Leading change in manufacturing innovation at MWC and 4YFN

The Mobile World Congress (MWC) stands as a leading event where the latest in technology is showcased, providing attendees with firsthand insights into the future. This edition, EIT Manufacturing’s participation in both the MWC, the world’s largest and most influential connectivity event, and 4YFN, its startup-focused event, has been fruitful.

Experts from EIT Manufacturing actively engaged in various sessions during the week of 26-29 February, thanks to collaboration with Mobile World Capital Barcelona, a foundation dedicated to promoting the digital development of society. Among the diverse topics discussed, EIT Manufacturing focused on issues related to manufacturing, in particular women in leadership, collaborative projects and the importance of open innovation in driving manufacturing development.

Driving sustainable innovation

Antoni Pijoan, Managing Director at EIT Manufacturing West, presented the ENERFAST collaborative project during the EU Projects networking session. This project, initiated through the Innovation Call by EIT Manufacturing, has been underway throughout 2023.

The project is committed to developing environmentally sustainable and highly efficient technology for the fabrication of advanced sintered components. During the session, participants had the opportunity to explore more collaborative projects and engage in networking after the pitches.

Through groundbreaking projects like this one, EIT Manufacturing endeavors to drive innovation in the manufacturing sector, promoting both competitiveness and sustainability.

Open innovation as a business booster

Javier González, Business Creation Manager at EIT Manufacturing, moderated a session on Open Innovation at 4YFN’s 10th anniversary event, where startups such as Wideum and Prenomics, supported by EIT Manufacturing, shared their insights on the use of Open Innovation.

Open innovation in the industrial sector promotes progress through collaboration, knowledge, and technology exchange. It speeds up the development of solutions, reduces costs, mitigates risks and tackles complex challenges through diverse collaborations.

By being open to external solutions, industrial companies can enhance their competitiveness, adaptability, and ability to reach new markets, while also contributing to the transformation of the sector towards more efficient and sustainable practices.

Javier González, Business Creation Manager at EIT Manufacturing West

González adds that through supporting the implementation of industrial projects, “EIT Manufacturing catalyses innovation and strengthens the manufacturing ecosystem in Europe”. These collaborations allow to discover disruptive technologies, support technology transfer, and generate industrial use cases for sustainable and cost-efficient solutions.

Empowering women in manufacturing leadership

Teresa Hernández, Women TechEU Lead at EIT Manufacturing, contributed to a panel discussion on women in industry, exploring strategies to unlock women’s potential and the need for cultural transformation. Despite the increasing number of women in STEM fields, their representation in leadership positions remains low. Nevertheless, studies such as SPRI‘s in collaboration with EIT Manufacturing, Impact of Women in Industrial Competitiveness, highlight the positive correlation between gender diversity and business competitiveness. She contributed to this topic by highlighting that women bring “different perspectives and problem-solving approaches”.

Hernández also introduced the recently launched Women TechEU, a support programme to empower female founders and entrepreneurs leading deep tech startups across Europe. The programme also offers financial support and European recognition to promote women’s leadership in deep tech.