These are the key findings of the book “Internet of Things - From Hype to Reality” that were presented in a workshop co-organized by the Word Bank and the Vietnam’s Ministry of Science and Technology in Hanoi on March 6th.

The workshop also discussed measures to make IoT work for Vietnam and to better prepare the country for the Industry 4.0.

IoT has significant potential, but it requires systematic, informed work by the Government, private sector, and civil society.

The conventional wisdom is that IoT will change everything, from sensors in elevators that alert government agencies to public safety risks, to data from school bags to keep children safe, to garbage trucks with the smarts to save cities money.

IoT has drawn significant attention lately from businesses and policymakers. The private sector has made headway, but conversations with government policymakers, even in advanced economies, reveal a few gaps:

* Knowledge - Most Government agencies are still relatively unfamiliar with IoT and its relevance to their immediate functions.

* Translating the hype to reality - Many were unsure about how to implement initiatives that included an IoT component; there seems to be a thirst for a toolkit to get them started.

* Lessons from peers - Most agencies expressed a keen desire to learn about initiatives in other governments, what had worked or hadn’t, and how that might affect their plans.

Like many other disruptive technologies, IoT is just beginning to be a part of government services, and the report’s findings reflect its nascent character: It’s still early days for IoT, policy/regulations have not caught up, the business models are still evolving, skills and knowledge are a major gap, infrastructure is a major barrier, Government has an important role to play, and successful pilots share common characteristics.

Participants agreed that it is necessary to examine the progress governments have made in incorporating IoT within their functions. The toolkit is a provisional starting point for governments whose initiatives are still on the drawing board, but much must be done to close both the knowledge and implementation gaps./.