Digital Hub Logistics builds bridge between European and African innovators with DIGILOGIC
The Digital Hub Logistics is coordinating the establishment of a pan-European-African “network of networks” as part of the new EU innovation project DIGILOGIC. The project is about improving logistics on both continents: SMEs, startups and innovators shall be enabled to jointly develop smart logistics solutions in close cooperation with industry and investors. “We are very pleased that we, as the leading innovation ecosystem for logistics and digital technologies in Europe, have been awarded the contract to lead the project,” said Thorsten Hülsmann, Managing Director of EffizienzCluster Management GmbH (ECM), which operates the hub. “For the companies and organizations in our environment, our involvement will certainly also open up new, exciting opportunities to approach innovation projects from a different angle as well.” ECM is in charge of organizing the project as well as collaborating with the Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics IML in the area of Smart Logistics. Thorsten Hülsmann: “This allows us to concretely integrate experts and expertise from our innovation ecosystem into the project and transfer knowledge accordingly.”
The European Commission is providing 1.9 million euros from the Horizon2020 research framework program for the project. It was launched in January 2021 and will run for three years. In addition to the Digital Hub Logistics, the DIGILOGIC consortium includes two other European Digital Innovations Hubs (DIH), VTT from Finland and Friuli Innovazione from Italy, as well as two African tech hubs MEST (Ghana) and BongoHive (Zambia). Also involved are the social consulting company Endeva (Germany) and the SME Prototipi (Nigeria).
From innovation radar to mentoring program
The spectrum for cooperation and joint projects between European and African innovators is as diverse as logistics itself. The first step is to create a “Smart Logistics Technology Radar” that maps the latest technical developments as well as the industry’s requirements. “Africa is currently experiencing a strong upswing. It is therefore of particular interest to us to understand the logistics needs of the African economy,” says DIGILOGIC project manager Darja Kramer. Numerous interviews with stakeholders from the logistics and technology industry in Africa have already taken place – due to Corona via online conferences.
The radar forms the basis for a mentoring and go-to-market learning program. As a result, an interactive e-learning platform shall be created, through which corresponding offers for innovators will be provided. Innovators can also use the platform to network and find partners for logistics projects. European and African companies will also have the opportunity to apply for a one-year mentoring and coaching program with smart ideas for logistics projects.
All further information about the project can be found here: https://digilogic.africa/