How can the new Innovation 4.0 Playbook support research and development in Chemical Sciences?

Posted on: 11/07/2022
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While digital technologies are now commonplace, the advantages of adopting them are not always straightforward. The new Innovation 4.0 Playbook reimagines the opportunity presented by adopting digital technologies in the chemical sciences, and highlights how our resources and tailored support can make this process easier.


As the world adapts to the economic and societal changes as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and the adoption of hybrid working across research and development jobs, innovators must have the resources available to continue to work on scientific and technological breakthroughs. The Innovation 4.0 Playbook is a guide for R&D practitioners in the chemical sciences who are interested in strategically digitalising their R&D operations and processes, by describing the range of digital technologies that can be applied using a Digital Maturity Framework to understand the layers of complexity involved in chemical science R&D.

Benefits of using the Innovation 4.0 Playbook

We have created this Playbook to be the beginning or part of a conversation about what R&D digitalisation means for your business or organisation and explore new, imaginative opportunities for using digital technologies to benefit the chemical sciences industry. The Playbook explores how digital manufacturing technologies can benefit the chemical sciences industry by introducing a Digital Maturity framework for Research & Development that will be useful for specialists working in the sector including chemistry, physics, materials, consumer goods, cosmetics, food & drink, composites, pharmaceuticals, life science, and biotechnology.

How can you use the Innovation 4.0 Playbook?

Many organisations can benefit from using the Playbook, from universities and labs, to industrial research centres. The Playbook can be used to explore innovative digital R&D technologies that enable industrial research, development, and innovation in the chemistry sector and new approaches to innovative work practices.

How can you use the Digital Maturity Framework?

The Digital Maturity Framework introduced in the Playbook will enable you to implement innovative technologies and approaches by helping companies understand the opportunity their organisation is working on and identify ways to implement it. The framework aims to be an antidote to the manufacturing-focused reference material and chemical science research already published, and will help companies accelerate their digitalisation journeys by providing a common language for defining their starting point, and their ambition.

The future of chemistry

The way we perform chemistry, materials, and formulation research has changed remarkably over the past half-century thanks to the increased range of scientific instrumentation and equipment available to the modern laboratory. Autonomous lab software, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and a collection of other groundbreaking technologies has enabled scientific insights to progress. Make sure to read the Playbook to learn more about the technologies being used, such as the advanced virtual computer simulation modelling used for experiments.

Get in touch

Innovate UK KTN can help you solve your research and development challenges, and provide valuable resources, including: 

  • Introductions to the most suitable digital solution providers for you 
  • 1:1 support to help your business become more digitally mature
  • Additional help in understanding the opportunity presented by digital technologies in the chemical science.
For more information and support, please contact Matthew Reeves, Knowledge Transfer Manager – Materials Chemistry and Formulation

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