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KMU 4.0

In particular, SMEs often lack the resources to deal with the possibilities of digitization, new technologies and their exploitation possibilities. The ACR institutes can play a key role as brokers between large companies, the research community and Austrian SMEs.


Austrian SMEs are faced with the challenge of maintaining their competitiveness in an economic world that is undergoing rapid technological change and increasingly global interdependence. Digitalisation opens up many new economic opportunities for companies, such as stronger customer orientation via networked value-added chains or new digital business models (e-commerce, big data, etc.). At the same time digitalisation also poses a threat to companies that can not, or not quickly enough, adapt to changes. Due to small-scale organizational structures and lower resources, SMEs in particular often lack the human and financial resources to deal with the new technologies and their potential uses (if they do not affect daily business). However, especially SMEs are considered to be particularly suitable for implementing their ideas in the form of new products, services, markets and business models because of their greater flexibility compared to large companies.

Against this backdrop, the aim of the SME 4.0 project is to build up a sound knowledge base on the topic of digitalisation within the ACR institutes and to develop and test a low-threshold, sector-specific digitalisation service for SMEs based on the skills and experience acquired in order to (further) develop and strengthen transformation skills for structural change among ACR customers in the long term.

Project team

KMU Forschung Austria (Lead)

GET - Güssing Energy Technologies

IBO – Österreichisches Institut für Baubiologie und –ökologie

ÖIAT - Österreichisches Institut für angewandte Telekommunikation

Research period

April 2018 – March 2020

Funding Institutions

Funded by the Federal Ministry of Digital and Economic Affairs in the framework of ACR Strategic Projects 2018

ACR – Austrian Cooperative Research