University of Bayreuth, Press Release No. 091/2023 - 28 June 2023
1.5 million euros from the Upper Franconia Foundation for transfer project at the University of Bayreuth
Modern innovation laboratories for small and medium-sized enterprises in the region - with this, the project "TIHO - TechnologyImpactHubs Upper Franconia" aims to support the economy in learning about new and sustainable technologies and implementing them themselves. The Upper Franconia Foundation is funding this project of the Institute for Entrepreneurship & Innovation at the University of Bayreuth with 1.5 million euros from 2023 to 2026.
The targeted combination of previously separate fields of knowledge and technology is the special feature of the new knowledge and technology transfer project "TIHO - TechnologieImpactHubs Oberfranken". In the region of Upper Franconia, whose economic performance is particularly supported by SMEs, the TIHOs are to connect more than 100 partners from business, science, networks and associations. The Upper Franconia Foundation as the project's sponsor thus significantly strengthens the regional innovative power.
Students, scientists, start-ups, regional companies and interested parties come together in the TechnologyImpactHubs and have low-threshold access to the technologies and the formats offered. The focus here is on knowledge exchange and collaboration between the actors involved. "The entire region is called upon to actively participate in the TechnologyImpactHubs, to discuss its own challenges with the scientists and to develop exemplary solutions," explains Dr. Petra Beermann, Director of Transfer and Innovation at the Institute for Entrepreneurship & Innovation at the University of Bayreuth and co-author of the successful funding application. The TechnologieImpactHubs promise short distances and a creative environment that improves knowledge transfer and thus achieves a sustainable impact and many innovation benefits in the Upper Franconia region.
Five Innovation Labs to come
The aim of TIHO is to provide co-creative innovation impulses of idea, knowledge and technology transfer in modern innovation labs - the TechnologieImpactHubs, TIHO. "It is not only the University of Bayreuth that benefits from this funding from the Upper Franconia Foundation. Regional companies in particular benefit from the experience and learning spaces in the TechnologieImpactHubs," says Dr Petra Beermann,. "They are supported in learning about new and sustainable technologies, experiencing them in a low-threshold way and profitably putting them into practice."
The focus is on the "hub idea": Five technology-oriented ImpactHubs, in which ideas and measures are developed in an interdisciplinary manner, are to be expanded and interlinked on the basis of the existing structures at the university: Innovations through Digitalisation, Innovative Materials, Innovative Glass Production, Game Innovation and Additive Innovations. In all of these topic areas, the focus is on increasing sustainability through technological innovations: ecological efficiency increases, economic viability and social responsibility. In this way, the University of Bayreuth, in cooperation with regional companies, makes an important contribution to environmental and climate protection. In addition, this strengthens the skilled labour market in the region in terms of social sustainability.
Example of additive manufacturing
"As an example for the ImpactHub Additive Innovations, this means that regional companies should be enabled to develop more ecologically sustainable products and to develop more sustainable processes and value chains with additive manufacturing. This also includes building resilience and circular economy concepts through additive manufacturing of spare parts," explains Dr.-Ing. Christian Bay from the Chair of Environmentally Sound Production Technology at the University of Bayreuth. The engineer heads the Additive Innovations Research Unit at the University of Bayreuth and played a leading role in the project application. He adds, "This not only means that light-weight optimised and functionalised products will be developed using additive manufacturing as case studies, but that we want to develop and transfer knowledge regarding sustainable process innovations with the companies."