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Get connected! Our path to digital strengths in Baden-Württemberg and Europe

Logo https://story.getconnected-bw.de/getconnected-bw-en-17190

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The disruptive force of digital transformation presents enormous challenges to small and medium sized enterprises of all sectors. New structures and processes, new chances and possibilities, unbeaten tracks.

As one of the most innovative regions, Baden-Württemberg creates new pathways and thus new links within Europe – come and join us! Meet here entrepreneurs and discover how to make use of the digital strengths of both Baden-Württemberg and Europe. Get to know already existing successful lighthouses as well as opportunities for participation along the main routes of digitisation - Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity and Internet of Things.

Let’s walk this path together and dwell on the topics you are interested in: Let’s get connected!

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Ways of digisation in BW and EU

The Business 4.0 Initiative of the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing embraces the chances of the digitisation and thus sustainably shapes the digital transformation especially for entrepreneurs. It is an essential component in the digitisation strategy digital@bw of the federal state with the goal of turning Baden-Württemberg both on a national and at EU level into the leading figure of digital transformation.


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Digital Pilots BW

These digital guides offer low-threshold support offers especially for „digital newbies“ from SMEs that are in the process of digital transformation.  

Lernfabriken 4.0 (Learning factories)

“Lernfabrik 4.0" is a two-stage concept: Basic research lab for teaching the basic technologies and principles of smart production.

Check out some examples of lighthouse-projects in Baden-Württemberg!

FZI/Competence Centre for IT-Security

With the Competence Centre for IT-Security, the federal state of Baden-Württemberg has created a central contact point for all questions about IT security.

ARENA2036

The research campus ARENA2036 is a form of cooperation where different partners from science and industry gather under one roof to do research on innovative future topic.

Cyber Valley BW

Cyber Valley is one of the biggest research cooperations in Europe in the area of Artificial Intelligence.

Regional Digital Hubs

Within the Business 4.0 Initiative of the Ministry of Economy, Labor and Housing Baden-Württemberg, ten regional digital hubs are created that will bring forward the digitisation in the regions of the federal state.

de:hub AI Karlsruhe

Supports companies in the exploitation of AI potentials, organise AI events, offer a wide range of consulting services.

Innovationcamp BW Silicon Valley

In a three-week camp, entrepreneurs get a glimpse of the culture, working methods and structures of the Bay Area companies.

Innovationswerkstatt BW

Experienced consultant support small and medium sized enterprises initially in the pilot regions of Ortenau and Ostwürttemberg.

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No matter the topic – Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity or Internet of Things – why is it so important that we network across regional borders on our journey towards the digital tomorrow?
Three german entrepreneurs give insights in their experiences.

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Digital transformation is the key to future growth in Europe. As a continuation to the Europe 2020 strategy, the programme “Digital Europe” has an overall budget of 9.2 billion Euros. A clear signal: The EU wants to get started and aims actively at driving forward the digitisation of Europe to the benefit of citizens and enterprises.

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Main routens AI, CS, IoT

The overall aim of Baden-Württemberg and the EU is to support digital innovation and transformation. In this brochure we focus on Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity and Internet of Things. Baden-Württemberg is already a strong location for these topics of the future. The three routes are based on and start at the core competences of our strong economic region. If you want to succeed with your enterprise, you need to create a network – both bilaterally and multilaterally as well as regionally and Europe wide.

Benefit from the strength of the existing networks: Check out the following pages and learn more about the different options. Take part and be engaged: Let’s get connected!


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Statement minister

Minister Dr. Nicole Hoffmeister-Kraut, ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing of the State of Baden-Württemberg and Member of the State Parliament of Baden-Württemberg (MdL)

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Summary

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This product was financed by the Enterprise Europe Network of the European Commission as well as the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing Baden-Württemberg.


Pictures and sources
The digital brochure and the print products created out of its content contain images, illustrations and graphics, which are partially own representations. Some of these contents originate from external sources, which are listed in the imprint of the brochure. For O-tones and interviews, the sources are always noted and identified in the imprint. The information on which this brochure is based is retrieved from publicly available sources of public authorities or government promoters (for example official programme websites, guidelines, tender texts, funding databases, etc.).


Credits
Ulrich Ahle, Cap Digital, Cyber Forum, ECSO, Annika Haas, IoT4Industry, Adrien Malguy, Ministerium für Wirtschaft, Arbeit und Wohnungsbau, Wolfram Scheible, Technische Schule Aalen


Disclaimer of liability
All information was carefully researched and compiled. The editors and publishers assume no responsibility for the correctness and completeness of the content as well as for interim changes.


Distribution notice
This digital brochure is published for the public by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing Baden-Württemberg for the public. The content serves public information about the digitisation strategy and flagship projects of the State of Baden-Württemberg as well as about the idea of European framework conditions and opportunities in the field of digitisation - especially in the areas of Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity and Internet of Things (IoT) in Baden-Württemberg and Europe. Neither parties nor their candidates or helpers may use this booklet during an election campaign for election advertising. However, it is permissible for the parties to use this booklet to inform their members.  


Publisher
Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing Baden-Württemberg
Neues Schloss / Schlossplatz 4
70173 Stuttgart
Telephone: +49 711 1230
poststelle@wm.bwl.de
www.wm.baden-wuerttemberg.de


Concept, text and editing
Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing Baden-Württemberg, Division Economic Policy in Europe
Dr. Frank Speier, Nicole Müssigmann

Commissioner for Europe of the Minister of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing Baden-Württemberg and leader of the Steinbeis-Europa-Zentrum
Dr. Petra Püchner

Steinbeis 2i GmbH
Kienestraße 35
70174 Stuttgart
Steve Bageritz, Tracey French, Ariadne Dimakou-Bertels, Dr. Meike Reimann, Bettina Remmele, Hanna Schäfer



Concept, design, editing and layout
DIE KAVALLERIE® GmbH
Agentur für Marketing und Kommunikation
Rosentalstraße 8/1
72070 Tübingen  
www.diekavallerie.de


Status
The digital brochure is continuously updated. 













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Digital strategy BW

New products and services, new value chains, new business sectors and models – the digital transformation changes our world of employment. Such a change requires a new mind-set and a new strategy – from all of us! That’s why representatives from enterprises, chambers, networks, unions and research are working together within the Business 4.0 Initiative.

With the Business 4.0 Initiative Baden-Württemberg the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing supports the industry and its employees with digitisation across sectors and thus increases the visibility of Baden-Württemberg as a renowned international location for digital industry.

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Start-up BW Pre-Seed
Support for innovative founders in their early founding stages in the form of an early stage financing.

Regional Digital Hubs – Regional digitisation centres in Baden-Württemberg
Funding measure for regional digitisation centres in Baden-Württemberg within which ten regional digital hubs have been selected. Digital hubs gather the different regional players of digitisation to stimulate an exchange of experience and to give an opportunity for trial and development of digital products through specific experimental spaces.

Digitisation Bonus
Support for concrete projects for introducing new digital solutions as well as for enhancing IT security in small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs).

Hightech Digital innovation voucher
Support for innovative research- and development-projects by established enterprises related to the implementation and application of digitisation solutions.

Ideas competition for transfer projects
Support for industry and topic-independent ideas for innovative technology- and knowledge-transfer projects in the area of digitisation.

Business Innovation Engineering Center (BIEC)
Support for SMEs in the digital transformation process and with the development of new business models, products and services.  





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These digital guides offer low-threshold support offers especially for „digital newbies“ from SMEs that are in the process of digital transformation.

With the Competence Centre for IT-Security, the federal state of Baden-Württemberg has created a central contact point for all questions about IT security.

The research campus ARENA2036 is a form of cooperation where different partners from science and industry gather under one roof to do research on innovative future topic.

Within the initiative Industry 4.0 of the Ministry of Economy, Labor and Housing Baden-Württemberg, ten regional digital hubs are created that will bring forward the digitisation in the regions of the federal state.

In a three-week camp, entrepreneurs get a glimpse of the culture, working methods and structures of the Bay Area companies.

Experienced consultant support small and medium sized enterprises, initially in the pilot regions of Ortenau and Ostwürttemberg.
.

Supports companies in the exploitation of AI potentials, organize AI events, offer a wide range of consulting services.

Check out some examples of lighthouse-projects in Baden-Württemberg!

Cyber Valley is one of the biggest research cooperations in Europe in the area of Artificial Intelligence.

“Lernfabrik 4.0" is a two-stage concept: Basic research lab for teaching the basic technolo-gies and principles of smart production.

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Leuchttürme BW

There are four digital pilots operating in Baden-Württemberg. These digital guides offer low-threshold support especially for „digital newbies“ from small and medium sized enterprises that are in a digital transformation process. More specifically, the support measures range from information material to digitisation workshops to individualised initial consultations.

Digital Pilots are supported by the Trade Association Baden-Württemberg e.V., by the Baden-Württemberg Confederation of Skilled Crafts, by the Hotel- und Catering Federation DEHOGA Baden-Württemberg and by the Virtual Dimension Center (VDC) in Fellbach.

Digital pilots crafts industry
Digital pilots planning and development
Digital pilots hospitality sector
Digital pilots commerce

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"If you want to produce successfully in future, you need employees who are well informed and are highly trained. This has also been recognised by the State of Baden-Württemberg: With a total of 6.8 million Euros, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing is supporting the establishment of 16 Lernfabriken 4.0 at vocational schools.  

Lernfabrik 4.0 is a two-stage concept: Basic research lab for teaching the basic technologies and principles of smart production. As well as an interlinked machine system for mapping the networked production processes. This concept will significantly enhance the value of the training to industry standards by providing visualisation and activation options.  

A new invitation to tender issued by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing Baden-Württemberg in June 2018 makes it possible to support up to 21 further Lernfabriken. The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports Baden-Württemberg supports the sites, where Lernfabrik are situated, with an overall educational concept."

Translated from German original by Tobias Barthruff (KM), StD Bernd Wiedmann (TS-Aalen)



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With the Competence Centre for IT-Security, the federal state of Baden-Württemberg has created a central contact point for all questions about IT security.
The Competence Centre for IT-Security offers solutions related to IT security for small and medium sized enterprises in Baden-Württemberg that are easy to understand, easy to implement and easy to communicate.

“We are working very application orientated especially in three sectors: high level research and science projects, service offers and advisory services for SMEs from Baden-Württemberg and qualifications for their employees for demanding works in the field of research and industry."
Dr. Dirk Achenbach, Manager Competence Center for IT Security

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The research campus ARENA2036 is a cooperation where different partners from science and industry gather to do research on innovative future topics regarding production and lightweight construction. The aim: to prepare the way for the mobility of the future.

ARENA 2036 is a flexible research factory for the hardware based knowledge production of the future and stands for a joint development of product and production of/in the factory 4.0.

ARENA 2036 is supported by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, by the Initiative Forschungscampus and by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) under the responsibility of the Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts Baden-Württemberg.

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The Cyber Valley is one of the biggest research cooperations in Europe in the area of Artificial Intelligence. It is located in the region of Stuttgart-Tübingen and is funded by the federal state of Baden-Württemberg. At the Cyber Valley, new research groups and departments are created in the areas of machine learning, robotics and computer vision. Moreover, it hosts the International Max Planck Research School for Intelligent Systems.

Partners of the Cyber Valley are the Max-Planck-Institute for Intelligent Systems with its two locations Tübingen and Stuttgart, the University of Tübingen and the University of Stuttgart as well as the corporations Amazon, BMW Group, IAV GmbH, Daimler AG, Porsche AG, Robert Bosch GmbH and ZF Friedrichshafen AG.

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"Today, we are at turning point. Many experts believe it brings bigger changes than the industrial revolution. It is time to set the course that digitisation serves humanity – and not the other way round. Especially for enterprises, there are enormous challenges. Regional digital ecosystems – also called regional digital hubs – provide comprehensive support to enterprises in Baden-Württemberg.

Ten regional digital hubs were established by the Business 4.0 Initiative of the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing Baden-Württemberg. These hubs will bring forward the digitisation in the regions of the federal state. They serve as spaces for ideas, experimentation and collaboration where different competences, disciplines, ideas, technologies and creativities can meet and grow. Besides the regional digital hubs, the federal state also funds three so called de:hubs.

On behalf of the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing the DIZ (Digital Innovation Centre) will create the Digital Hub-Network Baden-Württemberg with the regional digital hubs and the de:hubs to strengthen the position of Baden-Württemberg in the field of digitisation."

Gennadi Schermann | Head of the DIZ | Digital Innovation Center BW | Karlsruhe
- Translated from German original -

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"What is AI allowed to do? How can it help companies? How can knowledge be transferred or exchanged? Karlsruhe has the answer.

Artificial Intelligence ,made in Germany' has always something to do with the Deeptech-Valley in the region of Baden, where research institutions, top universities and thousands of high-tech- and IT-companies are close enough to meet personally. Karlsruhe, the living lab for digitisation, was rightly selected to become the de:hub for Artificial Intelligence. Here we make sure that AI solutions are put into practice.

We support companies in the exploitation of AI-potentials, organise AI-events, offer a wide range of consulting services, professional education and training. The de:hub creates platforms where research, politics, companies, start-ups and AI- developers meet and network with the main goal: to use AI where it serves people."

David Hermanns | Leader of CyberForum e.V. | Karlsruhe
- Translated from German original -

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"In a globalised world, we are challenged to actively participate in the change. Given this situation, I took the opportunity to attend the Innovationcamp BW Silicon Valley in San Francisco. In the three-week camp, I got a glimpse of the culture, working methods and structures of the Bay Area companies.

During this time, I could see that the real key to success lies in the setting - the much-described Silicon Valley mindset. The openness as well as the desire for development, improvement and further growth are deeply rooted in the DNA of all companies and people of the West Coast. A core competence is to reinvent yourself as a company over and over again - whether you are a start-up or an established group, whether the product is hardware or software, whether you are doing research and teaching or you are active in sales.  

The deliberateness, the precision in the detail and the commitment to sustainability have brought German engineering fame worldwide. Those achievements can be combined with the new digital possibilities and create new strengths. Instead of copying the Silicon Valley mindset, we should be the original. But we need to know and understand the strengths and weaknesses of each model. The cornerstones of building unicorns in the Silicon Valley can be experienced best in this camp."

Tanja Springer | Agentur ID GmbH | Nürtingen
- Translated from German original -

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"Influenced by our daily business, we often lack the time to develop new products. We certainly are innovative but not innovative enough according to our own perception. As a company for material testing, calibration activities and damage investigation sometimes we do not have the right tools. We were looking for help and partners to close this gap.

The Innovationswerkstatt Baden-Württemberg supported us in the search for partners. Together with these partners we got help for the creation of a business plan, our  roadmap as well as the registration of industrial property rights."

Experienced consultant support small and medium sized enterprises, initially in the pilot regions of Ortenau and Ostwürttemberg, to initiate digitisation strategies and projects under the keyword "Innovation through Cooperation". Steinbeis offers InnoBW vouchers for the implementation of projects. The "Innovationswerkstatt" also includes the "Popup Labor BW",  which is a temporary workshop where SME can obtain information on digitisation.

In conversation with Achim Baßmann, PWT Prüf- und Werkstofftechnik and Prof.Dr.Dr.h.c. Friedrich Klein (Aage GmbH)Bridge builder: Wolfgnag Müller, Steinbeis-Transferzentrum Infothek


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Focus AI, CS, IOT

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Future Field Artificial Intelligence

Digital Innovation Hubs (DIHs) as one of four pillars within the Digitising European Industry initiative, are an already established instrument to boost the EU's competitiveness in digital technologies and to ensure that every business in Europe can receive the full benefits of digital innovations.

Coordinated by technical universities and research institutes, the DIHs act as one-stop-shops, where companies  – especially small and medium-sized enterprises, start-ups and mid-caps – gain access to technology tests, financing advice, market research and networking opportunities. “The overall goal is to make the advantages of digital transformation for everyone accessible.” says Dr. Max Lemke, Head of Unit for Technologies and Systems for Digitising Industry, European Commission

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In April 2018, 25 EU countries signed a Declaration of cooperation and mutual engagement in a European approach to Artificial Intelligence (AI).

By teaming up, the involved countries aim to create access to all opportunities of AI and deal with its challenges collectively. At the same time, the goal of this united approach is to ensure Europe's competitiveness in research and deployment of AI, building on the achievements and investments of the European AI community.

Artificial Intelligence is applied today in both the personal and professional lives of citizens and is able to solve social, economic, ethical as well as legal questions. The technology is turning into a key driver for economic growth through the digitisation of industry and for society as a whole. The emergence of AI also brings challenges, though, which need to be addressed.

With the creation of a European AI-on-demand platform, Europe aims to support businesses and sectors dealing with AI. The platform should be a central point to gather and provide AI-related knowledge, algorithms and tools to businesses and sectors of the field. Another goal is the support of potential AI users in facilitating the integration of AI into their applications.

Read more about the AI-on-demand platform here.

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AMORPH.aero supports in a proactive way the management of passenger flows and airport resources. While measurement systems and CCTV (surveillance cameras) allow identifying big queues and long waiting times only after they appeared, AMORPH.aero highlights the appearance of problems before they happen.

Amorph Systems is an information technology company with headquarter in Stuttgart, Germany and further company locations in Timisoara and Oradea, Romania. With the help of the European SME-Instrument, the company was able to get funding to kick-start the market success of their product AMORPH.aero.

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In September 2017 the 5th Cluster Matchmaking Conference took place in Stuttgart. It was organised by the EEN partners Baden-Württemberg International (bw-i) and NorthDenmark EU Office. Part of the conference was the international cooperation forum where the German BioRegio STERN cluster and the Danish Welfare Tech cluster met. Since mid-February 2018, the two clusters are partnering in the cross-border ILDA-care project (Intelligent Logistics, Digitalisation and Automated Workflows for the Homecare and Nursing homes sector).

The aim of ILDA-care is to develop a new value chain that takes into account and integrates intelligent logistics, digitisation and automation for nursing staff in nursing facilities and care homes. The project is financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) with a total budget of almost 210,000 Euros. It will involve small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) from the BioRegio STERN region and Denmark, as well as some large companies.

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The Vanguard Initative focuses on new growth through smart specialization and has its foundations at the regional level. It seeks to lead by example in developing interregional cooperation and multi-level governance for supporting companies, RTDs and stakeholders.

The aim is to build synergies and complementarities in smart specialisation strategies in particular through pilots and demonstrators focusing on digital innovation (AI, ESM), nano technology, bioeconomy and energy. It facilitates access to potential business partners, helps to change information and to build investments.

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Over the coming decade, large parts of the economy and more globally of the society itself will be reinvented due to the emergence of technologies such as AI, quantum, robotics, etc. A deep-tech (heavily relying on science and engineering) revolution is coming. Europe has the talent, motivation and resources to lead the world in the next generation of breakthrough / market creating and disruptive innovations. But a smart support policy combined with adequate funding means is needed to maximise opportunities and tackle existing barriers.

Here is the purpose and the vision of the European Innovation Council (EIC) initiated and shaped by Commissioner Carlos Moedas and supported by the European Council in its conclusions of June 28, 2018. The EIC will focus on detecting, nurturing, supporting and scaling-up breakthrough market-creating and disruptive innovation, from the idea (“Pathfinder” scheme) down to market deployment and scale-up (“Accelerator” scheme) in a seamless approach.

„With the EIC, an important and promising step change in the impact of European support to innovators is rising. Europe is acting F.A.S.T.! Europe is back!“  
Jean-David Malo | Director for Open Innovation and Open Science | European Commission – Directorate General for Research and Innovation  

Find the complete statement  here.

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Challenge Cybersecurity

European Cyber Security Organisation (ECSO) was founded in 2016 to support the European Commission in implementing the Public-Private Partnership on Cybersecurity. Until now, ECSO has more than two hundred members, including large companies, SMEs and start-ups, associations, research centres and universities, end-users and operators, as well as the national public administrations. Thanks to this great variety of the European cybersecurity stakeholders ECSO unites, its activities go beyond the research and innovation (R&I) agenda and cover the entire value chain of cybersecurity.

To grasp the big picture of the commercially available cybersecurity products and services on the European Union (EU) market, ECSO has been consolidating a powerful visualisation tool – the ECSO Cyber Security Market Radar, which is especially relevant to micro companies and SMEs in placing them on cybersecurity innovations ‘map’ and boosting their visibility.

ECSO also coordinates the Smart Specialisation Pilot Action with five European regions with the aim to establish an interregional accelerator programme to facilitate the access of local companies to the European cybersecurity market.

Additionally, ECSO develops the ECSO SME Hub – a publicly accessible platform  – which maps European cybersecurity SMEs and promotes their products & services.

To further the European cybersecurity market consolidation, ECSO organises series of local European Access-to-Market-&-Finance events, which have been designed to cover different investment phases, ranging from seeding to strategic investment and M&A. These events provide a forum for the European start-ups and scaleups to meet investors and integrators.

ECSO Website
ECSO Cyber Security Market Radar

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Cyberwatching.eu is a Horizon 2020 project aiming to reinforce the European Cybersecurity & Privacy (CS&P) industry. Via an online platform the project increases clustering and collaboration between research projects. The research community can register in an Research and Innovation (R&I) Observatory and an online Catalogue of Service Offers as well as use the CS&P cluster workshops to create synergies on common technical themes.

SMEs, start-ups, spin-offs and R&I teams across Europe can use the Cybersecurity & Privacy Marketplace to connect all over Europe. By joining this exclusive community you can get free advice and tips from our experts and find out more about funding opportunities.

Join our growing community! 



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CYBERWISER.eu pragmatically addresses the urgent need to count on highly-skilled, multi-disciplined cybersecurity professionals, given the increasingly aggressive cyber-landscape that Europe and the world is facing. CYBERWISER.eu will be an educational, collaborative, real-time civil cyber range platform where cybersecurity competitions will take place, making it the EU’s reference, authoritative, independent cybersecurity platform for professional training.

Users can play the role of attackers and/or defenders in different scalable and configurable scenarios, composed of a set of virtual resources representing a company ICT infrastructure. The platform will be completely web-based, to facilitate adoption, collaborative support from end-users and continuous upgrade.    

CYBERWISER.eu expands and builds on the results and users community of the H2020 Innovation Action named WISER [2015-2017].

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Focus Internet of Things

The goal of Smart Anything Everywhere (SAE) is to let SMEs, start-ups and mid-caps enhance their products and services through the inclusion of innovative digital technologies. Digital Innovation Hubs (DIH) will bring user companies (with a need to invest in digital technologies) in contact with supply companies that have suitable digital technologies and products that address the needs of the users. They will get the opportunity to do a focused application experiment where the novel product or service is developed.

This creates a win-win situation for all actors: the user company can ‘test before invest’ and evaluate whether this innovative product brings benefit to its business. The supply company has an early customer and can im­prove its offering based on this experience. The ultimate goal of the application experiments is on the one hand to help foster competitiveness of in parti­cular SMEs and mid-caps, and on the other hand, to establish fully functional ecosystems of DIHs that can also provide services beyond technical advice such as business consulting and training.

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AMASS (Architecture-driven, Multi-concern and Seamless Assurance and Certification of Cyber-Physical Systems) is an EU-funded project in which 29 organizations from 8 countries collaborate, with the support of 16 influential advisory board members from industry and academia. It has created and consolidated the de-facto European-wide open tool platform, ecosystem, and selfsustainable community for assurance and certification of Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS) in the largest industrial vertical markets including automotive, railway, aerospace, space, and energy. The ultimate goal of AMASS is to lower certification costs for CPS in face of rapidly changing features and market needs.  

AMASS has received funding from the Electronic Component Systems for European Leadership Joint Undertaking (ECSEL JU). ECSEL Joint Undertaking is a EU-driven, Public-private partnership, funding innovation in electronic components and systems.  

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This is what the future of Industry 4.0. will look like: A pan-European and competitive collaboration between industrial enterprises and solution providers coming from the “Internet of Things” sector. For the time being, though, there are diverse obstacles such as language barriers and the comfort zones of regional companies. The goal of “IoT4Industry”, a project funded by the Horizon 2020 programme of the European Commission, is to help SMEs to overcome these obstacles.

Since April 2018, the cluster of excellence microTEC Southwest has taken action together with several partners to support a collaboration between enterprises and IoT-providers to integrate Industry 4.0 solutions, thus promoting innovation and the chance of new business opportunities.

microTEC Südwest, with its unique network in the area of industrial enterprises and IoT-solution providers, is the ideal partner in the project and thus represents the innovative force of Baden-Württemberg and Germany. The consortium helps interested stakeholders in finding partners and in writing project proposals for financial support. Selected, transnational projects – such as feasibility studies, prototypes and pilot projects – are funded with up to 120.000 €.

At the website you can find latest information about the project, the current funding status or expressions of interest as well as reports upon acquired results.

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EINS GmbH, a software company based in Karlsruhe, Germany, has successfully applied together with 2 partners for 50,000 Euros in EU funding via the SME instrument. With this financial support the IT experts were able to start their unique project:

ANDRUPOS (Automatic Non-Destructive Recognition of Used Printing techniques On Substrates) deals with the recognition of the printing technology used to create a document. This innovation makes automated forensic investigation of printed documents possible. Thanks to an approved follow-up project, supported by the Fast Track to Innovation programme, the idea will be now further developed to be ready for its launch into the market.  

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The EU-project „DIGITRANS – Digital Transformation in the Danube Region“ supports small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in developing their digital business models. Based on known methodological approaches, the consortium developed a customised method for SMEs in the fields of creative industries, health management and production. This method is provided to business representatives through training in order to directly assist them in developing their own digital business model idea.

Additionally to the trainings, interested parties will find practice-oriented approach descriptions as well as helpful instructions for implementing those approaches and methods in everyday working life on the DIGITRANS platform "digitrans.me", which has been specially developed by DIGITRANS.

The MFG Baden-Württemberg is the project coordinator of DIGITRANS.


Speaker in the video: Goran Levačić, Technology Innovation Centre Međimurje Ltd (Croatia), DIGITRANS Project Partner
 




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The IBH-Lab KMUdigital is a research and innovation network, in which universities and practice partners work on digital solutions. The gained results are used to support SMEs of the four-country-region around the Lake of Constance (Germany, Austria, Swiss and Liechtenstein) for handling, implementing and realising the industrial digitization.

"We strongly orientate on enterprises, which means that we look exactly what SMEs need. If you want us to meet your needs, get involved!"
Alexandra Boger, Leadmanagement BZI 4.0, IBH-Lab KMUdigital & Bodenseemittelstand 4.0


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Peer to peer

"In April 2018, we won the SME-Instrument Phase 2, which is part of the Horizon 2020 work programme. We submitted several times, with the help of our service provider. The programme itself gives extreme financial planning security. It is very start-up friendly, because a large part of the promised financing is paid in advance, so you can invest and plan straight away.

In addition, the programme offers a very attractive reach – we are invited to network meetings, theme evenings, trade fairs and for keynote speeches, beside the generic customer addresses throughout Europe."

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"Especially in Southern Germany, where we have a huge expert knowledge in the field of engineering, there is a great potential how we can use Artificial Intelligence to optimise our production processes. The problem that we have in this area is, that we don’t try it or don’t face this challenge and rather wait a little too long.

I think we should take this opportunity. In Germany we have so many world market leaders, strong SMEs and big global players – why do we always think vertically in exactly what we do instead of thinking horizontally about how to connect the things we do!"

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Digital agenda of Europe

Europe sets the legal framework when it comes to how digitisation can be shaped in each Member State. The key points were already defined in 2015 within the Digital Single Market Strategy for Europe. The EU advocates a free, digital single market in which businesses can grow beyond borders, while at the same time maintaining high standards of consumer protection and data protection.

The Digital Single Market Strategy for Europe has created a framework which now is complemented by the new Digital Europe programme. Ambitious funding and investments have been decided to further strengthen Europe's strategic digital capabilities. In particular, the areas of Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity, competences and eGovernment are identified by the EU as key areas for the EU's future competitiveness.

More information:
Digitising European Industry (DEI)
Digital Innovation Hubs (DIHs)

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Enterprise Europe Network
The Enterprise Europe Network relays more than 600 hubs in support for SMEs. The focus is to connect SMEs on European and International scale with the right matches and funding opportunities to trigger the next steps towards upscaling on innovation and internationalisation. Find your regional contact through: 
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Horizon 2020
Horizon 2020 (H2020) is the 8th EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation with almost 80 billion Euros of funding available between 2014 and 2020. It aims at promoting “more breakthroughs, discoveries and world-firsts by taking great ideas from the lab to the market”. AI, Cybersecurity and Internet of Things are key topics, with various funding opportunities. Get connected with your local Enterprise Europe Network partner:
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The European AI Alliance
The European AI Alliance was launched by the European Commission to support the work of the High Level AI Expert Group, in particular in the drafting of AI Ethics Guidelines and in ensuring the European Region's Artificial Intelligence competitiveness. The members of the alliance use a seperate forum to exchange and discuss among themselves as well as with the High Level Expert Group. In addition, members can access official AI documents and submit reports and documents to an open library.  
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Alliance for Internet of Things Innovation (AIOTI)
AIOTI was founded by the European Commission in 2015. The aim of the alliance is to strengthen the dialogue and interaction in the Internet of Things (IoT) area between the key players in Europe and to build a dynamic IoT ecosystem. Furthermore, the Alliance also fosters experimentation, the deployment of IoT and supports the interoperability of IoT standards. The working groups are accessible for large companies, successful SMEs and dynamic start-ups - as well as European research centers, universities, associations and public bodies.  
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European Cyber Security Organisation
The European Cyber Security Organisation is a fully self-financed non-profit organisation that supports all types of implementation initiatives and projects that develop and promote European cybersecurity since June 2016. The strategic cyber security research and innovation working groups are accessible through a membership and include a wide variety of stakeholders such as large enterprises, SMEs and start-ups, research centers, universities, end-users, operators, clusters and associations, and local, regional and national administrations active participation open.
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Lighthouse Industry 4.E

Industry 4.E pulls together the necessary work that is core to the ‘digitisation of industry’.

FIWIRE Initiative

FIWARE provides a framework of open source software components which are used to create IoT platforms and Smart Solutions in different domains

Factories of the Future

It is the EU’s 1.15 billion Euros research and innovation partnership which supports applied research in production technologies, and related fields.

Alliance of Internet of Things Innovation

AIOTI was initiated with the aim to strengthen the dialogue and interaction among Internet of Things (IoT) players in Europe.

Innovation Center Denmark - Silicon Valley

The Initiative helps to build bridges between research institutions, companies and capital in Denmark and Silicon Valley.

France is AI

The initiative was lounged to support and promote the French AI ecosystem on a global level.

Cap Digital

A French cluster which focuses on the development and expansion of the innovative economy in France in the field of the digital economy and sustainable development.

e-Estonia

Estland is a pioneer in digital economics and e-government in Europe.

Cybersecurity Innovation Hub España

A digital ecosystem around cybersecurity and advanced technologies in Spain.

Check out some examples of lighthouse-projects in Europe!

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Lighthouses EU

Lighthouse Industry 4.E is part of the ‘Lighthouse Initiative’ introduced by ECSEL Joint Undertaking to signpost the ‘digitisation of industry’ as subjects of common European interest. Industry 4.E pulls together the necessary work that is core to the ‘digitisation of industry’.

To keep production industries competitive, more and more IT- and ECS-driven know-how is needed, based on platforms, standards and appropriate certifications for safety. Present day fragmentation stands in the way of reaping the full benefits offered by digitisation: Industry4.E will address these issues.  

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"The basis for this is data and context information. But today this context information is very often managed in silos within and across different domains. FIWARE is driving key standards to break down information silos, integrating all vertical systems. We are providing a framework of open source software components which are used to create IoT platforms and Smart Solutions in different domains like Cities, Energy, Industry or Agriculture. For example, more than 100 cities from 25 different countries in the world are already creating their Smart City together with our partner companies based on FIWARE.  

The FIWARE technology has been developed in a European lighthouse project, the ‘Future Internet PPP’. In total 500 million Euro were invested during the past years to make the creation of new smart solutions as easy as making a sandwich. Our partners be it start-ups, SMEs or corporates are taking this open source framework and solutions library and just need to create 10% or 20% of custom code to create innovative Smart Solutions. This is effective and efficient and creates best value for money for the end users"

Ulrich Ahle | Chief Executive Officer |  FIWARE Foundation

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Factories of the Future (FoF) is the EU’s €1.15 billion Euros research and innovation partnership which supports applied research in production technologies, and related fields, to ensure that manufacturing in Europe remains competitive and sustainable. It is Europe’s Industry 4.0 initiative. Through Horizon 2020, the partnership launches annual calls for proposals for pre-competitive projects.

Factories of the Future is supported by a dedicated association, EFFRA – the European Factories of the Future Research Association. EFFRA defines the research priorities for the Factories of the Future partnership, assists partnership projects, and supports the large 'Factories of the Future'-community.

The partnership is open to all. Any company or organisation interested in collaborative research in production technologies can participate. The first step to participation is to get involved in the 'Factories of the Future'-community (existing and past project participants) through regular networking and technical conferences/workshops.

Participation does not just provide an opportunity to participate in European research but also provides your business with a chance to expand its network across Europe and across sectors.
You can find more information on all projects in the online Innovation Portal (free).

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The Alliance for Internet of Things Innovation (AIOTI) was initiated by the European Commission in 2015, with the aim to strengthen the dialogue and interaction among Internet of Things (IoT) players in Europe, and to contribute to the creation of a dynamic European IoT ecosystem to speed up the take up of IoT.

Other objectives of the Alliance include: fostering experimentation, replication, and deployment of IoT and supporting convergence and interoperability of IoT standards; gathering evidence on market obstacles for IoT deployment; and mapping and bridging global, EU, and member states' IoT innovation activities.

Learn more from Kees van der Klauw, Chairman AIOTI.

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The Innovation Center Denmark helps to build bridges between research institutions, companies and capital in Denmark and Silicon Valley. The main objective is to accelerate the entry of Danish companies into Silicon Valley, to facilitate US investments in Denmark and to foster research cooperation. The overall objective of the Innovation Center Denmark Silicon Valley is to help drive innovation in Denmark by providing inspiration.

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The initiative France is AI was lounged in 2016 to support and promote the French AI ecosystem on a global level. The key objectives are to build a dynamic network of the French AI players, to give a platform via the France is AI conference, to build bridges with international AI hubs and support correlating initiatives.

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Cap Digital is a French cluster which focuses on the development and expansion of the innovative economy in France in the field of the digital economy and sustainable development. It provides its members with information (through market & technology observation and forecast, publications, studies), training, helping with recruitment, matchmaking/networking, funding solutions, project reviews, business development and internationalisation services.

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In various areas such as health, economy or education, Estonia sees itself as a digital pioneer and society that has been driving digitisation since 2000 and in which 99% of public services are available online. The basis for many of the services is the electronic ID, which enables e-authentication and a secure and transparent access to the various services and data online.

Always with the aim of creating a direct benefit, e.g. by simplifying procedures, digitisation began in small steps. Despite the fact that analogue processes are still available, the digital offer was received very well. Another learning is that Estonian citizens are happy to pass on their data to the state as long as the state explains very transparently, what happens to the data. Full transparency and the use of Blockchain as a forgery-proof path and proof of data access took place relatively early in 2007.

More informations about e-estonia.

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Cybersecurity Innovation Hub is a digital ecosystem around cybersecurity and advanced technologies. It has been promoted by the Institute for Business Competitiveness of the Regional Government of Castilla y León (ICE) and the Association of Innovative Companies (onwards AEI) in Cybersecurity and Advanced Technologies, to bring the benefits of digitisation to companies, and help them to  accelerate their adoption of digital technologies, especially designed to improve an industry 4.0.

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