“I have no special talent,” wrote Albert Einstein to his biographers in 1952. “I am only passionately curious.” He was, of course, being modest. That said, he also expressed a simple truth: the urge to ask questions and to seek answers is what creates the quantum leaps that vault the seemingly insurmountable boundaries of scientific knowledge. Curiosity is what makes progress possible.
We, too, know this insatiable curiosity. It drives not only our efforts but also those of our partners and customers, helping to seed new collaborative projects in the field of applied research. It is what makes us ask questions, take on board different perceptions, weave together a multitude of perspectives and domains of knowledge – including what might seem quirky or unusual – and, on this basis, come up with new solutions. We need all of these approaches, because business, science and politics are now facing huge challenges – not least, the question of how best to engineer a use of new technology that is in symbiosis with the human workforce.
For all these reasons, we have placed curiosity at the heart of this year’s Annual Report. Just as every section of this report and each illustrative example is preceded by a question – so too is each of our projects and research collaborations. It is what drives us to get down to work.