Following the High-level governance meeting of the European platform of national initiatives on digitising industry led by Commissioner Mariya Gabriel on the 21st of November 2017, 3 new Working Groups were established in order to advance the digitisation of the European Industry.

The Wokring Group 1 held its first best practice sharing meeting of Digital Innovation Hubs in Europe on 22 January 2018.

The second meeting of the Working Group 1 will focus on improving access to finance for SMEs and DIHs, and will take place on the 21st of February 2018 in Brussels.

A recorded version of the event is available here.

Bringing Digital Innovation Hubs together

This is the first meeting of a series of the Digital Innovation Hubs Working Group meetings to take place until the next high-level governance meeting with Commissioner Gabriel in summer 2018.

The aim of the meeting is to bring together Digital Innovation Hubs representatives who are part of the European Catalogue of DIHs and other interested parties to discuss how to motivate SMEs to engage with hubs and how hubs can create demand for the services of the SMEs.

Sharing of best practices

During the day we gave the opportunity to all Digital Innovation Hubs that have a best practice on how they engage SMEs to test out digital innovations to improve their production processes, products or business models to give a short presentation about it.

Please find the agenda of the event with all presentations as follows:


09.15-10.00: Welcome coffee and registration

10.00-10.30: Setting the scene: the Digital Innovation Hubs initiative – objectives & expectations
Max Lemke & Anne-Marie Sassen, European Commission (20′ and 10′ Q&A) – presentation

10.30-10.45: The H2020 open calls mechanism & engaging SMEs in European DIHs
Mayte Carracedo, H2020 Coordination and Support Action I4MS-Go under the Innovation for Manufacturing SMEs initiative (I4MS) – presentation
Rainer Günzler, H2020 Coordination and Support Action Smart4Europe under the Smart Anything Everywhere initiative (SAE) (10′ and 5′ Q&A) – presentation

10.45-12.00: Session 1 – Reaching out to the SMEs
(individual presentations of 5′ and 25′ discussion)

innomine (Cloudifacturing project) (HU), Gábor Vicze
The digitalisation challenges the manufacturing SMEs face and how to motivate them towards embracing digital transformation. – presentation

BioSense DIH (RS), Grigoris Chatzikostas
The Lean Multi-Actor approach, a demand-driven methodology to digitalisation. – presentation

IAM 3D HUB (ES), Aintzane Arbide & WATIFY (BE) Gabriela Cinkova
Raising awareness to the SMEs and a region’s industrial community though technical innovation days, events and other dissemination activities (techflashes, social media, tradeshows). – presentation

Lithuanian DIH on Robotics (LT), Sander van der Molen
Technology demonstration events for the SMEs and raising awareness on digitalisation opportunities. – presentation

KDH (Kompetenzzentrum Digitales Handwerk) (DE), Alexander Barthel & VDI Technologiezentrum GmbH (DE), Anette Braun
The “SME 4.0-Centres of Excellence” and ways to engage the manufacturing SMEs in digital transformation. – presentation1 & presentation2

VDTC Saxony-Anhalt DIH (DE), Christian Blobner
Digitalisation coaches and Industry 4.0 check-up. – presentation

CEA Léti-Health DIH (FR), Patrick Boisseau
The Showroom, a catalyst for business innovation. – presentation

Cap Digital (FR), Manuella Portier
The Poc & Go testing program and other best practices that support the SMEs with their digital transformation (business support, coaching etc.) – presentation

Digital Innovation Hub Dortmund (DE), Thorsten Huelsmann
Supporting start-ins and providing dedicated co-working places for the SMEs to test digital innovations and improve their production processes – presentation

EIB – Bjorn-Soren Gigler & Alberto Casorati
Addressing the knowledge and funding gaps – presentation

12.00-13.00: Networking lunch

13.00-14.15: Session 2 – Towards a digital ecosystem and partnering approach
(individual presentations of 5′ and 25′ discussion)

Cantieri 4.0, the Industry 4.0 platform of Tuscany region (IT), Francesca D’Angelo & PRODUTECH DIH (PT), Pedro Rocha
A regional ecosystem approach towards engaging all actors in the digital transformation process and best practices. – presentation1 & presentation2

i2CAT (ES), Silvia Castellvi
Best practices and challenges on managing the regional digital ecosystem and engaging the SMEs in digital transformation. – presentation

EDITA DIH (HR), Emil Ilija Perić
DIH network management and ways to determine the maturity level of a region’s economy. – presentation

PhotonDelta DIH (NL), Anna Nikiel
Building trusted networks between research and industry. – presentation

Fieldlabs (NL), Hans Praat
Region of Smart Factories. – presentation

Basque DIH (ES), Cristina Oyon
The role of a Steering group as a public private collaboration space, in a region’s digital transformation. – presentation

Eurecat (ES), Julia Palma & DIGITECH SI-EAST (SI), Brane Semolič
The PIME entry point for the Catalan SMEs on supporting the innovation processes to increase SMEs competitiveness (technological prospecting, SME management training courses etc.), and access to finance for SMEs in Slovenia. – presentation1 presentation2

Smart Systems Hub Dresden (DE), Frank Bösenberg
The TRAILS strategy: networking the technology value chain and addressing the business needs of the SMEs within a region and beyond. – presentation

14.15-14.45: Coffee break

14.45-16.45: Session 3 – Break out in smaller groups to discuss topics of common interest
During the day all participants will be able to fill in post-its with themes they would like to discuss further with the other participants. In this session we will break out in smaller groups that discuss these topics. The objective will be that the participants learn from each other and everyone can go home with one or two ideas on how to improve the “demand” side for the services of their digital innovation hub.

16.45-17.00: Reporting back from the break-out groups of Session 3 & Closing