Efficient innovative company and business people working together

SMERF

Project overview

SME Ready for the Future

Countless companies will have to change their business models to stay competitive. They need to innovate to be prepared for a greener and more digital future. One way to cope with this challenge is to seek support from so-called innomediaries that function as innovation bridgers or change agents. The SMERF project offers smaller companies guidance on working with innomediaries. The project also creates a transnational inno-green market for transforming companies across central Europe.

2,49m €

Project Budget

80%

of the Budget is funded by ERDF

Layer 1

7

Countries

8

Regions

8

Partners

2

Pilots

Duration

Start date

End date

Project progress

43%

About the project

The project focuses on supporting low-tech and medium-tech SMEs' transition towards SMERF: SME Ready for the Future and providing new services to Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and Innomediaries (entities either supporting SMEs or closely cooperating with SMEs on innovations development) that will enhance their competences and equally support SMEs, especially in Lower Silesia (PL), Upper Austria (AT), Emilia-Romagna (IT), Baden-Württemberg (DE), Nyugat-Dunántúl (HU), Jadranska Hrvatska (HR), Liguria (IT), Východné Slovensko (SK) regions. SMERF creates a unique approach by linking concurrently 4 pillars based on new concepts and models of: 1) Innovation culture, 2) Digital manufacturing, 3) Open innovation 2.0 & sharing economy, 4) Green & circular economy & sustainability. SMERF helps SMEs to effectively transform and adopt innovative approaches. The goals of interregional cooperation (cross-border knowledge & good practice exchange) include: - creating innovation-friendly culture (often underestimated in SMEs), - speeding up or introducing digitalization in manufacturing, - starting or enhancing organizations to open up and encouraging them to Open innovation 2.0 tools & methods, - implementing solutions & best practices in line with Green Deal and circular economy.

Project partnership

Project partners

Polska (PL)

Lead partner

Wroclaw University of Science and Technology

Department for Laser Technologies, Automation and Production Management
Address
Łukasiewicza 5
50-370 Wrocław
Country
Poland (PL)
Web
www.pwr.edu.pl, www.wm.pwr.edu.pl

Project partner

Mechatronics Cluster
Address
Hafenstr 47-51
4020 Linz
Country
Austria (AT)
Web
www.biz-up.at
Total partner budget
254,010 €
Address
Via Confine 2310
41058 Vignola
Country
Italy (IT)
Web
www.crit-research.it
Total partner budget
404,403 €
Institute for Automation and Applied Informatics (IAI)
Address
Kaiserstr 12
76131 Karlsruhe
Country
Germany (DE)
Web
https://www.kit.edu, https://www.iai.kit.edu
Total partner budget
292,000 €
Address
Gesztenyefa u. 4
9027 Gyor
Country
Hungary (HU)
Web
www.pbn.hu
Total partner budget
229,480 €
Address
Radmile Matejčić 10
51000 Rijeka
Country
Croatia (HR)
Web
http://www.step.uniri.hr
Total partner budget
272,488 €
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Energetics, Management and Transportation
Address
Via All´Opera Pia 15
16145 Genoa
Country
Italy (IT)
Web
www.unige.it
Total partner budget
286,600 €
Address
Letna 9
040 01 Kosice
Country
Slovakia (SK)
Web
www.tuke.sk
Total partner budget
272,600 €

Roadmap

1

Context

SMERF will strongly support SMEs from regional S3 sectors: automation, environmental technologies, industry 4.0, technology-assisted life, industrial production processes, energy, sustainable food production and processing, mobility and logistics. Other beneficiaries of the project will be higher education and research organizations, business support organizations, enterprises except SMEs, sectoral agencies, local and regional public authorities.

2

Specific problem

Many CE firms do not yet have sufficient capacities to adopt new concepts and models as they lack know-how, human capital, best examples as well as organizational and managerial capacity. According to Flash Eurobarometer 486 “SMEs, start-ups, scale-ups and entrepreneurship” among EU SMEs' biggest problems are lack of skills, incl. managerial 17% (out of 12.343 SMEs); difficulties with digitalization 13% and innovation 9%, internationalization 8%. In such challenging circumstances, efficient and effective support is needed, which will allow SMEs to transform their organizational culture and business models, become more resilient to further challenges and to adapt changing conditions in terms of a digitalized and greener economy.

3

Idea

There is need for SMEs to effectively transfer and adopt new market and social -driven concepts and models will be addressed by focusing on 4 Pillars oriented on: innovation culture, digital manufacturing, open innovation & sharing economy, green & circular economy & sustainability.

4

Solution

Lack of know-how, human capital and organizational & managerial capacity in introducing new concepts & models will be reduced by providing Inspiration Knowledge Base together with webinars on 4 pillars topics, trainings for SMERF mentors, SMERF Trainings, SMERF Individual Support Program, study visits and SMERF Handbook.

News

Pilot actions

Outputs

O1.1 SMERF Strategy and SMERF Action Plan

A jointly developed by all PPs from 7 countries SMERF Strategy (SS) & SMERF Action Plan (SAP) will detail how the SMERF approach will be defined and executed. It will cover: -definition of 'SME Ready for Future' within 4 pillars -advancement level measurement system -diagnosis methodology -principles of qualifying SMEs for transformation -guide on the whole SMERF methodology implementation & detail all the actions foreseen in the work plan. Activities leading to this output: A1.1, A1.2, A1.3.
Type of output: Strategies and action plans
In development

O2.2 SMERF Diagnosis Tool

The solution will contain: 1) self-assessment functionality to assess advancement level in 4 pillars; 2) expert system that will develop transformation scenarios covering innovation culture, digital manufacturing, open innovation, sharing economy and green economy elements for each audited SME, & dedicated list of WP3 activities that SME could follow; 3) Inspiration Knowledge Base with essential information regarding 4 pillars. Activities leading to this output: A1.3, A2.1, A2.2, A2. 3, A2.4.
Type of output: Solutions
In development

O3.2 Model for supporting SMEs in the transformation process towards a company of the future

This solution will be composed of a set of procedures and services providing support to SMEs in the transformation process towards a firm of the future. The solution is dedicated to HEIs and innomediaries as a guide in helping an SME to transform into SMERF. It can serve as a guide on how to implement new services for SMEs in HEIs, RTOs, BSOs, sectoral agencies. The description of this solution will be presented in D.3.5.1 SMERF handbook. Activities leading to this output: A3.1-A3.5 and O3.1.
Type of output: Solutions
In development

O3.3 SMERF Memorandum of Understanding

SMERF Memorandum of Understanding will present the description of the formal cooperation concept once the project is ended. It will be signed by the 8 Project Partners and at least 8 other organizations from partners' countries cooperating across borders after the completion of the SMERF project. Activities leading to this output: A3.5 and D.3.5.3
Type of output: Strategies and action plans
In development

Project documents

Project images

SMERF

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Project on social media

Project Contacts

Project Manager

Mariusz Cholewa
Phone: +48713203137

Finance Manager

Ewa Mus
Phone: + 48 71 320 25 56

Communication Manager

Laura Fotulová
Phone: +421 907 066 557