From Industry 4.0 to Industry 5.0

The 4th Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0) is underpinned by digital tools, such as autonomous robots, machine learning, big data and analytics, augmented reality and cloud computing. Industry 4.0 has the potential to add value across all industrial sectors, enabling the reduction of production costs, improved consistency of product quality and mass customisation through the merging of the physical and digital worlds. However, industry 4.0 technologies also have the potential to cause social and organisational damage. The threat of unemployment, lost skills and lost opportunities in innovation and quality remain ongoing concerns.

The Industry 5.0 paradigm addresses these concerns by placing the need for efficiency, productivity and return on investment within the broader context of sustainability, resilience and human-centricity. Industry 5.0, in other words, broadens the strategic focus to include how digitalisation and related emerging technologies can not only be of immediate benefit for industry, but also for workers and society and for the longer-term prospects of productive and robust industries.

How does Up-Skill fit in?

The Up-Skill project addresses the workforce implications of industry 5.0, in particular, the relationship between automation choices and maintenance of skilled work, exploring the strategic space in production where automation adds value to skilled and artisanal work and where over-automation risks undermining the value of what is produced.

Ethnographic research will be used to identify the ways in which job roles and content are changing as a consequence of the introduction of Industry 4.0 and 5G technology, and the shifting managerial capabilities that are needed to ensure the maintenance of added value in these spaces. The Up-Skill project aims to change the mind-set from technology implementation being a substitution of skilled human work to one of human-machine inter-augmentation; extracting value from human-machine interaction to the benefit of both industry and workers and supporting the preservation of cultural heritage and craftsmanship that might otherwise be lost.

Female engineer and male specialist talking learn on the table

Policy Framework

European industry is a key driver in the economic and societal transitions that we are currently undergoing. To remain the engine of prosperity, industry must lead the digital and green transitions. The Industry 5.0 approach provides a vision of industry that aims beyond efficiency and productivity as the sole goals, and reinforces the role and the contribution of industry to society.

It places the wellbeing of the worker at the centre of the production process and uses new technologies to provide prosperity beyond jobs and growth while respecting the production limits of the planet. It complements the existing "Industry 4.0" approach by putting research and innovation at the service of the transition to a sustainable, human-centric and resilient European industry.

Why Industry 5.0?

Industries can play an active role in providing solutions to challenges for society including the preservation of resources, climate change and social stability. The Industry of the Future approach brings benefits for industry, for workers and for society. It empowers workers, as well as addresses the evolving skills and training needs of employees. It increases the competitiveness of industry and helps attract the best talents. It is good for our planet as it favours circular production models and supports technologies that make the use of natural resources more efficient. Revising existing value chains and energy consumption practices can also make industries more resilient against external shocks, such as the Covid-19 crisis.


How to make it happen?

This approach to industry contributes to 3 of the Commission’s priorities "An economy that works for people", "European Green Deal"and "Europe fit for the digital age".
Elements related to the future of industry are already part of major Commission policy initiatives:

Source: Industry 5.0 (

Are you interested in collaborating?

The Up-Skill project is open to engage and collaborate with partners from other EU-funded projects, organisations from industry and manufacturing and policymakers, to discuss technological aspects and organise joint activities such as information sharing, events or initiatives that can build on project results. Discover how the Up-Skill project can benefit you.


Who is working on Up Skill?

The Partners

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