Open Innovation for collaborative production engineering

The transfer to industrial companies of the Do It Yourself (DIY), fablabs, micro-factories and makers approaches can pioneer ways towards engineering solutions throughout the whole value chain. These innovative methods can lead to new processes, machines and products with new functionalities and shorter time to market.

Industry is not yet widely using such innovative approaches to engage consumers and respond to societal needs, also taking into account the individual preferences of women and men. Collaborative production liaising companies, especially SMEs, with these new approaches can however create Open Innovation networks that can unroll a wide range of entirely new business opportunities for the benefit of consumers.


Proposals should particularly cover consumer-goods sectors and couple design, creativity and knowledge with a customer-driven production. The co-creation of products in both ends of the value chain represents customer involvement in the production. In particular, proposals should cover at least three out of the following areas:

  • Novel approaches to capitalise on the knowledge and ideas of design and engineering coming from different and even new actors;
  • Design of new strategies based on creative and agile methodologies for analysis;
  • Development of knowledge, technologies and tools to share and analyse relevant data and demands from users as well as to fully enable collaborative engineering in the production network, allowing all actors to propose innovative solutions;
  • Development of open source product data exchange and standard representations of products and processes that ensure the compatibility of modelling and simulation with different process information systems;
  • Development of new Manufacturing Demonstration Facilities (MDFs), where companies will test new technologies in cooperation with fablabs and makers in order to develop real industrial products and where training is offered.

Proposals also need to take into account Social Science and Humanities (SSH) aspects regarding creativity.

Proposals submitted under this topic should include actions designed to facilitate cooperation with other projects; to enhance user involvement; and to ensure the accessibility and reusability of data produced in the course of the project.

Activities should start at TRL 4 and achieve TRL 6 at the end of the project.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU between EUR 4 and 6 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected Impact

  • Establish Open-Innovation networks for manufacturing that support customer-driven production all around Europe;
  • Creation of specific business models for the engineering of customised solutions, particularly for SMEs, rapid demand changes and shorter time to market;
  • Improvement of the co-design and co-development capabilities towards a reduction of development costs of new products and services;
  • Increase of product variety and personalisation for higher customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Cross-cutting Priorities

  • Socio-economic science and humanities
  • Contractual Public-Private Partnerships (cPPPs)
  • FoF
  • Open Innovation
  • Gender
Application date
Social sciences : Pedagogic & Education Research, Psychology & Cognitive Sciences
Other : Computer science, Physics, mathematics and engineering