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Study on Smart Industrial Remoting in Europe – new opportunities for Digital Innovation Hubs and SMEs!

3 Jun 2022

Study on Smart Industrial Remoting in Europe – new opportunities for Digital Innovation Hubs and SMEs!

Study on Smart Industrial Remoting in Europe – new opportunities for Digital Innovation Hubs and SMEs!

About the Study

On behalf of DG CNECT, PPMI is carrying out a 16-month pilot project titled ‘Smart Industrial Remoting: remote working in non-digitalised industries.’ The aim of the study is to identify the main challenges faced by industrial companies in their attempts to digitalise and offer targeted, evidence-based solutions to these digitalisation barriers. The recommendations produced by the study will inform the work of the European Commission and advise Digital Innovation Hubs (DIHs). They will also feed into the forthcoming European Digital Innovation Hub network (EDIH).

The study targets five of the least digitalised industries across the EU:

  • Agrofood
  • Automotive
  • Construction
  • Retail
  • Textile

Each industry has been matched with a selected EU country that faces a low level of digitalisation. We call them the ‘country-industry pairs’: 

  • Agrofood in Lithuania
  • Automotive in Hungary
  • Construction in Romania
  • Retail in Poland
  • Textile in Portugal

Project Partners

Our project partners in the study are DIHs which are based in each of the selected countries:

Study Roadmap

The project proceeds in six steps:

  • Step 1: Gap analysis – experts based in the five selected countries will assess the gaps and strengths associated with digitalisation in the targeted industries. 
  • Step 2: Problem identification – in accordance with the findings of Task 1 and with the aid of a survey targeted at SMEs, our study team will identify the main problems faced by SMEs in each country-industry pair in their attempts to digitalise.
  • Step 3: Best practices identification – we will then identify examples of good practices implemented by companies across Europe to address the problems outlined in Step 1.
  • Step 4: Experiments – in collaboration with our project partners, we will run five interventions with SMEs based on their specific digitalisation needs and capabilities. The interventions will be monitored over a six-month period.
  • Step 5: Toolbox development – based on the findings of the four previous tasks, our team will develop five digitalisation toolboxes that will contain recommendations for policymakers and (European) Digital Innovation Hubs.
  • Throughout the study we will organise workshops at each stage of the study to gather feedback from interested stakeholders and raise awareness about our findings. 

SME and DIH Involvement

We want to involve all relevant industry players at every stage of the study process. There are several ways to get involved:

  • Take our SME survey 
  • Join our workshops – eight workshops will be organised throughout the 16-month duration of the project, both in-person and online. Take a look at the upcoming events section below to register for our upcoming workshop!
  • Join the Hub events – our project partners will be hosting events in their local ecosystems to disseminate the study findings. Keep an eye on this page for more information on the upcoming events! 

Please find out about our main study outputs by following the links below:


Workshop takeaways: