Fraunhofer IAO awards prizes for innovation in technology management
Fraunhofer IAO awards the Technology Management Innovation Prize to recognize outstanding research work conducted within its own ranks. The qualities that set the 2012 prize-winning projects and designs apart included the customer value they offer, their practical applicability and methodical scientific approaches.
Every two years Fraunhofer IAO awards three innovation prizes for successful projects in industry or research. Research results are recognized for their high innovative potential and clear orientation toward direct practical application. Institute director Prof. Dieter Spath sees the competition as an opportunity to honor and showcase the excellent work being carried out by the IAO’s research scientists. Three very different projects impressed the jury this year:
First prize: Arcane – automatic collection and evaluation of data from the internet
The overall winner of the institute’s internal competition is a new Fraunhofer methodology for automatically collecting and analyzing data found online. Team leader Thomas Renner developed the software in collaboration with his scientific colleagues Claudia Dukino and Andrea Horch as a way to gather any kind of structured data from the internet, such as information relating to events, service offerings, product descriptions or prices. This makes the technology useful for carrying out quick and easy market analysis, for example. For Prof. Dieter Spath, Arcane represents the perfect example of how research can be put directly into practice, and provides a basis for diverse areas of application.
Second prize: Erlebnis Automat – new approaches to self-service equipment
Second place was taken by the joint research project “Erlebnis Automat”, run by two scientists who have been looking into the way people and automated service points interact. Elisabeth Büllesfeld and Jasmin Link worked with leading self-service machine manufacturers and operators from Germany, Austria and Switzerland to develop new approaches for the next generation of self-service equipment. Alongside a trend study and guideline, they also developed a scenario clearly depicting the innovation network’s central ideas. Fraunhofer IAO opened a suite of self-service equipment last year as part of the joint research project, with hands-on prototypes on display.
Third prize: ELAB – study on electromobility and employment
What impact does electromobility have on employment and the employer’s local environment? The answers provided by mobility specialists at Fraunhofer IAO, which they based on four market scenarios, were enough to secure them third place in the competition. The research project was initiated by Daimler AG’s central works council and carried out in cooperation with Daimler, IG Metall Baden-Württemberg and the Hans Böckler Foundation. The study examines the impact on employment of various “green” drive systems that are currently expected to be on the market by the year 2030. The results of the study are of benefit to the entire automotive industry.