New institute with a focus on sustainability and transfer founded at THI

Ceremony as part of the symposium "The Great Transformation" in Neuburg

[Translate to English:] Im Rahmen des Festaktes wurde auch das Logo des neuen Instituts enthüllt: (von links) Prof. Dr. Julia Blasch, Landrat Peter von der Grün, THI-Präsident Prof. Dr. Walter Schober, MdL Matthias Enghuber, Wirtschaftsstaatssekretär Roland Weigert, Prof. Dr. Uwe Holzhammer und Prof. Dr. Oliver Blask. (Foto: THI)

Techniosche Hochschule Ingolstadt founded the Research and Transfer Centre Sustainability Neuburg (ForTraNN) with a ceremonial act in Neuburg Castle today, Friday. The institute, which is located on the Neuburg campus, was launched in the presence of State Secretary for Economic Affairs Roland Weigert, Neuburg's Lord Mayor Dr Bernhard Gmehling and District Administrator Peter von der Grün at the symposium "The Great Transformation".

With ForTraNN, the university wants to create a transdisciplinary sustainability network of companies, municipalities, citizens, scientists and students. Social-ecological solution approaches are to be linked with techno-economic knowledge in order to meet the challenges of a sustainably designed future. Sustainability is an essential element of many research and transfer fields at the THI, e.g. renewable energies or electromobility. The new institute will form a bracket for these activities and enable transfer to all groups in society.

THI President Prof. Dr. Walter Schober said in his welcoming speech: "With our research we have the mission to shape a future worth living. We have anchored this as a mission in the THI's mission statement. Sustainability is a key to a liveable future - that is why we will increasingly anchor it in our degree programmes and our research. Neuburg is to become the beacon for sustainability for us. With ForTraNN, we are not only giving this aspiration an institutional anchor, but also a basis for our research and transfer activities in the field of sustainability."

The head of the new institute and professor of energy systems engineering, Prof. Dr. Uwe Holzhammer said: "In view of the shrinking scope within the planetary boundaries that provide a habitable zone for humans, holistic approaches to solutions and cross-system action are required." Companies as well as municipalities, but also students and citizens alike are to benefit from these approaches to solutions. "In this way, we are actively supporting the transformation process towards a more sustainable world," emphasises Prof. Dr. Uwe Holzhammer.

Bavaria's Secretary of State for Economic Affairs Roland Weigert said in his ceremonial address: "Only with a successful and sustainable culture of innovation will Bavaria remain attractive as a business location. Value creation based on sustainability is the order of the day and thus a competitive factor and future driver. The new institute on the THI campus in Neuburg bundles the existing competences of the region and links them with innovation research. The practice-oriented approach aims to transfer scientific findings to the economy, society and politics. In this way, the institute accelerates the ecological and sustainable transformation process and creates valuable synergies in the region."  

Neuburg's Lord Mayor Dr Bernhard Gmehling is also pleased about the new institute in Neuburg: "After the start of the campus on 4 October 2021, things are moving forward powerfully with the establishment of the Research and Transfer Centre for Sustainability at the Neuburg site. ForTraNN serves as a central contact point for sustainability topics in the region and sharpens the profile of the Neuburg Campus. I see the foundation as a great benefit for all involved."

Peter von der Grün, District Administrator of the Neuburg-Schrobenhausen district, is also convinced that it is high time to rethink. "Science must find the theoretical answers and the solutions must reach the citizens. That's why I'm pleased that research and transfer go hand in hand through ForTraNN. And I wish our society the open-mindedness that is necessary for a more sustainable future perspective."  

At the THI, numerous professors and scientific staff conduct research and teach in many areas relevant to sustainability. The activities of ForTraNN are organised in five thematic clusters, which are closely linked to each other:

  • Sustainable Behaviour (Prof. Dr. Julia Blasch)
  • Sustainable Management (Prof. Dr. Holger Hoppe)
  • Sustainable Construction (Prof. Dr. Oliver Blask)
  • Social aspects of the energy transition (Prof. Dr. Julia Blasch, Prof. Dr. Uwe Holzhammer)
  • Sustainable Systems Analysis (Prof. Dr. Uwe Holzhammer)

The founding of the institute was the ceremonial conclusion of the symposium "The Great Transformation". Since the morning, scientists, representatives from the economy as well as from municipalities and interested visitors exchanged ideas. In addition to expert lectures, interactive practical labs and a change plenary, a future market also took place. This presented what is already happening in the region in the area of sustainability.

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