Länder Institutions

Photovoltaic module on flexible substrate made of enamelled steel.
Photovoltaic module on flexible substrate made of enamelled steel.

The German states (Länder) and municipalities act as research funding bodies and operate several research institutes that support state research activities. There are more than 150 institutes covering a broad range of research areas.

One example is the Centre for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Baden-Württemberg (ZSW). The state of Baden-Württemberg set up ZSW in 1988 as a non-profit foundation bringing together universities, research institutes and companies. Today, it is one of the leading institutes for applied research in the areas of photovoltaics, renewable fuels, battery technology, fuel cells and energy systems analysis. Some 230 scientists, engineers and technicians and 70 student assistants and trainees are currently employed at ZSW’s three sites in Stuttgart, Ulm and Widderstall.

Another example is the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence , which is based in Kaiserslautern and has sites in Saarbrü¬cken and Bremen and a project office in Berlin. It is the biggest research centre worldwide in the area of artificial intelligence and its application in terms of number of employees and the volume of external funds.

Facts and Figures

  • More than 150 research organisations

  • 5,600 staff, including more than 2,400 R&D personnel (approx. 1,200 researchers) (2014)

  • Internal expenditure: 480 millions euros in total, for R&D: 200 million euros (2014)

Research Activities

Research activities are conducted in engineering, the humanities, health research and natural sciences.

Research Budget

State and municipal research institutions (without Leibniz Association)

State institutions that conduct research are primarily state-funded. More than 10% of these research institutions’ revenues come from their commercial activities. The total budget in 2014 was approx. 480 million euros, with 200 million euros allocated to R&D.