ICT Innovation for Manufacturing SMEs

I4MS (ICT Innovation for Manufacturing SMEs) is the initiative promoted by the EC to support the European leadership in manufacturing through the adoption of ICT technologies. In fact, Europe's competiveness in that sector depends on its capacity to deliver highly innovative products, where the innovation often originates from advances in ICT.

Therefore, I4MS aims at promoting leading edge technologies, developed in FP7 large ICT projects, in the following areas:

  • Robotics
  • HPC cloud based simulation services
  • Laser based applications
  • Intelligent sensor-based equipment

The initiative is dedicated to the whole European manufacturing industry with special focus on SMEs to address their needs to access to technology, infrastructures and new markets. I4MS will operate through two main instruments:

Open calls

Seven ICT projects are associated to the I4MS proposing mature technologies, but not yet available in the market, in the mentioned areas:

During the initiative, these projects will launch calls to select new partners for the projects and include experiments, based on the offered technologies, to address challenges in manufacturing encountered by SMEs. Experiments will be implemented with the help of competence centres providing the knowledge and support to go beyond national boundaries.

Interested companies will have the opportunity to apply to these Calls for Experiments launched by the projects in 2014 and 2015 and receive funding and technical assistance to carry out their experiments and contribute to the development of the technology in their field of interest.

Best practices

The second phase of the initiative will be dedicated to share best practices and lessons learnt through I4MS. With the collaboration of PathFinder and Road4FAME, two CSAs associated with I4MS, experiments successfully carried out will be presented on this portal and through different initiatives (workshops, conferences, webinars) to multiply the impact and foster the adoption of the ICT technologies for manufacturing among European SMEs.