Leadership in the Age of Digital Transformation (Industry 4.0) with Dr. Rafiq Ahmad

Leadership in the Age of Digital Transformation (Industry 4.0) with Dr. Rafiq Ahmad


Dr. Rafiq Ahmad believes that smart manufacturing and production systems based on data, sensors, automation, green technologies, and AI are key to the innovation and sustainability of future industries and society.

In this episode of The Leadership Standard podcast, host Gair Maxwell and Dr. Rafiq Ahmad discuss digital transformation and the challenges and opportunities that it presents.

Tune in below and discover how emerging digital tools can help your organization stay competitive and profitable—and how you as a business owner, executive, or manager can benefit the most from the technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

By tuning in, listeners and viewers can expect to discover:

4:00 What is the Fourth Industrial Revolution? What does “Industry 4.0” mean?

21:43 How to invest in Industry 4.0 technology

22:55 The origins of Dr. Rafiq Ahmad’s passion for improving the world

24:45 The role of additive manufacturing in the fight against COVID-19

33:40 Dr. Rafiq Ahmad’s leading research in the Laboratory of Intelligent Manufacturing, Design and Automation (LIMDA) at the University of Alberta

40:40 The potential role of Industry 4.0 as the ‘Buy local’ mindset continues to rise with consumers

52:00 Dr. Rafiq Ahmad’s advice for aspiring mechanical engineers


Dr. Rafiq Ahmad joined the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Alberta in May 2016. He is currently leading research in the Laboratory of Intelligent Manufacturing, Design, and Automation (LIMDA).

He obtained his Ph.D. and M.S. from Ecole Centrale de Nantes and Ecole Arts et Metiers Paris respectively, in France. He has recently completed his postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Luxembourg.

His research interest in “Design and Manufacturing” bridges the gap between fundamental research and its advanced applications in industry.

His research orientations are divided into three major areas:

1. Advanced Manufacturing (Hybrid Manufacturing, CNC machining, 3D Printing, STEP-NC, Laser welding, and cladding):
Combined machining and 3D printing, Multi-nozzle system for additive manufacturing, Re-manufacturing, Reverse Engineering, Knowledge-based vision-assisted approaches, STEP-NC, & Laser-assisted Manufacturing, Rapid Reconfigurable Manufacturing systems, Industry 4.0, Lean Manufacturing, and ERP systems.

2. Design for X (Design for Manufacturing/Re-manufacturing/Hybrid-manufacturing/Additive-manufacturing):
Sustainable design of both products and innovative manufacturing systems to produce it. This includes Decision systems for Methods and Tools selection, Design-for-Manufacturing and Additive manufacturing, Innovative Assembly Designs, Multi-nozzle system design, DFM, and DFAM.

3. Industrial Automation (Robotics):
Assembly / Disassembly automation, Multi-pass welding automation, Software, algorithms, and systems development based on knowledge and ontologies, vision-based path planning, Human-Robot Collaboration.

Visit his profile on LinkedIn

About The Leadership Standard Podcast

The Leadership Standard, hosted by TEC Canada speaker and branding expert Gair Maxwell, features in-depth conversations with subject matter experts all across the business spectrum.

Featuring thought leadership and actionable insights to challenge your assumptions – and inspiring stories of business triumphs, struggles, and perseverance that provide a motivational push – every episode of The Leadership Standard is a revealing discussion about the life of business and the business of life.

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