CIRP Encyclopedia of Production Engineering

Living Edition
| Editors: The International Academy for Production Engineering, Sami Chatti, Tullio Tolio

Learning Factory

  • Eberhard AbeleEmail author
Living reference work entry


Various definitions of the term “Learning Factory” were proposed and intensively discussed within the community (see, e.g., Initiative on European Learning Factories 2012; Wagner et al. 2012; Tisch et al. 2013; Kreimeier et al. 2014). Within a corresponding CIRP Collaborative Working Group (CWG), an agreement on the following definition could be achieved:
A Learning Factory in a narrow sense is a learning environment specified by
  • processes that are authentic, include multiple stations, and comprise technical as well as organizational aspects,

  • a setting that is changeable and resembles a real value chain,

  • a physicalproduct being manufactured, and

  • a didactical concept that comprises formal, informal and non-formal learning, enabled by own actions of the trainees in an on-site learning approach.

Depending on the purpose of the Learning Factory, learning takes place through teaching, training and/or research. Consequently, learning outcomes may be competency development and/or innovation...

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© CIRP 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institut für Produktionsmanagement, Technologie und WerkzeugmaschinenTechnische Universität DarmstadtDarmstadtGermany