In order to develop new market potentials, SMEs are particularly challenged to renew their processes, products and services and also their business models. SMEs achieve such innovative strength above all in networks and clusters, for example. In the "SME-NetC" funding measure, sophisticated research, development and innovation networks and clusters with significant participation by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are funded. The collaborations are geared to the needs of SMEs and the innovation strategies or technology roadmaps of the networks and clusters. "SME-NetC" is part of the concept "Right of way for SMEs - The BMBF's Ten-Point Programme for More Innovation in SMEs". With this concept, which is embedded in the "New High-Tech Strategy of the Federal Government - Innovations for Germany", the BMBF is promoting new ideas, new application possibilities and new business models, and is working towards the broad dissemination and use of research results and model solutions among SMEs.
Goals and procedure:
An unsolved problem in the fields of transport, logistics and in particular in freight forwarding is the forgery-proof transmission of information between the participants in the logistics chain. Transport accompanying documents, bills of lading and customs documents are today exchanged via e-mail and cloud services as well as via freight exchanges in addition to the classic paper form. Although there are numerous software solutions and interfaces, there are hardly any uniform standards, so interoperability is limited. The HANSEBLOC project aims to provide a sustainable solution to this problem using block chain technology. This is a new approach for fully automated business relations based on the execution guarantee. The project builds on existing systems in the field of freight forwarding and transport management and extends them by the secure electronic exchange of freight documents. This eliminates data losses caused by media disruptions and enables automated cross-organizational processes.
Cluster or network integration:
The project integrates the Hamburg Logistics Initiative, which was launched in 2006 with the aim of expanding the role of the Hamburg metropolitan region as Northern Europe's leading logistics metropolis and has achieved the gold status of "Cluster Management Excellence" in 2014 - the highest level of a recognised European seal of quality for clusters and networks. Within the LIHH guideline "Innovation and Value Creation", the digitization of logistic processes and traffic management is a major content of the innovation cluster and employs the majority of the more than 550 network members in their daily business. The joint project HANSEBLOC opens up new opportunities for the future strategic implementation of block chain technology based on the application areas of land, sea and air transport, thus making a valuable contribution to the implementation of the cluster strategy.
Perspective of innovation:
The aim of the project is to make logistics chains more transparent and automated by using blockchain and distributed ledger technologies (DLT) and at the same time reduce the number of media breaks. This innovation ensures freedom from manipulation and trustworthiness of information. The information that arises in the further course of transport (data on border crossings, transport transfers, changes of modality, etc.) is integrated into the data flow via so-called Smart Oracles as interfaces between the digital and the physical world, also in a secure, trustworthy and manipulation-resistant manner. The contractual logic is stored in Smart Contracts. The desired solution scenario consists of a combination of the four components - consignment note, Smart Contracts, block chain and Smart Oracles. In contrast to other projects, this project focuses strongly on local, but expandable solutions. These are to be put into operation not only as prototypes, but in full within a manageable timeframe, thus resulting in an advantage for the companies involved in the Logistics Initiative Hamburg.