Known as Stati Generali dell’ACCIAIO (STEEL General Assembly), this new siderweb – THE ITALIAN STEEL COMMUNITY project got underway in 2016. While Industria e Acciaio 2030 aimed to discern future prospects and so allow steel players to be ahead of the curve, the new Stati Generali dell’ACCIAIO project is an opportunity for joint critical appraisal, a platform bringing players and stakeholders together with aim of creating a new mindset in the steel world.
Stati Generali dell’ACCIAIO provides the steel industry with a tool to meet the business challenges of today’s society.
Globalization, digitalization and environment are the new paradigms of man’s oldest industry – the forging of iron – obliging it to make a giant leap forward to put it once again centre stage as the driver behind a new kind of industrialisation.
The aim: to develop a broad-based platform bringing together industry players and stakeholders in order to forge new links with society and develop a new mindset in the world of steel.
Starting from a baseline model of steel and what it represents, the platform will be a broad source of information for the industry manufacturers but also, more generally, for economic operators and the world of labour.
The model centres on the Enterprise, the driver of all solid long-lasting growth, the indispensable vehicle through which innovation and global competitiveness are forged.
Ours is an industry founded on knowledge and values, an industry quick off the mark to take on board the technological and digital revolution that while entailing a far-reaching paradigm of change, opens up rich new worlds.
The platform is rooted in the idea of working as a system, where individualisms are harnessed to bring about a structural change where merit, excellence and innovation forge the new model that Italy and Europe must adopt.
By encouraging open frank exchange, the Stati Generali intends to open up new prospects with the declared aim of ensuring that steel and its industry take the place they deserve in our lives and in our history.
THE FOUR DISCUSSION AREAS
The geography and the market of steel
Italy, Europe, China, the World. But perhaps the order should be reversed: the World, China, Europe and Italy. The geography of the steel industry features blurred borders within which assumptions can affect the final outcome. However, the final outcome is often dictated by decisions in which the steel industry has had no say. The only way to avoid being crushed is to comprehend what is connecting the various components, monitor developments, recognise revolutions, gain access to decision makers and participate in the discussion driving regulations and guidelines. Politics, the European Union and Government are the starting points for designing corporate strategies, the foremost being the strategy that the steel industry can and must implement, in order to set itself on a new course of political relations.
Environment and Sustainability
A new sentiment is emerging, and perhaps a whole new culture. Two forces are driving this turnaround: vision at the macroeconomic level and sensitivity at the microeconomic level, coming together to push from the top down as well as from the bottom up. The UN Climate Change Conference in Paris laid down the terms and procedures for limiting the rise in global temperatures. This means lower emissions and therefore different production systems. Grassroots NIMBY protests are rife the whole world over. Setting up a manufacturing plant is a challenge, especially if it produces steel – but energy, mechanical and chemical plants do not have it any easier. Sustainability is the new corporate culture straddling our economic, environmental and social dimensions. Streamlining and communicating: tailoring businesses to the needs of the environment, creating relationships with local communities and through them disseminating current and future plans. In the knowledge that in a world without enterprise there can be no development, no wealth and no future.
Innovation and the digital revolution
The world’s oldest industry – iron and steel – has always been in the forefront of breakthrough technology and product innovation; this has taken, and is still taking, capital, engineering expertise and flair. It is no mean feat to stay ahead of the curve, and it reflects a knack for picturing the future of the industry and its users, and reacting readily to new needs as they emerge. In other words, ensuring a steady flow of novel materials. The digital era, ushering in a veritable revolution, represents a paradigm shift. Its impact is affecting not just manufacturing but also communications and the way industry interacts with the world; going forward it will also change the market. There’s no predicting how or when, but the process is indubitably speeding up. And if Amazon can distribute fresh food, what’s to stop it distributing steel? If there’s anything to be learnt from economic history, it is that the market (or trade) is what sets the pace for manufacturing.
Steel shapes a new cultural space
The world needs steel. Steel needs people to talk about steel. The new cultural space that steel is currently forging is peopled by a community well aware of its role in the industrial as well as cultural fabric of contemporary society. New relations characterised by cooperation are materialising both inside and outside the industry, along with colleagues, universities and policy-makers. Cooperation begins at the intellectual level, then shifts gears and focuses on manufacturing processes and products. The next step entails building a steel-friendly world. Without steel, our lives would lack a fundamental mainstay. However, there is all too little awareness of this situation. Stati Generali dell’ACCIAIO (General Assembly of the Steel Industry) is the thread running through the new narrative that we are creating.