Welcome to the May  2018 Edition  Issue of SMART SPACE Newsletter

The SMART-SPACE  backbone 
Analyzing the Alpine Space 


The first step to a successful project is to work on the needs and current level of knowledge of the target groups, in our case they are SME’s, intermediaries and policymakers. To do so, Smart Space has spent resources on spreading awareness about the implementation of technologies as well as identify and verify the needs of alpine SME’s, intermediaries and policymakers.

What actions have been taken?
Actions were spread in four fields and contained local events, surveys and back desk analysis. We specifically did cover generic Digital Innovation to meet alpine challenges, Smart Technologies to improve SME’s, knowledge of intermediaries and the Digital Single Market to support policymakers and innovation stakeholders.

What results have been discovered?
The currently main challenges faced to all actors in Alpine Space we identified and elaborated were the economic globalisation, demographic trends, a change of alpine climate, meeting energy demands, an up to date mobility and transport challenge as well as the continuing digital divide.
Though, the Alpine SME’s did create a sustainable impression. Our Survey covering companies of most relevant fields in production already had an idea about the content of technologies relevant to Industrie 4.0. Also, most of them are currently trying to find suitable partners to implement technologies or get further information if they are not already in place.
Alpine Intermediaries were offering varying content for each region, yet with the same structure and similar quality of measures. Their main tasks are still awareness campaigns, providing a platform for SME’s as well as to exchange Ideas and network. To help improve intermediaries, Smart Space aims to support the international network and help connect generalists with digital specialists.
Regarding the Policy Makers and Innovation Stakeholders, a lot of initiatives are currently carried out on a regional, national and European level. The main EU initiatives to support Smart Space Ideas are the Smart Specialisation, aiming to support competitive innovations for all areas as well as the Digital Single Market Strategy. Smart Space aims at supporting those as well as other strategies and help to carry out ideas by supporting local and national authorities.

Digitising European Industry Stakeholder Forum 2018


The Stakeholder Forum on digitization of European industry has been held in Paris on March 27 & 28, 2018. This second edition has been co-organized by the European Commission and the French Ministry of Economy, during the Global Industrie exhibition. It gathered more than 350 people over the 2 days. This event took place in the context of the Digitising European Industry Initiative (DEI).

Regarding the challenges faced by Europe on digitization, in 2016 the EC launched the DEI initiative. The main goal is to improve the European competitiveness through the development of digital technologies and the digital transformation of the companies.

One pillar of the DEI initiative is to facilitate the access of the SMEs to digital innovations through dedicated hub of resources called Digital Innovation Hubs (DIH). The EC defines DIH as one-stop-shops where companies – especially SMEs – can get support with regards to their business, production processes, products and services by the use of digital technologies. Here is the panel of services that a DIH should provide to the companies: awareness creation on digital technologies, innovation scouting, digital maturity assessment, visioning and strategy development for business, brokering/matching, access to specialists and infrastructures, mentoring and training, access to funding and investor readiness services, collaborative projects.

There are already some European Digital Innovation Hubs referred under Smart Specialization Strategy Platform. One big priority for the EC is to support the networking of the local/regional DIHs to allow every SME to get access to the best available expertise, abroad if not available locally.  European calls for projects on digital innovation hubs and industrial platforms or European programs such as the I4MS, Innovation for manufacturing SME in Europe are European initiatives contributing directly to the implementation of this strategy with the objective to set up pan-European networks of DIHs.

During the second day of the Forum, a specific session was dedicated to share experiences and exchange best practices on DIH, presenting different regional, national or transnational initiatives. Many other relevant topics have been presented and discussed such as the digital industrial platforms, the challenges to face the lack of investments in digitization in Europe or to overcome the digital skills gap.
All the presentations of the workshops are available and a complete report of the forum with all the conclusions will be published soon.

The objective of the Smart Space project to support SMEs from traditional sectors in their challenges of digital transformations directly in line with the DEI initiative and will contribute to the EU strategy to support the setting up of transnational networks of DIHs.  Indeed, Smart Space project aims to set up a DIH at Alpine Space area level and to put in place an Alpine Space strategic partnership for digitalization of the SMEs. Through the services provided through the Smart Space digital platform and pilot actions in 11 regions, the Smart Space project partners can support you as an SME, intermediaries and policymakers to be informed on the latest developments on digitalization and to get the best benefits to support digitization of industry.


Smart-Space 1st Study Visit
Lombardy – 10-11 April 2018

Presenting the Smart Space Project  Presenting Kilometro Rosso

The first SMART-SPACE Study Visit was organized by AFIL, the Lombardy Cluster focus on Advanced Manufacturing, in Milan on the 10th and 11th of April 2018, involving more than 30 intermediaries from the involved regions.
During the 2-days event, the ongoing activities and initiatives in the framework of digital innovation of the key innovation actors in Lombardy were presented. The focus was on local Intermediaries Best Practices to support companies in undertaking the digitalization journey. Some of the main Lombard players unveiled their strategies and activities in order to be a key accelerator for digital transformation.
The involved actors were:

  • Lombardy Digital Innovation hub
  • AFIL – Lombardy Intelligent Factory Association
  • Vanguard Initiatives
  • Kilometro Rosso innovation district
  • Intellimech Consortium
  • Innovhub, the special company of the Chamber of Commerce of Milan
  • Industry 4.0 Observatory, Politecnico of Milan

The study visit included also the visit to the Industry 4.0 Lab at Politecnico of Milan.

Visit to the Politecnico of Milano Industria 4.0 Lab

Smart-Space  2nd Study Visit
Stuttgart  – 17-20 June 2018

This study visit is part of the Train the Trainer Course for Intermediaries of the Smart-Space project, allowing partners to connect with leading researchers and practitioners from all over the world. In total, at least 250 participants are expected.
In the last two decades, the ICE/IEEE ITMC Conference has brought together leading academics, researchers and practitioners, contributing to the global debate on research, science and innovation. ICE Conference is one of the premier conferences associated with the IEEE Technology and Engineering Management Society (IEEE TEMS). This year, we would like to invite our growing community of researchers, innovators, industrialists, engineers and practitioners to share their insights, practices, projects and case studies that address the conference theme: “Era of connectedness: The future of Technology, Engineering & Innovation in a digital society”
The 24th ICE/IEEE International Technology Management Conference will take place on the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th June 2018, in Stuttgart (Germany) and is organized by Baden-Württemberg Connected (bwcon), the leading technology Network in the South of Germany, together with the IST Innovation institute from the Lake Konstanz University. The 24th ICE/IEEE ITMC is a place where research, science and innovation are called for original ideas, papers, debates, initiatives and projects. Authors, workshop/tutorial organizers, and participants are invited to contribute to the shaping of the perspective on engineering, technology and innovation solutions for industry and societal challenges.

Smart Space Partners​















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