Press Release 20/2008

Start of German-Japanese Research Cooperation

Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe Signs Memorandum of Understanding with the AIST at the German-Japanese Science Workshop

On April 22, 2008, the Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe GmbH and the Japanese National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) will sign a memorandum of understanding on scientific cooperation at the German-Japanese science workshop of the Hanover Fair. Based on this memorandum, cooperation between the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and the AIST shall be intensified. The KIT, the merger of the Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe and the Universität Karlsruhe, bundles the forces of both partners to achieve an entirely new quality of cooperation.

The Chairman of the Executive Board of the Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe and designated (Co-) President of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Professor Dr. Eberhard Umbach, will sign a memorandum of understanding with his Japanese partner, the Vice-President of the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Dr. Akira Ono, on April 22, 2008, at the Hanover Fair. It is aimed at establishing a network of excellence between the AIST and the KIT, which will focus on promising research areas in the fields of energy, the environment, and key technologies. The memorandum of understanding will be signed within the framework of the German-Japanese science workshop organized by the Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe and the Forschungszentrum Jülich, both members of the Helmholtz Association of National Research Centers, together with the AIST. The high relevance of this event to start an international scientific cooperation for the development of sustainable technologies is reflected by the presence of the Japanese Senior Vice Minister of Economy, Trade, and Industry, Masashi Nakano.

The AIST is one of the largest publicly funded research institutions in Japan. Its mission is the bridging of scientific discovery and industrial application. At the Japanese pavilion - this year, Japan is partner country of the Hanover Fair -, the AIST will present a number of exhibits from the fields of robotics as well as environmental and energy technologies. These also are the fields, where cooperation with the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology will start. Apart from overlapping research topics, both institutions largely agree in their objectives: Besides research and education, innovation is one of the three main pillars of the KIT.

The AIST is in search of specific cooperation with the research centers of the Helmholtz Association. Apart from the memorandum of understanding with the Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe, the AIST has also concluded agreements with the Forschungszentrum Jülich and their umbrella organization, the Helmholtz Association.

At the Hanover Fair, the KIT has a central booth in hall 2, C18. Various other KIT booths relate to specific topics.

The Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) is the merger of the Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe, member of the Helmholtz Association, and the Universität Karlsruhe. This merger will give rise to an institution of internationally excellent research and teaching in natural and engineering sciences. In total, the KIT has 8000 employees and an annual budget of 700 million Euros. The KIT focuses on the knowledge triangle of research – teaching – innovation.

The Karlsruhe institution is a leading European energy research center and plays a visible role in nanosciences worldwide. KIT sets new standards in teaching and promotion of young scientists and attracts top scientists from all over the world. Moreover, KIT is a leading cooperation partner of industry.

jh, April 22, 2008

jh, April 22, 2008


Monika Landgraf
Head of Corporate Communications, Chief Press Officer
Phone: +49 721 608-41150
Fax: +49 721 608-43658
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