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For the Ministry of Economic Development, the 4.0 Competence Centers represent an integrated ecosystem, a new point of reference for business innovation, an aggregator of skills and an accelerator of technology transfer. For this reason, MISE has decided to nominate it for the European Digital Innovation Hubs, within the European network which is about to be set up. The initiative was further strengthened with the signing of the framework agreement with Confindustria’s Digital Innovation Hub Network.

Rome, 7th of April 2020 – The Ministry of Economic Development recognizes in the Competence Centers, active for over a year throughout the national territory, the right aggregation model in terms of 4.0 innovation and digitalisation, to be nominated in Europe to play an important role in European Digital Innovation Hubs network. This choice was furthermore reinvorced after the signing of the collaboration agreement between the 4.0 Industry National System of Competence Centers and Confindustria’s Digital Innovation Hub Network. This synergy, result of a close team game, aims to accompany Italian companies, in particular SMEs, in the digital transformation of products and processes and in supporting knowledge and specialist training in 4.0.

An innovation network that combines the strategic assets of the industrial DIHs (over 20, widely present in all regions with a single central coordination, which deal with monitoring and assessing the digital maturity of companies) with those of the Competence Centers , 8 Public-Private Partnerships, which combine the best of research and the University with the industrial excellence of the country dealing with training and technology transfer in the 4.0 field, management of innovation projects and also publication of specific calls for high TRL projects.

An aggregate system focused on digital skills and on the technological transition towards companies that MISE sees aligned with the Digital Europe Program which, for the period 2021-2027, is expected to field around 9.2 billion euros. In particular, the Italian Competence Centers are the ideal candidates for the Ministry to have a central role, within the European Digital Innovation Hubs, a conviction expressed also by sending a communication to all the representatives of the 8 Centers, in which the Mise reiterated their consistency and correspondence to the general purposes and parameters set by the Commission’s proposal for a regulation. An important step that gives Competences a central role, with the aim, in partnership with DIH, to then aggregate the further excellences of the territory in order to finally nominate qualified and credible subjects in Europe.

“The European industrial policy strategy speaks of – innovation ecosystems. Competence Centers are the ideal candidates to become European Digital Centers spread all over the country. They will achieve this objective by aggregating the skills that are present in their territories and promoting strong and deep-rooted system candidates; and working in coordination with other qualified technology transfer actors that are present. The connection with the Digital Innovation Hubs promoted by Confindustria reinforces this widespread innovation network, creating the best conditions for increasing the digital transformation of businesses. This is the direction along which we want to intervene as MISE: strengthen this system, expand it to the South of Italy; and bring it to Europe by participating in the network of European Digital Innovation Hubs “said the Undersecretary for Economic Development, Gian Paolo Manzella.