New three-party coalition sends green light for science
Strengthening universities as the heart of the science system and embarking on a decade of innovation
The science policy section of the coalition agreement presented yesterday by the social demo-crats (SPD), greens (Bündnis 90/Die Grünen) and liberals (FDP) promises to “strengthen uni-versities as the heart of the science system”. To make Germany “more creative, more excellent and more competitive” as a science and innovation powerhouse, the new government wants to “focus on promoting and accelerating innovation and transfer from basic research to applica-tion”. The announced increase in overall government spending on research and development to 3.5 percent is a logical and necessary step.
“The coalition agreement shows that the new government recognizes research at universities as an essential element for Germany’s future,” said Prof. Dr. Wolfram Ressel, TU9 President and Rector of the University of Stuttgart, “as well as emphasizing the importance of teaching through the dynamization of the financial volume of the Strengthening the Future Contract for Studies and Teaching and proposing the idea of a federal Digital University program.
As Technical Universities, we particularly welcome the emphasis on innovation and transfer in the coalition agreement. The establishment of new funding instruments for internationally competitive research and transfer regions is a forward-looking project. The combination of cutting-edge research with innovative application in a wide range of collaborations with indus-try creates ideal conditions for innovation and the successful transfer of start-up ideas to start-ups and companies. In order to ideally promote the existing potential for creating and strengthening innovation ecosystems with international radiance, a planned German Agency for Transfer and Innovation (DATI) must of course be open to all types of universities.
In addition to strong and reliable funding, the launch of an innovation decade requires clear framework conditions with lean, fast, digital and transparent procedures. The coalition agree-ment presented is a step in the right direction – now it is important to follow up the declara-tions of intent. Let’s put words into action as quickly as possible!”
Dr. Nicole Saverschek