A new concept of corporate culture for factories of the future

September 2013

- February 2015

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Industry 4.0

The initiative

SO SMART is a new concept of corporate culture for the factories of the future, so that they can prosper through social capital, the wellbeing of people and new stimulating and exciting management methods. We can think of SO SMART as a journey starting out from the idea that it is possible to improve the wellbeing – and performance – of people working in manufacturing and not forgo the company’s success. Implementing a factory that is socially sustainable can also be beneficial economically. The initial idea developed into the realisation that this would be feasible with tangible backing, and the SO SMART partners were able to come up with the right tools to ensure social wellbeing for workers in the factories of the future. The research underlined that, alongside an ageing working population, Europe is also faced with a skills gap that is pushing the workers of tomorrow’s factories to their limits.

The role of the Foundation

Fondazione Politecnico di Milano has been a partner in this project

Technical details

SO SMART – SOcial Sustainable MAnufaCToring ecosystems – is a EU coordination and support action funded by the European Commission under its Seventh Framework Programme. The projects’ partners come from an industrial or academic background, with experience in corporate management, production, human resources, corporate culture and industrial automation. From the start of the project, the SO SMART consortium was determined to examine the “social sustainability” of the factory of the future, using a “socially sustainable ecosystem” model that introduces the perspective of individual workers, together with that of the company and the society in which they are operating. The study concluded that the challenges of all three perspectives in the ecosystem should be well-balanced for the factory of the future to prosper and help to improve society.

Achieved results

An integrated “SO SMART ecosystem” that considers the perspectives of the individual worker, of the company and of society. A roadmap presenting a viable pathway that starts from the current challenges and ends with a new vision, to transform workplaces of today into tomorrow’s socially sustainable factories.

Financial supporters