Transatlantic Cluster Initiative

Roadshow on Industry 4.0

Industry 4.0 is the digitization of manufacturing, where big data, advanced analytics and the IoT are being leveraged to make production smarter, faster, more profitable, while growing competitive advantage.

Germany has a pioneering role globally in digitization and the term Industry 4.0 is well-known in German industry. 

In the US however, it is a fairly new concept for the technology and manufacturing industries. Automation Alley in 2017 reports that 85.4% of manufacturing executives want to invest in technological processes to increase productivity. Production is the most important field for investment in technological innovation at 73.2%, followed by R&D at 54.9%.

To build on this, GACC Midwest organized a roadshow on the topic of Industry 4.0 from February 26 to March 2, 2018 in the US.

“We participated in the Transatlantic Cluster Initiative roadshow on Industry 4.0 to observe best practices of how economic development works in the USA. Through great organization by GACC Midwest, we had an insight into workshops carried out by networks to support implementing smart devices in production. We took part in a tour of mHUB, Chicago’s first innovation center focused on physical product development and visited companies to understand the progress of digitization in production. The program gave us the chance to network and organize strategic partnerships with companies and organizations closely aligned with the operational and economic goals of our organization.”

Dr. Jochen Selle, Strategic Developer, Innovationszentrum Niedersachsen

Event Impressions

Dates & Venues

Monday, February 26, 2018 - Cleveland, OH           



Corporate College East
4400 Richmond Rd, 
Cleveland, OH 44128


Microsystems Technology for Smart Production, Dr. Jana Heuer, microTEC Südwest

Smart Wearables in Industrial Applications, Prof. Christoph Runde, VDC Fellbach

Economic Development of SMEs in the Field of Smart Production, Dr. Jochen Selle, Innovationszentrum Niedersachsen

Site Visit 1:

IIOT/Automation Site Visit
Cres Cor
5925 Heisley Rd.
Mentor, OH 44060 - 1833

Site Visit 2:

Microsystems Site Visit
Valtronic Technology Inc.
29200 Fountain Pkwy.
Solon, OH 44139 - 4347

Tuesday, February 27, 2018 - Troy, MI


Automation Alley
Woodward Auditorium
2675 Bellingham Dr.
Troy, MI 48083


Augmented Reality: The User Interface for Internet of Things, Trudi Hable, PTC Inc.

Cross-Border Manufacturing Challenges and Opportunities, Dan Nagy, IMS International

Site Visit 1:

Fori Automation
13231, 23 Mile Rd.
Shelby Township
MI 48315 - 3271

Site Visit 2:

3000 High Meadow Circle
Auburn Hills, MI 48326

Thursday, March 1, 2018 - Chicago, IL

Site Visit:

1415 N Cherry Ave.
Chicago, IL 60642

Conference 1:

University of Illinois at Chicago
Student Center East, 750 S Halsted St.
Chicago, IL 60607

Conference 2:

965 Chicago Av.
Chicago, IL 60642

Friday, March 2, 2018 - Chicago, IL


Chicago Metro Metal Consortium (CMMC)
Steering Committee Meeting
69 W Washington St.
Chicago, IL 60602

Delegation Trip to Germany

The roadshow was followed by a cluster delegation trip to Germany on May 14-18, 2018.15 select US-participants had ample opportunity to visit and speak with German Industry 4.0 key players from business and research institutions as well as interact with leading industry associations and clusters. Last but not least, participants were also able to enjoy German culture and hospitality.

For more details regarding future Transatlantic Cluster events, please contact Jessica Ferklass.

US Partners

German Partners



Jessica Ferklass

Manager, Consulting Services


+1 (312) 585-8344
+1 (312) 644-0738
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