category, still not well described in the literature. The way they are combined in the article is a relatively new proposal, important from the point of view of each of these areas.