Digital Single Market
Digital Economy & Society

Smart Anything Everywhere

The Smart Anything Anywhere (SAE) is an initiative of the European Commission that will build an ecosystems based on collaboration between researchers, large industries and SMEs with the aim to transfer knowledge and resources available to a much wider group of companies.

Smart phones, smart watches or smart TVs are just a few of the new products that are entering our daily lives. The functionalities of more and more objects are augmented by digital components hidden inside. For instance, smart offices can turn off the lights when nobody is in the office, or a car can brake automatically when an obstacle is noticed.

As an answer to these new changes, the European Commission proposes the creation of a 'Smart Anything Everywhere' Initiative (SAE). The SAE will build an ecosystems based on collaboration between researchers, large industries and SMEs across the complete value chain in a large number of small experiments facilitated by Europe's leading competence centres.

The network of competence centres, usually research technology organisations (RTOs) or technology transfer-oriented university institutes who cluster a wide spectrum of technical and application knowledge to support innovation are the core of the initiative.

The aim is to transfer knowledge and resources available to a much wider group of companies. SMEs who are very often having great ideas but are lacking the resources, and middle size companies can experiment with new technologies, try them out in their processes and work together with the suppliers of the technology to adapt it to their specific needs. This scheme is an important means for innovating their products and services and become more competitive in the global market.

A first group of four projects (funded through Horizon 2020 Innovation Actions) will make available EUR 25 mln  to support around 100 experiments with the aim of involving more than 200 SMEs and midcaps in the field of Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS), Internet of Things (IoT) and Smart Systems Integration (SSI). The information and the open calls will be published on a central/common web portal for all the projects taking part in the initiative: EUROCPS, SMARTER-SI, CPSELABS and GATEONE.

The official launch of the initiative took place on 26 and 27 March 2015 in Grenoble.

Digital Innovation Initiatives based on European Networks of Competence Centres

The European Union invests in innovation initiatives helping SMEs and mid-caps across the economy in digital value creation. "ICT Innovation for Manufacturing SMEs" (I4MS) has started working with a first network of competence centres since July 2013.

The picture below illustrates the position of SAE and I4MS initiatives in the technology adoption lifecycle.

The structure of the projects in the innovation initiatives is illustrated in the picture below. The core of the project clusters knowledge and access to specific technology and platforms which can be used in experiments. The experiments are usually driven by a neutral research organisation, not focused on one competence or specific technology, in order to avoid that such a competence centre becomes a marketing outlet for one single company, or that user SMEs will be locked into one particular brand. In one project, several of such competence centres are networked together.

Last updated on 18/05/2015 - 17:22


Marta Anna Bulik's picture
Marta Anna BULIK
Have you ever thought about your safety riding through a long tunnel, a road next to a very steep slope or strolling through ancient temples? If so, we have good news for you. Thanks to a collaborative research effort in the EU-funded GENESI project, the monitoring of the "health" of structures such as bridges, dams, tunnels or any buildings has become more affordable and reliable.
Marta Anna Bulik's picture
Marta Anna BULIK
When we are in the car, plane or train we are normally too busy to wonder how they work. We cannot imagine that many aspects of our everyday life, like different means of transport or factory plants, health and energy facilities are actually made possible by the integration of electronic equipment called embedded systems.
Jan Broenink's picture
Modern equipment (cars, airplanes, wafer steppers, automatic baggage handling) is nowadays highly computerized. While designing these, one needs deep knowledge of computer programming and how the machine itself behaves, i.e. the physical behaviour. These two sources of knowledge are quite different, and it is not easy to bring them together. This is a big obstacle in development of trustworthy systems.
Theodorus Denteneer's picture
Smart solutions for green buildings, eco-innovative technologies with focus on the user comfort and adaptation- all of these are nowadays challenges in the area of building automation and control system. Seamless collaboration of building systems such as blinding, lighting and HVAC-heating, ventilation, and air conditioning -adapting to season, time of day and building occupation, hold the promise of increased energy efficiency and improved user comfort and safety.
Andreas Eckel's picture
Andreas ECKEL
Ground-breaking safety-relevant technology used in safety-relevant data communication has successfully been developed within European Union (EU) funded research projects. Applications range from controls for airplanes, latest generation premium passenger cars, up to industrial equipment such as control for off-shore wind power turbines and many others.
Cristina Silvano's picture
Cristina SILVANO
Embedded computing touches every aspect of our lives: domestic appliances, mobile telephony, cars, aircraft, television, the internet, traffic management, security systems and power management, to name but a few! There are more embedded processors sold each year than in any other sector of the computing market, making it one of the major drivers of the IT economy. There are many times more embedded processors in place than people on the planet. It is also a field in which Europe is a global leader.
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