Almost every country has the means to go to war. Almost every country has an army of soldiers in their backyard. Not only do they have an army of soldiers but also a number of powerful weapons that would give them a chance to stand their ground in a war.
Today, just as it was in the war, for countries to succeed economically, they need to have a skilled workforce that responds to the rapidly changing world. With the fourth industrial revolution at hand, countries should be taking measures that will help them transfer the necessary skills that will increase their human capital.
Every country that fought in the war had one important focus; win the war. I mean, what would have been the reason to continue fighting if they didn’t fight to win. For any of them to win, they had to fight. Fighting required training and the manufacturing of ammunition. However, training had to happen as quickly as possible, in fact, I believe most of the training happened in the battlefield. In addition, weapons also needed to be produced and/or improved as quickly as possible and on a large scale.
Winning the war may have been an important focus, but the most important aspect was learning. Acquiring new, or modifying existing, knowledge and skills had to be processed in a more faster, strategic and productive way.
The ability to continue fighting was highly influenced by the speed at which weapons could be improved or invented. It was also influenced by the type of machines that were brought in and of course the rate at which new soldiers were brought in.
What countries and education ministries can learn from world wars is the importance of producing what is necessary and what is needed to compete in the economy.
Having means to go to war, having means to compete in this economy will require countries to produce necessary professionals as quick as the economy grows.
Large economies such as that of China and the United States think of the economy as a battlefield, they send in what is necessary to compete. They adapted to the revolution.
The problem with many countries is that they send in everything and everyone. They send in all of their graduates, they don’t send, let alone produce the necessary graduates that will respond to the revolution.