Scientific collaborations – Berlin’s open research atmosphere
The dynamic synergy of scientific institutions, research companies, and institutions of various disciplines is one of the most important features of Berlin’s scientific landscape. Berlin’s universities, technical colleges, private colleges, and non-university research institutions are in close contact with the technology parks and incubators of the capital city, where many research-oriented companies and innovative startups in particular are located. Brain City Berlin Ambassador, Dr.-Ing. Alexander Willner describes it thusly: “Berlin: an explosive mix of scientific and technological competence with a young startup scene. One of a kind.”
The number of dual study programs has tripled in the last ten years and important alliances between colleges and non-university science institutions are being forged. The interdisciplinary cooperation of the Berlin scientific community leads to the joint cluster applications within the framework of the Excellence Strategy. The interdisciplinary exchange between science and industry is being intensively pursued at Berlin’s future locations.
Overview of Berlin’s scientific landscape
Excellence Strategy, alliances, and joint research: Berlin’s scientific network
“Promotion of science and research in Berlin” - the stated goal of the Einstein Foundation Berlin. Since 2009, Berlin research projects have been funded across institutions thanks to the Foundation. The Einstein Center Digital Future is also funded by the Einstein Foundation Berlin: an inter-university nucleus dedicated to the digitization of society. The Einstein Center combines innovation with interdisciplinarity and connects scientists from different disciplines to research one of the most important topics of our time.
Universities in the association
The Berlin University Alliance is: “An alliance for innovative research and teaching.” The Alliance of Berlin’s Universities embodies the solidarity of Berlin’s scientific institutions.
Berlin’s University Alliance includes:
- Freie Universität Berlin
- Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
- Technische Universität Berlin
- Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin
The Berlin University Alliance stands for the dynamism of Brain City Berlin, which not only responds to global issues thanks to cross-institutional cooperation, but can also drive innovation - for example, in joint applications within the framework of the Excellence Strategy.
Strengthening research at universities of applied sciences: The Institute for Applied Research Berlin (IFAF) provides the best possible framework for applied research and promotes cross-university knowledge and technology transfer on the one hand and integration projects, digital cultural transformation, and startup financing on the other.
Since 2009, IFAF Berlin has been promoting:
- Alice Salomon Hochschule Berlin - University of Applied Sciences Berlin,
- Beuth University of Applied Sciences Berlin,
- Hochschule für Technik und Wirtschaft Berlin - University of Applied Sciences Berlin,
- Berlin School of Economics and Law (HWR Berlin),
- and free, cross-university research projects.
In addition, there is the "BIT6 Berlin Innovation Transfer" alliance, launched in 2018. The network of six Berlin universities offers practice-oriented transfer of information to all those who are looking for experts from science and research.
The members of the BIT6 network are:
- the Alice Salomon Hochschule Berlin - University of Applied Sciences Berlin,
- the Beuth University of Applied Sciences Berlin,
- the Hochschule für Technik und Wirtschaft Berlin - University of Applied Sciences Berlin,
- the Technische Universität Berlin,
- the Evangelischen Hochschule Berlin (EHB),
- and the Katholische Hochschule für Sozialwesen Berlin (KHSB).
The science metropolis Berlin creates innovative places of the future
Where science and industry merge
When science and industry come together in one place, benefit from each other, and lead to collaborations that strengthen the regional economy or contribute to technological progress, this is called a place of the future.
- Adlershof – largest science and technology park in Germany
- Berlin-Buch – one of the largest biomedical locations in Germany
- Campus Charlottenburg/City West – one of the largest contiguous university areas in Europe
- CleanTech Business Park Berlin-Marzahn – Berlin’s largest contiguous industrial site
- EUREF-Campus – a reference location for sustainable energy technology, environmental and climate protection, as well as electromobility
- Humboldthain – a technology park, that houses e.g. Germany’s oldest startup center
- Schöneweide – a large industrial area in the southeast of Berlin
- Südwest – a technology center and Smart City project
- The airports Tegel and Tempelhof – Prestigious projects that are used for art, culture, and urban future technologies
Berlin is known not only for its places of the future, but also for being a flourishing startup metropolis. The startup network of the Berlin’s universities B!Gründet networks, mobilizes, and promotes startups at Berlin's universities, thereby opening the way for scientists to enter the economy.
A survey conducted by the Technologiestiftung Berlin has shown that 21 percent of Berlin's most innovative companies cooperate with universities. Cooperation with public research institutions is carried out by 15 percent of the companies, an above-average density of networking between science and industry throughout Germany.
The result is successful spin-offs such as Babbel (founded at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin) - a science-based language learning platform that is accessed regularly by more than one million users.
Beyond the borders of the capital: Berlin’s international collaborations
Berlin’s science and industry network reaches beyond the borders of the country. Berlin maintains a total of 17 city partnerships with metropolises such as London, Moscow, and Tokyo and supports associated international projects.
Berlin’s universities are an important incubator in the field of international collaborations
- The Freie Universität Berlin is an international network university with seven liaison offices worldwide, including Beijing, New York, and Moscow.
- The Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin with a strategic network of 375 partner universities.
- The Technische Universität Berlin with its satellite campus in El Gouna, Egypt.
Berlin is part of many other international projects, such as:
- “Open Cities: Open Innovation Mechanisms in Smart Cities”
- “Cross Innovation”
- European Creative Industries Alliance (ECIA)
- UNESCO Creative Cities Network, which recognized Berlin in 2006 as a “City of Design”