• 19-22 September 2023
  • Milan, Italy

Moving towards sustainability through innovation

The congress program covers four days: September 19th, September 20th, September 21st and September 22nd


Tuesday, September 19th 

The UITIC tradition of offering the participants a complementary program of factory and institutional visits continues; three options will be available*, which will give an insight into the Italian shoemaking world and the best research and innovation infrastructures:

1- Suppliers

In the morning visit to Industrie Chimiche Forestali, shoe material and adhesive manufacturer (Marcallo con Casone, MI).
In the afternoon visit to Tacchificio Villa Cortese, footwear component manufacturer (Villa Cortese, MI) and to TFL, tannery pilot plant (Buscate, MI).

2- Inspirational

In the morning visit to Kilometro Rosso, innovation district (Bergamo, BG); in the afternoon visit to MADE Competence Center I4.0 (Milan, MI).

3- Shoe Factory

At 9.30 AM in the morning visit to CIMAC, test and certification lab (Vigevano, PV); at 10.30 visit to Calzaturificio Roveda, shoe factory (Parabiago, MI).
In the afternoon, at 14.30, visit Calzaturificio SeymechamLou, shoe factory (Nerviano, MI).

* each Factory Visit (Program 1, Program 2 or Program 3) costs € 60,00


Wednesday, September 20th  

The SIMAC TANNING TECH trade show is the landmark exhibition for the most advanced design and manufacturing technologies; a one stop occasion to observe the latest technical evolutions and to discuss them with their creators with the support of the ASSOMAC team. A unique and convenient opportunity for all the participants.

Venue: Rho Fiera Milan

  • 9:30 AM  Visit SIMAC TANNING TECH and technology guided tour
  • 5:30 PM  Evening welcome cocktail

Thursday, September 21st

Venue: Congress Center (Milanofiori, Assago)

Innovation and sustainable development have sometimes been considered as two antagonistic principles; they must now be fully associated to ensure the viability of the company. In this context, neglecting sustainable innovation when creating products, services and equipment would be a mistake that could lead to turning one's back on the future.

  • 9:00 AM  Opening ceremony
  • 9:30 AM  Keynote Speech: Innovation

This keynote speech will address, from a broad and general perspective, the topic of innovation and of its importance for the success of modern companies, whether it is product or process innovation. Key takeaways will be offered to the audience for a smooth and effective adoption of “innovative thinking”.

  • 10:00 AM  Session 1: Products, Materials and Consumers of Tomorrow

The objective of this session is to highlight innovations to better meet consumer needs, explore new design paradigms, conceive products with less environmental impact, identify and implement new materials, and propose methods to measure the environmental impact of products and materials.

  • 11:30 AM  Networking break
  • 12:00 AM  Session 2: Digital Transformation

To deal with major economic, technological, organizational challenges, companies must rethink their tools. New design and manufacturing technologies are fundamental means to provide improved, secure, flexible, reliable, competitive tools. They constitute a vast field of improvement in the overall competitiveness of the company. It is essential to reduce the innovation lead time and the design and production cycle duration, through the massive use of digital models and digital data exchanges.

  • 1:30 PM  Lunch break
  • 2:30 PM  Session 3: Human Capital for Industry 5.0

The new technological age in which we are entering, will impose deep evolutions regarding humans’ place in footwear companies. It needs a human-centred factory, to better consider collaborators’ expectations all along their active life and to better attract talents it needs. Digital revolution will strongly impact the skills required and it will define new jobs, new management methods or attitudes will emerge. Employee protection, as well as skills development, is a major issue in sustainability.

  • 4:00 PM  Networking break
  • 4:30 PM  First panel

In this first panel, experts from high tech companies in the field of automation, robotics, data analytics will discuss how they innovate their equipment and how these innovations eventually may impact on the footwear product.

  • 5:30 PM  Closure remarks day 1
  • 7:00 PM  Departure by bus for the Gala Dinner in Vigevano from NH Assago
  • 8:30 PM  Gala Dinner in the Castle of Vigevano: more info
  • 11:30 PM  Return to the NH Assago

Friday, September 22nd

Venue: Congress Center (Milanofiori, Assago)

  • 9:00 AM  Opening of second day
  • 9:15 AM  Keynote Speech: Sustainability

The integration of sustainability in all its dimensions is no longer an option for the global footwear industry. It is a pressing and urgent necessity. It is also an opportunity for companies to find new sources of competitiveness and attractiveness. The keynote speech addresses this topic from general and specific perspectives.

  • 9.45 AM  Session 4: Successful Sustainability Stories

Beyond the will of companies to become sustainable manufacturers, they are often confronted with implementation difficulties and the definition of their priorities. This topic is vast and could be approached from the angle of products or of production equipment. There is also often the question of labelling systems to ensure that the approaches are recognised. This last session, based on success stories covering all aspects of sustainability, will allow to present global approaches. Its aim will also be to enlighten participants about the key success factors for implementing their project.

  • 11:30 AM  Networking break
  • 12:00 AM  Second panel

Once again, major high-tech players will be asked to discuss their paths to sustainability through the adoption of targeted approaches and how these could be of inspiration for the audience

  • 1:00 PM  Closing ceremony
  • 1:30 PM  Farewell lunch