European Survey Report - Robotics/AI and 3D printing (July 2017 - 65 pages)
Issues faced by SME Managers when considering the introduction of robots into their organisation - European Review Report (April 2020 - 86 pages)
The aim of this 38 page Report is to produce an introduction to 3D printing, what it is, the opportunities and potential for its use, the impact on society, the prospects for employment, how to introduce 3D printing in training establishments, including the type of hardware and software required, and a few general ‘tips/tricks’.
A detailed “New Age Technology Training Module Framework” (Robotics and 3D Printing) has been developed and, following pilot testing in Europe, is now available for use by training institutions with the expectation that they will adapt/modify the modules to suit their organizational and cultural needs. This Training Framework will provide an outline of what an New Age Technology training programme should look like and what it should contain in order to support and develop the European technology sector.
The understanding and implementation of robots and AI (Artificial Intelligence) into the workplace is becoming an increasingly important aspect of economic growth in Europe. In order to take advantage of the technological advances SME Managers need the appropriate tools (including skills and competencies) to evaluate the value of automation and how to integrate robots and AI into the workforce.
SME Managers need to consider a range of strategic factors to integrate next-generation robots into their overall strategy. They need to re-think workflows – introducing autonomous units that can think and interact with a wider ecosystem requires a re-evaluation of workplace structure. They need to consider social factors – the introduction of robots requires an understanding of social context and how these they interact and communicate.
The specific aim of the Project (September 2019 - August 2021) will be to develop a series of training and support tools for SME Managers to enable them to assess the value of robots to their business development and sustainability and then effectively introduce them. These tools will include a best practice guide, self-assessment tools and an information exchange platform.
The overall impact of the Project will be an effective and viable way of managing the growing need for information and support of SME in the area of the introduction of new age technologies into their business.
Since its beginning, the 3D printing industry has experienced significant growth, evident in Wohlers Associates’ yearly reports (Wohlers Report 2019 ISBN 978-0-9913332-5-7). Behind this growth is a talented workforce. But, as with most disruptive technologies, the sector growth happens much quicker than the pace of learning, leading to a talented workforce. This lag has created what is commonly known as the 'Additive Manufacturing (AM) Skills Gap'; the notion that there are simply not enough talented people to fill jobs and thus meet the needs and demand from the AM employers.
To achieve the project’s aims and objectives we will develop and produce a ‘3D Printing Toolkit’. The Toolkit will have 3 elements:
1. INTRODUCING 3D PRINTING
2. TEACHING MATERIALS FOR TRAINERS
3. PROGRAMME ON 3D PRINTING, PEDAGOGIC GUIDE FOR TRAINERS
The results of our THREE-D-Print project is to provide support for the educational and training challenges related to equipping the future workforce with relevant and needed skills to participate in the 3D printing revolution. The key focus of the project is on providing an entry-level, easily accessible courses that could motivate adults with fewer qualifications.
This is an important opportunity to give adult learners the expertise and competencies needed for societal development and individual development.