Digital Innovation Hubs Digital Innovation Hubs

AFIL - Lombardy Intelligent Factory Association AFIL - Associazione Fabbrica Intelligente Lombardia

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Contact Data

Coordinator (Networked, cluster organization)

AFIL (The Lombardy Cluster for the Advanced Manufacturing)

Coordinator website

Year Established



via Ercole Oldofredi, 23, 20124, Milano (Italy)


Social Media

Contact information

Marzia Morgantini

Contact information

Roberta Curiazzi



AFIL is the result of a process driven by the Lombardy Region aimed at creating bodies which favor the aggregation of different regional players active in the field of Research and Innovation (R&I) within the priority areas identified in the Regional Smart Specialisation Strategy. 
AFIL is a no-profit private organization aimed at fostering connections between all key relevant stakeholders (competence centers, industry, users and suppliers, technology experts and investors) able to boost Industry 4.0 revolution and facilitating Lombardy SMEs access to EU value chains. 
AFIL, through its Working Groups, provide tools and services for its members for:
  • Increasing companies’ awareness on existing opportunities on Industry 4.0. 
  • Feasibility studies and transfer of best practices
  • Matching services to support companies in identifying Competence Centers or solution providers having specific competences on Industry 4.0.
  • Support in accessing private and public available funds. 
  • Regional and Interregional ecosystem Building and networking, promoting the access to EU value chains.
  • Project idea support generation 
  • Roadmapping, regional technological priorities mapping 
  • Digital Maturity Assessment


Find the link to AFIL Working Groups activities and services:

Find the link to AFIL Community, a virtual space where Working Groups members interact and share ideas and discussions (Available in Italian only. English version under development):

AFIL è il risultato di un processo guidato da Regione Lombardia volto all'aggregazione di diversi attori regionali attivi nel campo della Ricerca e Innovazione (R&I) all'interno delle aree prioritarie individuate nella Strategia di Specializzazione Regionale. La mission di AFIL è quella di favorire le connessioni tra le principali parti interessate (centri di competenza, industria, utenti e fornitori, esperti di tecnologia e investitori) in grado di promuovere la rivoluzione Industria 4.0 e facilitare l'accesso delle PMI lombarde ai mercati europei.

AFIL, attraverso i suoi Gruppi di Lavoro, fornisce strumenti e servizi per i suoi membri per:

  • Aumentare la consapevolezza delle aziende sulle opportunità esistenti su Industry 4.0.
  • Studi di fattibilità e trasferimento delle migliori pratiche
  • Servizi di corrispondenza per supportare le aziende nell'identificazione di Centri di competenza o fornitori di soluzioni con competenze specifiche su Industry 4.0.
  • Supporto nell'accesso a fondi disponibili privati ​​e pubblici.
  • Ecosistema regionale e interregionale Costruzione e collegamento in rete, promozione dell'accesso alle catene del valore dell'UE.
  • Generazione di supporto per l'idea del progetto
  • Roadmapping, mappatura delle priorità tecnologiche regionali
  • Digital Maturity Assessment

Di seguito il link alle attività e servizi dei Gruppi di Lavoro:

Di seguito il link alla community AFIL, uno spazio virtuale dove i mebri dei Working Groups possono costantemente interagire, scambiando idee e discussioni:

Link to national or regional initiatives for digitising industry

AFIL was supported by the EU H2020 I4MS initiative, in particular thorugh the BEinCPPS Project - Business Experiments in Cyber Physical Production Systems (, started in 2015, and officially launched the regional manufacturing activities in January 2017.
Lombardy Region rely on technological clusters to enhance the adoption and effectiveness of the S3 strategy. AFIL is the officially recognized Lombardy technological cluster focused on Advanced Manufacturing.  Indeed AFIL activities are fully aligned with Lombardy S3 strategy with a specific focus on Advance Manufacturing.  Find the link to Lombardy Region website where there is the evidence (available only in Italian): .
In addition, AFIL contributed to the development of the roadmap where S3 Macro Themes and strategic development themes for Advanced Manufacturing are specified (available only in Italian):

Market and Services


  • Manufacture of food products, beverages and tobacco
  • Manufacture of textiles and textile products
  • Manufacture of leather and leather products
  • Manufacture of wood and wood products
  • Manufacture of pulp, paper and paper products; publishing and printing
  • Manufacture of coke, refined petroleum products and nuclear fuel
  • Manufacture of chemicals, chemical products and man-made fibres
  • Manufacture of rubber and plastic products
  • Manufacture of other non-metallic mineral products
  • Manufacture of basic metals and fabricated metal products
  • Manufacture of machinery and equipment
  • Manufacture of electrical and optical equipment
  • Manufacture of transport equipment
  • Other Manufacturing

TRL Focus

  • TRL6 - System/subsystem model or prototype demonstration in a relevant environment
  • TRL7 - System prototype demonstration in an operational environment
  • TRL8 - Actual system completed and qualified through test and demonstration
  • TRL9 - Actual system proven through successful mission operations

Services provided

  • Awareness creation
  • Ecosystem building, scouting, brokerage, networking
  • Digital Maturity Assessment
  • Access to Funding and Investor Readiness Services
  • Education and skills development
  • Other

Service Examples

Awareness creation and innovation scouting

AFIL organized several meetings and events, ranging from  istitutional events to thematic workshops for increasing awareness on key topics, from specific working groups to support companies on certain needs to matchmaking events.
In detail, more than 30 promoted and organized events per year:

Working groups meeting, aimed to:

  • Promote networking among regional actors
  • Discuss about project opportunities
  • Develop Vanguard demo-cases
  • Update of regional R&I priorities

Thematic workshops:

  • Focused on specific topic of interests  
  • Organized in collaboration with WGs coordinators 
  • Participation of experts 
  • In line with the topics emerging at national level

Cooperation tour:

  • Broader thematic events at European level
  • Panel session with interregional experts
  • Workshop session with companies involvement
  • Matchmaking and companies visits

Istitutional events:

  • Cluster Assemblees (AFIL, CFI)
  • Relevant events for AFIL members

Clients: Companies (both SMEs and LE), academia and industrial associations.

Clients' needs: Companies willing to increase knowledge and awareness on the topic of interests, find suitable partners and networking. Academic representatives willing to disseminate their researches. Industrials willing to share their innovative applications.

Solution provided: AFIL organize several meeting to meet companies' and academia needs, in order to increase awareness, knowledge and networking.

More details:

Project idea support generation

AFIL organizes periodical infodays to raise awareness on available funding opportunities, as well as event for enhancing matchamking opportunities to foster project idea generation. Some examples of projects emerged from AFIL Working Groups are: 
  • SMART4CPPS – Smart Solutions for Cyber-Physical Production Systems (a project funded by Lombardy Region with 16 partners and a total budget 7.4 Million Eur)
  • MADE4LO - METAL ADDITIVE FOR LOMBARDY (a project funded by Lombardy Region with 11 partners and a total budget 6.6 Million Eur)
  • FiberEUse (a €9.8 million research project funded by the European Union since June 2017 and collaborating with 20 partners from 7 EU countries).

Clients: Companies (C.M.S. Costruzioni macchine speciali Spa, Ratti Spa, Scaglia Indeva Spa, Quantra Srl, Porta Solutions Spa, Cavagna Group (OMECA), Camozzi Spa, Balance Systems Srl, TXT e-Solutions Spa, Fincons Spa),  RTOs and Universities (Politecnico di Milano, Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche - Istituto di Tecnologie Industriali e Automazione, Università degli Studi di Bergamo e Università degli Studi di Brescia).

Needs: Find the right partnerhsip to develop intercommunicating and intelligent CPS to be adopted in manuafcturing contects.

Solution provided: AFIL organized Working Group meetings focused on the mentioned challenge and in the meanwhile the cluster identified suitable available funding opportunities. Interested stakeholders settled-up a partnership that applied to a Lombardy Regional call (Bando Accordi) and initiated the project with a budget of about 7,4 M Euro.


More details:

Funding Opportunities Monitoring

AFIL constantly monitor available funding opportunities at a regional, national and European level in order to identify the most suitable opportunities for the needs of its members and organize periodical infodays to raise awareness and introduce them to comapanies.

Clients: Alascom Services S.r.l.

Clients' needs: Alascom was looking for the suitable technological partner and for financial support in investing in robot programming.

Solution provided: AFIL found the right partner and the right call/measure where the company could apply. Alascom participated to Innodriver regional call with a Research center and their "RHP (Robot Holo Programming)" Project was funded.

More details:

Roadmapping, regional technological priorities mapping

AFIL roadmap group periodically revise the Lombardy Advanced Manufacturing Roadmap, with the invovlement of AFIL members that are asked to provide inputs, comments, suggestions according to the needs and challenges they are facing. These updates are then trasnferred to Lombardy Region that leverage on the Roamap to formulate future calls and revise its startegy accordingly.

Clients: Lombardy Region

Clients' needs: Align regional startegies with companies emerging needs

Solution provided: AFIL organize specific meeting to collect companies needs and future challenges. Then the cluster developped the Roadmap for Advanced Manufacturing, in order to transfer the emerged input to Lombardy Region.

More details:

Regional and Interregional ecosystem Building and networking

AFIL support the matching among companies, demanding support in solving specific needs or in implementing certain technologies, and Competence Centers or solutions providers having knowledge and competences to overcome the challenge.
For examples, AFIL during a periodical visit to one of its member, a packaging company willing to solve a technological issue impacting its production process, identified a partner that have the proper competencies to start a fruitful collaboration with the company. Indee, they are now actually working on a private project.

Client: Large Enterprise working in the a packaging industry in Varese.

Client need: solve a technological issue impacting its production process efficiency.

Solution provided: AFIL identified a partner that have the proper competencies to start a fruitful collaboration with the company. Indeed, they are now actually working on a private project.

Best practices and feasibility studies

AFIL collect success stories of companies having successfully implemented digital technologies to show SMEs and start-ups how they can digitalize their processes, products or business models. According to this, AFIL initiated an Initiative “Cento4.0: the Excellence of Lombardy Intelligent Factory”, to collect innovative industry 4.0 solutions developed or adopted by companies.

Client: Innovative companies (both SMEs and LE).

Client need: disseminate and promote innovative solutions

Solution provided: AFIL developed Cento4.0 initiative to collect innovative Industry 4.0 solutions (both from manufacturers and solution provider perspectives). Thanks to Cento4.0 initiative, innovative companies have a suitable space to promote and disseminate their solutions, while companies still hesitating in implementing digital technologies can effectively understand the potential advantages.

More details:

Access to infrastructures

AFIL itself does not hold infrastructures/facilities, but it relies on the infrastructure made available by its members spread in Lombardy,  where companies can test their technologies.

In particular, AFIL is working on this, though the Vanguard Initiative, whose aim is to develop a network of demostration facilities accessible and used by companies, in particular SMEs, in order to test and scale up technologies. 
Concretely speaking, AFIL is the co-coordinator of Vanguard Efficient and Sustainable Manufacturing pilot, where  the demo-case "De- and Remanuafcturing" where AFIL Working Group memebers are playing a central role in connecting their infrastructure to an EU network (e.g. STIIMA-CNR De- and Remanufacturing lab in Milan, the Interdepartmental Laboratory of Politecnico of Milano for battery re-use, Relight hydro weee technology, Xnext x-ray technology, ...).
The partners belonging to FiberEUse project are testing and developping their technologies on the pilot.
Online reference:

Another concrete example refers to a manufacturing company in Bergamo that has the necessity of developping a prototype of a monitoring system. AFIL took the company to the POINT, the laboratory of Intellimech Consortium (located in Dalmine, Bergamo), where the company had the possibility to test the monitoring system before have fully invested on it.


Organizational form

(Part of) Private organization



Number of employees


Evolutionary Stage

Fully operational

Geographical Scope



  • Horizon 2020
  • European Regional Development Fund
  • Private funding
  • Memberships


Number of customers annually


Type of customers

  • SMEs (<250 employees)
  • Large companies, multi-nationals
  • Research organisations



Partner Type


Politecnico Di Milano (POLIMI)

Partner Type



National Research Centre (CNR)

Partner Type

Research & Technology organization

SSI Intellimech Consortium

Partner Type

Networked, cluster organization


  • Sensory systems
  • Cyber physical systems
  • Robotics
  • Internet of things
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Interaction technologies
  • Cyber security
  • Big data, data analytics, data handling
  • Virtual, augmented and extended reality
  • Cloud computing
  • Additive manufacturing
  • Logistics
Last updated: 21/12/18 11:10