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MANUFUTURE Platform creates Research Association on Factories of the Future - EFFRA

The European Technology Platform MANUFUTURE has recently launched EFFRA - European Factories of the Future Research Association as a reaction to the European Commission's proposal for the establishment of a public-private partnership in the context of the “Factories of the Future”.

Set up by 92 organizations from 17 EU Member States, and open to all legal entities within the European Union, EFTA and Candidate Countries, EFFRA will pursue the promotion of pre-competitive research on manufacturing technologies across Europe and create European-wide networks of companies, trade associations, universities, research institutes and other stakeholders in the manufacturing field. EFFRA aims to establish joint undertakings and manage European research funds together with the European Commission.

Constituting an important partnership between the private and public sector, EFFRA will boost ‘smart’ investments and use them in research in order to develop, demonstrate and increase the use of technology in the manufacturing sector.

With a total research budget of 1.2 billion Euros, EFFRA is part of the second pillar of the European Economic Recovery Plan and its aim is to boost the manufacturing industry and to accelerate structural reforms in a time of crisis, helping EU manufacturers, particularly SMEs, adapt to global competitive pressures. For that, it proposes to widen the technological base of EU manufacturing through the development and integration of the enabling technologies of the future, such as engineering technologies used in adaptable machines and industrial processes, ICT and advanced materials.

“With EFFRA we are establishing a legal entity that will act as the European Community's private partner", said Professor Heinrich Flegel (Daimler), the Chairman of the European Technology Platform MANUFUTURE.

The first EFFRA General Assembly took place on 26 May 2009 in Brussels, gathering more than 70 high-level delegates who discussed the way forward for the public-private partnership on future manufacturing technologies.  The second meeting will take place on 1 December in Gothenburg, Sweden, following the Conference MANUFUTURE 2009.

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