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IT Tool to support SMEs in systematic innovation, based on consolidated methodology and innovation knowledge domain structured trough specific ontologies

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Easy road to high-tech business innovation

An online tool for business support in the electromechanical field that promises to enhance innovation has been successfully tested and launched.

Digital Economy

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the electromechanical sector play an important role in furthering European industry. These companies, however, must always remain at the cutting edge of technology and must constantly innovate in order to remain competitive. The EU-funded project TECH-IT-EASY developed a solution to reinforce this objective. Based on ontologies that represent the SME market, the project created a toolbox comprising a robust information system to organise and define SME technology products in specific industrial contexts. This will enable the exploitation of additional knowledge regarding technology innovation, analysing digital information from within the enterprise, from information providers and from the web. The technology also involves a support tool that guides users through the innovation process, linking a product's technology system to different knowledge sources and trends in evolution. To achieve its aims, the project team conducted a detailed analysis of the innovation and market domain of SMEs. It combined different process methodologies with information technology to advance innovation processes, establishing a collaborative environment that enables different users to work together. The project team successfully tested and developed a comprehensive information system and software tool that demonstrated its ability to support the innovation process in SMEs. The system features different modules that can, for example, conduct a market analysis or undergo searches for patents. The tool can also identify what parts of a product are redundant and can document market trends. These results have been disseminated to stakeholders in different European countries, as well as through newsletters and online. Once the outcomes are taken up by companies in the electromechanical field, their innovation potential is bound to increase. This will give the European electromechanical industry a very welcome boost during these challenging economic times.

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