Veerle Rijckaert
Innovation manager
44% completed


Type of partnership
Partnership duration (months)
Number of partners
Number of SMEs involved

Summary and objectives

The ambitious, common goal of our S3P partnership ‘Smart sensors 4 agri-food’ is to enable the food companies in Europe to make the leap towards industry 4.0. We will support them to introduce new technologies and inspire and enable the companies to use these, connect competences and support the development of specific business cases. The ultimate goal is a more interconnected, resilient and smart agri-food system in Europe.

In the framework of the Connsensys project we will focus on the following objectives:

1. General objective

In accordance with the COSME call specific objective, the overall objective of our project is to set-up a platform, including a joint cluster partnership strategy and partnership agreement to establish our partnership, an implementation roadmap and interregional investment projects. These investment projects can be between food- and electronic/ICT cluster organisations and relevant RTOs or between two or more companies, to lower the barriers for agri-food companies to access the newest smart sensor systems, to enable the Internet of Things (IoT) transition of the food industry.The focus of this proposal is to encourage the partnering process in relation to the key drivers of industrial modernization in the food industry, such as digital transformation. The industrial thematic areas of our partnership include: advanced manufacturing, digital transformation/industry 4.0 and big data analytics.  The close cooperation between cluster organisations – that manage joint activities, facilitate networking and provide or channel specialised and customised business support services – and RTOs improves the business environment for SMEs and maximises synergies, as both types of organisations give SMEs better access to innovation support and funding. The intense, strategic collaboration between clusters and RTOs will create a trust zone and lead to a cross-fertilisation process between the involved sectors. This will facilitate the wider distribution and penetration of R&D results and stimulate innovation excellence, and will accelerate the introduction, validation and implementation of IoT solutions based on smart electronic systems and embedded technology in the food industry on a wide scale (from multinationals to locally operating SMEs).

2. Specific objectives

With the aim of facilitating the implementation of smart sensor systems, we will explore the potential of living labs and pave the way towards setting up these facilities. We aim to join up comparable living labs, staffed with competent, multidisciplinary teams, from different European regions, to facilitate the sharing of best practices and complement each other’s expertise. In these living labs technologies can be demonstrated, tested, workshops can be organised, etc.

Additionally, we want to establish shared support services for business creation and technology intelligence. Relevant information and experiences regarding available technologies (partners and companies in the different regions), funding possibilities, business support, etc. will be shared.

In the framework of this shared support service system, we will develop two, more generic business models that can facilitate concrete, interregional investments and investment projects in this domain. The business models will outline the steps to consider and hurdles to tackle in relation with the collaboration between two (or more) different companies or can outline the ground rules, necessary investments, etc. in the framework of the establishment of a living lab or other relevant innovation structure to support the food companies.

Results expected

  • Plans for a network of interlinked, open access living labs to facilitate the implementation of smart sensor systems in the agri-food industry:
    • Staffed with competent, multidisciplinary teams
    • Facilitate awareness creation, give demonstrations, trainings and workshops
  • Support services for business creation and technology intelligence:
    • 2 generic business models
    • Technology Catalogue
  • Number of resulting collaboration and innovation projects and the total amount of investments generated, including those mobilised in the context of the implementation of cluster policies and smart specialisation strategies: 37 projects – amount of investments: 40 mio €
  • Number of SMEs having directly benefitted from the supported actions: 100
  • Number of SMEs having indirectly benefitted from the supported actions: 900
  • Joint cluster partnership strategy and implementation roadmap
  • Number of regions involved in the identification, preparation and testing of joint activities towards improving cluster-specific framework conditions as well as the number of firms from which concrete industry feed-back was gathered for this purpose:
    • 12 regions of our S3P partnership
    • Number of companies consulted via surveys, regional workshops, interregional activities, etc.: 500

Sectorial and industrial focus

Sectoral industries
Cross-sectoral industries
Digital Industries

Other linked key partners or networks

Upcoming events

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Latest news and documents

Achievements Document Published: 30.10.2020
Operational handbook to establish a European network of living labs
Achievements Document Published: 30.10.2020
Demonstration case studies on senso based solutions in the food processing industry
News Achievements Published: 29.10.2020
Successful joint final event Connsensys - online - 26/10/2020
News Achievements Document Published: 29.10.2020
Hungarian study visit -online- 7/10/2020