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Special Issue "Additive Manufacturing and Sustainability in the Digital Age: People, Factories and Businesses of the Future"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2021) | Viewed by 855

Special Issue Editors

Centre for Socioeconomic and Territorial Studies (DINÂMIA’CET-ISCTE), Lisbon University Institute (ISCTE-IUL) Lisbon, 52253 Lisbon, Portugal
Interests: management; sustainability; knowledge management; intellectual capital; measuring of intangibles; innovation; additive manufacturing and digital transformation
Faculty of Science and Technology, Universidade NOVA de Lisboa, 2829-516 Caparica, Portugal
Interests: industrial engineering; industrial symbiosis; energy management; sustainability; circular economy; additive manufacturing; lean manufacturing; quality management systems; sustainable energy systems
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Additive manufacturing (AM) is one of the most promising and game-changing manufacturing technologies, emerging from the new global industrial revolution known as Industry 4.0.

This technology is also part of the manufacturing technologies of the future identified by the European Union to support sustainability through the reduction and optimization of material and energy consumption. The development of this technology has boosted the growth of several industrial sectors and the emergence of new business models. The evolution of additive manufacturing technology and its use, for example in FabLabs or home production, to create protective parts and equipment during the COVID-19 pandemic, allow us to affirm that we are at a turning point where it will coexist or even compete with traditional systems, allowing for distributed manufacturing mechanisms, and the “democratization” of production.

With the development of this technology, various production and co-creation possibilities have emerged for companies and domestic producers; however, product safety raises complicated issues of trust and security for consumers and users, especially in complex areas such as the medical area. As an example, we can mention the innumerable parts for medical use (e.g., the valve used for a lifesaving ventilator) or protective materials that have been produced in the most varied productive environments, in the context of COVID 19. 

This Special Issue intends to integrate several multidisciplinary areas that are fundamental in AM development. Firstly, to address the sustainability issues, namely the environmental implications of the uncontrolled use of AM by prosumers and the necessity to identify, systematically, different materials by type and to create mechanisms for their classification, separation, and recycling. Secondly, to address the impacts on factories and the business model of the utilization of AM technology – more consumer-centered businesses, increase in remote and decentralized manufacturing and reduction in stock levels, creating more secure and efficient supply chains and more problems of protection of patent rights. Thirdly, to address the impacts of AM on people’s lives with impacts in areas such as health or transports.

This Special Issue will explore and integrate the challenges in these topics, or other similar topics, presenting positive and negative aspects of this interconnectivity.

Prof. Dr. Florinda Matos
Prof. Dr. Radu Godina
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • additive manufacturing
  • digital age
  • sustainability
  • factories of future
  • business models
  • Industry 4.0
  • digital transformation
  • smart factories
  • cyber-physical systems

Published Papers

There is no accepted submissions to this special issue at this moment.
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