University research in German-speaking countries is a rich source of innovation and entrepreneurial spirit. So many new ideas are born in college lecture theatres, seminar rooms and laboratories. That’s why more and more universities are developing incubators in which research findings and innovative thinking are translated into start-ups. Here, ingenious ideas can be paired with marketing know-how and expertise in scaling up and finding backers. Innovations and a start-up culture are key to the success of our economy, with the ability to rapidly turn ideas into businesses set to play a crucial role in securing our economic future. After all, start-ups are SMEs in the making – and thus fundamental to continued economic growth.
For Handelsblatt and Goethe University Frankfurt, the award’s initiators, the University Innovation Challenge (UIC) is an opportunity to celebrate pioneering solutions and thus showcase innovative ideas for tomorrow.
WHO CAN ENTER?
The University Innovation Challenge celebrates innovative university research projects and start-ups from Germany, Austria and Switzerland (DACH region). There are six different categories of product, service or business model, the entry requirements in each case being that the idea has to either still be at the university research stage or have been developed by a start-up with a university background.
The winners of the first University Innovation Challenge were crowned on 13 November in Frankfurt am Main. You can learn more about the winning innovations here.
WHAT YOU GET
As a University Innovation Challenge finalist or winner, you’ll benefit from …
- … mentoring from University Innovation Challenge partners.
- … valuable contacts in business, science and the media.
- … the opportunity to present your project at the exclusive award ceremony.
- … media coverage and a high-profile platform.
- … a prestigious award that enhances reputation and market visibility.
HOW TO TAKE PART
University research projects and start-ups can apply online to enter the University Innovation Challenge 2019.
In its role as the University Innovation Challenge’s science partner, TechQuartier assesses all entries and puts together a shortlist of the best projects in each category.
On 1 October, our high-calibre jury will meet to decide the two finalists in each category. These will then have the opportunity to present their innovations live at the award ceremony.
On 13 November at a special event in Frankfurt am Main, the finalists will pitch their ideas live to an expert audience and the UIC jury, who will then jointly decide the winners in each category.