Knowledge vs adaptation: The Industry 4.0 in the case of auto parts in Baja California and Chihuahua, Mexico

Type de publication:

Conference Paper


Gerpisa colloquium, Detroit (2022)


adaptation, autoparts sector, Baja California, Chihuahua, I4.0, knowledge, Mexico


Baja California and Chihuahua are states with more than 50 years of industrial tradition characterized by the strong presence of exportation focused auto parts manufacturing firms known as Maquilas. In recent years, these organizations have undergone a significant transformation leaded by the implementation of the Industry 4.0 (I4.0) production model.
In an era where technological change dictates the speed at which things are moving, companies compete to adopt technologies that can allow them to obtain the benefits of a greater technification and digitalization of their operations that in turn can have an impact on efficiency, differentiation, and cost in various areas within the organization. This situation has put the spotlight on I4.0, which involves technologies that can be used in different phases of the operation of an organization, such as design, production, logistics, sales, and customer service.
To obtain the measure of the current dynamics in Baja California and Chihuahua, we followed a quantitative approach via an on-line survey developed by AXIS. The measurement instrument gathers data about the degree of knowledge and implementation of 19 technologies from the auto parts industry personnel that are familiar with I4.0. The sample considered collaborators in the production, engineering, quality, and supply chain departments, with organizational positions such as technician, engineer, department manager, general manager, and directors, among others.
In the case of Baja California, AXIS carried out the survey in June 2019, and in the case of Chihuahua we carried out a modified version of the survey that utilizes a five-point Likert type scale in February 2021.
The central contribution of this paper comes from information gathered by surveying engineers of the local auto parts industry and its supply chain, presenting an image of the current situation of the knowledge and use of technologies related to Industry 4.0 within the auto parts plants in Baja California and Chihuahua. Finally, the document summarizes the findings derived from the research and offers suggestions on the way forward. Through the disclosure of this work, we expect to generate awareness of the current state of development and the challenges and opportunities arising from the I4.0 model for the auto parts industry in Baja California and Chihuahua.


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