The 72nd CIRP General Assembly comes to Ireland: A landmark event in advanced manufacturing


The CIRP General Assembly, which was hosted at University College Dublin from 20-26 August 2023, had over 600 attendees. This General Assembly is the preeminent international gathering of  leading academics and industrialists in advanced manufacturing.

CIRP – the International Academy for Production Engineering – was founded in 1951 with the aim to address scientifically, through international co-operation, issues related to modern production science and technology.

Now in its 72nd year, this year’s CIRP General Assembly included a range of presentations on cutting-edge advanced manufacturing research in areas such as Industry 4.0, automation, additive manufacturing and sustainable manufacturing. The Assembly provides a unique opportunity to foster international collaborations, which will help drive innovation and progress in advanced manufacturing. Prominently, the Assembly's focus on Diversity, Equality and Inclusion also underscores the commitment of the CIRP community to shaping a more equitable and inclusive future for advanced manufacturing and engineering.

Underpinning the Assembly's significance are the 11 distinct Scientific Technical Committees (STCs) that drive the discussion. The event will feature presentations of select papers submitted earlier in 2023, destined for publication in the prestigious CIRP Journal of Manufacturing Science and Technology (CIRP-JMST).

The selection of Dublin as the host city for this year's Assembly – the first occasion that the General Assembly has been hosted in Ireland – highlights Ireland's exceptional contributions to high-technology manufacturing, and the importance of manufacturing for the Irish economy. Ireland's growth into a flourishing innovation centre and a European hub for global thinking and business opportunities resonates with the event's emphasis on sustainability and progress.

With themes including digitalisation, machine learning and sustainability in manufacturing, the General Assembly is closely aligned with the I-Form Centre’s ongoing research agenda, and provides the opportunity to engage on the international stage.

I-Form academics played major roles on the Assembly Organising Committee, including Professor Nikos Papakostas (Chairperson), Professor Rocco Lupoi (Co-Chairperson) and Professor Gerry Byrne (Honorary Chairperson). I-Form Centre Director Professor Denis Dowling also played a key role as a member of the local organising committee.

“The hosting of the 72nd CIRP General Assembly is an opportunity to promote Ireland's success in high-technology manufacturing employment. As a share of total employment, it is now the highest in the EU, with 29% of manufacturing jobs in high-technology sectors, which is four times the EU average”, said Professor Dowling.

“As the world’s most prestigious organisation in production engineering, the hosting of the CIRP General Assembly is an opportunity to highlight the importance of manufacturing for the Irish economy, with the sector accounting for 37% of Irish gross domestic product.”

To help demonstrate Ireland’s strengths in advanced manufacturing research, as part of the Assembly exhibition was the ‘Island of Ireland Manufacturing Excellence Showcase’. This exhibited examples of cutting edge manufacturing research from six academic and technology research centres both North and South of the border.

CIRP’s network of researchers and industrialists are at the forefront of design, optimisation, control and management of processes, machines and systems. The fusion of academic and industry expertise at CIRP promises a rich and multidimensional exchange during the General Assembly.

Invited speakers at the Assembly included Professor Edmond Harty (President of Engineers Ireland, Founder of Innovalogix, and Former owner, CEO, and Technical Director of Dairymaster) and Mr Peter Earlie (Director of Trauma Advanced Operations & Divisional Operations Lead, Stryker).


Large group of people gathered in an exhibition hall