We are living in the middle of a third industrial revolution, the electronic revolution. The microchip has become an indispensable part of our daily life. In the car, in the kitchen, at the cash desk in a supermarket, when sending emails – wherever you look, these small electronic devices are the technological basis. More and more people want to do as much online as possible. Even the task of going to the supermarket can be passed on to somebody else via an app. Another structurally important trend is the movement of people from rural areas into the cities. Urbanisation has in fact been taking place in Europe and Germany for hundreds of years now.
On an international level, it has considerable consequences: just a few years ago, in 2008, we passed the point where more people were living in urban than in rural areas. Urbanisation has consequences for those who remain in the rural areas: retail sales, public transport, public administration – among other things – all decline when people move away, making life more difficult for those who are not mobile, as they do not own a car, and can not (or do not want to) use the internet. In Germany’s rural areas this mostly affects the older generation, as they find the new digital daily life difficult to grasp.