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‘Smart Plus’ key to upgrading manufacturing industry

Author  :  QU JINPING     Source  :    Chinese Social Sciences Today     2020-08-28

Smart Manufacturing: The Road to Enterprise Empowerment

Information technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI), big data and the internet of things, have been widely applied in daily life. “Smart Plus,” such as smart manufacturing, smart transportation, smart commerce, smart healthcare and smart education, have emerged, ushering in a smart and digital era.

Co-authored by scholars from Guangzhou University including Sun Yanming, Pi Leisheng, Hu Yongjun and Sun Lijun, Smart Manufacturing: The Road to Enterprise Empowerment focuses on what is Smart Plus manufacturing, its difference from smart manufacturing and how it empowers enterprises and other issues in the current manufacturing industry in China. The book analyzes the situations of manufacturing companies, in particular their development bottlenecks, from the perspective of technology management and industrial economics. 

Smart Plus integrates “Internet Plus,” “Big Data Plus” and “AI Plus”—the three major dimensions of the new generation of information technology. It utilizes these three aspects to promote the transformation and upgrading of the traditional manufacturing industry. The process will develop new business forms, new products, new models and new organizational forms, which are far beyond the scope of intelligent manufacturing. The products, factories and supply chains of smart manufacturing are a transition to the modes of operation of Industry 4.0 or the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Smart Plus manufacturing refers not only to smart performance at a manufacturing level, but to the transformation of business models from products and supply chains to platforms and ecosystems based on the internet, big data and artificial intelligence.

Smart Plus is a basic means for the manufacturing industry to transform from a secondary industry into a service-oriented manufacturing or 2.5 industry, an industry that is integrated with the tertiary industry. In the process, manufacturing companies gradually transition to software companies and internet companies, achieving the shift from an industrial economy to a digital and a smart economy. 

From the perspective of industrial and technological development, the authors reveal the current situation of Smart Plus manufacturing at home and abroad, analyze the development bottleneck in China, propose a development strategy framework for manufacturing companies in China, and establish a systematic method for Smart Plus to empower manufacturing enterprises.

In the book, specific methods are given regarding Internet Plus, Big Data Plus and AI Plus from the perspective of application scenarios, empowerment methods and effectiveness evaluations, with typical case studies such as the cloud management of documents, the industrial internet platform of Haier Group Corporation and the projects of Hengyi Petrochemical Corporation.


Qu Jinping is Academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering and a professor at South China University of Technology.

Editor: Yu Hui

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