1st European Stakeholder Forum on Digitising European Industry, January 31 to February 1, 2017, Essen


The 1st European Stakeholder Forum on Digitising European Industry, took place at the Grand Hall in Kokereiallee, Essen, between the 31st of January and the 1st of February, 2017. 

‘The Stakeholder Forum is a yearly public event co-organised by the EC and the Member States and the pivotal European conference to address, interlink and consult with stakeholders from the entire digital value chain. It is an essential part of the coordination framework between the various actions on the digitisation of the industry at national, regional and EU level known as the "European Platform of National Initiatives".'

This event was set-up by Max Lemke, Head of the unit of “Technologies and Systems for Digitising Industry” within the directorate of the Digital Industry of DGCNECT.

ETP4HPC was represented at this Forum by Eugene Griffiths from BSC.

On the first day, high-level policy debates highlighted different aspects of the digitisation of the industry and Industry 4.0, and during the second day focused on national initiatives for the digitisation of the industry and Industry 4.0 and included workshops on digital innovation hubs, digital industrial platforms, standardisation, skills for the digital age, IT security and regulatory challenges.

Khalil Rouhana stood in for Roberto Viola and talked about the EC role in: sharing experiences, assuring a digital single market, consider areas where we need to pool resources to achieve a critical mass, ensuring connection and networking of partners along the innovation chain.

A workshop on Digital Innovation Hubs explained the concept of: one stop shop providing services to companies in the region through multi partner cooperation.

The thinking behind the Digitising Industry Strategy is: Industry is one of the pillars of the European economy – the manufacturing sector in the European Union accounts for 2 million enterprises, 33 million jobs and 60% of productivity growth. We are standing on the brink of a new industrial revolution, driven by new-generation information technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT), cloud computing, Big Data and data analytics, robotics and 3D printing. These open new horizons for industry to become more adventurous and efficient, to improve processes and to develop innovative products and services. Recent studies estimate that digitisation of products and services can add more than €110 billion of the annual revenue in Europe in the next five years.

HPC is an important enabler in this very wide scope of Digitising European Industry.

Examples of already existing actions are FORTISSIMO projects (under I4MS) for the democratisation of HPC for SMEs.

An exhibition area offered the possibility of getting more information on national and European initiatives, and in showcasing successful examples of the use of digital technologies. The conference had a specific focus on SMEs.

Photo references:

  • Photo 1: Keynote 1(K1): Digitising European Industry: State of the Initiative    Speaker: Khalil Rouhana, Deputy Director-General, European Commission, DG Connect
  • Photo 2: Keynote 2 (K2): Panel (P3) Highlights from national initiatives: success stories, best practices and EU-level cooperation:    Mario Buisán, Director General of Industry and SMEs, Spanish Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness
  • Photo 3: Final Keynote: Günther H. Oettinger, EU Commissioner in charge of Budget and Human Resources

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