Digitalization & Industrie 4.0
Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data, Artificial Intelligence or Machine Learning: The digital transformation has long since arrived in mechanical engineering. However, the associated dynamics repeatedly present every company with the challenge of recognizing and successfully exploiting existing digitization potential.

Themenfeldgrafik Digitalisierung und Industrie 4.0

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Aus unseren Inhalten
Cybersecure procurement of machinery and equipment

The VDMA Supply Chain Security specification gives purchasers a standard-compliant aid to minimum requirements in accordance with IEC 62443, simplifying the process for both sides without sacrificing security.

NIS2: Mandatory cybersecurity requirements

The new version of the NIS directive will in future oblige manufacturers of "critical products" such as machines or control components to implement cybersecurity in their own operating environment.

Technological sovereignty: communication technologies are crucial

Connectivity is a key component for the successful technological and economic development of economies, and thus for social prosperity.

Manufacturing-X: On the road to digital sovereignty

In order to remain at the technological forefront and enable climate protection, the world of production must change. It needs more knowledge about all processes and materials in the value network, and it needs more cooperation toward a sovereign production location in Europe. The "Manufacturing-X" initiative is intended to make this possible.

Always up to date

Are you interested in news, events and trend topics relating to digitization in mechanical and plant engineering? Stay up to date with our app "VDMA Software & Digitalization".

Business Transformation - The Opportunity for Machinery and Plant Engineering

The publication provides industrial SMEs with practical guidance for the successful development of an individual strategy and roadmap for holistic digitization.

The (Industrial) Metaverse is an interaction of different technologies

VDMA found out why it will influence the world of work and how we will work together in the industrial environment in the future in an interview with two of our member companies.

Door Closed on the Net" campaign for more digital security in NRW companies

The state of North Rhine-Westphalia wants to raise awareness of cybersecurity and is providing financial support of up to 15,000 euros for investments.

"EU Bubble talks - 30 minutes insights from Brussels": Web seminar series launched

Attention Europe enthusiasts! With our new web seminar series "EU Bubble talks - 30 minutes insights from Brussels" we take a look behind the scenes of European politics and take you with us.

The BMWK publishes the support concept for Manufacturing-X

Manufacturing-X is all over the place! Be it in politics, the media or at the Hanover Trade Fair and now something tangible is available with the funding concept.

EU Parliament: Resolution on the EU-US adequacy decision

The European Parliament plenary adopted a resolution on the adequacy of the protection provided by the EU-US data protection framework on May 11, 2023.

Abusive wave of cease-and-desist letters

The automated scouring of websites for possible DSGVO violations through "Google Fonts" integration does not justify an injunction or immaterial claims for damages.

AI Act must not lead to AI blockade

Everyone is talking about AI, but at the same time numerous questions regarding the legal framework remain unanswered. The current debate in the EU Parliament on AI legislation is therefore important, but it must not lead to an overall AI blockade.

IPCEI-Cloud: New funding guideline on use cases

Key issues paper published for a complementary funding guideline in the area of cloud and edge infrastructure and services under the IPCEI-CIS.

The evolution from low-code to generative AI models like ChatGPT for code generation.

ChatGPT is on everyone's lips - but can it really replace developers?

GDPR: "Copy" means a faithful and intelligible reproduction

The right to a "copy" includes excerpts from documents or entire documents or also of corresponding excerpts from databases, if this is indispensable to enable the effective exercise of the rights conferred by the GDPR.

Mere breach of GDPR does not per se lead to damage claims

The ECJ has ruled that a claim for damages does not, however, depend on the non-material damage suffered reaching a certain threshold.

Quick-Guide "Global Production Language and Industrial Automation Security - connect your old machines with semantic interoperability and secure systems"

On 18 April the Quick Guide "Global Production Language and Industrial Automation Security- Connect your old machines with semantic interoperability and secure systems" was presented as part of the "Indonesian-German Dialogue on Quality Infrastructure". This guide was developed by the VDMA together with Siemens, Telkomsel and other companies. The project is supported by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.

The IAS (Intergrated Assembly Solutions) Member Dialogue took place on April 21st.

With the motto: "Solving problems means listening", our exchange format "Meet the Board" took place on Friday, April 21, 2023, with more than 20 participants.

Automation is part of the solution for the future in Germany

The VDMA represents a total of 176 member companies in its IAS (Integrated Assembly Solutions) sector group, all component and/or system manufacturers in the field of assembly and handling technology.

VDMA Study "Challenges and Potentials of the EU Data Act for the Mechanical and Plant Engineering Industry".

With the Data Act, the European Commission is aiming for a new legal framework for data use, utilization and distribution. The new study provides recommendations for action for the mechanical and plant engineering sector.

"A strong signal for the industrial competitiveness“

After three Corona years, Hannover Messe 2023 celebrated a successful comeback. Exhibitors from the mechanical and plant engineering sector demonstrated with their technologies how climate change can be combated and intelligent production advanced.

EDPB adopts Guidelines on the Right of Access for Data Subjects

Following a public consultation, EDPB has adopted a final version of the Guidelines on Data Subject Rights - Right of Access.

Supporting program of automatica at a glance

Preparations for automatica, the world's leading trade fair for smart automation and robotics, are in full swing. What characterizes a world-leading exhibition? That it also offers a top-notch supporting program providing real added value through successful formats. The focal points in 2023 will include intralogistics, service robotics, and support for young talent.

ECJ on national regulations for employee data protection

The ECJ (Rt. v. 30.03.2023, C-34/21) has ruled that national regulations on the processing of employee data must remain inapplicable if they do not comply with Art. 88 DSGVO or Art. 6 para. 3 DSGVO.

"Embrace industrial competition, hold necessary debates, make decisions quickly"

The mechanical and plant engineering sector is demanding clear statements from politicians on how to secure and strengthen Germany and Europe as industrial locations. The necessary location debate requires great openness, and the path to 2035 must be designed in a way that promotes industry and small and medium-sized businesses.

New digitization expert at VDMA Agricultural Machinery

VDMA Agricultural Machinery is future-proofing its expertise in digitalization.

VDMA: Initiation of an ISO ad hoc working group on cyber security

In the context of increasing connectivity of agricultural machinery, securing communication interfaces is of paramount importance to prevent cyber attacks.

UK Policy Paper "AI Regulation" published

The UK government's white paper describes plans for implementing an innovation-friendly approach to AI regulation. It is supplemented by a corresponding consultation.

Presentation forum for Machine Vision at the automatica – Call

The Vision Expert Huddles facilitate the exchange between trade show visitors and machine vision experts. All exhibitors of the parallel trade shows automatica and Laser World of Photonics with machine vision in their portfolio are welcome to actively participate with a talk. Application deadline: 10 May 2023

Companies are already dealing with the Metaverse

As part of the online event "Metaverse - a benefit for the industry?" on March 16, 2023, a survey on the topic was conducted to obtain an up-to-date mood picture from the companies.

Market exploration trip to China with a focus on AI, Metaverse and Blockchain

July 2 - 8, 2023

China: Cross-border data transfer framework in force

In February 2023, the missing pieces of the Chinese cybersecurity framework puzzle were published. Compliance risks have increased enormously. VDMA's policy briefing provides a compact overview.

All information about our publication overview - compact and online

Our publications deal with various aspects of digitalization in mechanical engineering companies as well as cybersecurity and information security and serve as recommendations for action.

New: European business climate indicators as interactive report

Stay successful in a volatile market: VDMA offers an interactive report on European business climate indicators. Follow the developments of your most important European target markets and customer industries at a glance and make informed decisions based on current data.

GrindingHub launches digital platform in year between events

Live, innovative and brimming with know-how – the new digital GrindingHub platform. The trade fair organizer VDW (German Machine Tool Builders’ Association), in cooperation with the IndustryArena business network, offers the grinding technology industry a top-tier platform under the 360°SPECIAL brand – even in the years when no trade fair is held. On 23 May 2023, companies will have the opportunity to pitch their new products and technologies to an international online audience and make contact with potential customers. The event will be presided over by an expert moderator and also include scientific presentations on current topics.


The new working group Intralogistics-2X is concerned with interface developments for AGV, AMR and other intralogistics systems. Users and suppliers alike can contribute to the work.

Strengthening networking in intralogistics

VDMA Materials Handling and Intralogistics Association is founding the working group Intralogistics-2X to develop interface topics in intralogistics. Suppliers and users are equally in demand.

Damages for breach of the GDPR right to information

A company had to pay 10,000 euros in damages to a former employee due to a breach of the GDPR right to information.

Robotics and automation expects significant growth in 2023

Turnover forecast 2023: growth of plus 9% to just under 16 billion euros

Digital, aber sicher – Wie Sie der Kostenfalle vorbeugen!

Sicher und schnell in die vernetzte Zukunft: Das braucht auch für den mittelständischen Maschinenbau kein Hexenwerk zu sein! Wirkungsvoll unterstützen können Datencenter.

Production planning becomes predictable

Researchers report on how production planning can be automated at the EMO Hannover Lunch-Talk Let's Talk Science.

Support for your digitization!

With the support of experienced scouts from the field, the first steps toward digitization become more tangible.

Gamification is the cherry on the UX cake

VDMA found out why gamification should be seen as a valuable tool in an interview with Florian Fuchs from CaderaDesign GmbH and with Florian Holzapfel from Plain Concepts GmbH.

Control 2023 - Manufacturers of length measurement technology push digitalization

In three working groups, fundamental standards are currently being developed that will promote communication and interoperability in measuring technology in the future. At Control 2023, the VDMA will present the ongoing projects at its booth in Hall 5, where trade show visitors can talk to experts from the participating companies and get first-hand information about the status of the projects, content and use cases.

Spring 2023 forecast: Executive Board Drive Technology

At the meeting of the Drive Technology Executive Board on 08.03.2023, a nominal sales increase of 3 percent was confirmed.

EDSA publishes position paper on cookie banners

EDSA provides guidance on the use of cookie banners in practice.

IT students from Ghana for the mechanical and plant engineering industry

Together with a university network in Ghana, students with IT expertise are to be approached to work remotely for mechanical engineering companies.

EU Data Act must be industry-compatible

The EU Digital Strategy is important for the single market. The associated EU Data Act has massive implications for the entire interlinked industry business. Legal uncertainty must be avoided.

Chinese Standard Contractual Clauses (C-SCC) published

The Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) published the C-SCC and the corresponding regulation on February 24, 2023. These will come into effect on June 1, 2023.

Our expert and focus topics

Our expert and focus topics
Industry 4.0 needs easily available, secure and consistent data networking. Manufacturing-X is designed to make this possible. The goal is to establish a data ecosystem that enables trustworthy data exchange between companies based on open standards and offers companies digital sovereignty.
Artificial Intelligence
Everyone is talking about artificial intelligence and machine learning. At VDMA, there are already many organizational units that are examining the topic more closely. Here, you can gain some insight into all the activities that the VDMA is conducting on the topic of Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence.
When it comes to security at the VDMA, everything revolves around protecting machines and systems in production, manufacturing or intralogistics from attacks and disruptions. The aim of these organizational and technical protective measures is to develop cyber-resilient machines and systems and trustworthy services while reliably maintaining their permanent operation.
The audio blog for trend topics from mechanical and plant engineering
AGV Mesh-Up
The AGV Mesh-Up is a live test event for the VDA 5050 communication interface. Companies can test the interface suitability of their vehicles and master control systems in front of an audience.
Global production language
For us humans, language is a central means of communicating with each other. Language connects and enables understanding. And what about the machines in increasingly networked production? 
Technological Sovereignty
Technological sovereignty as a goal is gaining importance regarding the changed geopolitical situation. International division of labor and global trade are our drivers of prosperity and are existential, especially for the mechanical engineering sector.

Level 1 Themenwolke


To the point

To the point

Auf den Punkt Zitat Digitalization

Prof. Claus Oetter,

"The success of digital business models in the industry is decisive for the position in international competition."

Prof. Claus Oetter,
Henrik Schunk, VDMA Vice President

Auf den Punkt Zahl Digitalization


Percentage of machine builders

expect AI-based products and services to have a medium to very strong impact on their current business model.

Source: VDMA mechanical engineering in numbers and images, 2020

Auf den Punkt Zusammenfassung Digitalisierung

Whitepaper "Platform Economy"
  • Examples from the mechanical and plant engineering sector show where and in what form the principles of the platform economy come into play.
  • Here, member are no longer just machine or component manufacturers, but in some cases also take on the role of system integrators for software applications.

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Tue. 13.06.23 Tue. 13.06.23

  • Manufacturing-X

Connect2Discover gives you an insight into what is behind the new term "Manufacturing-X" and the idea to succeed in the digital transformation by involving medium-sized companies. Furthermore, learn how our Machine Information Interoperability department supports you in your transformation process.

Places available

Unsere Leistungen

Unsere Leistungen
eMagazine "Digital Transformation"
In the digital publication, you can see that German companies can already provide a whole range of products and solutions so that digitalization can be developed and implemented in companies.
Consultation offer Digitization and Industry 4.0
The competence overview for mechanical and plant engineering regarding the range of consulting offered by software manufacturers. This enables companies to pinpoint appropriate first steps in addressing the respective issues within their value chain, and to utilize this expertise in finding their own individual path toward digitalization and Industry 4.0.
Database OPC UA Companion Specifications
In our database you can find all Companion Specifications created by VDMA working groups. The entries can be browsed, filtered by output period and downloaded as an Excel file.
Guideline "Added Value by Software" 2022
Digital platforms and artificial intelligence are integral parts of digital solutions and thus a key success factor on the path to greater customer benefits. The current industry guideline "Added Value by Software" presents possible ideas and application examples that can also be implemented in your company.
Industry 4.0 Guide
Our guide is a practice-oriented tool that offers you specific entry points for identifying and introducing business models for Industry 4.0.
Guide on Marketing Digital Services
The guide "Successfully marketing digital offerings" assists you in identifying types of digital services and provides practical recommendations for successful marketing.
Self-learning production processes guide
Our "Self-learning production processes" guide demonstrates how to use reinforcement learning in order to optimize your products and processes.


Working Group Research Industry 4.0 and Artificial Intelligence
The "Research Industry 4.0 and Artificial Intelligence" working group aims to initiate pre-competitive and cross-industry research projects in the field of Industry 4.0 and AI. VDMA members who are interested are very welcome to join.nical engineering sector with the innovation centers of German research institutes.
Expert Group Machine Learning
Among other things, the VDMA committee develops Use Cases on the topic of Machine Learning.
30 OPC UA working groups
The VDMA coordinates the activities of around 30 working groups that are defining a common, cross-industry language between machines and plants in the form of "OPC UA Companion Specifications".



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