The Italian robot industry involves 429 thousand workers and is sixth in the world for the number of industrial robots in the company
Robotics Italy is not afraid of global competition: its numbers are constantly growing and the skills of companies and technicians bring greater value both nationally and globally.
So let's see what are the results at national and world level, what are the trends of the future and above all the relationship between man-machine and employment.
Robotics: $ 16,5 billion in the global market
The latest data, related to 2018, indicate that the robot installations in the world have been of 422 thousand units; or + 6% compared to 2017. In the same year, there were 9837 the units installed only in Italy. (data provided by SIRI, Italian Robotics and Automation Society).
Globally it is Singapore dominating the scenes at the density level of robotic machines compared to operators: they are indeed 831 per 10.000 operatorsfollowed by Korea (774) and Germany at a great distance, with 338.
The robotics market in Italy
Here are the numbers of the robotic sector in Italy:
- About 10000 units installed every year;
- Sixth place in the global market;
- Seventh place for the number of robotic units installed;
- Ninth place for the worker / number of robots ratio; they are indeed 200 per 10.000 employees;
- Annual growth rate 4/5 times higher than the world one.
The Italian growth rate is double compared to that of the rest of Europe and the United States, but also compared to Germany, a country that has always been a large manufacturer of industrial robots.
The trends of Italian robotics
The Italian robot industry has one big advantage: congregators. This means that the engineers and companies in Italy have a strong culture and preparation on what is the world ofplant, and not only of robotics itself; not surprisingly, i manufacturers from all over the world turn to Italian companies to create and test new applicationsthen marketed anywhere in the world.
I cobots are also starting to change the market, although they are still quite niche, as they represent less than 30% of total robotics sales, but are growing steadily. At the moment, however, despite the fact that cobots are starting to like more and more, especially in the SME market, it is not yet possible that they will replace the traditional industrial robot.
What most distinguishes the market in Italy, then, is the social fabric of businesses: in most cases, it is SMEs, family-run businesses or those with few employees. This feature means that companies often do not have the capital available to invest in new, often very expensive, technologies. However, with the advent of the innovations of "Industry 4.0" and the availability of data, companies could to network, collaborate by making more information available and thus obtain digital tools usually available only to multinationals.
In this perspective they could groups of medium-small companies are born but which, together, manage to have the same capacity and relevance as a multinational company, giving rise to a new digital craftsmanship.
The presence of robots and employment
One of the biggest issues related to industrial robots is that related to employment: in fact many worry that robots can replace humans, eliminating jobs.
According to Domenico Appendino, president of SIRI, the robot is instead: "the plow of the man of the third millennium; an instrument in the hand of man, which is destined for his own benefit ". They are therefore tools in human hands, where the operator is not replaced but, on the contrary, the worker becomes operator of the machine, therefore with a decision-making role.
In fact, there is no connection between the number of robots in a country and unemployment, indeed. The data indicate exactly the opposite and in the countries analyzed (the sample takes into consideration different countries, such as Brazil, China, Germany, USA ...) i numbers show that the more the number of installed robots increases, the more the unemployment rate falls over the years.