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Enhanced impact of the Factories of the Future PPP through technology transfer and expanded community

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - FoF-Impact (Enhanced impact of the Factories of the Future PPP through technology transfer and expanded community)

Reporting period: 2016-01-01 to 2016-12-31

With the launch of Horizon 2020, the European Institutions and members states demanded that EU programmes do not continue focus solely on research and demonstration but incorporate the entire innovation cycle. It has been the intention of the FoF-Impact CSA to respond to this “political request” and to develop the present Factories of the Future PPP and PPP community into a more complete FoF Innovation Ecosystem. The Ecosystem will be capable of further leveraging the results of ‘Factories of the Future’ projects and will strengthen their industrial deployment.

The FoF-Impact CSA has integrated, in one comprehensive and service-oriented package, a set of tools and measures (guidelines, technology transfer tools and market uptake mechanisms) in support of exploitation of project results generated by the FoF PPP. The FoF-Impact CSA has built upon the existing work, such as the EFFRA Innovation Portal which offers a dynamic community-based environment for sharing and retrieving information about exploitable results.

In summary, the FoF Impact CSA aims as composing a package of guidelines and tools (including a FoF-Impact helpdesk) that will service individual 'Factories of the Future' projects as well as project participants or clusters of projects.
In the current set-up of EFFRA website, the Exploitation toolkit is accessible via the menu 'Research & Innovation'. The link also leads to the exploitation toolkit main page.
These pages aim at providing
• A list of Success factors for successful industrial exploitation; this list constitutes the backbone of the toolkit
• Examples of projects that illustrate the relevance of the success factors
• References to valuable documentation and links in connection to the success factors
• References to organisations ('service providers') that can be of help in realisation of different success factors
• Guidelines with formats of events or workshops useful for different stages of the project life that supports consortia in addressing the success factors

A page organised in tabs leads to information of success factors, illustrative cases, service providers, workshop formats, the EFFRA Innovation Portal and some background information about the FoF-7-2014 coordination actions.

The Formats for public workshops

Deliverable 2.2 is first providing an overview of existing approaches or services (‘Benchmark analysis’), where the Exploitation Strategy Seminars are already deployed as a services to FoF projects through DG Research & Innovation (although it has been seen that some FoF projects funded by DG Connect have also use the ESS services).
The second part of Deliverable 2.2 is dedicated at describing workshop formats, first in a general way, then more specifically mapping the workshop formats on the success factors of the FoF-Impact toolkit.

Promote projects and projects results and stimulate synergies and clustering of projects

The FoF-Impact CSA provided complementary support or more generic support for clustering:
• The organisation of the FoF Workshop on IMPACT, yearly organised by the EC was heavily supported, in particular with respect to the allocation of projects to the clusters/project areas.
• On the project search page on the EFFRA Innovation portal, the projects can be filtered according to clusters or project groups
• Sector-oriented workshops have been organised and will be organised in the future, where possible in cooperation with organisation that have a sector focus. These workshops will establish a new way of clustering, focussing on end-user sectors, such as the maritime sector and the aerospace sector.
• Multi-sector workshops where organised focussing on the presentation of the project results (the FoF-Pitch)

As anticipated, the EFFRA Innovation Portal is a good instrument in support of the promotion of project results and the stimulation of interactions across the boundaries of project consortia. During the FoF Workshop on impact of 14-15 April 2016, some delegates referred to the EFFRA Innovation Portal as a market place of FoF results (an R&D&Innovation marketplace, rather than a commercial marketplace). EFFRA further stimulates the description of project results. See also

EFFRA has started the publication of the public Newsletter ‘Impact’. This newsletter focuses on the promotion of project results as soon as they become available. The newsletter can also be used by projects to look for partnerships outside the consortium in order to enhance the industrial exploitation of project results. Copies of these newsletters can be found in the EFFRA website
Both on a conceptual level (success factors, workshop formats, …) and a practical level (through the different activities carried out under Work Package 3), the FoF-Impact CSA has heavily increased the attention for the results of the Factories of the Future PPP and has provided a better insight at EFFRA (in the EFFRA office and among the wider community) on how industrial exploitation can be further stimulated in the future.
1.3.2 Sustained activities beyond the project duration

During the last 6 months of the project, the role of the ‘regional nodes’ has been further developed in the document ‘Action Plan for a European Factories-of-the-Future Technology Transfer, Scouting & Impact Network’. The vision is to establish a European network of potential partners which should accelerate manufacturing innovation through technology transfer, brokerage and uptake of R&I-results. This network will be a win-win-situation: European projects which are looking for channels for exploiting their results will benefit by meeting appropriate innovation partners. Companies looking for inspiration, innovations, solutions or the “missing link” to realize their innovative ideas will increase the probability to find what they are looking for. Technology Transfer organisations /multipliers can widen their networks and scope, find new business opportunities and new partners.

The set of success factors will be continuously illustrated by project cases on the public website and these should be updated on regular basis. The analysis of projects, the contributions of projects to workshops and events are the source of these cases. This will lead to a continuous process of fine-tuning of the toolkit.
The exploitation toolkit section within the EFFRA web site will be maintained and EFFRA will be the first contact point for Innovation related questions.

Further implementation of a service directory and supporting projects in finding service providers
The development of the services directory in relation to the success factors (which should be considered as a guideline illustrated by project cases) and the progressive development of the role of EFFRA as a matchmaker between service requests and service offers is another activity that will be further developed beyond the project.

The organisation or co-organisation of workshops and events that promote the outcome are part of the mission of EFFRA and this should be considered as an important ‘service’ towards the projects and the FoF PPP as a whole.
Access to the project toolkit and innovation portal
Index Impact newsletter