Sector-spanning support for digitalisation efforts undertaken by Baden-Württemberg’s business sector.
Digitalisation is changing the way we live and work. Both employers and employees are facing major changes. For this reason, "Economy 4.0" is the topic of economic policy today and in the coming years.
Against this background, the "Initiative Economy 4.0 Baden-Württemberg (IW4.0)" was launched in 2017 by Economics Minister Dr Hoffmeister-Kraut and a joint "Roadmap Business 4.0 (PDF)" was developed in the partner group. The IW4.0 bundles cross-sector activities in the field of Business 4.0. In the meantime, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Tourism is working together with 35 partners from associations, business organisations, business-related research institutions, companies and chambers to design digitalisation measures and initiatives that are as practice-oriented as possible. Under the umbrella of IW4.0 are various sector pillars and sector-related strategies, such as the "Industry 4.0 Alliance", Crafts 2025, Trade 2030 and Service Industry 4.0 as well as Cultural and Creative Industries 4.0.
The goal of IW4.0 is to work together with the 35 partner organisations to advance the digitalisation of the economy in Baden-Württemberg, especially with regard to small and medium-sized enterprises, across all sectors and throughout the entire state. IW4.0 acts as an "umbrella" and "communicative bracket" for all activities related to the digitalisation of the economy. Since the launch of IW4.0, the partners have implemented numerous activities in their respective areas to advance the digital transformation of the economy. In the process, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Tourism has supported digitalisation with a wide range of measures, from information and networking to consulting, research and development to concrete funding programmes.
At regular intervals, the top representatives of the initiative meet in the top-level meeting to discuss selected digitisation projects in Baden-Württemberg and current developments in the industries. The partners of the initiative also deal intensively with a number of cross-cutting issues such as IT security, new business models, technology and knowledge transfer along with Economy 4.0 and Corporate Culture 4.0 in various working committees. New trends and technologies such as artificial intelligence and blockchain are also addressed at an early stage and worked on together as part of the Economy 4.0 initiative.
The Initiative Economy 4.0 also aims to create more transparency about initiatives and funding programmes in the area of digitalisation of the economy. The portal "wirtschaft-digital-bw" provides an overview of the activities of the Initiative Economy 4.0 as well as projects, funding programmes, contact points, events and practical examples from Baden-Württemberg.
Minister of Economics Dr Hoffmeister-Kraut: "With the Initiative Economy 4.0 future programme jointly adopted today, we want to support the state's economy in becoming more sustainable, innovative and resilient through digitalisation."
"In view of the current enormous and in some cases unprecedented challenges, starting with the far-reaching structural change of industries, the energy crisis, disrupted supply chains, climate change, digitalisation and the shortage of skilled workers, the adaptability of our economy and also that of economic policy is required in an unprecedented way," said Minister of Economic Affairs Dr Nicole Hoffmeister-Kraut today in Stuttgart on the occasion of the fifth top-level conference of the Initiative Economy 4.0 Baden Württemberg.
In 2017, the Initiative Economy 4.0 (IW4.0) laid the foundation for working together with 35 partner organisations to sustainably strengthen the business location. During this period, the Ministry of Economic had approved more than half a billion euros in measures and projects to advance the digitalisation of the economy as well as future and key technologies. "Today, the foundation stone was laid for the further joint path of IW4.0. I am therefore pleased that we will be tackling the challenges together," summed up Economics Minister Dr Nicole Hoffmeister-Kraut.
As part of the top-level conference, a future programme was adopted with the top representatives to support Baden-Württemberg companies in continuing to use the potential of digitalisation and to take advantage of market opportunities. The joint declaration "Resilient Economy 4.0 - Strengthening and expanding our competitiveness with digitalisation" emphasises that future technologies are indispensable for a crisis-proof and sustainable economy in Baden-Württemberg.
With specific measures, the Ministry of Economic, together with the partners of the "Business 4.0 Initiative", is advancing the digitalisation of Baden-Württemberg's economy and actively shaping the digital transformation. The focus is on the targeted promotion of digital pioneers as well as the support of small and medium-sized enterprises in all sectors in their entry into digitisation.