Miscellaneous  |  10/12/2023

Founding Commission of the German Agency for Transfer and Innovation Takes up Its Work

The German Agency for Transfer and Innovation (DATI) is to break new ground in the fostering of transfer and innovation. The aim is to bring research results into application and to people more quickly and effectively, and to unleash new innovation potential throughout Germany. Dietmar Harhoff was appointed a member of the DATI founding commission by Federal Minister Stark-Watzinger at the beginning of October 2023. The commission has now taken up its work.

Portrait of Director Dietmar Harhoff
Dietmar Harhoff was appointed a member of the DATI founding commission by Federal Minister Stark-Watzinger.

Technological and social innovations increasingly determine the competitiveness of the economy and the future viability of a society. Numerous universities and other research institutions in Germany generate new knowledge and explore new technologies each and every day. 

The DATI is set up to bring research results into economic and/or social applications through an effective transfer of ideas, knowledge, and technology. It will operate across all topics and focus on both technological and social innovations. The agency will pursue an innovative and flexible funding approach that is based on the specific needs and competences in the country, and offers transfer from a single source.

The DATI Founding Commission, which convened for its constituent meeting in Berlin on 9 October 2023, has the task of developing proposals for the location and leadership of DATI. It is also tasked with making recommendations on the content and procedural aspects of establishing and expanding DATI. The committee consists of 16 experts from science, industry, associations, start-ups, the federal states, the international sector, and the Parliament.

Federal Research Minister Bettina Stark-Watzinger explained: “In Germany, too many good ideas have so far ended up in a drawer. We want to bring more of them into application, and thus into companies and to people. A key instrument for this is the German Agency for Transfer and Innovation, where we are now taking the next important step with the Founding Commission. The Commission will help us to get the new innovation agency up and running quickly.”

After Dietmar Harhoff had already supported the founding of the German Ferderal Agency for Disruptive Innovation (SPRIND), whose central task is to find and promote highly innovative ideas with the potential for disruptive innovation, in 2019 as Chairman of the Founding Commission, his expertise is now in demand for the founding of DATI in the area of innovation-oriented transfer.

Dr. Stefan Groß-Selbeck (BCG X, Boston Consulting Group) has assumed the chairmanship of the founding commission. He emphasized: “DATI is an important new element in the German transfer and innovation landscape. As the founding commission, we will closely accompany this process and contribute in particular to important issues such as site selection and the selection of management personnel.”

Further members of the DATI founding commission are:

Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Uschi Backes-Gellner (University of Zurich), Prof. Dr. Jörg Bagdahn (Anhalt University of Applied Sciences), Dr. Anna Christmann, MdB, Dr. Achim Dercks (German Chamber of Industry and Commerce), Andrea Frank (Stifterverband), Prof. Dr. Holger Hanselka (Fraunhofer Society). Thomas Jarzombek, MdB, Prof. Dr. Kira Kastell (University of Applied Sciences Hamm), Prof. Dr. Andreas Pinkwart (TU Dresden), Prof. Dr. Birgitt Riegraf (University of Paderborn), Ye-One Rhie, MdB, Prof. Dr. Stephan Seiter, MdB, Prof. Dr. Anja Steinbeck (Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf) und Philipp von der Wippel (Project Together).