This paper discusses digitalization as a megatrend that gave rise to a deeper discontinuity with previous social, economic, and environmental patterns. In line with this perspective, managerial literature largely framed the fifth industrial revolution as a new paradigm able to break down barriers, thanks to digital technology, between the real and virtual world. Firm, institutions, and decision-makers are key actors in triggering or resisting the ongoing transformation. In this direction, the paper aims to look beyond economic and technological aspects of the fifth industrial revolution and to consider it as part of a wider socio-ecological adjustment, by adopting a socioecological perspective. The study is rooted on theoretical concepts and it provides a conceptual study, through which the fifth industrial revolution appears as a 4.0-based adjustment. In this perspective, Industry 5.0 could present both implications and challenges for societies and firms. On one hand, it contributes to the improvement of sustainability and the increase of customization; on the other hand, it requires particular attention to data management and security.
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