Manufacturing and Engineering Week ( 2023 continues to live up to its promise of being ‘the festival of industrial innovation’ with several new events added for 2023 including Smart Factory Expo and the Drives & Controls zone. The week beginning 5th June 2023 is Manufacturing & Engineering Week with the centrepiece exhibitions Design & Engineering Expo, Smart Factory Expo, Maintec and the Drives & Controls zone taking place at Birmingham’s NEC on 7th and 8th June. Other exhibitions are also taking place at the NEC during the week, and these include Automechanika run by Messe Frankfurt; Med-Tech Innovation Expo and TCT 3Sixty from Rapid News Group and Subcon from the Mark Allen Group.

Education is a big part of M&E Week with two paid conferences, The Manufacturing Digitalisation Summit and The SME Growth Summit taking place, but a major attraction is the free-to-attend conference programme across two Keynote Theatres and six Solutions Theatres. Each theatre offers a comprehensive schedule of free-to-attend presentations delivered by manufacturing and technology experts. Solutions Theatre topics include: Automation & Robotics, Digital Transformation, IIoT & Connectivity, Industrial Data & AI, Innovation and Design Engineering. The full programme can be found at .

Keynote conference theatres

Something that might catch the eye of UK Manufacturing readers is a keynote from Juergen Maier CBE who will provide his perspective on manufacturing in the UK and the opportunities and challenges it is facing in a session titled What Next for UK Manufacturing? In addition to his former position as advisor to the government on industrial strategy Maier is also former Chief Executive of Siemens UK.

Make UK CEO Stephen Phipson CBE will be taking the stage for a keynote speech entitled State of the Nation. This session seeks to provide an overview of how manufacturers can be in the best position to succeed.

Finally, leaning on his experience as both managing Director of Siemens Digital and co-Chair of Made Smarter, Brian Holliday tackles the question How Can Manufacturers Take Advantage of Innovation and Industry 5.0? This keynote session will cover the importance of digitalisation and Industry 5.0 for business improvement and growth, as well as the current opportunities available to manufacturers to support them on this journey.

Maintec conference theatre

The Maintec Conference Theatre, sponsored by RS, will see several ‘firsts’ across its two-day programme, including the first public output from the Maintenance Research Project. This session will provide the initial results from an independent report created by RS Maintenance and the IMechE, that reveals the challenges facing maintenance professionals within UK manufacturing. This session will report on key statistics and data taken from interviews with over 750 senior maintenance professionals.

The theatre will also see the launch of a Global Responsibility Competency Compass by Engineers Without Borders UK. The Compass is for those who are struggling to respond effectively to the complexity, uncertainty and challenges of the age. The action-oriented tool, developed through extensive consultation and testing, articulates the essential skills, knowledge and mindsets that engineers increasingly need to deliver the most positive impact on the four principles of global responsibility: responsible, purposeful, inclusive and regenerative. For those who want to achieve something regarding their sustainability challenges then this session is a ‘must see’.

Additional free educational sessions are being hosted by the Institute for Manufacturing in the IfM Theatre. These Masterclasses are designed to challenge and extend the attendees’ thinking in relation to some of the most pressing challenges and opportunities they face. Previous strategic masterclass topics have included: Strategic Roadmapping, Technology and innovation management, Sustainability – Scope 3 emissions, Sustainability – Reducing energy waste and Digital strategy.  IfM Masterclasses require advance booking, and this can be done when registering for your ticket to visit M&E Week’s Smart Factory Expo.

Finally, adding a little fun to M&E Week is the Guitar legends competition. The competition will take place on both days of the centrepiece exhibitions at Birmingham’s NEC on the 7th and 8th of June. Entrants will play the intro to a classic rock song or create their own solo to be in with a chance to win a Nexa3D printed guitar. A guitar will be awarded to each day’s competition winner while the winner on 7th June will also get the chance to play with The Shadow Monkeys at the Day 1 drinks reception.

To register for a free pass or enter the Guitar Legends competition visit: