3 EDITORIAL DISCOVER THE LAND OF IDEAS From the fuel cell to one of the world’s first Covid-19 vaccines – German inventions have changed people’s lives. What is more, it is research and development (R&D) that keeps a successful economy going. However, we are currently facing many global challenges such as climate change, poverty and health issues. As a country, Germany is one of the world’s top investors in R&D. “The German research landscape” shows who is behind this: universities and research institutes, federal and state institutions and companies committed to research. Together, these partners form a research infrastructure of international significance. Germany offers academics from all over the world first-class working conditions, while international research institutions and businesses can find partners for collabo- ration and options for networking. Enjoy discovering the German research landscape!
t r e n n a L r e k l o V / D A A D r e n p p a Z n a J / D A A D G E T I N T O U C H www.research-in-germany.org facebook.com/Research.in.Germany twitter.com/ResearchGermany www.linkedin.com/company/research-in-germany l i 4 2 r o o c o d u t s o t o f / k c o t S e b o d A h t u g n e g a H e h t r ö D / D A A D G A r e y a B
5 CONTENTS RESEARCH IN GERMANY 6 An overview of the German research landscape: Germany is among the most innovative countries and attaches great importance to networking and excellence. UNIVERSITIES Successful talent factories: German universities are attracting more and more international students. NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH The big players in German science: be it in basic research or applied science – German research institutes are excellent. Max-Planck-Gesellschaft Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft Helmholtz Association Leibniz Association Academies of Sciences and Humanities GOVERNMENT RESEARCH INSTITUTIONS 16 28 30 38 46 54 62 70 Competent political advisors: the research institutes financed by the federal and state governments work on topics that relate to us all. PRIVATE SECTOR 76 The core of German research: industry and service providers are responsible for the majority of investments in research and development. IMPRINT 85
6 RESEARCH IN GERMANY Outstanding, innovative, open- minded – research in Germany has a superb reputation all over the world. It is a research community shaped by universities, research institutions and extensive research by industry. The research covers a broad range of different fields, with a special focus on future- oriented topics. Germany is one of the countries worldwide that invest the most in research and development.
7 Key technologies for tomorrow: at the detect- or laboratory of the GSI Helmholtzzentrum für Schwerionenforschung, cameras are developed and produced for the centre’s research work. F A C T S A N D F I G U R E S More than 1,000 public and publicly funded institutions for science, research and development Over 400 research and innov- ation networks and clusters 708,000 staff in R&D, includ- ing 434,000 researchers More than 45,000 patent registrations worldwide (5th place) Expenditure on R&D: 104.7 billion euros, or 3.1% of GDP (2018) H b m G g n u h c s r o f n e n o i r e w h c S r ü f m u r t n e z z t l o h m l e H I S G / n a s o H . J
8 RESEARCH IN GERMANY Who researches what? A lmost 105 billion euros – that is the massive sum invested in research and de- velopment (R&D) in Germany. The funding partly goes to projects in universities, non-university re- search institutions and government research labs. Industry accounts for the largest share of R&D. RECORD INVESTMENTS IN RESEARCH The German private sector is the main investor when it comes to looking for new methods, products and applications. In fact, it contributes more than two thirds of total R&D funding in Germany. 2018 saw a record 72 billion euros invested. The German automotive industry is the most important client. More than a third of the money invested in R&D by industry goes into vehicle manufacturing. In terms of R&D intensity – that is to say the proportion of turn- over spent on internal R&D expenditure – the pharmaceutical sector leads the field. For example, German firms played a leading role in the development of coronavirus vaccines, benefiting from massive support in the form of public funding. The vaccine developed by Mainz-based biotech company BioNTech and its US partner Pfizer was the first coronavirus vaccine to be approved in the USA and the European Union. BROAD RANGE OF RESEARCH Higher education institutions are further im- portant players in German research. They spend more than 18 billion euros to this end, con- ducting research across the entire spectrum of science. Basic research plays as important a role as application-oriented research. This also applies to collaborative projects with companies and non-university research institutes. INTERDISCIPLINARY AND INTERNATIONAL Non-university research institutes are a particu- lar feature of R&D in Germany. These largely belong to the four major, internationally re- nowned research organisations, namely the Max Planck Society, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, the Helmholtz Association and the Leibniz Associ- ation. Their R&D activities range from basic research to application-oriented research in all fields and disciplines. The organisations tend to conduct interdisciplinary research with an international focus and often in collaboration with academic or private-sector partners. Like the large science academies, which also count as non-university research institutes, the big four are registered as non-profit organisations and receive government funding. Together with the federal and state (Länder) research institutions and other research facilit- ies – such as archives, libraries and specialist information centres – publicly financed non- university research organisations commit more than 14 billion euros annually to R&D. R & D Internal expenditure by sector in % 69% Private sector businesses 18% Higher education sector 14% Public sector 2018; deviation in the sum due to rounding; source: Destatis 2021
ALMOST 105,000,000,000 EUROS is invested by Germany in research and development 2018; source: Destatis o t o h p k c o t s i / j a a T l
10 RESEARCH IN GERMANY f i a l / h t e u L a n N i Finding solutions for tomorrow’s world The key objectives of government research policies are: to find solutions to global challenges to develop future competencies to establish an open innovation and venture culture A series of research policy instruments is de- signed to help achieve this. One of the most im- portant is the cross-departmental High-Tech Strategy 2025. “HTS 2025” will see Germany step up its investment in research and development to 3.5 percent of GDP by 2025. The goal is to move Germany further down the path to becoming the global innovation leader. This will be done by finding creative answers to the urgent challenges of today, be it a question of sustainable urban planning, climate action and eco-friendly energy sources, personalised medicine or the digital society. The idea is to speed up the process of turning scientific insights into applications. For this to happen, science and industry, and this includes small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), must work closely together. Such colla b- orations are explicitly supported for example in the fields of electromobility or digital manufac- turing. And when it comes to the big picture, things do not stop at national borders. Global challenges call for international efforts. Which is why the High-Tech Strategy 2025 focuses on European and international collaboration.
11 RESEARCH IN GERMANY ) 2 ( t r e n n a L r e k l o V / D A A D I N T E R N AT I O N A L O R I E N TAT I O N More than 43,000 scientists from abroad receive funding in Germany Cooperation agreements on scientific-technological collaboration with more than 50 different countries Around 14,700 stays abroad are funded each year for German academics 1.2 billion euros is the sum spent by the Federal Govern- ment on R&D to support inter- national scientific organisations and inter-government research institutes Close cooperation between the private sector and scientists is expli- citly supported. INTERNATIONAL NETWORKS This is the focus of the Federal Government’s internationalisation strategy. It seeks not only to strengthen scientific excellence through worldwide collaboration and forge strong inter- national links between science and industry. The strategy is also intended to better master global challenges such as climate change, healthcare and food supplies – together with European and international partners. And it is a success: in 2018 alone, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research funded around 2,300 re- search projects involving international partners. There is above all strong cooperation with the European Research Area. More synergies, more coherence and more bridges built – these are the central objectives. The goals are also in line with the European Framework Programme Horizon Europe. The world’s largest funding programme for research and innovation, it supports projects that cover the entire development chain – from basic research through to preparing products ready for market. Funding is available for higher edu- cation institutions, research institutes and companies – especially small and medium-sized enterprises. Germany contributes to the financ- ing and benefits from the funding for research projects.
12 RESEARCH IN GERMANY Strong public funding Germany is one of the leading countries for research and science. This is thanks, not least, to the distinct system of government research funding, which finances infrastructure and institutions, but also supports outstanding academics. Together with the private sector, government is the biggest source of funding for research in Germany. Almost 30 percent of investments in R&D are financed from tax money. Thus Germany is among those nations worldwide whose governments invest the most in R&D – both in absolute terms and as a percentage of GDP. WHAT IS FUNDED? In Germany, the Federal Government and the 16 German states (Länder) share responsibility for funding education, science and research. There are several instruments for this: Institutional funding: This focuses first and foremost on basic equipment as well as on staff salaries and materials budgets for the re- search organisations and universities. Invest- ments in new buildings or new purchases of research equipment or infrastructure likewise come under this category. More than 40 per- cent of Federal Government research support is spent on institutional funding. Project funding: This type of financing re- lates to specific, fixed-term projects and is allocated via special funding programmes. Project funding is provided to drive improve- ments in study programmes and teaching, for example. It also supports joint research projects between academics, researchers and SMEs in particular, or goes towards projects with international participation. Departmental research funding: Policymakers and public administrations need scientific support and advice them- selves. Commissioned research is required to facilitate this. Primarily, of course, it is the government’s own research institutions which the federal ministries or state (Länder) authorities contract for research assignments; however, other research institutions can also be commissioned with R&D projects. R&D tax incentives: R&D tax incentives are another instrument for direct project funding. Companies of any size can apply for a tax incentive for R&D projects; this is based on expenditure for R&D personnel and for commissioned research. Federal Agency for Disruptive Innovation – SPRIN-D: The Federal Agency SPRIN-D aims to discover highly innovative research projects with disruptive potential, support their devel- opment and help them break into a market. The newly established Federal Agency is ini- tially planned for a period of ten years, during which time a budget of around one billion euros has been earmarked. SUPPORTING ACADEMICS Direct government funding is not available for individual researchers. Instead, they can seek support from research funding organisations (which primarily draw on public-sector finance) such as the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) or the Alexander von Humboldt Founda- tion. These organisations have specially tailored programmes for international academics, for in- ternational collaborations or for the support of (joint) research projects.
GROSS DOMESTIC EXPENDITURE ON R&D IN 2018 in billion euros Financing sector Industry 69.1 65.2 1.4 2.5 Performing sectors Business enterprises 72.1 Government 14.2 Financing sector Government 29.1 2.2 11.7 Higher education institutions 18.4 15.2 Funding is also provided by private non-profit organisations (0.4 billion euros) and foreign institutions (6.1 billion euros). Total funds: 104.7 billion euros. Source: OECD 2020, deviations in the sums due to rounding n e h c n e u M U T / t t o g r e d d e H s a e r d n A
German Centres for Research and Innovation (DWIH) The Covid-19 pandemic is proving to be one of the greatest challenges that the modern world has ever faced. Its impact has been felt on all areas of life – personal and professional, social and political, economic and academic. Since it is a global crisis, it requires a global response. Through a web-talk series, the DWIH New Delhi and its supporters are seeking to utilise perspec- tives from India and Germany with a view to understanding several aspects that have had an impact on the society. The DWIH New Delhi is one of five German Centres for Research and Innovation which, alongside New Delhi, are located in Moscow, New York, Tokyo and São Paulo. They all see them- selves as platforms for exchanging information about the German research and innovation world, and they showcase the research achievements of German academia and German companies that carry out research. In addition, they provide international academics, entrepreneurs or academic organisations with advice and support in the initiation of collaborations, information about funding options and points of contact in Germany. And naturally, the German Centres for Research and Innovation also offer a wealth of information about the multifaceted world of research in Germany. www.dwih-netzwerk.de t r e b m o G d i r g i S / D A A D
15 RESEARCH IN GERMANY Global reach: German universities are not only active in international collaborations; many also offer opportunities to study abroad. o t t O d r o L n a i t s i r h C / D A A D , t r e n n a L r e k l o V / D A A D Ambassadors of German research abroad German research and science make thorough use of international exchange and cooperation. And it’s accessible – around the globe. For example, the German Centres for Research and Innovation form a network that brings international academics into contact with German research and helps form new hubs. With representative offices in 14 countries, Ger- man universities have expanded their international visibility. What’s more, over 37,000 agreements be- tween German universities and partner institutions are in place worldwide. Many universities also offer opportunities to study abroad or are involved in set- ting up universities that follow the German model. German universities are also regular guests at all important educational fairs abroad. During the coronavirus pandemic, MOOCs , web seminars, digital meetings and conferences, and virtual fairs have been used to replace or complement these formats. The four big internationally renowned non-univer- sity research organisations – the Max Planck Soci- ety, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, the Helmholtz Association and the Leibniz Association – are all represented worldwide with representative offices, affiliated international research centres or inter- national platforms such as the Max Planck Centers. The Humboldt Foundation and the research fund- ing organisation DFG also have offices abroad. The DAAD maintains its own network of regional of- fices and information centres (ICs) in more than 60 countries, and has posted around 500 “Lektors” and language assistants to universities worldwide.
16 UNIVERSITIES They are among the best in the world and are attracting an ever greater num- ber of students from abroad. German higher education institutions, and not only those in the big cities, prioritise first- rate research and teaching and empha- sise their international character. s e g a m I y t t e G / t r e b m o G d i r g i S
17 Independent work: the “unity of research and teaching” plays an important role at German higher education institutions. F A C T S A N D F I G U R E S 420 higher education institutions 738,000 staff in total, includ- ing 407,000 academic staff 2.9 million students in total Expenditure on R&D: 18.4 billion euros (2018) www.hrk.de
18 UNIVERSITIES k i t a m r o f n I t ä t l u k a F / n e d s e r D U T H eidelberg University is the oldest uni- versity in Germany – and at the same time a vibrant hub of science: teaching started in three faculties way back in 1386. Today, the uni- versity has 12 faculties with over 28,000 students and 6,000 academics active in teaching and re- search. Heidelberg is one of Germany’s most successful universities. There are currently three Nobel Prize laureates among its professors – in total, no fewer than 11 professors from the university have received this highest of scholarly honours. TRADITION AND DIVERSITY Not much younger, and just as successful, is Ludwig- Maximilians-Universität München (LMU). Dating back more than 500 years, it sees itself as a genuinely holistic educational institution that seeks to develop interdisciplinary solutions to the increasingly complex challenges of the future. From the start, it was one of the top universities in the Germany-wide excellence competition, and together with the Technical University of Munich (TUM) runs four clusters of excellence. LMU and TUM in Munich, as well as Heidelberg University, all rank among Germany’s inter na tion- ally renowned top universities. Their successes are based on the long tradition of values which make academic quality possible in the first place: namely the unity of research and teaching and the guarantee of scientific freedom, both being qualities that shape the face of German univer- sities and make them so special. The scholar Wilhelm von Humboldt (1767–1835) restructured education in Germany at the beginning of the 19th century and founded today’s Humboldt- Universität zu Berlin in line with his ideas. As Humboldt himself stated, it became “the mother of all modern universities”.
19 UNIVERSITIES Open to new ideas: an important principle is the freedom of academic thought. f i a l / r e h c s a r o M d o n r A l , s n o m m o C s a c u L m a h a r G / s e g a m I y t t e G Modern architecture, innovative curricula: as a university of technology, TU Dresden covers a broad scientific spectrum, whereas Leipzig University offers a range of humanities disciplines. “Diversity and open-mindedness in higher education are the key prerequisites for academic work and cooperation.” PROFESSOR KONRAD WOLF, Science Minister of Rhineland-Palatinate
20 UNIVERSITIES Excellent conditions: high-level interdisciplinary and international research is conducted at the technical universities. g r u b m a H W A H / k i t a m r o f n I k i n h c e T , s e g a m i I y t t e G / r e g n h c s i F n e e r a M TECHNICAL UNIVERSITIES These also include the technical universities and colleges. Germany’s 19 technical universities focus on engineering disciplines, the spectrum ranging from architecture to industrial engineering. The leading technical universities are grouped under the label TU9 and include RWTH Aachen Univer- sity. One of the German universities of excellence, this internationally renowned university, together with numerous regional partners, runs two of the seven future clusters that are funded nationwide, namely the NeuroSys and Hydrogen clusters. The major technical universities are outstanding re- search institutes: five of the nine universities are universities of excellence, and 145 of the renowned European ERC Grants have been awarded so far to TU9 scientists.
The International Research Training Group “Diversity” A prime example of innovative and international teaching and research at German higher education institutions is the International Research Training Group (IRTG) “Diversity: Mediating Difference in Transcultural Spaces”. It is studying cultural diversity in European and North American societies. Two countries, three universities and nine de- partments are involved, meaning the doctoral programme is itself highly diverse regarding fields and nationalities. Professor Ursula Lehmkuhl of the Department of International History at Trier University initiated the research training group and is its spokesperson. Also on board are Saarland University and Université de Montréal in Canada. The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) has been financing the research training group since 2013. On both sides of the Atlantic, 58 doctoral students, eight postdocs and more than 60 academics have been studying aspects of cultural diversity for more than eight years now. “It really enriches our research and educa- tion”, comments the Canadian spokesman for the IRTG, Professor Laurence McFalls of Uni- versité de Montréal, thanks to “the change in perspective” and the “intensive exchange” – this is interdisciplinary and inter national research at its best. www.irtg-diversity.com s e g a m I y t t e G / s n o i t c u d o r P s u a h r e t n H i
22 UNIVERSITIES Strong practical links: teaching at German universities of applied sciences focuses on potential applications. D I V E R S E A N D B R O A D - R A N G I N G 420 institutions of higher education are the vibrant face of higher education in Germany: 120 universities 203 universities of applied sciences 57 film, art and music colleges 34 colleges of administration 6 universities of other type www.higher-education- compass.de manufacturing, health management and indus- trial informatics. Hochschule Emden/Leer cooperates with other universities and companies in the region. It is not only teaching that benefits from the research and the link to practical applications, so too do the students who wish to start up their own businesses (see also page 23). S O U R C E S O F R & D F U N D I N G I N H I G H E R E D U C AT I O N 82% Public sector 14% Industry 4% International 2018; source: OECD 2021 s e g a m I y t t e G / y k s w o b a r G e t U UNIVERSITIES OF APPLIED SCIENCES Since the 1970s, the universities of applied sciences have been enriching German higher education. Originally set up as purely teaching facilities with a practical and applied focus, they are nowadays taking responsibility for important research and expanding their teaching range accordingly. They now cater to over one million students. At univer- sities, basic research and applied sciences tend to take centre stage, and classes usually focus on research. By contrast, research at universities of applied sciences normally concentrates on applying teaching in practice. RESEARCH BENEFITS TEACHING This can also be seen from one of the newest academic institutions in Germany, Hochschule Emden/Leer. Founded in 2009, this university of applied sciences scores high with an interdis- ciplinary curriculum, an international approach and strong links to the region. It sees itself as an intermediary between science and business, and has its own technology transfer office. Research focuses on topics such as energy efficiency in
Application-focused and regionally rooted The combination of practical science and application-focused teaching is pretty much unique in the world. The German univer- sities of applied sciences (FH/UAS) are the country’s former state schools of engineering, higher vocational schools and academies. They offer degree courses in sub- jects ranging from engineering and the natural sciences to economics, law, design and healthcare. When first established in the late 1960s, practical training of skilled professionals was initially their fo- cus. Since the mid-1980s, however, the universities of applied sciences have also been engaged in applied research and development. These institutions have long been partnering universities to offer joint doctoral degree programmes. Now- adays, a number of research-orient- ed universities of applied sciences also have the right to confer PhDs in certain subjects themselves. The principle followed by univer- sities of applied sciences has proven successful: because they are regionally rooted and offer applica- tion-focused research and practical qualifications, the UAS are par - ti cularly well suited to responding flexibly to specific societal and business needs at the local level, working together with companies, associations, municipalities or social welfare institutions. Applied research and research- based qualifications for young re- searchers are therefore the focus of special funding programmes at the federal and state levels. The pro- gramme Research at Universities of Applied Sciences takes centre stage. It currently makes 70 million euros per year available in funding to provide targeted support for UAS. This has financed more than 1,500 research projects since 2008. Professors at universities of ap- plied sciences need practical and teaching experience in addition to their scientific qualifications. The UAS are provided with addit- ional funding to allow them to ecruit the best candidates: for ex- ample, the FH-Personal funding programme supports the estab- lishment of specialist professor- ships or tandem programmes with companies or other partners for staff development. s e g a m I s s e n i s u B y e k n o M / k c o t S e b o d A
Approx. 52,000 INTERNATIONAL ACADEMICS teach and research at German higher edu - cation institutions 37,600 AGREEMENTS between German universities and partner institutions in around 150 different countries More than 5,600 INTERNATIONAL PHD STUDENTS successfully complete their doctorates in Germany every year 412,000 STUDENTS FROM ABROAD are enrolled in Germany 2019, 2020, 2021; source: Destatis, BMBF, HRK 35 GERMAN UNIVERSITIES are involved in European higher education networks m E e y E / l e a f a r n e s s a l c / k c o t S e b o d A
25 UNIVERSITIES Attractive courses: Germany is the most popular study destination for international students after the USA, Great Britain and Australia. n n a m r e t t ü H t r e b r o N / D A A D , n n a m e d o R / e z t e u h c S / a p d Analogue and digital: modern teaching fol- lows both paths. The picture shows the library at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg. INTERNATIONAL FOCUS Science needs freedom and exchange across bor- ders. No country can solve global issues such as climate change, combating poverty or sustainable energy supplies on its own. Which is why inter- nationalisation is a key aspect at German univer- sities, too. Important steps have already been taken: about 300 German universities collaborate with international academic institutions in 150 countries on more than 37,000 different projects. German study programmes abroad play a special role here. One example of such cooperation is the German University of Technology (GUtech) in Oman, one of more than 80 German transnational education projects. It was founded in 2007 with support from RWTH Aachen University, on whose curriculum its study programme is modelled. With great success: companies in the region are eager to hire GUtech graduates because of their research-based, practical education and their high level of independence. German universities are also involved in the European University Networks (EUN). This is a European Union initiative to support university partnerships all over Europe. These alliances of universities from at least three EU countries undertake to set up a European inter-university campus. The idea is for transdisciplinary and transnational teams of students, researchers and external stakeholders to tackle topics that are important for Europe, such as climate action, democracy, health, big data or migration. OPEN FOR INTERNATIONAL TALENT An increasing number of international academics are teaching and conducting research in Germany. One in eight academics at German higher educa- tion institutions, approx. 52,000 in all, come from abroad. And Germany is one of the most popular destinations for international students. Around 412,000 international students are enrolled at German universities. At the same time, roughly 135,000 Germans study abroad, which again fos- ters international exchange.
26 UNIVERSITIES Learning together: at German universities, teamwork plays an important role, even across disciplinary boundaries. INVESTING IN INNOVATION German universities have been very successful in extending their international profile, boosting innovative research and offering attractive study programmes. This is not least the result of mas- sive investments by the Federal Government and the states (Länder). For example, the billions invested by the Excellence Initiative have had a tangible impact: graduate schools, clusters of excellence and future projects have enriched the university landscape, given research a real boost and created outstanding education facilities for young researchers. Now, this successful programme is being con- tinued in the form of the Excellence Strategy. It is again investing in cutting-edge university re- search while supporting clusters and universities of excellence, with annual funding totalling 533 million euros. Small and medium-sized universities as well as universities of applied sciences also receive sup- port. With their strong regional roots, they are innovation engines for their respective state. The federal/state initiative Innovative Hochschule will commit up to 550 million euros until 2027 to promote the research-driven transfer of ideas, knowledge and technology (see also page 23). As a rule, complex research areas which involve high research risks and hold great potential for groundbreaking innovation require the collabor- ation of several partners. The Research Campus funding initiative therefore supports long-term projects involving collaboration between science and industry. The topics range from new methods for diagnosing infectious diseases to innovative manufacturing technologies. Each of the nine selected research campuses can expect to receive up to 2 million euros in funding each year. t r e d e D e n r A / a p d , h t u g n e g a H e h t r ö D / D A A D
Fostering talents from around the world PROFESSOR MICHAEL HOCH, Rector of the University of Bonn Professor Hoch, the University of Bonn is the most successful university in Germany’s nationwide ex cellence competition. What is your formula for success? It is thanks to the extraordinary achievements of our academic and administrative staff. We have succeeded in bringing them together, in all their diversity, to work towards a common strategic objective. This gives rise to incredible innovative strength. Nearly one in seven of the students at your univer sity comes from abroad. What makes the Univer sity of Bonn so attractive to this target group? Many of our departments are world-class. Our outstanding academics attract students and re- searchers from all over the world. As indeed does the international city of Bonn, which is a centre of science, culture and business, not to mention a United Nations base and home to numerous federal authorities in the west of Germany. How do you hope the University of Bonn will develop over the coming ten years? I hope that our curiosity-driven research will become an even more powerful international in novative engine to drive major global trans- formation processes. And that we continue to attract and provide excellent support to young talents from around the world. n n a m r e t t ü H t r e b r o N / D A A D , n n o B i n U / n n a m m o r F a r a b r a B
28 NON- UNIVERSITY RESEARCH Independent basic research, applied science with a high degree of innovation and experiments with unique large-scale equipment: non-university research institutes in Germany offer ideal conditions for top-level research and enjoy international standing.
29 H b m G g n u h c s r o f n e n o i r e w h c S r ü f m u r t n e z z t l o h m l e H Progress requires research: non-university research in Germany makes an important contribution to our future. I S G / n a s o H . J
30 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH MAX-PLANCK- GESELLSCHAFT Insight must precede application: the desire to get to the bottom of things drives the Max Planck Society, Germany’s generator of Nobel Prize winners. T hey go by the names of Gravity, Sinfoni and Naco, and they are very talented. Gravity for example can measure the changing positions of a star with great precision so as to determine the trajectory of its orbit. All three are extremely sensi- tive instruments for infrared observations, based at the Very Large Telescope (VLT) of the European Southern Observatory (ESO) in the Atacama Desert in northern Chile. Gravity, Sinfoni and Naco allowed the astrophysicist Professor Reinhard Genzel, together with colleagues from around the world, to track a star named S2 when it passed our galaxy’s black hole in May 2018. Genzel and his team spent many years preparing for this event. And for the first time they were able to measure something that Einstein had predicted: the light of a star is stretched to longer wavelengths by the very strong gravitational field of the black hole. This effect is known as gravitational redshift. Genzel and his group have been researching black holes for decades and have made many ground- breaking findings in galactic and extragalactic astrophysics. This led to Genzel receiving the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2020 “for the discovery of a supermassive compact object at the centre of our galaxy”. Genzel is one of the directors at the Max Planck Institute (MPI) for Extraterrestrial Physics in Garching near Munich. The institute is one of the Max Planck Society’s 86 research institutes that work independently. F A C T S A N D F I G U R E S 86 research institutes (including 5 institutes abroad) Roughly 24,000 staff (approx. 6,900 scientists and 2,200 guest scientists) More than every second scientist comes from outside Germany Over 3,000 research projects in more than 120 countries Annual budget: approx. 2.5 billion euros (2019) www.mpg.de
Invisible giants: black holes are among the greatest mysteries of the universe. The astrophysicist Reinhard Genzel proved that there is a black hole at the centre of the Milky Way that swallows up even stars and communication waves. r a n o o Z / e c n a i l l a e r u t c i p
NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS20 Since 1948, the year when the Max Planck Society was established, 20 scientists from its ranks have received the greatest honour for scientists: the Nobel Prize.
33 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH They focus on basic research, often taking an interdisciplinary approach, in the following fields: life sciences natural sciences humanities and social sciences TOP SCIENTISTS What distinguishes the Max Planck Institutes is that they are established in line with Harnack’s principle. This is named after Alfred Harnack, the first president of the Kaiser Wilhelm Society which was established in 1911 and was the precur- sor to the Max Planck Society. The aim is to re- cruit the world’s best and most creative scientists to the society. The Max Planck Institutes are then set up according to their research interests and needs. At the heart of this principle is absolute freedom of research. Heads of institutes enjoy the best possible work- ing conditions and are given a free hand in choos- ing their staff, subject matter and cooperation partners. Nowadays, the institutes are no longer always established around individual researchers and more value is placed on interdisciplinarity and international collaboration than was the case 100 years ago. Yet the same principle still applies to choosing outstanding researchers with a focus on the best minds, and they are given free rein in how they use resources. THE MISSION Max Planck Institutes are committed to basic research. They research the inside of elementary particles and the origins of the universe. They study the molecular building blocks of life, inves- tigating ecosystems and the specific conditions underlying them, explore the changes resulting s n o i t c u A e g a t i r e H : 2 3 . p , l e ﬀ e n K r e t e P / a p d Professor Reinhard Genzel is one of the directors at the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics in Garching. In 2020, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics for his research on black holes.
34 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH from global migration and compare international legal systems. Whatever their particular focus, the Max Planck Institutes always devote themselves to fields of research that are particularly innovative. The range of work covered by the Max Planck Society continues to grow, with new institutes being established and existing ones being rededi- cated in order to find the answers to the scientific questions of tomorrow. The Max Planck Society has the scope to be able to react quickly to new scientific developments. INTERNATIONAL ORIENTATION In view of such research conditions it is no wonder that the Max Planck Institutes attract so many top international players. More than half of their scien- tists come from abroad, as do nearly 40 percent of the institute directors. Over 90 percent of schol- arship holders and almost 60 percent of visiting scientists have non-German citizenship. Yet it is not only the teams that are international. Max Planck Institutes are part of international networks; their scientists exchange ideas with colleagues all over the world and they are involved in more than 3,000 projects with some 6,000 international partners in 120 countries. THE NEXT GENERATION The efforts made by the institutes to encourage the upcoming generation also have an inter- national focus. Every second doctoral student at more than 60 International Max Planck Research Schools (IMPRS) comes from abroad. The research schools are established by one or several Max Planck Institutes. They collaborate closely with universities and other research institutions which also have an international focus. Here next-generation scientists can enjoy first-class “I chose the IMPRS because it offers a unique opportunity for developing my scientific and personal skills: I collaborate in a dynamic inter- national team while learning state-of-the-art techniques.” ANA PATRICIA BAÑOS QUINTANA is writing her doctoral thesis at the International Max Planck Research School “Chemical Communication in Ecological Systems”, Jena B U D G E T 40% Federal 40% Länder 11% Third-party 9% Others 2019; source: Max Planck Society
A fantastic framework for our research project DR MIRIAM LIEDVOGEL Max Planck Research Group Leader “Behavioural Genomics” Dr Liedvogel, at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology you investigate birds’ migra tory behaviour. What do you find so fascinating about it? What I find particularly fascinating are young birds on their first long-distance migratory flight. They fly thousands of kilometres to a wintering site they have never been to before – without the help of their parents, but with remarkable accuracy! We want to understand which genes are respon- sible for letting the bird know how to find its wintering site and which signalling pathways play a role. What makes a Max Planck Research Group a good place for your work? It offers us a fantastic framework for our interdis- ciplinary project. That includes the infrastructure and expertise with which the institute supports us. Moreover, we have the greatest possible independ- ence to pursue our specific research questions. How important to you is international exchange? Bird migration is a global phenomenon; national borders pose no barriers for birds. Breeding and wintering areas are often located on different continents, meaning that international cooperat- ion is essential for our work, both in the field and in the lab. s e g a m I y t t e G / r e h c a m u h c S n n a h o J , e t a v i r p
k c o t s r e t t u h S / v o p o P _ y e r d n A 1 2 0 2 Language without speaking: scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences are exploring how the brain processes sign language.
37 MAX PLANCK CENTERS The Max Planck Centers constitute a platform for international scientific collaborative programmes. They pool the expertise of the Max Planck Institutes involved and that of their international partners, enable the joint use of research facilities, support postdoc exchanges and host workshops. MAX PLANCK INSTITUTES ABROAD Bibliotheca Hertziana in Rome, Italy Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz, Italy Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguis- tics in Nijmegen, Netherlands Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience, USA Max Planck Institute Luxembourg for International, European and Regulatory Procedural Law, Luxembourg conditions. The students are part of a group and have access to the relevant institutes’ infrastruc- tures. Around two thirds of the 3,600 doctoral students at a Max Planck Institute are enrolled at an IMPRS. Particularly gifted young scientists with (inter- national) experience as postdoctoral researchers can apply for a position as leader of a Max Planck Research Group. Taking responsibility for such a group allows them to research independently, manage a team and administer budgets. The Max Planck Society has set up about 180 Max Planck Research Groups. These open up excellent career opportunities and provide aspiring scientists with a chance to prove themselves.
38 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH FRAUNHOFER- GESELLSCHAFT Dedicated to the future: when something needs to work, the researchers at the Fraunhofer Institutes are the people to call. After all, Fraunhofer is the largest organisation for application-oriented research in Europe. s e g a m I y t t e G a i v k e h t o t o h P / y k s w o b a r G e t U
39 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH Specialists in high-tech: at Fraunhofer, the focus is primarily on innovations – although always taking the needs of the individual into account. F A C T S A N D F I G U R E S 75 Fraunhofer Institutes and research facilities in Germany Approx. 29,000 staff, includ- ing more than 11,300 scien- tists and scientific staff More than 1,000 international researchers Research centres, repre- sentative offices and senior advisors in Europe, North and South America, Asia, the Middle East and Africa Annual budget: approx. 2.8 billion euros (2019) www.fraunhofer.de
40 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH R esearchers at the Fraunhofer Institutes look to the future in everything they do. Whether the subject is the tactile internet, smart manufacturing, cyber-security research or new technologies for the energy transition: they address the issues of today for the technologies of tomorrow with an eye to practical applications. 75 institutes and research centres in Germany take this problem-oriented and application-based approach in the seven Fraunhofer Strategic Research Fields: bioeconomy digital healthcare artificial intelligence next generation computing quantum technologies resource efficiency and climate technologies hydrogen technologies With around 29,000 employees and a research budget of 2.8 billion euros, the Fraunhofer- Gesellschaft is the leading organisation for applied research in Europe. It is named after the researcher, inventor and entrepreneur from Munich, Joseph von Fraunhofer (1787–1826). He carried out ground-breaking work in researching optics, and at the same time devel- oped successful new products. THE TASK Research for practical application was Joseph von Fraunhofer’s guiding principle, and the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft feels bound by this, too. The Fraunhofer Institutes work for clients in business as well as for the Federal Government and the German states (Länder). The aim is to make academic findings usable for customised products and applications. To this end, the Fraunhofer Institutes can draw on the expertise of international teams of experienced developers and creative minds, as well as on their own re- search departments. s e g a m I y t t e G / a r u m i k _ t : 1 4 . p , t r e n n a L r e k l o V / D A A D Key technologies: the Fraunhofer Institute for High Frequency Physics and Radar Techniques FHR is one of the biggest radar research institutes in Europe.
INVENTIONS A YEAR733 Fraunhofer is one of the top 20 patent applicants to the German Patent and Trade Mark Office and among the top applicants to the European Patent Office (rank 32). Small wonder that in 2019 Fraunhofer placed second among Reuters’ ranking of The World’s Most Innovative Research Institutions.
42 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH n n a m r a K l e i n a D / a p d The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft is primarily funded through commissioned research. Approx. 70 per- cent of the assignments come from industrial and service-sector companies, though publicly funded research projects are also covered. The basic fund- ing is provided by the federal and state (Länder) governments. RESEARCH AIMED AT PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS When science becomes practical, it translates into business. This works particularly well when Fraunhofer researchers found their own com- panies. The Fraunhofer Venture department sup- ports this and is dedicated exclusively to company foundations, start-ups, investors and the partici- pating Fraunhofer Institutes. In 2019 alone, Fraun- hofer Venture supported 69 new spin-off projects, 26 of which came directly from within the ranks of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. The focus here is on technology transfer to business. “We know how”: this is the principle according to which the researchers at the Fraunhofer- Gesellschaft work. They tackle their tasks with determination and an inquiring mind. B U D G E T 30% Federal and Länder 70% Project revenue 2019; source: Fraunhofer
Big data on the farm Smartphones in the barns, high-tech on the fields: modern information technologies have long been making life easier for farmers. Many of the processes involved in cultivating crops or breeding cattle become more efficient as a result. However, the potential offered by digitisation in agriculture is far from exhausted: for example, how could farmers increase their productivity while at the same time operating sustainably? How could they raise the quality of the products and reduce their use of resources? Researchers in the Fraunhofer lighthouse project “Cognitive Agriculture” (COGNAC for short) are searching for answers. Their goal is to set up a central, manufacturer-independent digital plat- form. “In this project, we are developing and testing novel concepts for an agricultural data space that allows confidential exchange and multivalent data use”, explains Ralf Kalmar from the Fraunhofer Institute for Experimental Soft- ware Engineering IESE, one of eight participating Fraunhofer Institutes. The researchers use innova- tive robots, sensor systems and data services in their work. The data they generate are interlinked and analysed. This allows farmers to identify for example the ideal times for activities such as planting and harvesting. Big data on the farm – smart farming of the future. www.cognitive-agriculture.de s e g a m I e l p o e P / s e g a m I y t t e G
44 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH FRAUNHOFER LOCATIONS WORLDWIDE FRAUNHOFER AFFILIATED PARTNERS, REPRE- SENTATIVE OFFICES AND SENIOR ADVISORS North America Boston, USA Brookline, USA College Park, USA East Lansing, USA Newark, USA Plymouth, USA San José, USA Storrs, Connecticut, USA South America Santiago, Chile São Paulo, Brazil Africa Pretoria, South Africa Stellenbosch, South Africa Middle East Lavon, Israel Asia Ampang, Malaysia Bangalore, India Beijing, China Jakarta, Indonesia Seoul, South Korea Singapore Tokyo, Japan Europe Bolzano, Italy Brussels, Belgium Budapest, Hungary Dublin, Ireland Ercolano, Italy Glasgow, United Kingdom Gothenburg, Sweden Graz, Austria Moscow, Russia Porto, Portugal Vienna, Austria INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATIONS The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft has affiliates in Europe as well as in North and South America and Singapore. At the centre of its European activities is its office in Brussels, which acts as an interface between Fraunhofer and the European institutions. Access to local markets abroad is provided through the Representative Offices and Senior Advisors, which are represented worldwide. In addition, Fraunhofer is involved in numerous strategic collaborations with excellent international partners, such as at the Fraunhofer Project Center for Cybersecurity. A cooperative project established in 2019, it combines the competencies of Fraun- hofer’s Israeli partners at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem with the expertise of the Fraunhofer In- stitute for Secure Information Technology SIT. The centre, which is based in Jerusalem, is designed to serve as an R&D platform for companies and to form the heart of a network of excellence in the area of cybersecurity. In 2019, Fraunhofer generated revenue of almost 300 million euros abroad.
A new era of communication The age of digitisation entails some very consid- erable advantages. However, the data that is gen- erated on a daily basis, which in some cases is highly sensitive, needs to be properly protected. Cybercrime is a problem all over the world. Anyone wishing to protect their data in view of today’s high-performance computers needs one thing in particular: highly secure communication systems. So-called quantum communication can play an important role in this. QuNET, an initiative funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), is researching and developing a modern IT infrastructure for Germany that is de- signed to achieve highly secure data transmission using quantum communication. The main institutions taking part in QuNET are the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering IOF, the Fraunhofer Insti- tute for Telecommunications, Heinrich Hertz Insti- tute, HHI, the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light (MPL) and the German Aerospace Center (DLR-IKN). In the first phase, the partners already developed key modules for modern and secure communication systems, thereby paving the way for the hybrid, secure communication network of tomorrow. We protect the basic right to data security. PROFESSOR ANDREAS TÜNNERMANN, director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering IOF and spokesperson of the QuNET steering committee g n i r ö D n e v S
e t o r G n a i t s a b e S / t u t i t s n I - r e n e g e W - d e r f l A The research icebreaker Polarstern on a mission: scientists on board the excellently equipped polar research vessel are studying climate and climate change.
47 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH HELMHOLTZ ASSOCIATION Investigating unknown worlds: ambitious goals require effective tools. The Helmholtz Association uses high-performance infra structure and unique large-scale research equipment. F A C T S A N D F I G U R E S 18 independent research centres Approx. 43,000 staff, includ- ing roughly 25,000 scientists and scientific staff 8,000 PhD students, among them over 2,000 internation- al doctoral students More than 10,000 inter- national researchers International collaborations all over the world; research networks in Germany, especially with universities Annual budget: approx. 5 billion euros (2020) www.helmholtz.de I t was the biggest Arctic expedition of all time: the German research icebreaker Polarstern spent an entire year drifting through the frozen Arctic Ocean. Hundreds of scientists from 20 countries took part in the MOSAiC expedition. Their goal was to undertake a close- up study of the Arctic as a hotspot for global warming and obtain funda mental insights that would lead to a better understanding of anthropo- genic climate change. MOSAiC was coordinated by the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI). AWI is one of 18 independent research centres that have joined forces under the umbrella of the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres. With approx. 43,000 employees and an annual budget of around 5 billion euros, the Helmholtz Association is the largest scientific organisation in Germany. The association is named after the great German polymath and naturalist Hermann von Helmholtz (1821–1894).
48 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH The research centres within the Helmholtz As- sociation focus on natural sciences, biology and medicine, and work in six fields of research: energy earth and the environment health aeronautics, space and transport information matter THE TASK Helmholtz works on long-term research goals. Its core objective is to preserve and improve the basis for human life. The researchers in the association help to decode the complex systems that define and shape humanity and the environment. And they develop answers to the major, pressing issues facing society, science and the economy: What will the energy supply of tomorrow look like? How can resources be used sustainably? What therapies can be found for previously incurable diseases? t d e t s r e i B k n a r F / R D Z H WORKING WITH LARGE-SCALE EQUIPMENT The autonomous research institutes specialise in developing, building and operating complex re- search infrastructures. The large-scale equipment they use includes accelerator systems, telescopes, research ships and high-performance computers, which Helmholtz makes available to scientists all over the world. And the interest from the inter- national research community is immense: in 2020 alone, more than 10,000 researchers from abroad, among them almost 3,500 visiting scientists, were able to exchange ideas and make use of the infrastructures of the Helmholtz Centres. Hope for patients: researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have developed an immunotherapy to treat radiation-resistant tumours. B U D G E T 71% Federal and Länder 29% Third-party 2020; source: Helmholtz Association
We observe electrons at work PROFESSOR FRANCESCA CALEGARI Head of the Attosecond Science division at DESY, Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron Professor Calegari, what is attosecond physics and why are you interested in these short timescales? An attosecond is one quintillionth of a second – that is 18 zeros behind the decimal point. One attosecond to a second is like a second to the age of the universe. Attosecond physics means we can observe electrons at work. Having access to this incredibly short timescale allows the origin of fundamental physical and chemical processes – activated by the light-matter interaction – to finally be revealed. What do you aim to achieve with your research? I am interested in investigating ultrafast processes in biorelevant molecules. With the help of atto- second laser pulses, we have been able to image in real-time the ultrafast electronic motion occur- ring in amino acids – the basic building blocks of proteins – after interaction with light. In the long term, we’re hoping not only to observe the elec- trons but also to guide them, with the aim of con- trolling the outcomes of a biochemical reaction. This research has potential outcomes in medicine and pharmaceutical applications. What is special about working at a Helmholtz Centre? DESY offers an extremely attractive, interdiscipl- inary research environment. I can collaborate here with groups from a range of fields and use differ- ent light sources for my experiments, such as FLASH and the European XFEL. I can investigate bio relevant molecules from various points of view. t r e n n a L r e k l o V / D A A D , R L D
202 JUNIOR RESEARCH GROUPS Strategic talent management plays an important role for the Helmholtz Association. With its junior research groups, the association promotes the early independence of young postdocs.
51 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH OPPORTUNITIES FOR YOUNG SCIENTISTS The utmost priority is given to fostering up- and-coming scientific talent. The association’s talent management team gives particularly strong support to PhD students, postdoctoral research- ers and future managers. Helmholtz offers its early career researchers attractive qualification opportunities: 21 Helmholtz Research Schools and 13 Helmholtz Graduate Schools a postdoc programme for support immediately after the doctorate approx. 200 junior research groups for top (international) talents HELMHOLTZ INTERNATIONAL RESEARCH SCHOOLS For young international scientists, the nine Helmholtz International Research Schools offer a structured doctoral programme run jointly by the Helmholtz Centres, partners from abroad and German university partners. Up to 25 doctoral candidates work together here as they focus on specific research topics. This gives them the opportunity to gain vital experience in working with other researchers at the international level. The PhD students receive outstanding specialist training that not only lays the foundations for a future career but is also character-forming. s e g a m I y t t e G / l e x i P y t s u D : 0 5 . p , t r e n n a L r e k l o V / D A A D Attractive conditions for talents: the Helmholtz Association makes targeted offerings to early career researchers.
g i l l i K r e v i l O / R D Z H Racetrack for particles: the petawatt laser PENELOPE, a medical particle accelerator, is set up at the ELBE – Center for High-Power Radiation Sources at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf.
53 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH MEMBERS OF THE HELMHOLTZ ASSOCIATION GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI), Bremerhaven Deutsches Elektronen- Synchrotron DESY, Hamburg Helmholtz-Zentrum Hereon, Geesthacht German Aerospace Center (DLR), Cologne Forschungszentrum Jülich German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), Bonn GSI Helmholtz Centre for Heavy Ion Research, Darmstadt CISPA Helmholtz Center for Information Security, Saarbrücken Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie (HZB) Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine in the Helmholtz Association (MDC), Berlin Helmholtz Centre Potsdam – GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research (HZI), Braunschweig Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, Leipzig German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg Helmholtz Zentrum München – German Research Center for Environmental Health (HMGU) TRANSLATION INTO PRACTICE The work of Germany’s largest scientific organisa- tion goes further than researching the fundamen- tal elements of the major challenges of the day. The Helmholtz Association also aims to apply and implement the findings and solutions in practice, and thus, more specifically, to translate research into usable products and services. In order to achieve this, Helmholtz issues for example licenc- es, facilitates the use of research infrastructure and also fosters collaboration and commissioned research right through to establishing start-ups. In 2020 alone, there were 18 spin-offs from the Helmholtz Centres, with scientists founding their own companies based on a technology they devel- oped. In total, the association can proudly look back on more than 250 successful company foun- dations since 2005.
54 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH LEIBNIZ ASSOCIATION Theoria cum praxi: the desire to use science for the benefit and good of humankind was formulated by Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz back in 1700. The research organisation that bears his name demonstrates every day just how relevant this principle still is, even today. F A C T S A N D F I G U R E S 96 independent institutes Approx. 20,000 staff (including 10,000 researchers) Roughly 2,400 international researchers Approx. 4,000 doctoral students Annual budget: more than 1.9 billion euros (2019) www.leibniz-association.eu Planetary boundaries: a team of researchers at the Potsdam Insti- tute for Climate Impact Research is investigating changes in various areas of our Earth system.
55 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH r e l b a T s i n e D / k c o t s r e t t u h S
56 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH W hat are the limits to our planet’s resili- ence? This weighty question has relevance for the whole of humankind. The Potsdam Insti- tute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) is search- ing for an answer in the “Potsdam Earth Model Planetary Boundary Simulator” project. For the first time, it is exploring how the various so-called “planetary boundaries” (such as climate change, acidification of the oceans and loss of biodiversity) affect one another and which feedbacks arise between the atmosphere, the terrestrial and marine biosphere, oceans and ice sheets. Studying all relevant components jointly is intended to paint a picture of the overall state of the Earth system and to simulate the changes it is undergoing. The researchers hope that this will give them insights in particular into the effects that global change is having on forest ecosystems and which conse- quences the weakening of the Gulf Stream will have for the marine biosphere. THE BRIEF PIK is not only one of the world’s leading think tanks in the field of environmental policy, but also one of a total of 96 independent research institutes run by the Leibniz Association. Like PIK, they are all guided by the same principles of quality and social relevance that were advanced by Leibniz more than 300 years ago. The scope of their research ranges from the natural sciences, engi- neering and environmental sciences to eco- nomics, space science, social sciences and the humanities. e b o d A k c o t S / o d u t s _ a n a N i : 7 5 . p , s e g a m I y t t e G / t t o c S y b t o h S A broad field: Leibniz Association scientists pursue research in fields such as biodiversity – as well as in peace studies, contemporary history and education.
RESEARCH STATIONS ABROAD14 From Senegal and Peru to Norway – Leibniz Association research stations are to be found all over the world.
The entire world of economics Nowhere in the world is there as much literature on economics as there is here at the ZBW – Leibniz Information Centre for Economics. The world’s largest research infrastructure for literature on economics, the ZBW operates nationally – both online and offline. Its library houses more than 4.4 million books and some 24,000 current maga- zines. 2.3 million documents are available online. These are complemented by 206,000 articles and working papers, all of them freely accessible. This wealth of literature is of particular benefit to economists. Yet not only the online services and the open-access repository, but also the specialist portal EconBiz containing over ten million data records can be accessed free of charge by anybody interested throughout the world. In the 21st century the librarian’s world is under- going a period of radical change such as has never been seen before. It is the ZBW’s intention to become actively involved in this process. The or- ganisation is for example conducting research into application and publication processes on the Internet and investigating new search paradigms for revealing previously unknown links between digital documents. Open science plays an impo- rtant role for the ZBW. The centre conducts intensive research in this area, too, developing new technologies that enable access and remove barriers. www.zbw.eu
59 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH The focus of the Leibniz Association is on knowl- edge transfer. It advises and informs representa- tives of politics, science, business and the general public. The institutions in the Leibniz Association are concerned with basic research, applied re- search and research-based infrastructures. It is this wide range of subjects and research approaches that makes the Leibniz model so very appealing – to top international researchers, too. Leibniz boasts four kinds of research infrastructures: information infrastructures such as archives and libraries to manage information of all kinds e-Infrastructures such as data and cloud infrastructures, high-performance and super- computers and grid computing infrastructures large-scale equipment and research platforms such as GREGOR, the largest solar telescope in Europe, in Tenerife social research infrastructures, i.e. conference and meeting centres where scientists can ex- change information in their own specialist areas and initiate new projects THE ROADMAP The Leibniz Roadmap for Research Infrastruc- tures is the Leibniz Association’s way of planning the future. To ensure that excellent research will still be possible in 10 to 15 years’ time, the re- search infrastructures need to be assessed and expanded. The roadmap contains concepts for research infrastructures which the Leibniz Associ- ation has prioritised as part of an internal process. To qualify, the relevant concepts should allow for excellent scientific work and be socially relevant, of significant importance to the scientific com- munity and user-oriented. k c e b r o V n a f e t S : 8 5 . p , o t t O d r o L n a i t s i r h C / D A A D A tight-knit international network: the Leibniz Association engages in global collaboration – with around 25% of its scientists coming from abroad. B U D G E T 33% Federal 33% Länder 25% Third-party 9% Others 2020; source: Leibniz Association
60 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH LEIBNIZ INSTITUTES STAND FOR A BROAD SPECTRUM OF SCIENCE Humanities and educational research Economics and social sciences, spatial research Life sciences Mathematics, natural sciences and engineering Environmental research Nine projects designed to complement and enrich the research infrastructures of the future were chosen. Four of the Leibniz concepts were selected for the list of the national Roadmap for Research Infrastructures; three others have been included in the roadmap of the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI). One thing that has already been decided is to set up the Leibniz Center for Photonics in Infection Research (LPI). It was one of three new national research infra- structures to be selected, and is to go into operation in 2024. Its goal is to fight infectious diseases with the help of innovative photonics-based diagnostics and therapeutic methods. THE NEXT GENERATION OF SCIENTISTS Training the next generation of scientists is an im- portant aspect of the Leibniz Association’s mission. There are some 4,000 doctoral students working at the institutes. In addition, the Leibniz Association is committed to structured graduate training. To this end, the Leibniz Institutes collaborate closely with universities. In total, Leibniz is involved in almost 170 graduate schools. COOPERATION AND NETWORKING Leibniz also collaborates closely with universities on research. There are more than 20 networks of Leibniz Institutes and university facilities working together on an interdisciplinary basis as the Leibniz ScienceCampi. Various Leibniz Institutes are affiliated in twelve Leibniz Research Alliances and concentrate on subjects of great scientific and social relevance. For instance, scientists at eight Leibniz Institutes have teamed up to form the Leibniz Research Alliance “Nanosafety” with a view to understanding the effect of nanoparticles and developing safe nanomaterials. The institutes also cooperate as part of Leibniz Re- search Networks on focal topics or key technologies such as green nutrition and citizen science. These networks see themselves as a central point of c ontact for their fields of research not only within the Leibniz Association, but also for the worlds of politics, media and business and for their sponsors.
One of eight research museums in the Leibniz Association: the Senckenberg Museum in Frankfurt am Main is one of Germany’s largest museums of natural history. l n i e H r e d n a x e l A / a p d
r e n p p a Z n a J / D A A D Excellent teams: more than 2,000 academics conduct research under the umbrella of the Union of the German Academies of Sciences and Humanities.
63 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH ACADEMIES Bring all the most intelligent people together in one and the same place. That was Plato’s idea over 2,400 years ago, when he identi- fied the grove of Akademos as the ideal place for his philosophers’ school. And to this day it is at the core of the idea of a community of thinkers – the academy. F A C T S A N D F I G U R E S 8 academies in the Union with more than 2,000 scientists and scholars Approx. 900 staff on the Academies Programme Annual budget of the Academies Programme: 70.8 million euros (2021) www.akademienunion.de G ermany’s first scholarly society was found- ed as long ago as 1652. The Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina is thus the oldest scientific and medical academy in the world. It has been the German National Academy of Sciences since 2008. Yet there are many other academies in Germany, too. They include the Union of the German Academies of Sciences and Humanities, which is an association of eight state (Länder) academies. Then there is the National Academy of Science and Engineering, acatech, which represents the technical sciences, at home and abroad. And since the beginning of the new millennium Die Junge Akademie has represented new scholarly talent. The key tasks of the academies are to coordinate long-term basic research projects, to advise policy makers and the public on issues relating to our futures, and to support interdisciplinary dialogue by organising symposia and events. Union of the German Academies of Sciences and Humanities Eight academies have joined forces to form this union. They represent more than 2,000 member scientists who are among the best in their
We document our cultural heritage PROFESSOR HANNS HATT President of the Union of the German Academies of Sciences and Humanities Professor Hatt, what does it mean to be President of the Union of the German Academies of Sciences and Humanities? It is a great honour to represent the eight vener- able academies of sciences and humanities. More than 2,000 outstanding scholars from a variety of fields are members of these institutions. Our goal is also to further strengthen cooperation between the academies. What is special about the Academies Programme? The Academies Programme is unique worldwide. It includes more than 130 long-term basic re- search projects in the humanities. They are dedi- cated to retrieving, preserving and interpreting documents of culture heritage worldwide. In this way, it makes a key contribution to documenting cultural heritage and showing how it is relevant to society today. What does the Union intend to achieve in the next few years? It is the task of academics to advise society and policymakers on major challenges, such as migra- tion, climate change and energy. It is imperative that expertise in the social sciences and humanit- ies become more strongly involved in this process. And such expertise is especially well represented at our academies. r e n p p a Z n a J / D A A D , e t a v i r p
65 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH respective fields. In particular, they conduct basic research in the humanities and social sciences, projects that require endurance. Some of their trad itions date well into the 18th century. The latest member of the Union is the Academy of Sciences and Humanities in Hamburg, which was founded by Hamburg civil society in 2004. The collective research programme of the academ- ies of sciences – the Academies Programme – ranges from the Goethe Dictionary and the edi- tion of Alexander von Humboldt’s manuscripts to basic research on the role of culture in early ex- pansions of humans. It is the largest programme of research in the humanities in Germany and draws on funding of more than 70 million euros for a total of 132 research projects. The goal is to catalogue, secure and represent Germany’s cultural heritage. THE EIGHT ACADEMIES IN THE UNION ARE: Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities (1992/1700) r e n p p a Z n a J / D A A D Göttingen Academy of Sciences and Humanities (1751) Bavarian Academy of Sciences and Humanities (1759) Saxon Academy of Sciences and Humanities in Leipzig (1846) Heidelberg Academy of Sciences and Humanities (1909) Academy of Sciences and Literature, Mainz (1949) North Rhine-Westphalian Academy of Sciences, Humanities and the Arts (1970) Academy of Sciences and Humanities in Hamburg (2004) Focusing on cultural heritage: the Union coordinates Germany’s largest research programme in the humanities and social sciences. B U D G E T Academies Programme 50% Federal 50% Länder 2021; source: Union of Academies
66 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH Leopoldina “Exploring nature for the glory of God and the good of mankind” was the mission of Johann Lorenz Bausch, Johann Michael Fehr, Georg Balthasar Metzger and Georg Balthasar Wohl- fahrt when, in 1652 in the Free Imperial City of Schweinfurt, they founded the Academia Naturae Curiosorum, one of the world’s first scientific and medical academies. The Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina sought to bring to- gether the leading academic scholars of the day in order to debate scientific questions, insights and findings across the disciplines and for the benefit of society. That remains the case to this day. About 1,600 outstanding scientists from over 30 countries, among them 33 Nobel laureates, work according to this interdisciplinary and international tradition. Each of them was nominated for membership solely on account of his or her significant scholarly achievements. The Leopoldina is now located in Halle in Saxony-Anhalt. It is the world’s oldest continuously existing academy of the natural sciences. DIALOGUE OF THE ACADEMIES Since 2008, the Leopoldina has been the German National Academy of Sciences. It is thus the voice of German science in the international dialogue between academies. The Leopoldina has a global network of international partners such as the Aca- démie des sciences in France or the Indian National Science Academy. The Leopoldina not only repre- sents German scientists on the international com- mittees, but also shares its findings with policy- makers and the public. Together with the science academies of the G7 and G20 member states, it advises the heads of state and government at their annual summit meetings, for example. F A C T S A N D F I G U R E S Approx. 1,600 members, including more than 500 international scientists and scholars Approx. 100 staff Close relations with science academies on all continents Annual budget: 17.2 million euros (2019) www.leopoldina.org B U D G E T 80% Federal 20% Saxony- Anhalt 2021; source: Leopoldina
7,800 OUTSTANDING SCHOLARS Since its foundation back in 1652, more than 7,800 outstanding scholars have been nominated members of the Leopoldina. Among them were 183 Nobel laureates and renowned personalities such as Marie Curie-Skłodowska, Charles Darwin, Albert Einstein, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Alexander von Humboldt and Max Planck. s e g a m I y t t e G / s e g a m I a r t e T
68 NON-UNIVERSITY RESEARCH F A C T S A N D F I G U R E S Die Junge Akademie Die Junge Akademie, founded in 2000 by the Leo- poldina and the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities, is the world’s very first academy for early career researchers. The 50 young researchers from across all disciplines ro- tate: every year, ten new nominees replace ten members who withdraw. During their five-year membership of Die Junge Akademie, each mem- ber has access to a research budget of some 35,000 euros for joint projects. Taking their cue from Die Junge Akademie, there are now academies for young scientists in numerous countries. In fact, the Global Young Academy was founded in 2008, with Die Junge Akademie playing an advisory role in the process. acatech acatech, the National Academy of Science and Engineering, sees itself as a “working academy”. It has almost 600 members from academies, uni- versities, research institutes and companies. They collaborate in 10 topic networks that address the research and technology-policy issues of tomor- row. acatech views itself as a network that links science and business. Scientists and experts from the business sector work closely together. Their objective: to provide independent, science-based consulting geared to public welfare for policy- makers, businesses and the public. The topic net- works at acatech are interdisciplinary in structure and have a practical focus. They address issues of future industrial applications, as well as econom- ic, ecological and social opportunities and risks. The topics range from the reliability of complex socio-technological systems or the analysis of the development of the energy systems of tomorrow to questions of possible obstacles to innovation in nanotechnology. 50 members, each with a re search budget of 35,000 euros 5-year membership More than 40 research groups since foundation www.diejungeakademie.de B U D G E T 90% Federal 5% Saxony- Anhalt 5% Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities 2021; source: Die Junge Akademie F A C T S A N D F I G U R E S Almost 600 members Approx. 40 research projects per year, collaboration with institutions and companies Annual budget: approx. 13 million euros (2020) www.acatech.de B U D G E T 5% EU 27% Federal and Länder 68% Third-party 2021; source: acatech
Forever changing: after completing five years each, ten members withdraw from Die Junge Akademie and are replaced by ten newly appointed young researchers. Total membership remains constant at 50. r e n p p a Z n a J / D A A D
70 GOVERNMENT RESEARCH INSTITUTIONS Are tattoos dangerous? When does noise cause illness? What can be done so that fish swim upstream again? Scientists in government research institutions are exploring such issues that potentially affect us all. And the insights they gain often lead to recommendations for policymakers. Biobased building materials: the concrete of the future may contain rice husks or coconut fibre.
71 F A C T S A N D F I G U R E S More than 40 federal institu- tions with R&D responsibilities About 140 state (Länder) research institutes More than 25,000 staff (among them 12,000 R&D personnel) Internal expenditure: 3.1 billion euros in total, for R&D: 1.5 billion euros (2019) www.bundesregierung.de T he construction sector is booming – not only in Germany, but worldwide. How- ever, this could have fatal consequences for our climate as large amounts of carbon dioxide are released during the production of cement, which is a key component of concrete. This is reason enough for researchers at the Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung (BAM) to work on finding ways to replace cement, at least partly, with renewable resources. Their research shows that the husks or skins of plants such as rice, cassava or coconut can be used as a substitute for the conventional chemical and mineral additives in concrete. In fact, the new concrete is in some cases stronger, as well as easier to process and mould. This would be ideal for use in Africa, where many cement plants are currently being built. What is more, large quantities of the raw materials from plant husks and their ashes are available there, without being used to date. This basic research, which is of interest not only to the construction industry in Africa, was helped by the BAM’s cooperation with African scientists. This collaboration is now to be made permanent by creating a joint knowledge network with researchers in Africa and industry. s e g a m I y t t e G / e g d i r b d n a t S a r d n a S
Germany is a globally significant player PROFESSOR KLAUS CICHUTEK, President, Paul-Ehrlich-Institut (PEI), Federal Institute for Vaccines and Biomedicines Professor Cichutek, the coronavirus has revealed how dangerous viruses still are today and how important vaccination research is. What makes Germany stand out as a location for research in this field? Germany has traditionally played an important role in vaccine development and production. In addition, biotechnology has been widely promot- ed in Germany as a promising means of develop- ing innovative therapies and diagnostics. This, combined with creative and risk-taking research- ers, has made Germany a globally significant player in the field. During the pandemic, several companies in Germany played a key role in the rapid development of novel and highly effective vaccines. What are the most important issues that the PEI will address in the medium term? By establishing the German Pandemic Vaccines Center at the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut, we will lay the foundations for the development and supply of vaccines in future pandemics. In addition, we will continue to build on the synergism between translational academic research, medical product development by biotech and pharma industries, and the regulatory science provided by the Paul- Ehrlich-Institut. This is a mainstay of our response to the pandemic, as well as to many other clinical challenges we are facing. n e s n a J n e t s r o h T , e u a L l e a h c i M r D / I K R
GOVERNMENT RESEARCH INSTITUTIONS 73 the Federal Government needs in order to take well-founded decisions. The scientists concern themselves with current issues, such as: the impact of modern technologies health and nutrition mobility and urban development the environment, energy and climate protection changed working and living conditions the global economy If for example there is an outbreak of measles or a dangerous virus like the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 begins spreading, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) in Berlin will continuously monitor the situation, evaluating all available information, assessing the risk for the population in Germany and advising the Federal Ministry of Health and the Federal Government. It provides health professionals with recommendations and gives an overview of its own research. If allergies to textiles or resistances to antibiotics are detected, it is the German Feder- al Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) in Berlin that intervenes and warns the public. RESEARCH AT THE STATE LEVEL At the state (Länder) level, there are another 140 or more research institutions with over 6,000 staff members to support the respective state govern- ments. Here again, about 1,300 scientists conduct research on all the relevant social and economic issues. The experts look for contemporary solutions in fields such as laser applications, totalitarianism studies, hydrogen and heat storage or artificial intelligence. t u t i t s n I - h c o K t r e b o R Prime science: government research institutions devote themselves to topical issues that have an impact on the world. COOPERATING WITH THE MINISTRIES The most important job of the BAM is to help de- velop legal regulations, for example for defining safety standards and limit values, and to advise the German government, industry and national and international organisations on matters r elating to materials technology and chemistry. The BAM is one of over 40 federal research institutions that specifically pursue research on questions raised by policymakers and public auth orities. About 5,000 scientists make forecasts that give early warning of pending problems, or they study the effects of ongoing initiatives. In this way they provide the scientific insights that
l i 4 2 r o o c o d u t s o t o f / k c o t S e b o d A GOVERNMENT RESEARCH INSTITUTIONS 74 Competent and motivated: highly qualified personnel work at state research institutions. The German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) for example seeks to develop innovative software. It is Germany’s leading research centre in the field of innovative commer- cial software technology using artificial intelli- gence. The DFKI is a public-private partnership with the states of Bremen, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland and has numerous renowned German and international high-tech companies as share- holders. At present, approximately 660 highly qualified researchers, administrators and 440 graduate students from more than 65 countries are contributing to approximately 250 DFKI re- search projects – such as joint activities with the European Space Agency (ESA) to develop AI technologies for applications in civilian space travel. VAST NETWORK The government research institutions’ infrastruc- ture is in part among the best worldwide and open to external research groups, too. The goal is to boost interaction between everyone involved in the German research and innovation community – and shed light on issues of science policy from many different angles. Deutscher Wetterdienst (DWD) for example relies not only on government research staff. Scientists from LMU Munich, FU Berlin and the universities of Hamburg, Frankfurt, Bonn and Cologne, as well as from the Max Planck Institute for Meteor- ology and the Max Planck Institute for Human Development, work at its Hans Ertel Centre for meteorological research. Their aim is to improve weather forecasting and climate monitoring. For example, they use laser beams to measure wind patterns, gusts and convective turbulent structures up to a height of several hundred metres above the ground. The researchers see themselves pri- marily as information providers: they study the weather to help DWD give more accurate weather warnings and to support the quality of decisions by policymakers, local authorities and business.
Strengthening bees Bee populations are suffering from both climate change and the bee parasite varroa, in combin- ation with attacks by viruses. There have been heavy losses. One measure to support honeybee biodiversity is the creation of Europe’s first gene bank for honeybees, led by the Institute for Bee Research Hohen Neuendorf e. V. (LIB). The in- stitute is headed by Professor Kaspar Bienefeld. In recent years, LIB and industry partners have made technical advances in the preservation of drone semen, allowing the gene bank to be set up. The aim is to collect genetic resources from over 200 colonies, in cooperation with national and international partners. The LIB is itself the product of successful cooper- ation. The long-standing research establishment is funded by the states of Brandenburg, Saxony- Anhalt, Saxony, Thuringia and Berlin. Representa- tives of beekeeper associations and scientists are also represented in the non-profit organisa- tion. With a strong practical focus, the institute addresses different aspects of bee research: breeding and preservation of bee populations, molecular microbiology, honey analysis and projects to protect wild bees and honey bees. www.honigbiene.de f r o d n e u e N n e h o H e d n u k n e n e i B r ü f t u t i t s n i r e d n ä L
76 PRIVATE SECTOR The private sector in Germany is one of the world leaders in research. It invests billions in research and development and relies on a global network of research facilities, all dedi- cated to finding solutions for products and processes for the industry of tomorrow. F A C T S A N D F I G U R E S More than 470,000 research staff Distribution of the internal research budget: 8% small enterprises (up to 249 employees), 4.5% medium- sized enterprises (250–499), 87.5% large enterprises (more than 499) R&D internal expenditure: 72.1 billion euros or 2.2% of GDP (2018) www.stifterverband.de Reaching for the sky: wind power is becoming increas- ingly important worldwide.
7 7 Getty Images/CharlieChesvick
78 PRIVATE SECTOR G A r e y a B I t’s a good plan. And a gigantic one. One of the biggest offshore wind farms in the world is to be linked to an electrolyser and become the world’s first system to produce coveted “green” hydrogen directly – that is to say without the tur- bine being connected to the grid. To achieve this, Munich energy company Siemens Energy and its Spain-based subsidiary Siemens Gamesa have joined forces. Over the next five years, 120 million euros are to be spent on developing an innovative solution that will illustrate how a cost-efficient and climate-neutral modular offshore wind-hydrogen system can be realised on a major scale. The project is part of the H2Mare initiative and is being imple- mented as part of the ideas competition “Hydrogen Republic of Germany” run by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Green hydrogen has a key role to play in tackling climate change: it is to help make the biggest emitters of greenhouse gases – such as the steel and aluminium sectors and the manufacturers of glass and cement – more climate-friendly. The research and development of solutions that will allow its production are therefore essential if we are to meet the central challenges of today: how can we become independent of mineral oil by using clean technologies? What will mobility look like tomorrow? Be it small start-ups, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) or global players such as Volkswagen – the German private sector is deeply involved in research into prac- tical and fundamental issues.
79 PRIVATE SECTOR G A s n e m e i S / e s a e P r u h t r A Image-generating processes in medicine: new technologies enable treatment methods that are more precise. Innovation as the basis: research and development are key in the pharma industry. EN ROUTE TO INDUSTRY 4.0 Germany is one of the top five industrialised nations worldwide when it comes to the volume of private sector investments in research and de- velopment (R&D). The sector accounts for more than two thirds of total R&D expenditure, name- ly more than 72 billion euros in 2018. Companies in the following areas are particularly active: automotive and transport technologies data processing, electronic and optical products mechanical engineering engineering firms, software developers, scientific and technical development laboratories and research institutions At present, researchers in many companies are addressing the topic of Industry 4.0: digitally networked systems connect production facilities using modern information and communication technologies. There is hardly any other develop- ment that German corporations have engaged with as intensively as digitisation. This is also true of the heavyweight in industrial research: the automotive industry, which accounts for slightly more than one in three euros spent on R&D. The electronics, chemical and pharmaceutical indus- tries are also major investors in R&D.
G A n e g a w s k l o V , U O s n o i t c u d o r P ﬀ o k n e d o r o G 80 PRIVATE SECTOR Seamlessly connected: the German company Bosch has teamed up with the US company Microsoft to develop the next generation of vehicle software. Not only industrial corporations rely on research to advance: freelance, scientific and technological service providers invest more than classical pharmaceutical industries. A typical example of one such young company is HQS Quantum Simu- lations, a spin-off of the renowned Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). This deep-tech start-up develops ideas for making quantum computers suitable for use in medical or energy research. LEADING IN THE WORLD By international standards, German industry is right at the forefront of research and develop- ment. One of the leading companies worldwide in the R&D investment tables is the carmaker Volkswagen. It spent more than 14.3 billion euros on R&D in 2019 alone. In the same rankings, Daimler, BMW, Robert Bosch, Siemens and Bayer are all among the top 30 corporations worldwide. Many companies conduct research abroad and some even have their own global networks, such as German automotive component supplier Continental. It develops its products at 88 differ- ent locations worldwide. GERMAN COMPANIES WITH THE HIGHEST R&D EXPENDITURE in million euros Volkswagen Daimler BMW Robert Bosch Siemens Bayer SAP Continental Boehringer Merck 14,306 9,630 6,419 6,229 6,086 5,628 4,283 3,597 3,462 2,268 2019; source: EU R&D Scoreboard 2020
81 PRIVATE SECTOR CLUSTERS OF INNOVATIVE ACTIVITY Germany is one of the world’s most innovative countries when it comes to international patent applications (in line with the Patent Cooperation Treaty, PCT): seven metropolitan areas rank among the world’s top 50 science and technology clusters – only the USA is r epresented by more regions in this list. Berlin 3,333 Cologne 7,827 2014–2018; source: WIPO Frankfurt 5,167 Mannheim Heidelberg 3,913 Stuttgart 8,336 Erlangen Nuremberg 3,729 Munich 7,532
Many people have been involved PROFESSOR UĞUR ŞAHIN, Chief Executive Officer, BioNTech SE Professor Şahin, your company BioNTech devel oped one of the world’s first Covid19 vaccines to obtain market approval. What is your formula for success? The progress we had already made in developing our mRNA technology made all the difference. We have a great team of many experts who facilitated the development, production and distribution processes. Many different aspects were tackled in parallel: while development of the vaccine was underway, we were busy expanding our production capacities at the same time. Many people have been involved in this project for all humankind. You are cooperating with the US company Pfizer. Why is international cooperation so important? A global problem cannot be solved by one com- pany or one country working on its own. We knew that we would need a strong partner to test the vaccine worldwide and have it approved. Further- more, we needed a partner with the infrastructure required to get the vaccine to as many people around the world as possible. Our contribution came in the form of the mRNA technology and our deep understanding of the immune system. Which key research areas do you plan to focus on particularly over the coming ten years? Above all on cancer research. Our goal is to r eplace existing treatment methods with novel approaches and to develop therapies for cancer types that to date have proven virtually untreat- able. We want to improve the lives of patients. In addition, we are working on ways to treat autoimmune disorders such as MS and allergies. ) 2 ( 1 2 0 2 E S h c e T N o B i
83 PRIVATE SECTOR G A r e y a B , U O s n o i t c u d o r P ﬀ o k n e d o r o G Internationally successful: German companies are among the world top five in terms of patent, utility model and industrial design applications. Big players: alongside the automobile and electronics sectors, the chemical and pharma in- dustries are among the major investors in R&D. Thanks to its strong research sector, Germany is also among the world top five in terms of patent, utility model and industrial design applications. The world’s top applicants include Bosch, Siemens and BASF, not to mention family-owned Schaeffler and the automotive manufacturer BMW. HIDDEN CHAMPIONS AND START-UPS It is not only large corporations that conduct a lot of research. Almost 13 percent of the total spent on in-house R&D by businesses – i.e. 9 bil- lion euros – is invested by SMEs. Above all the mid-sized mechanical engineering, pharma and IT service companies have a strong research focus. They include many hidden champions such as the family-owned PTV Group from Karlsruhe, whose inno vative software is making mobility more efficient, safe and environmentally friend- ly. And not only in Germany: with 28 locations worldwide, PTV Group has customers in more than 120 countries. IT also plays a key role among start-ups. More than one in four are digital newcomers, their business models centring for example on apps, online commerce or web design. And there are support programmes to help them lock into venture capital from private equity investors or funding programmes like the High-Tech Gründer- fonds (HTGF), Germany’s biggest investor when it comes to early-phase financing of innovative and technology-oriented companies.
84 ABOUT THE INITIATIVE “RESEARCH IN GERMANY – LAND OF IDEAS” This and many other “Research in Germany” publications are available at www.research-in-germany.org/downloads For more information about “Research in Germany”, please visit our website www.research-in-germany.org and subscribe to our newsletter www.research-in-germany.org/newsletter WHAT IS “RESEARCH IN GERMANY”? “Research in Germany” is an initiative of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. It presents Germany as a country of research and innovation and creates a forum for international exchange and cooperation. WHAT ARE THE GOALS OF “RESEARCH IN GERMANY”? “Research in Germany” provides international researchers with information about funding and career opportunities in Germany. The initiative gives research and science organisations from all over the world the chance to establish contact with potential German partners in the fields of science, research and industry. The initiative presents itself online at www.research-in- germany.org, as well as at international confer- ences and fairs.