Efficient and Sustainable Manufacturing (ESM)

About the Pilot

The Vanguard ESM Pilot initiative addresses the development of a European network of pilot plants in manufacturing efficiency and sustainability. It is aimed at sustaining the competitiveness of the European Manufacturing sector, by allowing the exploitation in Europe of innovative efficient technologies, methods, processes, and standards in production, contributing to pollution and energy consumption reduction and facilitating smart usage of resources.

The ambition of the ESM pilot plants will be to address multiple enabling technologies in a systemic perspective, making available an infrastructure that is currently not existing, due to its complexity and to the high innovation level of the industrial applications for which it is conceived. These pilots will be open to companies, constituting a neutral and cooperative playground for cross-sectorial and interregional collaboration, facilitating access to state of the art and newest process technologies to all European manufacturing environment.

Activities & Long Term Goals

Since its start-up, the ESM pilot has defined a structured methodology consisting in a mixed bottom-up and top-down process in which regional actors were called to express their priorities, in terms of pilot plants in a structured format and in line with regional S3 and the involvement of companies. Proposals were clustered considering their synergies and complementarities and inter-regional teams of European experts in charge of collaboratively develop pilot plants projects with a European added value are established. Out of about sixty regional proposals, five pilot plants projects emerged and during these years they have developed their contents. Up to now four demo cases are following the steps of the defined methodology which consist of:
i) Pilot Concept definition,
ii) Business planning,
iii) Pilots funding and implementation.

According to their status of progress, the activities that are implemented at pilot level are intended to support demo-cases with the aim of bringing the projects a step forward. To achieve this goal pilot coordinators and demo-case coordinators are working on the submission of project proposals under divers EU, national and/or regional programmes to foster the content development while at the same time leveraging on workshops and events to promote cooperation and collaboration among the Regions and the actors involved and to further expand the existing network.

The ESM pilot organises two plenary meetings every year: one to report the midterm achievements of the demo cases and the other one in December to provide an overview of the yearly progress as well as to present the plan for the following year. For what concern the ongoing project activities through which the pilots and the demo-cases are supporting their development, there are:
- Greenomed (INTERREG MED): https://greenomed.interreg-med.eu
- SCREEN (Horizon 2020): http://www.screen-lab.eu

Co-Leading Regions
Auvergne - Rhône-Alpes
Pilot Contacts
Giacomo Copani

Cluster Manager AFIL

Joan Guasch

Participating Regions
Baden - Württemberg
Basque Country
East and North Finland
East Netherlands
Friuli Venezia Giulia
Lower Saxony
Pays de la Loire
Tampere Region
Upper Austria (Oberösterreich)
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Demo Cases

web, network, programming
ESM Digital Transformation Demo-case: the Mid Term Event

On the 30th of June was held the Mid Term event of the Digital Transformation demo-case, co-coordinated by Sergio Gusmeroli (Politecnico di Milano, Lombardy), Coed de Graaf (Province of Noo


Vanguard ESM pilot and Digital Transformation demo-case coordinators are pleased to invite you to the 2021 Mid Term event to be held on June 30 from 9:30 t

welder, welding, industry
ESM Smart Plastics Hub selected for support by the TAF program of S3 platform

Within the demo-case “Polymers based functional products” of ESM p

Vanguard Initiative Regional Conference: New growth of industrial regions through Smart Specialization

The Vanguard Initiative Regional Conference New growth of industrial regions through Smart Specialization

stock, trading, monitor
First results of the activities towards a funding and financing roadmap for Vanguard Initiative's Pilots

Following the decision to anchor the analysis of the regional funding and financing (F&F) opportunities to the concrete needs of the Vanguard Initiative's Pilots, a process was launched to coll

artificial intelligence, brain, think
New EU-project launched within ESM Pilot

The digital transformation demo-case of the Efficient and Sustainable Manufacturing (ESM) Pilot has successfully launched the project AI REGIO, funded by Horizon 2020. 

Pilot annual report 2020: ESM

In 2020, the activities of the pilot will be managed in continuity with the previous years, focusing on the development of demo-case projects and on the consolidation of use-cases enlarging the ind

Pilot Action plan 2021: ESM

In 2021, ESM activities will be managed in continuity with the previous years, focusing specifically on the development of demo-case projects and on the consolidation of use-cases enlarging the ind

Pilot Action plan 2020: ESM

This Annual plan is the main reference that will guide the ESM Pilot activities during 2020.

ESM Flyer

The ESM Pilot aims at the realisation of an integrated network of European pilot plants and demo-sites supporting the uptake of advantaged technologies boosting manufacturing efficiency and sustain

Digital Transformation Demo-Case Mid Term Event

Vanguard ESM pilot and Digital Transformation demo-case coordinators organized the 2021 Mid Term event.

The event was an opportunity to share demo-case progresses and future activities, through the presentation of AI REGIO project updates and related Open calls, which recently opened.
Moreover, with the aim to strengthen and further expand Digital Transformation network, the demo-case coordinators have launched an expression of interest for new experiments: you can find the template attached.


The presentations and the link for the recorded session are available here: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/s2toxaojk5ruiqs/AADA8sUT19dMdSyCipNel-0-a?dl=0

ESM Pilot presentation - summary 2021

This document outlines the work plan for 2021.