hilmar dunker 2014Germany is moving too slowly when it comes to adapting its economy to the digital age.

The country's Ministry for Traffic and Digital Infrastructure writes on its homepage: "The digitalization of all areas of our lives and the economy is moving at breathtaking speed. We need to use the opportunities for more innovation, growth and employment to turn Germany into the leading digital nation in Europe."

But is Germany prepared for this? The country's three responsible cabinet ministers, Sigmar Gabriel (Economy), Thomas de Maiziere (Interior) and Alexander Dobrindt (Traffic) probably don't even know the answer to that one.

There doesn't seem to be much conviction in the government's efforts. The digitalization of our society - and economy - is moving at lightning speed, but the German government's "Digital Agenda" is barely getting out of the starting blocks.

This gap between reality and planning will probably mean that Germany's objective to establish digital primacy in Europe is likely to become a long-term goal.

That is going to hurt the traffic infrastructure. Germany needs a functioning and intelligent traffic network that consistently exploits the possibilities offered by new information and communication technologies.

Unfortunately, it doesn't look like this is happening. The government's draft of  a nationwide traffic infrastructure plan for 2015 doesn't make much mention of new technologies. It merely refers to the so-called UR:BAN project, a cooperative research project whose goal is to develop driver assistance and traffic management systems for cities.

That's not enough to prepare Europe's biggest economy  for tomorrow's mobility.

-By Hilmar Dunker, editor-in-chief, automotiveIT, Germany