Training and innovation drive the manufacturing industry of the future


MECSPE Bari, the landmark event for the manufacturing industry in Central and Southern Italy, concluded its second edition with 14,715 professional attendees and makes an appointment in Bologna from March 6 to 8, 2024.

A total of 14,715 professionals filled the pavilions of the Nuova Fiera del Levante for the second edition of MECSPE Bari, the event dedicated to Central and Southern Italy of Italy’s leading trade fair dedicated to the manufacturing industry, organized by Senaf. With the closure of the Apulian edition, MECSPE is preparing for the 22nd international edition that will return to Bologna from March 6 to 8, 2024.
The fair, with 511 exhibiting companies, featured 150 conferences and workshops and 11 special initiatives aimed at delving into the issues of technological innovation and the training of the professional figures of the future to make the industry increasingly high-performing and competitive. During the inaugural conference, “The Transformation of Italian Manufacturing between Training, Innovation and Sustainable Processes”, data from the MECSPE Observatory were presented, which showed an industry in good health with most companies looking to the future by forecasting a path of growth in the next two years (70 percent), especially in size. The inaugural conference saw the support and collaboration of local institutions, including Confindustria Bari BAT with the Mechanics Section, Federmeccanica, the Apulia Region, and the Municipality of Bari, which helped create value for the area and the sector.

Traininginnovation, and sustainability: these are the guidelines that permeate MECSPE each year and its program of initiatives dedicated to the future of the industry and discussion among industry players. The collaboration with “ITS A. Cuccovillo Mechatronics Puglia Foundation” pushed precisely on the first of the three directions, creating the Training 4.0 Square, a space where ITS and partner companies talked about their collaboration and opportunities for the territory. The area, which throughout the fair involved and oriented young students and future mechatronics technicians, emphasized the importance of bridging the gap between companies and schools so that more and more companies can take advantage of already trained and competent resources. Puglia’s ITSs, also present in the MECSPE Young & Career space, have created opportunities to meet and network with local companies to start professionalizing paths.
Among the conferences that enlivened the second edition of MECSPE Bari was The Industry You Don’t Expect, organized by Federmeccanica to bring young people closer to the industry world. The event recounted a reality consisting of evolved, digital, and innovative businesses, debunking the clichés connected to the sector, where the hope is that young people will play a key role.
There is great excitement for activities dedicated to new enabling technologies, with a plethora of high-tech exhibitors and countless sophisticated innovative systems. The theme of innovation characterized this edition of MECSPE Bari, which confirmed the Apulian capital as the heart of digital and technological innovation for industry in Southern and Central Italy, but not only. One example is the Bari Polytechnic’s demonstration area, which brought out very high-tech projects based on Brain-Computer Interface and Artificial Intelligence, such as Spotty, the little robot dog that executes commands by decoding brain responses, and the Neural Raceway, an innovative educational and entertainment system that allows users to control the movement of toy cars through their brain activity. “The just-concluded second edition of MECSPE Bari highlighted how much the manufacturing sector represents a driving force for the development of the area”, said Ivo Nardella, president of Senaf and Tecniche Nuove Group. “The fair was an opportunity to give space to excellence in terms of innovation, with new technologies and intelligent use of AI and training, highlighting the central role played by ITS, Universities, and Polytechnics in preparing the professionals of the future who are increasingly key players in the transition that industry is facing. In this regard, great attention has been paid to creating synergies between business and education to adequately respond to the needs of the industry and make the sector increasingly competitive. Manufacturing, as the driving sector of the Italian economy, must be ready to face the challenges of a changing future, challenges that we will explore as early as next March with the annual MECSPE event in Bologna”.
Finally, new to this edition is the Sustainability Objective Path initiative, organized in collaboration with Project Hub 360, which gave visibility and recognition to exhibitors who are committed to a path of improvement in terms of ESG (environmental, social, and governance criteria). The project stems from the principle that sustainability is never an endpoint, but a path of continuous improvement that all companies are required to implement.

20.000 sq m of exhibition area, 511 attending companies, more than 150 conferences and workshops, 11 special initiatives, 3 halls, and the Exhibition Core “Energy Transition and Industry 4.0: Sustainability in the Manufacturing Industry”. 16,243 professional visitors participated in the last edition (2019).