FAU launches Innovation Research Lab

Bild: FAU/Georg Pöhlein

Students from a variety of disciplines bring forward innovative concepts

Companies need innovative minds to move forward and stay ahead of their competition and students need the chance to test themselves in real life topics and learn from them. At the “Innovation Research Lab” (IRL) at the Central Institute for Healthcare Engineering (ZIMT), both have the chance to meet. FAU launched the lab in order to give students a creative and productive environment to develop their ideas.

The IRL offers lectures and practical training sessions on the topics of Innovation management, interdisciplinary innovations in healthcare and product design to the students. Furthermore, they have the possibility to work on their thesis or complete the “Interdisciplinary Management” internship offered from Siemens Healthcare and ZIMT. Additionally the IRL is working with international students and researchers from around the world.

The IRL is run by Sultan Haider, founder and manager of the Innovation think Tank at Siemens Healthcare. “We are happy to announce that Mr. Sultan Haider will run the IRL in the course of a lectureship”, says Prof. Dr. Joachim Hornegger, vice-president for research at FAU. Mr. Haider already gave several lectures at FAU on the topic of Innovation Management.

Dr. Kurt Höller, CEO of ZIMT, discussed a characteristic feature of the IRL and offered courses: “Here, technical problems, as well as problems that come from synergies between technology, production, marketing, usability and societal acceptance, are solved in multicultural and interdisciplinary teams”. This offer is available for any student, whether they have a medical, engineering, humanities, sciences or economics background. Together they develop innovative ideas for several groups of interest such as university, public services, or industry. In the “Innovation Management” seminar, for example, students team up. Fellow students that have already finished this seminar will be their advisors. Consequently, the students profit from the experiences of their team leaders, who in return gain leadership skills for project management.

With the different approaches taken by the students, several ideas and prototypes have been delivered utilized in different applications. Siemens Healthcare has already pushed several ideas and projects into production.  “On the one hand this develops the competences of the participants in intercultural communications with representatives of different fields of study, e.g. technicians with humanities. On the other hand, these courses teach that an innovative solution will take more than a view from a technical perspective”, says Dr. Rudolf Kötter, CEO of the Center for Applied Ethics and Science Communication (ZIEW). ZIEW offers seminars on key qualifications from different faculties and departments at the FAU and therefore has a close tie to the IRL.


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