Close cooperation between science and industry is a key success factor in the transfer of research results into marketable innovations. In order to make this collaboration even more intensive, the University of Paderborn, ten technology companies in the region, and the Fraunhofer project group Entwurfstechnik Mechatronik at the Zukunftsmeile Fürstenallee, are launching the Software Innovation Campus Paderborn, or SICP for short.
In addition to the spatial proximity, the diverse forms of cooperation will enable effective cooperation between business and science. Among others, these include cross-partner competence groups and a joint project office. "We understand SICP as a place of research and innovation, of knowledge transfer and human resources development", Prof. Dr Engels said, describing the core tasks of the research campus. In this respect access to interdisciplinary knowledge is a key competitive factor. Therefore, not only computer scientists and engineers, but also economic and humanities scholars will participate at SICP.
"With SICP we are expanding interdisciplinary research as well as knowledge and technology transfer with the economy – both hallmarks of the university", said the President of the University, Prof. Dr Nikolaus Risch, in welcoming the initiative. This increases the importance of the University of Paderborn as a whole, but also opens up many possibilities for all the scientists involved, says the President.
"The close networking at SICP strengthens the innovation and competitiveness of companies," says Dr Stefan Sauer, executive director of the s-lab – Software Quality Lab – of the benefits for the partners. Benefits for businesses include a simplified access to different knowledge sources at the university, and the preparation of research topics in a broader technical and organizational context.
S&N very much welcomes and supports the idea of SICP. On the one hand the initiative reflects the importance and performance of the IT training provided in Paderborn. Secondly, we are working very practically on future-oriented topics in the areas of big data analytics, cloud computing and mobile enterprise apps. In this regard, having an eye on future applications for these innovative technologies, we are extremely interested in an interdisciplinary collaboration with other companies and the various scientific institutions, especially of course with computer science and economics. Zukunftsmeile Fürstenallee provides an excellent environment for successful collaboration between science and industry.
Initial participants in SICP include Paperborn based companies, dSPACE, Fujitsu, Morpho, Orga Systems, S&N and Wincor Nixdorf, as well as the local companies HJP, Resolto and UNITY. "But we have already had discussions with other companies, who have also expressed great interest," says Prof. Engels, who expects to attract further partners. In particular the University of Paderborn is bringing its technology transfer institutes C-LAB and s-lab into SICP. In this respect alone, current research projects are being conducted with funding of 4.5 million euros for the two institutions.
SICP is pursuing ambitious growth targets for the future: by 2020 there should be 200 employees working on campus. This collaborative model is open to other partners from within business, whereby especially companies in the Ostwestfalen-Lippe region are being appealed to.