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Manufacturing Policy Portal [beta]

Hosted by the Centre for Science, Technology & Innovation Policy (CSTI)

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Manufacturing R&D

Manufacturing R&D


Foresight exercises in manufacturing R&D in Germany tends to be carried out by the Bildungsministerium für Bildung und Forschung (BMBF)


2014 – BMBF

2010 – BMBF/ Project Management Agency Karlsruhe (PTCA)


In Germany, there have been notable documents assessing the future of high value manufacturing. Germany’s priorities for manufacturing R&D are governed by a number of considerations.

  • energy, environmental and sustainability manufacturing challenges;
  • market orientation and strategic product planning;
  • digital manufacturing and advanced automation;
  • production systems and processes for emerging technologies (and non-traditional ‘manufacturing’ sectors);
  • people in flexible and responsive manufacturing firms;
  • flexible production networks and systems for customized production;
  • protection of production know-how and products in global manufacturing systems


In Germany’s Rahmenkonzept "Forschung für die Produktion von morgen" (Framework Concept for the Production of Tomorrow), a component of the High Tech Strategy for Germany, there are four thematic fields of action.

  • Market orientation, strategic product planning, services
    • Software development
    • Product development
    • Prototype production
    • Sustainable production
    • Business segment planning
  • Production processes and production equipment,
    • Primary shaping and recasting
    • Chipping
    • Surfaces and layers
    • Heat treatment
    • Assembling
    • Measurement engineering
    • etc.
  • Cooperation of producing enterprises
    • Logistics
    • Cooperation
  • People in flexible enterprises
    • Skilled industrial labour
    • Plant design
    • Assembling
    • Company development


Applications under this programme are to be made on the basis of future orientation (cutting-edge technology, high risk innovation), economic relevance, a systemic approach (interdisciplinarity, cooperation between business and science, concepts for project controlling), and a broad range of potential impact (sector-wise), education and further training aspects.


A 2010 document produced by the Project Management Agency Karlsruhe (PTCA) for the Bildungsministerium für Bildung und Forschung (BMBF), Herausforderungen für die Produktion(sforschung) 2020, identifies a collection of production challenges of the future.

  • New Production Technologies for future energy systems
    • development of highly productive plants for the production of photovoltaic cells, wind turbines and heat pumps
    • development and establishment of international standards
    • Innovation leadership through know-how clusters and supplier networks
  • Value chains and production technologies / systems for electric mobility
    • Setting the standard for the electric drive of the future
    • create conditions for the development of a national value chain (strategy, clusters, technology) for battery and drives
    • development of new production methods and machines necessary for competitive production
    • automation concepts
  • Resource-efficient production technologies
  • From the source-sink economy to a circular economy
  • Production technologies for the markets of tomorrow
    • hi-tech production technology for low-cost products
    • Culture Room Specific product design and production related technologies
    • benefit rather than product sales / integration of product and service
  • Digital Factory / IT in the factory of the future
    • Progress through integrated MES, PPS, ERP systems
    • Holistic simulation of product un product systems
    • Augmented & Virtual Reality
    • PLM integration
  • The forward-looking prototypes - and mold at the beginning of the value chain
    • Generative Method for the gentle and customized production
    • Process chains for custom products
  • Automation know-how to expand
    • cognition in planning and programming
    • Robotics for service, logistics
    • Low-cost automation, human-machine interface
    • "Intelligent" drive technology, sensor-actuator technique
  • New forms of learning for the production of tomorrow
    • Training factories for excellent production technical education and training
    • areas of learning and teaching for the factory of the future
    • concepts for virtual and real production environment
  • New production technologies for medical technology of tomorrow
    • Production of customized implants
    • Complete equipment for hospitals
  • Chemical and Pharmaceutical Production Technology
    • The chemical plant: modular manufacturing cells and changeability
    • Micro Process Engineering: Key for new products
  • The demographics-oriented factory
    • Age-appropriate work systems
    • training concepts
  • Innovative machine tool technology as the basis of a production technology leadership
    • integration process / multi-technology platform
    • Holistic simulation of machine and process in terms of quality, time and resources
    • Innovative user interfaces
  • High-performance manufacturing procedures to ensure progress in the core sectors
    • process stability at the limit productivity
    • Simultaneous engineering manufacturing processes, equipment and product
  • Expertise in high-performance process chains for future growth centres
    • "intelligent" process chains, best practice
    • Integrated quality assurance, process control
    • simulation tools, closed simulation chain
  • Product development, foresight and system-oriented
    • Strategic development of product innovations
    • Innovation speed increase by gearing material science, development methodology, production technology
    • Methods for integrated product and production system development
  • The breathing and versatile production network
    • linkage of flexible capacity structures un adaptable networks
    • Reconfigurable building and production technology
    • Adaptable organizational structures
    • Supply Chain Management
  • Know-how protection in dynamic markets
    • production technology with integrated protection against plagiarism
    • Production technologies for identification