Tools for collaborating with civil society are needed

Industry 4.0 requires tools and methods for collaborating with civil society

October 30th, the German social lab focusing on Industry 4.0 convened for its second panel meeting in the SmartFactory OWL in Lemgo, Ost-Westphalia-Lippe. At the meeting, participants working in the context of industrial automation gathered to discuss new tools and design-oriented methods for cross-sectoral collaboration. Among other things, a new collaboration tool prototype developed by Frauenhofer CeRRI was introduced and tested by the participants in the SmartFactory OWL. Reflecting on this tool, the participants thought that both regular meetings with the same group of people as well as one-off meetings with a diverse set of people would benefit from this tool. It would help to formulate ideas, needs and tasks and to support their networking activities.


Industrial automation needs integration of societal perspectives

Overall, the participants thought the meeting was fruitful and relevant to their work. Although collaboration in the industry of automation is mainly business to business, the participants agreed that collaboration with civil society is relevant to the development of industrial automation technology and that there is a need for integrating societal perspectives such as ethical, environmental and social issues into the industry. However, the participants do not necessarily know how to do this in practice, which is why they were happy and motivated to work with new and interesting collaboration tools.