COM³ pilots: new students and businesses join the UoL4.0 Challenge

21 October 2022 - Published by P. Khodabakhsh
The UoL4.0 Challenge is a “Challenge-Based Learning” educational strategy to support both students and small businesses in the discovery of digital technologies. As part of COM³, the University of Lincoln implements this innovative approach and matches undergrad students in operations management with local companies.

The COM³ partners at the University of Lincoln have opened a new phase in the implementation of the UoL4.0 Challenge. In October 2022, a new cohort of students in Operations Management joined the programme. They will start working with local SMEs and help them develop digital solutions to face real business challenges.

 The UoL4.0 challenge educational strategy integrates traditional learning modules (theory and practice) and real-life challenges that require solutions. Its purpose is twofold. On one hand is to support the development of highly engaged, employable, and creative-thinking graduates who contribute to the development of society and the economy; on the other hand, for businesses to connect their new commercial ideas with their potential markets, through the development and use of digital technologies.

Benefits for students, SMEs and the University

The University of Lincoln initiated this programme in January 2020, as part of the COM³ project. Results suggest that the UoL4.0 Challenge increases students’ understanding of operations management in real-life settings, and help the students’ development of 21st century skills. It also demonstrates the interest of SMEs in exploring the use of digital technologies to improve their performance, and build their resilience, through more digitally-based sustainable practices.

About the University of Lincoln

The University of Lincoln has competences in supporting SMEs in their adoption and use of digital technology. These are evidenced through its two digital hubs, and in previous projects which have matched academics with SMEs to test out new business models using digital technology. The university also has a strong track record in evaluating policies to promote the adoption of broadband and digital technology in rural areas.

In COM³, the University of Lincoln runs the regional pilot UoL4.0 challenge together with Lincolnshire County Council. It also works with other academic partners in developing the COM³ project methodology.


Do you want to learn more about the UoL4.0 Challenge? Read the pilot story here.