May will be “Metaverse Month”. At the initiative of The Dots and consulting firm Deloitte, a series of events will be held around this concept built on virtual worlds that are interconnected to the real world.

How can we prepare for what looks like a new technological wave? How do we transpose or even reinvent our ways of collaborating and creating engagement in the new metaverse space? How can we take advantage of this progress? These are some of the topics that will be discussed during the dedicated month.

Patrick Laurent, Partner at Deloitte, Advisory & Consulting Group Leader and Innovation Leader, provides an overview.

Mr Laurent, how did the idea of the Metaverse Month come about?

“This idea originates from our desire at Deloitte to offer our clients expert insights on the key issues of our time. The metaverse is part of a natural evolution of the web and new technologies. In the 1990s, there was what we might call Web 1.0, with static, informational sites. Then there was Web 2.0, called the participatory web, with interactive platforms allowing collaborative communication approaches.

More recently, we have seen two developments that both claim to be Web 3.0: on the one hand, a dizzying development of technologies that allow the interpenetration of the real world with the virtual world via augmented reality. The capacities of infrastructures and machines provide so-called immersive experiences.

In parallel, there is an evolution towards a decentralised internet, identified as Web 3.0. It is built around the blockchain, with the principle of DAO (Decentralised Autonomous Organisation), the creation of tokens and all the technologies that allow us to work in a context equivalent to that of Web 2.0, but without a trusted third party.

In order to take stock of the evolution of all these technologies, and to help people get more familiar with the concept of metaverse, we discussed the opportunity to organise this month-long event with The Dots.”

The prospects are potentially unlimited

But what is the metaverse anyway?

“The term itself is not new. It was coined 20 years ago in the novel ‘Snow Crash’ by Neil Stephenson. With new technologies such as virtual reality, augmented reality, tokenisation and micro-payments, driven by gaming and IT players, we are witnessing the emergence of a virtual world that is highly interactive with the real world. When we see the billions of euros invested by the big names in technology, such as the Facebook group – which is changing its name to Meta – it is clear that the phenomenon is currently very promising.

There are even deep reflections about a new organisation of the world of work around the possibilities offered by the metaverse. The prospects are potentially unlimited, and their adoption will depend on the willingness of the players to take full advantage of these new tools.”

What will be the highlights of the Metaverse Month?

“It will be structured around four events.

  • Firstly, on 4 May, there will be an introduction to the concept of the metaverse, with panels and masterclasses to introduce and discuss the subject in general.
  • Then, on 11 May, there will be demonstrations of NFT (Non-Fungible Token) -oriented tools in the fields of art, fashion and film, which are particularly advanced in this area. This will also show what NFTs can bring to the economy at large. We have worked on this part together with the Luxembourg Creative Industries Cluster of Luxinnovation.
  • Then, on 18 May, we will organise an event more specifically dedicated to the Finverse, organised with The Dots. Technological applications seen through the prism of the financial centre are obviously being followed very closely in Luxembourg, as they are potentially sources of major industrial transformations.
  • Finally, on 31 May, we will close the Metaverse Month by focusing on a longer-term theme of reflection on the impact of the metaverse and technologies on various aspects of the world of work. Some companies have already decided to buy thousands of devices to enable their employees to enter the metaverse. Is this just a fad or will it structure the world of work in the future? We will try to shed some light on these questions thanks to the many experts from all over Europe who will be taking part in this first edition of Metaverse Month.”

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