The Minister of Enterprise and Made in Italy Adolfo Urso signed the ministerial decree allocating funds for the national financing of European Digital Innovation Hubs (EDIH) a few days ago. Among these is “AI MAGISTER”, the Hub dedicated to Artificial Intelligence in which DITECFER, Italy’s main Railway Technology Cluster, is participating, thus bringing one of its national headquarters to Pistoia.
114.5 million Euro from PNRR funds for the “Strengthening and thematic and territorial extension of technology transfer centres for industry segments” will co-finance the 3-year start-up period of the 24 new Hubs.
The AI MAGISTER Hub will operate at national level, supporting the adoption of AI-based solutions by companies operating in the Sustainable Mobility and Agri-Food sectors, and by the Public Administration, with specific reference to municipalities.
AI MAGISTER is promoted by 19 partners, including the University of Naples Federico II, the University of Salerno, the Polytechnic University of Marche, the IULM of Milan and the main Italian incubator and accelerator of start-ups in the field of artificial intelligence. Within the managing entity, DITECFER will act as a catalyst for the transformation needs of the railway sector with a view to sustainable mobility.
The Hubs will help the digital transition of industry and the Public Administration by providing testing and experimentation services, training and skills development, support in accessing funding, networking and creating connections with start-ups and Italian and European innovative organisations capable of offering solutions to the specific needs that companies and municipalities express for their digital transition.
For businesses, artificial intelligence can enable the development of a new generation of products and services, the reduction of wasted energy and consumption of natural resources and materials, the optimisation of processes and the increase in the quality of products and services, as well as make it possible to free valuable human resources from repetitive or lower added-value roles – which can be carried out by artificial intelligence – and assign them to better roles.
For citizens, artificial intelligence entering public administration can help reduce costs, offer new options in public transport, education, energy and waste management, and much more.
The promoters of the Hubs are now waiting for indications from the Ministry in order to be able to proceed with their formal establishment and start-up of activities. A Ministerial Steering Committee, settled by the Decree, will have the task of monitoring the implementation of activities and promoting coordination between the various national Hubs.
For Daniele Matteini, President of DITECFER and Confindustria Toscana Nord: “This is yet another goal that DITECFER has achieved in recent years. After so many successes at the European level, with this strategic national initiative we are able to bring to the Pistoia area a point of access to highly innovative and competitive services for our companies. This is an opportunity for our supply chain, but also for the territory, because it could bring with it strategic synergetic investments to innovate and energise our industrial and social ecosystem”.
For Veronica Elena Bocci, Coordinator of DITECFER and Vice-President of the European Railway Clusters Initiative: “With this new instrument we are extending DITECFER’s action in a stable manner to one of the most promising and disruptive advanced technologies, and we are doing so as a national but also European ‘hub’, since through us companies will be able to access services and solutions not only ‘made in Italy’ but also from other European countries: our task will be to find, no matter where, the right skills for the specific need of the company“.