Dr. Elisabeth Zuber-Knost
What do networks look like that bundle research, training, and innovation - for instance, of universities, large-scale research institutions, and industry – on a European level? To establish the basic structures needed for a cross-national cooperation of industry, research, and education in fields of vital and long-term relevance, the European Union (EU) has now launched four pilot projects. The Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) initiated two of them..
Universität Karlsruhe (TH)
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Institut für Fahrzeugtechnik und Mobile Arbeitsmaschinen
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The EU projects are aimed at identifying efficient and effective ways of cooperation of science and industry in large European research networks in the run-up to the foundation of the European Institute of Technology (EIT). With this, the competitiveness of Europe shall be maintained in the long term. The partners, who are supposed to contribute their know-how, frequently are located far away from each other. The EU projects to be coordinated in Karlsruhe are SUCCESS (Searching Unprecedented Cooperations on Energy and Climate to Ensure Sustainability) and GAST (Green and Safe Road Transportation). The underlying idea: due to their complexity, the necessary concepts for the future or solution approaches in the fields of energy and climate (SUCCESS) as well as mobility (GAST) may be developed successfully and best on the European level and jointly by large-scale research institutions, universities, industry, technology transfer offices, and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with their high innovation potential.
The resulting pilot network will provide important information on the efficient function of such projects to those involved in similar initiatives, such as the Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs) which will be set up under the European Institute of Technology (EIT), as well as Joint Technology Initiatives (JTIs).
The pilot projects started, however, are not supposed to focus on the scientific-technical aspects of energy, climate, and mobility mentioned, but to create cooperation structures. “It is necessary to find and practise novel and unprecedented ways of coordination and management”, says the head of the Institute for Thermal Turbomachinery of the Universität Karlsruhe, Professor Hans-Jörg Bauer, who will coordinate the EU project SUCCESS. According to Bauer, it was rather thrilling to bring together partners from science and industry from all over Europe and experts in a variety of fields with varying scientific knowledge and socio-economic know-how while preparing the project. Bauer underlines that the way towards viable approaches to solving major scientific and social issues in Europe consists in strengthening the so-called knowledge triangle. This term refers to education, research, and innovation, the latter being the implementation of novel ideas in competitive products. It is not only envisaged to strengthen the “corners” of this triangle, but to considerably improve the links between them. As pointed out by Bauer, this will mainly apply to the links between research and innovation as well as between education and innovation.
18 partners and 28 associated project partners from science, education, and industry have joined the energy and climate project SUCCESS. GAST, the parallel project that will be coordinated by the Karlsruhe enterprise for cooperation development “inno Germany AG”, has 18 project partners and 3 associated partners. GAST partners are universities, research and training facilities as well as technology transfer institutions and automotive industry and component suppliers. KIT is also strongly involved in the GAST project. “Only in a network will it be possible to develop solutions for the essential problems of future vehicles and transportation in Europe,” says Professor Frank Gauterin, head of the Institute for Automotive Engineering and Mobile Working Machines of the Universität Karlsruhe and responsible for the inter-faculty Centre of Automotive Research and Technology” (CART) of the KIT. As the co-coordinator of GAST, Gauterin considers it to be a major objective of the EU mobility project to increase energy efficiency in the transportation sector and enhance the safety of growing traffic on the roads. According to Gauterin, it will be indispensable to coordinate the strategic research objectives of industry and research institutions even better in the future.
The project will benefit from the expertise of the Karlsruhe scientists, which is presently being bundled by the merger of both partners, the Universität Karlsruhe and the Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe to the KIT. This merger is also aimed at linking education, research, and innovation..
The Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) is the merger of the Universität Karlsruhe with the Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe. Altogether, it has 8000 employees and an annual budget of 600 million Euros.
KIT will be an institution of internationally excellent research and teaching in natural and engineering sciences. KIT shall attract the best experts from all over the world, set new standards in teaching and promotion of young scientists, and establish the leading European centre in the field of energy research. KIT will assume a leading role in nanosciences worldwide. It is the objective of KIT to be one of the most important cooperation partners of industry..
Press Release 05/2008
Cooperating throughout Europe
EU-Projects on Energy / Climate and Mobility Are Initiated by KIT – Partners Are Universities, Research Institutions, and Industry
Fuel from straw: Viable energy / climate and mobility concepts are in the focus of the EU projects SUCCESS and GAST.
Photo by: Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe
Photo by: Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe
lg, January 31, 2008