SIBILA – Innovative Training Programme towards the Integration of Competitive Intelligence and Technology Watch Practices and Methods in SMEs from Manufacturing Sectors

Implementation period: 01.02.2022 – 01.08.2024

Programme: Erasmus +, Key Action “Cooperation partnerships in vocational education and training”


Project Partners:



BATTI, Bulgaria

Textilni zkusebni ustav, Chech republic

Globalnet sp. z o.o., Poland

Innovation and value creation within the EU industry are profoundly changing, driven by a new consumer who expects value-co-creation, connectivity and real-time performance measurements [1]. As a consequence, on 2013 the European Committee for Standardization published the European Technical Specification CEN/TS 16555-1 on Innovation Management Systems to assist organisations in the deployment of innovation. To correctly establish an Innovation Management System, it is important to implement a strategy on Technology Watch and Competitive Intelligence, key instruments defined by the Observatory for Industrial Technology Foresight as the structured system for searching, detecting and analyzing the environment to transmit information and knowledge continuously to be aware of the main activities in their sector. Both Technology Watch and Competitive Intelligence have become crucial business practices to compete in today’s increasingly digital, global and dynamic environment. They allow organisations to know the latest

developments from competitors, to systematically monitor what is happening in their environment, to anticipate changes and to make decisions, minimising risks and seizing opportunities for innovation. In this sense, SMEs from sectors that traditionally follow fashion trends, such as furniture and textile, are starting to realise about the importance of monitoring the business environment to learn about the state-of-the-art trends in the future and to adapt to the market changes, and furthermore, the importance of the key staff to have the right skills for integrating such practices into daily activities.

Therefore, the systematization of an innovation strategy is becoming increasingly crucial in such sectors, that need to adopt innovation management strategies and update their skills and knowledge as it is recommended in sectoral reports stating the need of adapting VET systems to include new sector specific skills and competences required in the future [2,3]. Both sectors in Europe are massively dominated by small enterprises, requiring flexibility and multiple skills within

the staff and very specific and straightforward programmes that allow them to put the acquired skills and competence into practice in a specific process. These sectors have undergone significant changes to focus on upgrading quality, innovation and new applications areas, which forces organisations to be constantly informed of everything that happens around, and not exclusively of technological or sector-related news. The main opportunities ahead lie in continuing investment in skills, creativity, research, innovation, and new technologies [3,4]. Both sectors share similar threads, like the fierce competition from Asian Markets, but also have common opportunities and strengths, such as the innovative character and the resilience shown, and new business models arisen from a new profile of consumer. In this sense, a properly implemented Innovation Management Systems become a great asset for counteracting their common threads and weaknesses.

SIBILA will meet the current needs that the target groups have for increasing the quality of their activities and practices of their organisations that will provide clear benefits:

-Anticipate changes in the environment by identifying threats and new business opportunities.

-Reduce risks, identifying alternative products and competitors.

– Identify new partners and contributors, opening up to new actors, not naturally included within one sector.

-Be informed on best practices in business and R&D management.
[1] Investing in a smart, innovative and sustainable Industry. EESC

[2] Study on the EU furniture market situation (CEPS, Economisti Associati, CSIL and Demetra) – Nov 2014.

[3] A Strategic Innovation and Research Agenda for the EU Textile and Clothing Industry, the ETP Fibers, Textile, Clothing – Oct 2016.