EuroMaintenance15 December 2022
From my point of view

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We live in one of the most inspiring timeframes for our future Asset and Maintenance Managers, -Technicians and -Engineers. This timeframe is full of choices to make and create a sustainable future in domains of Smart Industries, Sustainability, Asset performance Management, Safety and Human Factor. Now at the end of Industry 4.0, it is time to reconsider the role of the human factor, resilience and the sustainability in an increasing smart technological environment.


Industry 4.0, announced by the former Chancellor of Germany Angel Merkel at the Hannover Messe mid-2011, has become a globally adopted term in the past decade. Industry 4.0 -better known as Smart Industries Industry 4.0- was about nine topics as for example The Internet Of Things, Digital Twins, Vertical and Horizontal Aggregation of Information and more.


From 4 to 5

At the ten-year mark of the introduction of Industry 4.0, the European Commission announced Industry 5.0 in 2021. Industry 4.0 is considered to be technology-driven, whereas Industry 5.0 is value-driven. Industry 5.0 recognises the power of industry to achieve societal goals beyond jobs and growth to become a resilient provider of prosperity, by making production respect the boundaries of our planet and placing the wellbeing of the industrial worker at the centre of the productionprocess.


The analysis of the Industry 5.0 -as far as we know now-, shows a lot of uncertainty about what it will bring and how it will disrupt business in detail, as well as about its potential to break down barriers between the real world and the virtual one. Industry 5.0 will be defined by a re-found and widened purposefulness, going beyond producing goods and services for profit. This wider purpose constitutes three core elements: Human-Centricity, Sustainability and Resilience.


From one point to another

Rather than taking emergent technology as a starting point and examining its potential for increasing efficiency, a human-centric approach in industry puts core human needs and interests at the heart of the productionprocess. Rather than asking what we can do with new technology, we ask what the technology can do for us. Rather than asking the industrial worker to adapt his or her skills to the needs of rapidly evolving technology, we want to use technology to adapt the productionprocess to the needs of that professional, e.g. to guide and train him/her. 


Although the other two topics of Industry 5.0, Sustainability and Resilience, the human factor as one of the five topics of the EuroMaintenance conference in Rotterdam 2023, inspire me the most. It encourages me to overthink and discuss how to educate, train and motivate our NextGen’s and prepare them. These are the questions that confront me and fellow European Maintenance and educational organisations. I am looking forward to meet, share thoughts and insights at the event.

Jan Stoker, Chairman of the European Training Committee EFNMS and Sr. Lecturer in Asset & Maintenance Management.