KM3D – Knowledge Management in Additive Manufacturing: Designing New Business Models


This project intends to develop research with Aditive Manufacturing technologies to identify and characterize knowledge management strategies that should be adopted for increasing competitiveness and sustainability in these new business models.

Starting Date: 2018

Number of Partners: 4

Total Budget: 232K€

In the current business environment, increasingly dynamic, with numerous technological innovations, human resources and the know-how generated are volatile. Knowledge and the way it is shared and retained in organizations has become a source of competitive advantage. It is, therefore, necessary to develop tools to help companies manage their knowledge and use it to leverage value creation. In the case of companies that use or can use Additive Manufacturing Technology (AM), often associated with 3D printing, knowledge management processes are even more important because they are in a disruptive and emerging industry with innovative and complex products whose business models’ dynamic is not yet known. Despite the great opportunities for this technology, the uncertainties about its future developments and impacts on society and business models remain. KM3D intends to answer the question: What are the impacts of the adoption of AM technology on the business models of companies?

KM3D aims to improve decision-making processes by identifying and characterizing the impacts of adopting this technology, as well as the knowledge management strategies to be adopted to increase competitiveness and sustainability in business models, in companies using AM technology.

KM3D research plan aims to:
– Characterize the state of maturity of the companies that use AM technology, in Portugal.
– Develop maturity models of knowledge management that integrate the sustainability indicators of AM.
– Develop a roadmap, integrator of knowledge, that supports the implementation of sustainable business models based on AM technology

To meet the challenges of multidisciplinarity, KM3D project brings together experts from different scientific fields ranging from engineering and technology to business and management. To achieve the KM3D’s objectives, qualitative and quantitative data collection methods will be used, such as case studies of the Portuguese industry, interviews and questionnaires.

The KM3D, being centred in the new global industrial revolution, known as Industry 4.0, aims to fill a gap of SCTN research about the disruption that inevitably will occur with the future business models due to the use of AM. At the same time, the project will support the proposals of the Portuguese Ministry of Economy which are aimed at accelerating the adoption of strategies for Industry 4.0 by the business community, since the AM is one of the technologies in that industry. Emphasis should be placed on the involvement of the industrial fabric, namely the representative of the mobility sector and the users of AM technologies in the production of components for this sector, which will have its knowledge greatly enriched with the KM3D.