New Industrial Digital Innovation Hub to connect RMIT with industry globally

New Industrial Digital Innovation Hub to connect RMIT with industry globally

RMIT University and Siemens have announced the establishment of an ‘Industrial Digital Innovation Hub’ to help drive workforce transformation for Industry 4.0 in the Australasian region.

The hub, which will have a node at RMIT University (Vietnam), includes a significant grant from Siemens, one of the largest industrial software companies in the world. 

RMIT Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the College of Science, Engineering and Health, and Vice President for Digital Innovation, Professor Aleksandar Subic, said the initiative with Siemens, which is also supported by the Australian Government, would enable RMIT to lead industry clustering in Industry 4.0 and develop and rollout workforce transformation initiatives through its study programs. 

“We need to think big with Industry 4.0. An industrial revolution doesn’t discriminate – it impacts every sector and therefore requires a multi-disciplinary approach with a holistic view across the entire continuum of education and training,” Professor Subic said.

Professor Subic said he expected as many as 10,000 RMIT students across a range of disciplines in engineering, science, technology, health and design to access some of the most advanced industrial software available over the next three years.

This would include all engineering and technology students at RMIT campuses in Vietnam, making RMIT the first university in Vietnam to have access to Siemens’ Internet of Things platform MindSphere and AI platform Mendex, which are essential platforms for Industry 4.0.

news-1-new-industrial-digital-innovation-hub-to-connect-rmit-with-industry-globally The initiative with Siemens would enable RMIT to lead industry clustering in Industry 4.0 and develop and rollout workforce transformation initiatives through its study programs.

Siemens Australia Chairman and CEO, Jeff Connolly said he was excited by the possibilities of this announcement. 

“Although Germany’s concept of Industry 4.0 (fourth industrial revolution) initially described the future of manufacturing, it has become clear that there are significant implications for energy, healthcare, transport, building and construction, engineering, and sustainability industries also - all part of RMIT’s and Professor Subic’s broader partnership approach,” Mr Connolly said. 

“COVID-19 is forcing businesses all over the world to look for new ways to keep our economic engines running. The university sector has been hit by the pandemic also, so like other industries, they also need to innovate and evolve during this time. No doubt the software grant will support RMIT to continue the constant drive to innovate their models and offerings and to ensure an even greater connectedness to industry.

“Digitalisation has no borders and we have to learn how a nation’s economy can participate and thrive and be resilient in the global economy. This requires new ways of thinking, new ways to collaborate and new skills across the entire spectrum of the workforce,” Mr Connolly said.

The new Industrial Digital Innovation Hub will be managed out of the RMIT Advanced Manufacturing Precinct in Melbourne. In Vietnam, RMIT and Siemens in partnership with Festo will establish a dedicated digital innovation laboratory at RMIT’s Saigon South campus that will act as a node of the global hub.

The lab will not only expose RMIT students in Vietnam to leading industrial software but also engage local industry in workforce development and Industry 4.0 projects.

RMIT University (Vietnam) Dean of School of Science & Technology Professor Julia Gaimster expects the new hub to “bring a competitive advantage to RMIT students in Vietnam, helping them come out on top of the country’s emerging digital workforce”.

thumbnail-new-industrial-digital-innovation-hub-to-connect-rmit-with-industry-globally The new Industrial Digital Innovation Hub will be managed out of the RMIT Advanced Manufacturing Precinct in Melbourne.

Professor Subic added that it had never been more important to provide this type of industrial digital environment for the development of the workforce of the future, that enables and supports teams to co-design and co-deliver programs and projects across borders and industry sectors remotely.

“I believe this will be the first time an Australian dual sector university in partnership with a global industry leader has considered the international implications by connecting Australian campuses and industry to those in Vietnam and the region.

“For successful industry transformation at scale we need our students, staff and industry partners to work collaboratively on the same global digital platforms based on globally accepted industry standards and processes,” Professor Subic said.

Story: Karen Phelan and Ngoc Hoang

13 October 2020

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