Working Paper Ircres-CNR 07/2018                            
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Innovative Channels of Industry 4.0 and SMEs

Angelo Bonomi
Senior Research Associate, CNR-IRCRES, National Research Council, Research Institute on Sustainable Economic Growth, via Real Collegio 30, Moncalieri (TO) – Italy

corresponding author: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



This paper concerns a preliminary study on the innovative channels for implementation of enabling technologies of Industry 4.0, in particular SMEs. The offer of these enabling technologies occurs in an industrial ecosystem constituted by various actors such as ICT industries, consulting firms, startups, universities and research laboratories supplying innovations to manufacturing firms, and it is characterized by appearance of a new way of transfer of technology using industrial platforms.
The study describes the structure and processes of industrial platforms as well as activities of technological consulting firms, and the role of startups and universities in the ecosystem. The relation between firms and university is discussed considering the Italian governmental plan with the introduction of digital innovation hubs and competence centers. Comparing the  innovation channels, industrial platform might assume a future important role in the implementation of Industry 4.0. Concerning SMEs, the study describes the main difficulties to be faced through the implementation of Industry 4.0. Then, it presents a preliminary discussion about the case of producers of taps and valves considering application of the various enabling technologies to the operational structure of this manufacture. Cooperation among SMEs in studies about aspects of implementation of enabling technologies appears favorable for this purpose. More advanced cooperative ideas concern the realization of a common producing plant, fully applying Industry 4.0 technologies, leaving to SMEs only product developments and commercialization.


Keywords: Industry 4.0, SMEs, industrial platforms, industrial districts, technology innovation, startup.


JEL codes: O14, O25, O33, O38


DOI: 10.23760/2421-7158.2018.007



How to Cite this Article

Bonomi A. (2018). I Canali Innovativi di Industria 4.0 e le PMI. Working Paper IRCrES, 4(7). 10.23760/2421-7158.2018.007






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