Latest news

  • 2020

    Artificial intelligence: shaping Europe’s digital future


    To further advance the outstanding and trustworthy use of artificial intelligence (AI) across Europe, the “High-Level Expert Group on Artificial Intelligence” clarified its findings from the past year in detail, developed them further and made them usable. As a member of the expert group, institute director Prof. Wilhelm Bauer brings Fraunhofer IAO’s experience in the human-centered application of AI to the group.

  • 2020

    The museum of the future – have Netflix and the like rendered museums superfluous?


    Art and cultural institutions in particular are facing major challenges during the Coronavirus pandemic. Museums remain closed for long periods or can receive only a few visitors. Digital and new formats are needed in order to maintain operations. What should museum visits be like in the future? As part of the collaborative Future Museum project, Fraunhofer IAO set up an online survey to ask members of the public about the future of museums.

  • 2020

    Getting non-profit organizations fit for the digital transformation


    Most non-profit organizations (NPOs), such as associations, foundations and trade unions, have limited resources and scope for innovation that would allow them to exploit the potential of the digital transformation. In the “Digital laboratory for non-profit organizations 4.0” project funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), Fraunhofer IAO is collaborating with additional partners to support NPOs in trying out and implementing digital applications and cooperative forms of organization.

  • 2020

    Virtual reality can assist with the evaluation of future transport concepts


    In a multimedia project – “2049: Zeitreise Mobilität” – conducted together with the German regional broadcaster Hessischer Rundfunk, Fraunhofer IAO has used virtual reality to send test persons on a journey through time to German and U.S. cities in the year 2049. The concluding study shows which future transport concepts meet with acceptance and are regarded as realistic. When it comes to tomorrow’s transport, however, different generations do not always agree on which attributes are most desirable.

  • 2020

    Art and robots – how digitalization can change a visit to museums


    The use of innovative technology and smart services can substantially enhance the museum experience, providing visitors with a new approach to art, history and knowledge. That’s the latest lesson from the Future Museum project, a joint initiative by the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO and the company MUSEUM BOOSTER GmbH. But what does a digital museum experience actually involve?

  • 2020

    Catalyst for sustainable cities and regions


    Cities are some of the biggest emitters of CO2 – and that makes them a powerful lever in the fight against global warming. The team behind the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft’s Morgenstadt initiative recently published a position paper that aims to help German municipalities fast-track the implementation of sustainable urban development and digitalization. The goal of this new publication is to pool existing solutions, make them accessible and financially viable for municipalities and cities everywhere, and create new capacities.

  • 2020

    The coronavirus home office survey: How well are we working from home?


    People working from home are currently being asked to take part in a survey by Fraunhofer IAO on their current work situation. Its purpose is to analyze the quality of collaboration with colleagues and research partners, to gauge respondents’ wellbeing and to evaluate the quality of their work. A study based on this survey will then make inferences with regard to a range of factors as well as future developments.

  • 2020

    Start of the Fraunhofer Competence Center “Quantum Computing Baden-Württemberg”


    In order to advance application-oriented research on quantum computing, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft is founding a national network on quantum computing with regional centers in seven German states. The first center to start is the Competence Center “Quantum Computing Baden-Württemberg”. The federal state government will support the center with up to € 40 million over the next four years. Fraunhofer IAF takes over the coordinative management of the Competence Center Baden-Württemberg together with Fraunhofer IAO.

  • 2020

    Making hotels smart and resilient in times of crisis


    With their numerous services involving person-to-person contact, the hotel and tourism industries are suffering severely in the current crisis. How can hotels survive the crisis, resume operations, and still enforce social-distancing measures? A new report from Fraunhofer IAO’s FutureHotel research project shows potential ways forward and explains why digitalized hotels promise resilience.

  • 2020

    Exit strategies for the production industry at re:publica re:mote


    The renowned conference »re:publica«, which attracts thousands of guests eve-ry year, will offer an online conference format for the first time on May 7th, 2020. The Fraunhofer institute IAO will be present with the session »re:think work - The digitalization of production«. Thereby, the focus will be laid on the laboratory twin, which is part of the project »FutureWork 360«. The project aims to communicate practical research to international target groups via virtu-al environments.

  • 2020

    Contactless measurement method detects infections


    An innovative measurement method is helping to detect people infected with coronavirus from a safe distance. It detects fever, increased pulse rates and fast breathing without endangering the person conducting the testing. Fraunhofer IPA and Fraunhofer IAO are currently testing the procedure at the Robert Bosch Hospital in Stuttgart.

  • 2020

    FutureWork360: Just how virtual can research be?


    Even at the best of times, it can be difficult coordinating joint projects and research, especially if partners are spread across different countries – or unable to travel because of a major international crisis. FutureWork360, a joint project by the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO and the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA, shows how new and, most especially, virtual forms of communication and collaboration can help.

  • 2020

    Fraunhofer researcher to join University of South Australia


    The University of South Australia (UniSA) in Adelaide, South Australia, has appointed Prof. Frank Wagner to a new strategic role. Wagner, currently head of strategic R&D management at Fraunhofer IAO, will be responsible for strengthening UniSA’s ties to industry worldwide and promoting partnerships designed to deliver benefits for the end user. He will also support the State of South Australia in this area.

  • 2020

    FutureHotel: Next project phase to kick off in May 2020


    Fraunhofer IAO’s FutureHotel research group is poised for its next stage with the project’s seventh research phase to kick off in May 2020. In related news, two recently published FutureHotel studies explore tomorrow’s hotel room and developments in the hospitality sector. Hospitality industry members with a keen interest in innovation are welcome to join in as partners. The project will remain open to new entrants after its official launch.

  • 2020

    Ambient factors in workplace design: How the setting influences our work


    What does it take to design a space that allows people to work creatively, with laser-like focus and a minimum of stress? In a new meta study entitled “Environmental Psychology for a New World of Work”, Fraunhofer IAO has presented a systematic synopsis of the results of various empirical studies that explore the effect and design of spaces in the workplace.

  • 2020

    German-Chinese cooperation center for SMEs


    The Pujiang County regional government wants to establish a German-Chinese cooperation center at the industrial park in Pujiang to support small and medium-sized enterprises from Germany in their efforts to expand into China. Fraunhofer IAO therefore conducted a study among German SMEs to find out what they need from China in order to do business there.

  • 2019

    AIRPoRT: Greater IT security in the manufacturing industry


    How can companies reduce the risk of cyber-attacks on their production environments? Fraunhofer IAO is seeking answers to this question as part of the AIRPoRT project (artificial intelligence for robotics and connected manufacturing). Both security and efficiency can be increased by automating processes and making use of AI and machine learning.

  • 2019

    The seven top industrial research and development trends


    How can companies make their research and development activities fit for the future and which promising trends will help them achieve this goal? Fraunhofer IAO put this question to R&D experts and presented their responses in a study titled “Future R&D” as seven key trends shaping the future of research. Early next year, Fraunhofer IAO will also launch the “Future R&D – Trends, Strategies and R&D Ecosystems” innovation network.

  • 2019

    Patenticus: a fun way to get a grip on intellectual property rights


    The Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO has launched a free app that shows how to safeguard intellectual property rights. “L2Pro – Learn to protect your intellectual property” is a project designed to provide small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), students and other interested parties with handy tips on how to file patents etc.

  • 2019

    Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft joins Cyber Valley


    Europe’s largest application-oriented research organization Fraunhofer Gesellschaft has joined the Cyber Valley research consortium, which includes the Universities of Tübingen and Stuttgart, the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, and several of the world’s top industry players. For Baden-Württemberg, the cooperation reaffirms the region’s position as one of the world’s leading AI hotspots. Founded by the Fraunhofer Institutes IPA and IAO, the AI innovation center Learning Systems offers medium-sized companies a central point of contact for applied research on artificial intelligence.

  • 2019

    Smart and sustainable: shining beacons for future urban living


    How can today’s urban centers be transformed into smart cities that leverage digital technology and provide a good quality of life for their citizens while also – increasingly an essential criterion – meeting sustainability targets? Fraunhofer IAO has now teamed up with 31 partners from ten EU member states in order to develop pioneering solutions for a new smart city initiative by the name of SPARCS. The aim of this project is to create a network of Sustainable energy Positive and zero cARbon CommunitieS.

  • 2019

    Driving experience of the future: new spaces and potential


    In ten years’ time, automotive interiors will have little in common with what we see inside cars today. Fraunhofer IAO and McKinsey have set out to investigate emerging concepts for interiors, design, services and personal transportation in the new “Mobility Experience and Technology Lab“ (MXT Lab). These researchers aim to plumb the potential of innovations that create value for both users and vendors.

  • 2019

    What are the future topics of applied research?


    On behalf of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, the Fraunhofer IAO and three other institutes of the Fraunhofer Group for Innovation Research, have identified the most important future topics of applied research. In a foresight process, technological and societal developments were analysed with regard to their innovation potential and their relevance for applied research. Some spotlight topics such as geoengineering were discussed particularly controversially.

  • 2019

    Envisioning tomorrow’s transportation in Germany and the USA


    Scientists, businesses, and policymakers worldwide are striving toward sustainable transportation solutions that will transform urban life. Fraunhofer IAO and Hessischer Rundfunk (HR), a German regional broadcaster, have joined forces in a cross-media project to envision the future of urban transportation in both countries. Part of Deutschlandjahr USA (an initiative to promote German-American friendship), this project builds on the impressions of experts and users who were sent on a virtual-reality journey through time to experience what mobility may be like in 2049.

  • 2019

    How research from the laboratory translates to the national innovation system


    In order to make research results visible and exploitable for industry, politics and society, new ways of sharing knowledge and new technologies need to be found. In the joint research project “Transfer Science”, set up in June 2019 with funding from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and coordinated by the German Aerospace Center (DLR), Fraunhofer IAO and Technische Universität Berlin are looking at ways to organize this transfer.

  • 2019

    Mobile innovation lab for rural regions earns OECD accolades


    The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has acknowledged the Social Foresight Lab developed by Fraunhofer IAO’s Center for Responsible Research and Innovation (CeRRI) as a public sector innovation. Born of a project called Horizonte erweitern – Perspektiven ändern, or Broadening Horizons – Changing Perspectives, the lab is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). A mobile medium to promote participation and knowledge transfer, it has been deployed successfully to Bavaria, Hessen and Schleswig-Holstein.

  • 2019

    Mobility plus: Future scenarios for autonomous driving


    What must cities do to improve their mobility culture in the face of climate change? A new study published by Fraunhofer IAO, which investigates the role of autonomous vehicles in a multimodal transportation solution for the cities of tomorrow, shows that these vehicles are one of the most important points of leverage for sustainable urban development and a better quality of life for city-dwellers, and open up entirely new options for land use in general.

  • 2019

    Sustainable Mineral Exploration in the EU


    The EU-funded INFACT project aims to combine the development and test of innovative, non-invasive mineral exploration technologies with an assessment of their societal acceptance. Therefore, the “Horizon 2020“project targets the development of first-of-its-kind European “reference sites” for non-invasive mineral exploration technologies in three EU countries. In April 2019 the INFACT project launched an airborne electromagnetic (AEM) campaign in the South of Spain to collect new geoscientific data of the area. As part of the project consortium, a research team from the Fraunhofer IAO supported the actions, from a technology management perspective.

  • 2019

    Robocabs: The mobility of the future?


    Even if the technology has as yet only been tested in prototypes on test routes, autonomous driving will apparently be possible in the near future. How exactly do potential users envision such vehicles? And how high is the level of public acceptance? The Robocab study, performed by Fraunhofer IAO and the Institute for Social-Ecological Research ISOE with the support of the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI), provides insights into international survey results.

  • 2019

    A smart approach to using parking spaces for logistics


    The consortium behind the “Park_up” project, namely Fraunhofer IAO, veloCAR-RIER and evopark, has developed a solution for sustainable urban logistics in close cooperation with APCOA Parking Deutschland. Their concept envisages the use of publicly accessible parking spaces as transshipment hubs for cargo bikes. APCOA, Germany’s leading car park operator, is implementing the project in three of its central car parks in Stuttgart. On 24 June 2019, the companies will showcase the project in the Zeppelin-Carrée car park in Stuttgart.

  • 2019

    New Work – future models for work


    The New Work project, which is funded by the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (BMAS), analyzes the success factors for new forms of employment, to which end it described interesting examples from all over Germany. In an accompanying study, Fraunhofer IAO investigated how employees can be included in management processes and which measures can be used to achieve this.

  • 2019

    AI solutions for autonomous vehicle fleets


    How can artificial intelligence (AI) be used in vehicle fleets? How can autonomous vehicles be integrated in car sharing information and communications technology (ICT) systems? The Fraunhofer IAO project KI4ROBOFLEET is investigating the possible applications of AI in the area of autonomous driving.

  • 2019

    “Future Museum”: innovation network for museums


    Fraunhofer IAO and MUSEUM BOOSTER will launch a new innovation network for museums in July 2019. The goal of the “Future Museum” project is to assist museums in applying cutting-edge know-how and to create a network of museum leaders, public authorities, donors and suppliers for the exchange of ideas and for collaboration.

  • 2019

    Corporate Innovation Labs: the place to pursue disruptive ideas?


    What exactly is a corporate innovation lab? Why are so many companies so keen to set up a think-tank? And what sets this type of lab apart from conventional R&D units? Fraunhofer IAO has answered these and other key questions in a recently released explorative study entitled “Corporate Innovation Labs.” This report looks at case studies and offers recommendations on setting up innovation labs.

  • 2019

    The human factor in artificial intelligence


    Everyone is talking about artificial intelligence. It’s a topic that is generating high hopes but also provoking some fears. Fraunhofer IAO therefore intends to try and dispel some of the myths in the course of the “2019 Science Year”, devoted to AI. A series of lectures, publications and projects will explain how companies and specific business sectors can use artificial intelligence, and what impact it will have on the world of work.

  • 2019

    EarthLab: Artificial intelligence and sustainability


    The Center for Responsible Research and Innovation CeRRI at Fraunhofer IAO has been commissioned by Microsoft to organize “EarthLab,” a two-day forum dedicated to examining whether the technological potential of artificial intelligence can be harnessed in the service of a greater sustainability.

  • 2019

    Lean solutions can help capture new markets


    Frugal innovations are based on clever concepts and a good understanding of customers’ needs. The recently opened Center for Frugal Products and Manufacturing Systems (ZFP) at Fraunhofer IAO and Fraunhofer IPA helps companies to break into cost-sensitive markets. This spring, ZFP is organizing a German edition of the InnoFrugal conference and also offering free coaching on the subject of “exploring projects.”

  • 2018

    Securing jobs in the automotive industry


    A study conducted by Fraunhofer IAO and initiated by the trade union IG Metall and representatives from the automotive industry predicts that electromobility will lead to a loss of jobs. The initial findings were first presented back in the summer. Now the study has been published in full and also contains recommendations for action to safeguard employment and prosperity in Germany.

  • 2018

    Inaugural "Virtual World Tour" scheduled for december


    On December 4–5, Fraunhofer IAO is staging a global dialog on tomorrow’s world of work. Organized to mark the culmination of Science Year 2018, this inaugural virtual world tour will spend 24 hours visiting selected labor research institutes around the globe in order to showcase the latest research on future working environments. This will offer an overview of the current discourse in this field worldwide and reveal where research is still needed. On this basis, it will then be possible to draw up an international knowledge map.

  • 2018

    Innovation in 2030 – open, digital, systemic?


    By 2030, innovation will take place outside of R&D departments. Innovation processes will be comprehensively digitalized. New products, services and business models will be brought to market as integrated solutions. Knowledge will be freely available and open to all – though the advantage will be with those who can put that knowledge to good use. Europe will have established itself as a global leader in data security and data sovereignty.

  • 2018

    Solutions for digital working worlds


    TransWork, one of the most extensive publicly funded, collaborative initiatives to investigate work in a digitalized world, is looking at how digitalization is transforming jobs across industries. Research teams have now presented the core findings of 29 projects undertaken in this priority funding category.

  • 2018

    Food for the city – from the city


    Whereas the number of people living in cities worldwide is continually growing, the already scarce area used for growing food and resources has been steadily shrinking. This disparity, however, can be partly bridged by urban farming, the practice of growing food in cities and urban areas. Fraunhofer IAO has published a study investigating how cities could benefit from locally grown food and resources, looking at indoor plant and microalgae cultivation.

  • 2018

    Providing home care in emergency situations


    How can it be ensured that people in need of care and help at home still receive this support in a crisis? What happens, for example, if the roads are blocked or their relatives and carers can’t get to them? In its KOPHIS research project, the IAT at the University of Stuttgart is exploring how relevant stakeholder groups can collaborate to ensure such care is provided.

  • 2018

    2018 Work Research Conference


    On December 4 and 5, the Science Year 2018 will culminate with the 2018 Work Research Conference at the Haus der Wirtschaft in Stuttgart. The Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO is staging the event.

  • 2018

    New inquisitive mind for digital product development


    Fraunhofer IAO has expanded its management team to include Prof. Oliver Riedel. Focusing on research into digital product development, he brings 25 years of research and industry experience in digital product creation and product lifecycle management to the existing leadership trio of Prof. Wilhelm Bauer, Prof. Dieter Spath and Prof. Anette Weisbecker.

  • 2018

    The car of the future – sleeper cars and travelling offices too?


    As part of a survey involving 2500 motorists in five major markets, management consultants Horváth & Partners worked together with the Fraunhofer IAO to determine respondents’ willingness to pay and desired interior configurations for self-driving vehicles. The results are summarized in the “Enabling the Value of Time” study.

  • 2018

    Mapping out the future for the automotive industry


    Electrification of vehicle powertrains is set to significantly reduce personnel requirements, with suppliers expected to take the hardest hit. The transition to electromobility can succeed if the right overall conditions are established. Government and companies now need to develop strategies to tackle this challenge.

  • 2018

    Encouraging academic entrepreneurship


    Germany derives long-term benefits from innovative ideas developed in research organizations. But many of these promising ideas and research findings are simply filed away, their potential left unexploited. Fraunhofer IAO presents strategies for promoting the exploitation of research results in the research and education system in a dedicated results brochure.

  • 2018

    Germans open to the idea of 3D printed organs


    Many Germans are open to the idea of 3D printed organs, permanent body scans and cell repairing nanorobots as part of healthcare in the future, says an international survey conducted by BR, ARTE and Fraunhofer IAO as part of the “Homo Digitalis” project. In all, more than 22,000 respondents from Germany and France took part in the online quiz, which tested their acceptance levels for new technologies.

  • 2018

    The right office for every type of work


    Where will future office and knowledge work take place and how should the individual working environments be designed? In its Office Analytics study, conducted as part of the Office 21® joint research project, Fraunhofer IAO addresses these questions – which are becoming increasingly pertinent for companies.

  • 2018

    Wanted: Choice within work environments


    A survey conducted by Fraunhofer IAO shows that modernization of work organization is usually too slow. More than 1000 office and work environment experts from a variety of companies participated in the survey conducted on behalf of designfunktion Group. The “multispace” office is set to become the leading future office setup. A range of different working spaces offers numerous benefits, e.g. it has positive impacts on employer attractiveness, collaboration and personal autonomy.

  • 2018

    A helping (Sens)Hand


    Due to mechanization and automation the amount of physical load work has been progressively reduced. Yet for those working in intralogistics, the manual handling of material is still very much part of the job. Partners in the “SensHand” project, funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), have developed a prototype glove designed to help pickers.

  • 2018

    System for measuring the R&D factor of diversity


    What kinds of frameworks are in place to promote equality in the various EU member states? What indicators can be used to assess the effect of equality measures? The EU Project EFFORTI publishes reports by country and frameworks for evaluating gender inequality in research and development. Fraunhofer IAO is a member of the project’s consortium.

  • 2018

    Morgenstadt Initiative welcomes new partner


    In March 2018, Ströer SE & Co. KGaA – a leading provider of outdoor and online advertising in Germany – became the latest partner to join the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft’s Morgenstadt City Insights innovation network. Over the next two years, the Morgenstadt experts will support Ströer in defining projects, bringing innovative products to market and gaining a foothold in the smart city sector.

  • 2018

    Virtual reality conference comes to Reutlingen


    From Los Angeles to Reutlingen: in 2018, the premier international conference on virtual reality and 3D user interfaces will be held in Germany for the second time in the conference’s 25-year history. Over 500 academic and industry experts from more than 20 countries are expected to attend the 25th IEEE VR 2018 conference in Reutlingen from March 18 to 22, 2018.

  • 2018

    New trends and key success factors in research and development


    The increase of digitalization has brought new challenges and responsibilities for employees and managers working in research and development (R&D). The Fraunhofer IAO is conducting an expert survey of R&D departments at manufacturing companies in order to determine current trends, key success factors and objectives in this field.

  • 2018

    Professional coordination of civil protection


    In crisis situations, how can intermediary agencies provide an interface between the emergency and rescue services, on the one hand, and the civil population, on the other? KOKOS, a research project currently under way at the Institute of Human Factors and Technology Management IAT of the University of Stuttgart, is investigating this question. Results of this research are now available in the form of guidelines covering conceptual, legal and organizational issues.

  • 2017

    See, understand and experience the work of the future


    With events, projects, interactive experiences and a series of blog posts, Fraunhofer IAO will offer a diverse range of information, hands-on activities and support services relating to “Working Life of the Future,” the motto of Science Year 2018. Representatives of business and politics and the general public are invited to participate. The program will kick off with the Future Forum at the Im Wizemann concert hall in Stuttgart on February 1-2, 2018.

  • 2017

    Corporate coworking as a driver of innovation


    How do companies utilize coworking? Which types of corporate coworking offer the best opportunities for companies? Does corporate coworking truly drive innovation? Fraunhofer IAO has published “Coworking - Driver of Innovation for Companies,” a study that identifies nine coworking models and evaluates the opportunities and risks posed by each model.

  • 2017

    Launch of the world’s first online platform for digital accessibility


    The world’s first online platform for digital accessibility has been launched. As part of the EU’s “Prosperity4All” project, DeveloperSpace is where interested parties, developers, companies, and the scientific community come together. The aim is to develop simple, cost-effective and efficient solutions for assistive technologies.

  • 2017

    Equality in action


    Fraunhofer IAO and its partner Institute for Human Factors and Technology Management IAT at the University of Stuttgart have been awarded the TOTAL E-QUALITY equal opportunity accolade for the sixth time. The honor was bestowed at a ceremony in Gelsenkirchen on October 27, 2017, and accepted by equal opportunities representative Jasmin Link.

  • 2017

    Building Projects: How virtual reality can defuse conflicts with citizens


    Fun, effective and easy to understand: new digital visualization technologies offer an excellent opportunity to improve communication with citizens on large building projects. Titled “Visualizing Building Projects,” the practical guidelines give planners, architects and public agencies advice on how to use virtual reality and similar innovations. The guidelines were developed jointly by Fraunhofer IAO and the University of Hohenheim in Stuttgart as part of the VisB+ research project.

  • 2017

    Fraunhofer IAO joins “Partnership on AI“


    Founded by big tech companies such as Apple, IBM and Microsoft, the Partnership on AI promotes collaboration and exchange on the important topic of artificial intelligence. Through its membership, Fraunhofer IAO is playing an active part in developing AI best practices and technologies to benefit businesses and society.

  • 2017

    Monitoring trends in the environmental technology market


    To identify the most promising trends in the lead markets “water”, “air” and “circular economy” on behalf of the German State of Baden-Württemberg, Fraunhofer IAO has developed a roadmap for the environmental technology sector in collaboration with the State Agency for Environmental Technologies and Resource Efficiency (UTBW) and the Institute for Industrial Ecology (INEC) at Pforzheim University.

  • 2017

    BR launches "Homo Digitalis" future project


    What impact will future technologies such as artificial intelligence, chips in the brain and virtual lovers have on our lives? Now you can find answers at In addition to the Homo Digitalis web series, BR, ARTE and the ORF TV networks have joined forces with Fraunhofer IAO to develop a chat bot that playfully interacts with the user and gives them individual feedback about their possible future.

  • 2017

    Sharing ideas for tomorrow's digital communities


    The digital transformation of communal life calls for cross-sectoral thinking and solutions. The second edition of the Morgenstadt Workshop, which is to be held in Stuttgart in November 2017 and is organized by Fraunhofer IAO and Baden-Württemberg’s Ministry of the Interior, Digitisation and Migration, offers a platform with many creative formats that will enable all stakeholders involved in urban and regional development to contribute their own questions and solutions to the discussion and develop them further.

  • 2017

    Better practice for disaster situations


    Accidents, terror attacks and catastrophic events present big challenges for civil defense disaster relief forces. In a new publication, Fraunhofer IAO, the German Red Cross and the Bavarian Red Cross unveil concepts for full-scale drills responding to a mass-casualty incident.

  • 2017

    Smarter robot vacuum cleaners for automated office cleaning


    Can you really use Outlook to make sure your office floor gets vacuumed? Absolutely! Fraunhofer IAO is currently developing an intelligent cleaning concept for smart offices. A robot vacuum cleaner automatically takes care of upcoming cleaning jobs that have been scheduled in Outlook.

  • 2017

    From parking garage to smart multi-purpose garage


    What is the key to effectively managing urban parking garages? In a collaborative project dubbed Park_up, Fraunhofer IAO is working with partners to develop long-term solutions. As part of the project, the partners are exploring digital utilization concepts aimed at improving urban traffic and logistics flows as a way to relieve strain on people and the environment.

  • 2017

    The technology with a feel for feelings


    In the EMOIO project, funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), scientists from Fraunhofer IAO are developing an emotionally responsive, neuro-adaptive brain-computer interface. The first live demonstration took place at the BMBF future congress “Bringing technology to people,” held in Bonn June 26-27.

  • 2017

    Fraunhofer creates new group for innovation research


    Understanding the complex effects of new technologies is critical for the success of entire economies. Structural changes through technological developments must therefore be recognized and understood at an early stage in order to actively shape the long-term economic, social, political and cultural impact on society and the economy. With the new Fraunhofer Group for Innovation Research, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft aims to strengthen its future role in research, technology and innovation policy dialogue with industry, politics and society, thus further cementing its position as a leading player in the German innovation arena.

  • 2017

    Browse the new technology shelf


    What trends and disruptive innovations will photonic technologies enable in the coming years? With its “PHOTONIC TOWER” technology shelf, Fraunhofer IAO invites makers, companies, researchers and students to find answers to this question.

  • 2017

    Trend radar support SMEs in Malaysia


    What are the technology and market trends that will transform the Malaysian economy in the coming years? Together with its research partner SIRIM and the software provider ITONICS, Fraunhofer IAO has developed an IT-based trend radar for small and medium-sized enterprises.

  • 2017

    Transformation towards the smart factory


    How can we create better conditions for innovation when it comes to the smart factory? The University of Stuttgart’s IAT, a close cooperation partner of Fraunhofer IAO, is researching this very question. The Smart Factory Hub project gets under way with a survey of medium-sized enterprises.

  • 2017

    “Urban Space” pilot course for professionals


    What will urban spaces of the future look like? Smart cities represent a major challenge for public sector employees. With its “Urban Space” pilot course, Fraunhofer IAO has developed an innovative theoretical and practical training concept offering representatives from industry and administration ideal preparation for the cities of the future.

  • 2017

    Ludwigsburg goes digital


    The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research has selected the city of Ludwigsburg as one of 20 communities for the second phase of the City of the Future competition. Under the slogan “Digitalization, participation and the city,” Ludwigsburg’s sustainable urban development department and Living Lab business unit is joining with Fraunhofer IAO to proactively promote digitalization and make it an urban reality.

  • 2017

    New study on Smart Cities published


    A joint study by the BBSR, PwC and Fraunhofer IAO clearly shows: municipalities must make digitisation a strategic task to remain independent and empowered. They must address changes in the economy to be able to offer companies an attractive, networked environment. And they must have all population groups on board on the way to a Smart City – even those that are already unable to cope with today’s digital world. The results are being fed into the Smart City Charta for Germany.

  • 2017

    Frugal Innovations: when less is more


    Many innovative companies still focus primarily on the premium sector. Yet attractive market opportunities for entry-level solutions abound in emerging and industrialized economies alike. With practical methodology training and a quick online check, Fraunhofer IAO is helping companies build up frugal skills and expertise.

  • 2017

    Cloud Solutions for SMEs


    Cloud computing applications offer small and medium-sized enterprises many options for cutting costs and unburdening their IT systems. Yet when it comes to storing company data off premises, security concerns frequently outweigh the benefits. Fraunhofer IAO and its partners are demonstrating successful real-life examples and flexible solutions via the “Cloud Mall Baden-Württemberg,” which launched in Stuttgart on March 30, 2017.

  • 2017

    SME 4.0 Center of Excellence Stuttgart opens


    On March 28, 2017, the SME 4.0 Center of Excellence Stuttgart premiered with a kickoff event held at the Fraunhofer Institute Center. Funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi), the new facility aims to establish the transfer of practical expertise to help get SMEs in southwest Germany in shape for the digital transformation.

  • 2017

    Open ecosystem for smart assistance systems


    Under the banner of “d!conomy - no limits,” CeBIT 2017 will focus not only on the digital transformation of industry, administration and society, but also on the markets and opportunities this transformation opens up. From March 20 to 24, Fraunhofer IAO will be at the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) joint booth (Hall 6, Booth C40) to present the ENTOURAGE joint research project.

  • 2017

    Smart data analysis for transport in Stuttgart


    The overburdening of city transport systems is becoming an increasing challenge. But before cities can take concrete action, they need to gather precise traffic data. This is often very time consuming and expensive. A study by the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO in cooperation with Telefónica NEXT and the data analysis specialist Teralytics found that mobile network data can make a positive contribution to transport planning. To clarify, analyses were carried out for the city of Stuttgart with the help of anonymised and aggregated mobile network data, which provide detailed insights into the actual travel behaviour of Stuttgart residents. This gives an idea of the data’s potential.

  • 2017

    Research for transdisciplinary start-up teams


    Innovations generally arise at the interfaces between different perspectives and disciplines. In the “knowledge triangle” project, Fraunhofer IAO is working with teams behind high-tech start-ups to test how combining the three disciplines of science and technology, business, and design can aid the development of viable and sustainable business models.

  • 2017

    Dieter Spath is new acatech president


    As of February 8, 2017, Professor Dieter Spath – director of both the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO and the Institute for Human Factors and Technology Management (IAT) at the University of Stuttgart – is also president of the German Academy of Science and Engineering (acatech e.V.). At a ceremony in Berlin attended by some 150 people, Reinhard F. Hüttl handed over the reins to his successor after two terms as acatech president.

  • 2017

    Showcasing “building information modeling” at BAU 2017


    What direction are developments in the building industry taking? What will global megatrends in planning, constructing and operating buildings require in terms of technologies and processes, and what consequences will they have? At BAU, the world’s leading trade fair for architecture, materials and systems, Fraunhofer IAO will be presenting building information modeling (BIM). The trade fair will take place in Munich from January 16 to 21, 2017.

  • 2017

    Future Work Lab makes Work 4.0 tangible


    What is work becoming? In what directions is it developing? How can we best harness the potential of new technologies for our work? As digitalization transforms processes and services as well as factory floors, many new questions arise. The Future Work Lab, which was officially opened today, offers answers and innovative approaches to these issues. Attending the opening were Prof. Johanna Wanka, German Federal Minister of Education and Research, the Fraunhofer Executive Board, the institute directors and some 150 distinguished guests from the worlds of politics, research and business. In the innovation laboratory for work, people and technology, the Fraunhofer Institutes IAO and IPA and the University of Stuttgart Institutes IAT and IFF pool their expertise in the area of Industrie 4.0.

  • 2017

    More transparency in Engineering IT


    Digitalization is making openness in the linking of IT solutions increasingly important. The Code of PLM Openness (CPO), developed by the ProSTEP iViP Association, supplies a concrete approach for achieving precisely that. Fraunhofer IAO has now developed an effective certification for companies, which helps them comply with the CPO criteria.

  • 2017

    On patrol in social networks


    The digital revolution is bringing new challenges and sweeping changes for such organizations as law enforcement agencies that have traditionally been responsible for security and stability. As part of the EU project MEDI@4SEC, Fraunhofer IAO is developing solutions and recommended strategies for enhancing people’s understanding of how social media can be used in the realm of public security.

  • 2016

    ChargeLounge: E-charging station for IKEA customers


    IKEA shoppers in Ludwigsburg can now use a special electric charging station. Werner Spec (Ludwigsburg’s mayor), Prof. Wilhelm Bauer (Fraunhofer IAO director), Ulf Wenzig (IKEA Germany sustainability manager), and Anja Heinle (IKEA Ludwigsburg manager) opened Germany’s first “ChargeLounge”. It features an integrated and speedy e-charging station in the parking lot of IKEA Ludwigsburg.

  • 2016

    Local grid solution for global energy transition


    What will intelligent, decentralized energy management look like in the future? Using its own Micro Smart Grid and control systems developed in-house, the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO is exploring how to efficiently coordinate energy producers, storage systems, and consumers as well as how to test the innovative technologies required. The research parking garage houses 30 charging spots for electric vehicles, Europe’s fastest high-speed charging station, as well as Europe’s first hydrogen storage system based on LOHC technology.

  • 2016

    Wilhelm Bauer named as new technology commissioner


    Prof. Wilhelm Bauer, director of Fraunhofer IAO, has been appointed technology commissioner for the state of Baden-Württemberg. His appointment was announced by Baden-Württemberg Prime Minister Winfried Kretschmann and Minister of Economic Affairs Dr. Nicole Hoffmeister-Kraut at today’s state press conference in Stuttgart. Bauer’s role will be to help Baden-Württemberg master the future challenges it will face as a center for technology and innovation.

  • 2016

    20 years of office research at Fraunhofer IAO


    Since 1996, Fraunhofer IAO has been working with numerous partners from the business world to shape the future of office and information work in the joint Office21® research initiative. At ORGATEC 2016, these office researchers take stock and will showcase two of their latest workplace prototypes.

  • 2016

    The desks of tomorrow


    “New visions of work” is this year’s motto for ORGATEC, the leading trade fair in modern workplace concepts. Together with partners from the Office21® innovation campaign and other companies, Fraunhofer will be premiering two entirely new workplace prototypes.

  • 2016

    Efficient safeguarding of modern value chains


    In a study entitled “Identity management in modern value chains,” the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO offers an insight into the efficient administration of access rights and authentication, taking Europe’s automotive industry as its example. The study is based both on a quantitative survey of 85 companies and qualitative interviews with specialists.

  • 2016

    LIGHTest - building global trust


    On September 1, the EU-funded project “LIGHTest” was launched with the goal of establishing a global, cross-domain trust infrastructure. Scheduled to run for three years, LIGHTest aims to provide a simple and transparent way of verifying electronic transactions.

  • 2016

    Six scenarios for the meeting space of the future


    Germany is Europe’s top location for conferences and congresses. To ensure Germany stays on top, Fraunhofer IAO is collaborating with numerous business and tourism partners on the Future Meeting Space research project to analyze developments in the event industry and develop innovative event formats.

  • 2016

    How do companies deal with disruption?


    Often viewed as the specter of the business world, “disruption” became the Business Word of the Year in 2015 in Germany. Even so, experts are unable to agree on what the word actually means. The Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO is working on how companies can best be equipped to deal with disruption. In an ongoing study, it is investigating how companies handle potentially disruptive technologies.

  • 2016

    Celebrating 10 years service research at ServLab


    For the last ten years, Fraunhofer IAO has offered companies the possibility of testing out and optimizing services in ServLab, which was developed in-house, before they are put into operation. On the occasion of ServLab’s 10th anniversary, service engineering experts will present selected use cases for smart services in the newly renovated lab, accompanied by a speech from Kathrin Schütz, Baden-Württemberg’s state secretary for economic affairs.

  • 2016

    The Science fiction hotel of the year 2052


    Robots, drones, reactive environments: in its current “FutureHotel Building 2052” study, Fraunhofer IAO looks at trends and technologies that are changing the hotel industry and the design of hotel buildings. What may sound unbelievable today could well be reality in 35 years.

  • 2016

    New leadership trio at Fraunhofer IAO


    After three years as CEO of WITTENSTEIN AG, Prof. Dieter Spath, a former long-serving director of Fraunhofer IAO, is returning to Stuttgart. From October 1, he will join Prof. Wilhelm Bauer (executive director) and Prof. Anette Weisbacker (deputy director) in forming a new management team. This means Spath will also be returning to his director’s post at the IAT, the University of Stuttgart institute with which Fraunhofer IAO cooperates.

  • 2016

    Work and the digital revolution


    Digital technologies are revolutionizing the way we work. They are having a broad impact on employment, labor markets, occupational health & safety, and the way businesses are structured. The project “Transwork - The Transformation of Work through Digitalization” aims to develop approaches and solutions for working in the digital world and make these solutions accessible.

  • 2016

    Lightweight robots in manual assembly


    What is the current state of cage-free robot technology in German industry? This was the question Fraunhofer IAO investigated in the study “Lightweight robots in manual assembly.” Based on case studies in factories already using lightweight robots for manufacturing, the study looked at their experiences with implementing the robots, gaining acceptance from human coworkers, and improving operational efficiency.

  • 2016

    Award for "Smart Senior Care Services" project


    At the international conference “The Human Side of Service Engineering,” which took place as part of the “International Conference on Applied Human Factors and Ergonomics” (AHFE), a paper produced by the research collaboration between the Stuttgart-based Fraunhofer IAO and the Chinese research center BRCUSE on the subject of Smart Senior Care Services received the Best Paper Award.

  • 2016

    Discovering electric mobility in a playful way


    How can services help encourage the spread of electric mobility, and how can they be systematically developed? Using four case studies from Finland, Estonia, Denmark and Norway, Fraunhofer IAO presents various approaches to developing e-mobility projects. One of the key research findings was that using game-like methods to involve customers in the development of e-mobility projects helps those business ventures become accepted.

  • 2016

    Combating traffic congestion with advanced data analytics


    Researchers at Fraunhofer IAO are carrying out a study to determine whether data from cell phone networks could offer a reliable source of information for traffic planning and an improvement over current data collection methods. Telefónica Deutschland is supporting the research project by providing anonymized cell phone data.

  • 2016

    Gearing up for the future: Digital Business Innovation


    On Thursday, June 30, 2016, Fraunhofer IAO launched the Business Innovation Engineering Center (BIEC). This initiative is designed as a platform where business and science can advance their innovation capabilities in the digitalization age. Companies are invited to take part in the network and help shape the initiative.

  • 2016

    German-Chinese cooperation gets underway


    Fraunhofer IAO and the Chinese State Key Lab for Intelligent Manufacturing Systems Technology will be working together in the future on key topics including virtual product development and smart factories. The two research institutes signed a cooperation agreement at the 8th Chinese-German Forum for Economic and Technological Cooperation.

  • 2016

    Usability in civil protection


    Interactive systems can support the safety authorities and organizations in their day-to-day work. Fraunhofer IAO has developed a set of guidelines that is tailored to the authorities and organizations responsible for ensuring public safety. The guidelines also present the idea of usability and aim to raise future system usability within this highly specialized work environment.

  • 2016



    With the “Morgenstadt-Werkstatt,” Fraunhofer IAO and Landesmesse Stuttgart are initiating a so-called “makerspace” that brings citizens, students, start-ups, established companies, and municipal governments into dialog about the city of the future. The event provides a variety of formats and spaces for exploring interdisciplinary issues relating to mobility, energy, and adaptive construction in the context of digitalization.

  • 2016

    Future Work Lab makes the future tangible


    With the Future Work Lab, the Fraunhofer Institutes IAO and IPA are opening a center that will let visitors experience the future of manufacturing. The center will offer tangible demonstrators, expertise development and training programs as well as a platform for scientific exchange, and targets industry, employee associations, politics, science – and future production workers.

  • 2016

    Collaboration and open innovation in SMEs


    Large companies are already using the concept of open innovation to great success. But what is the collaboration situation in smaller companies? Fraunhofer IAO is examining this question as part of a study entitled “Collaboration in the Area of Research and Development in Small and Medium-sized Enterprises.”

  • 2016

    Autonomous driving: emergence of new billion euro market


    Autonomous driving is expected to generate annual sales worth several billion euros in value-added services over the next decade. In collaboration with management consultants Horváth & Partners, the Fraunhofer IAO surveyed 1500 motorists as part of the "Value of Time" study regarding their willingness to pay for in-car value-added services.

  • 2016

    Malaysian SMEs on the way forward


    Fraunhofer IAO and Malaysian research organization SIRIM have implemented a series of measures for increasing the innovative capabilities and productivity of Malaysian SMEs. On the long run, Fraunhofer Institute-style innovation centers will be built up in the Asian country.

  • 2016

    Honorary professorship for Wilhelm Bauer


    On May 6, 2016, the Technical University of Cluj-Napoca (UTC-N) in Romania conferred an honorary professorship on Prof. Wilhelm Bauer, director of Fraunhofer IAO. Romania’s second-largest technical university awarded the honor in recognition of Bauer’s outstanding scientific achievements and his commitment to the collaboration with UTC-N.

  • 2016

    Finding digital business models simply


    Digital Scout is a new instrument that Fraunhofer IAO has developed for monitoring digital business models emerging across the globe. To date, experts have identified 15,000 digital business model approaches. Most of these come from the United States and China, with Germany ranking in sixth place. Companies can use this method to develop a digital innovation strategy.

  • 2016

    A roadmap to success for companies


    In cooperation with TIM Consulting, Fraunhofer IAO conducted an online survey from July to September 2015 on the use, challenges and success factors of roadmaps in everyday company operations. An excerpt of its key findings is given in a publicly available infographic.

  • 2016

    Networking help for seniors


    Fraunhofer IAO’s SONIA project already investigated how well communication-supporting technology can improve quality of life for the elderly. Building on that great success, the follow-up project SONIAnetz has been specially tailored for people in need and their relatives.

  • 2016

    "FutureHotel" enters a new research phase


    What will the hotel guest bathroom of the future look like? What are the expectations and needs of the future traveler? The “FutureHotel” innovation network is putting these questions at the center of its research, which is now entering its fifth project phase. By using different research methods – including online surveys, expert interviews and creative workshops – project partners are creating intelligent solutions for guest bathroom design that not only meet the needs of guests but are also economically feasible in their implementation.

  • 2016

    Buenos Aires is new Morgenstadt partner


    This year, Buenos Aires became a partner in the Morgenstadt: City Insights innovation network. In collaboration with the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, the city will be conducting projects focusing on resource and energy efficiency, climate protection, and sustainable mobility. The Argentinian metropolis is the first South American city to join the innovation network.

  • 2016

    How taking part helps e-mobility take off


    For just over a year now, people have had the chance to play the Elektr-O-Mat online game to find out what type of electromobility would work best for them. An initial analysis of the data gathered indicates this playful approach serves as a good introduction to electromobility for many people. Such an approach could also be transferred to other topics.

  • 2016

    IP award for patent champions


    For the ninth year in a row, Fraunhofer IAO will recognize three companies that have implemented successful strategies and organizational structures for managing patents. This year, the institute will also unveil a new tool that uses patent data to rate how far companies have progressed along the digitalization path. Both the award ceremony and the presentation will take place at the Patente 2016 conference in Munich on March 1.

  • 2016

    Inclusion through robotics


    Robots are already becoming widely established in German factories. But how can companies be sure to split the work between people and robots such that human workers don’t lose out on the desirable tasks? An event marking the start of the AQUIAS project showcased approaches to guaranteeing quality of work for manufacturing employees, including those with severe disabilities.

  • 2016

    Simulation even SMEs can afford


    The sheer complexity of today’s production systems makes “going with your gut” decision making a questionable approach at best. So as part of the EU-funded project DREAM, a simulation-based support system was developed to help decision makers in planning and managing production. And thanks to the project’s pragmatic approach, the solution can be easily implemented – even by small businesses.

  • 2016

    “Future Meeting Space” innovations catalogue


    Technological and social change is transforming the way that events are run. As part of the “Future Meeting Space” joint research project, Fraunhofer IAO has studied the latest innovations to which event planners, organizers and venue providers are having to adapt. A catalogue containing the highlights of around 120 innovations has now been published.

  • 2015

    Automated driving is a huge opportunity


    Highly automated driving will have achieved technical maturity before 2020. That is the result of a study carried out by Fraunhofer IAO and other partners on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy. The authors also anticipate value creation in Germany amounting to 8.8 billion euros for the year 2025. Creating the legal framework and developing infrastructure represent major challenges.

  • 2015

    Top innovative ideas for the city of tomorrow


    As part of the Fraunhofer “Urban Futures” conference, ten selected young entrepreneurs and start-ups took to the stage to dazzle the jury and the audience with their innovative ideas. The finalists presented their concepts for the city of the future at an “idea pitch” event on November 25, 2015 to about 250 prominent representatives from municipalities, politics, business and research. The top three received a membership in Fraunhofer’s Morgenstadt innovation network, each of which is worth 25,000 euros.

  • 2015

    Innovative, Sustainable and livable cities of tomorrow


    Fraunhofer’s Urban Futures Conference, which takes place in Berlin on November 25 and 26, 2015, will offer participants a glimpse of the urban future. Scientists, engineers, politicians and economists will present new concepts for intelligent and sustainable urban innovation. The aim is to help transform our cities into clean and vibrant places to live and work.

  • 2015

    R&D Management for Malaysian SMEs


    Fraunhofer IAO has been supporting SIRIM, a Malaysian research organization, with the development and implementation of measures for increasing the innovative capabilities and productivity of Malaysian SMEs since March 2015. Now the joint project is entering the final phase, which includes conducting innovation workshops and establishing industrial centers of innovation.

  • 2015

    Sharing – a blessing or a curse for companies?


    Established companies are still not fully addressing the sharing economy, as demonstrated by “BW Share,” a study by Fraunhofer IAO. In this study, researchers investigated how established companies currently view the sharing economy and provide initial recommendations for politics, business and research.

  • 2015

    EU's amePLM project improves data management


    During the lifecycle of a product – from inception, through engineering design and manufacture, to service and recycling – a large amount of information is stored in a wide range of IT systems. As part of the EU’s amePLM project, Fraunhofer IAO has created a platform that helps small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) to control these complex processes.

  • 2015

    Mike Freitag wins Burbidge prize


    Fraunhofer IAO service researcher Dr. Mike Freitag was presented with the Burbidge Award for best scientific paper at the international Advances for Production Management Systems (APMS) conference. In cooperation with two fellow researchers, he developed a method that allows interactions between product and service development to be factored in during the development phase.

  • 2015

    Brain research meets industrial engineering


    With the opening of its NeuroLab, Fraunhofer IAO now has a test environment for researching neuro- ergonomical topics. It is a place where researchers are applying neuroscientific knowledge to issues of ergonomic workplace design. The focus is on assistance systems in vehicles, in human-robot collaboration, and in knowledge work. The laboratory opened on October 27, 2015, with a symposium.

  • 2015

    Improving safety and efficiency on the road with UR:BAN


    The partners in the UR:BAN research initiative set out to make driving in tomorrow’s cities safer and more efficient. At the initiative’s upcoming final presentation, demonstration vehicles will show how intelligent and cooperative systems could help make driving in the city even safer, more economical and environmentally more sustainable.

  • 2015

    Better processes with high-quality master data


    Where is the field of master data management currently headed? How can companies find the right products to meet their needs? In a recent market study, Fraunhofer IAO compared the master data management systems of 14 providers, with a primary focus placed on the features of the various systems.

  • 2015

    "Development aid" for e-mobility services


    At the RESER conference in Copenhagen, Fraunhofer IAO premiered a service engineering reference model for the e-mobility applications sector before members of the service research community. In the future, this model will assist companies in systematically developing and bringing to market new services and business models.

  • 2015

    Envisioning the production of tomorrow


    The 23rd International Conference for Production Research ICPR, which took place from August 2-5, 2015 in Manila, was a runaway success for Fraunhofer IAO and the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. Both keynote speakers, Professor Wilhelm Bauer (IAO institute director) and Professor Hans-Jörg Bullinger, received a Certificate of Appreciation, and each was part of a team that scooped an Outstanding Paper Award 2015. In Professor Bauer’s case, this was for his work with Dr. Stefan Gerlach and his team on KapaflexCy; Professor Bullinger received the honor alongside Thomas Meiren and Rainer Nägele for their publication on the future of smart services.

  • 2015

    Banks need new business models


    Banks and the banking business are on the edge of profound change. This is the primary finding of the newly released “Bank & Zukunft 2015” trend survey. Only a fifth of the executives and managers surveyed still anticipate business to take a positive direction in the next four years. Despite this, banks continue to drag their feet when it comes to implementing innovative business models in order to tap new areas of revenue.

  • 2015

    Platform for smart assistance systems


    ENTOURAGE, an interdisciplinary project involving Fraunhofer IAO, has succeeded in attracting funding from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) through its Smart Service World technology competition. ENTOURAGE is one of 16 successful projects selected from among 130 entries. Over the next three years it will seek to build a bridge connecting the Internet of Things with smart assistance systems.

  • 2015

    Fraunhofer IAO web relaunch


    Clearer and more customer-friendly: the new Fraunhofer IAO website went live today. The aim of the relaunch is to maintain the existing design but present the institute’s various research projects and services more vividly and help visitors reach their destination more quickly.

  • 2015

    Helping people help themselves in crisis situations


    To get a handle on crisis situations you need volunteers from the general population. The KOKOS project investigates how volunteers’ help can be incorporated into the crisis management efforts of public bodies. Research is focusing on IT supported and systematic integration of existing structures such as associations, companies and citizens’ initiatives.

  • 2015

    Ensuring a technological lead


    More and more technologies offer companies opportunities for developing new products, speeding up processes or creating innovations. In the book “Technologien frühzeitig erkennen, Nutzenpotenziale systematisch bewerten”, Fraunhofer IAO presents methods, models and semantic tools for recognizing technological developments at an early stage and systematically assessing any benefits they may offer.

  • 2015

    Call for ideas: New impulses for better cities


    What does the city of the future look like? Start-ups, cities and students will present their best ideas to prominent representatives from communities, politics, industry and research at the Fraunhofer Urban Futures Conference in Berlin on November 25 and 26, 2015. An “idea-pitch” event will determine the top three innovators.

  • 2015

    Top 50 Chinese industry 4.0 patents


    Fraunhofer IAO has analyzed patents registered in China over the last three years for industry 4.0 technologies. The first study to be published on the topic shows that Chinese researchers have patented important inventions in the fields of wireless sensor networks, embedded systems, low-cost robots and big data, indicating that China will be leading the pack when it comes to production data in the future.

  • 2015

    First exoskeleton for industry unveiled


    Production workers often lift up to 10 metric tons of material a day. According to the Work Foundation Alliance (Lancaster, UK), 44 million workers in the EU suffer from work-related musculoskeletal disorders. Now researchers in the EU’s Robo-Mate project have developed an exoskeleton that makes loads up to ten times lighter to lift or carry. The project partners presented the first prototype at Fraunhofer IAO in Stuttgart on 12 June.

  • 2015

    Simulation for civil protection


    In 2012, 40 researchers, technicians and operators from 17 European institutions joined forces in the EU’s CRISMA project to develop simulation and modeling solutions that help public authorities and rescue teams prepare for crisis situations. Now to conclude the project, the consortium will present its concepts for modeling and simulation.

  • 2015

    Launch of HMI 4.0 joint research project


    How do technological developments change the way humans and technology interact in industry? And how can companies make use of these changes? As part of the HMI 4.0 joint research project, Fraunhofer IAO is working with industrial partners to develop scenarios and solutions to address these issues.

  • 2015

    Technology that feels good


    In the EMOIO project launched at the beginning of the year, Fraunhofer IAO is working with partners from research and industry to study how they might record and classify the emotional experiences that take place when a human being interacts with a technical product. The goal is to develop emotion-sensitive assistance systems that adapt to the mood and personal needs of users.

  • 2015

    Services for innovative urban systems


    How can smart services help to create connected city systems for the city of the future? The Smart Urban Services pilot project “Data-based service platform for tomorrow’s urban value-added networks” aims to identify the areas of most potential and develop a platform that profitably connects the various subsystems of a city.

  • 2015

    Study: R&D - Fit for future


    Which trends and challenges will research and development (R&D) managers face in the years to come? Which approaches are successful in practice? In its current “R&D Fit for Future” study, Fraunhofer IAO uses survey results, case studies and example projects to present a variety of ideas for how to design R&D to be future-ready.

  • 2015

    Innovation impetus for Southeast Asia


    Fraunhofer IAO and SIRIM, a research institution in Malaysia, will work together to support small and medium-sized enterprises with their expertise in innovation and technology management in the future. In December 2014, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and SIRIM signed a declaration of intent for the cooperation. The first joint project with Fraunhofer IAO kicked off in March.

  • 2015

    Industry 4.0: China moves into the fast lane


    Part of Fraunhofer IAO’s China TechWatch research project involves analyzing developments in Chinese technology. The project’s first white paper reveals that China is way out in front when it comes to patents for the basic technologies needed for industry 4.0. Purely in terms of the number of patents filed, China has now far outstripped the United States and Germany.

  • 2015

    Intelligent energy management


    Infrastructure operators are already pushing the boundaries of what conventional energy management systems can cope with. This led Fraunhofer IAO and partners from the research and industrial communities to join forces as part of the SmartEnergyHub project to develop a smart data platform that reduces energy consumption by optimizing operational processes.

  • 2015

    Mission: city of the future


    Science Year 2015 is devoted to the city of the future. On February 19, Fraunhofer IAO joined representatives of communities, science, industry and the general public in Berlin to present recommendations for how we can sustainably develop our cities and equip them for the future. As part of a campaign tackling the major questions around the city of the future, Fraunhofer IAO is also informing city authorities, companies and individuals and helping them find the answers.

  • 2015

    Survey on the sharing economy


    Is the sharing economy just media hype or is it in fact a development we should be taking seriously? What risks and opportunities does this growing economic system hold for conventional businesses? Fraunhofer IAO is examining these questions in an online survey.

  • 2015

    LOGWERT adds to Heilbronn's status as a research hub


    On March 1, 2015, the LOGWERT competence center in Heilbronn will be ready to start its work. The center brings together Fraunhofer IAO’s expertise in mobility and urban systems engineering with Heilbronn University’s specialist knowledge of logistics. Initiated by Heilbronn-Franken’s Chamber of Industry and Commerce, the project is receiving funding of one million euros from the Ministry of Finance and Economics Baden-Württemberg.

  • 2015

    Service research award


    On March 5, Thomas Meiren, service researcher and head of department at Fraunhofer IAO, was awarded the 2015 CFSMI Award in recognition of his success in researching and promoting new services. The Confederation for Services Management International made the presentation as part of the 87th AFSMI Chapter Meeting, which carried the title “Transformation of Organizations for Successful Solution Business”.

  • 2015

    IP Management Award 2015


    For the eighth year in a row, Fraunhofer IAO and Management Circle have recognized companies that have demonstrated excellence in the field of commercial property rights. Winners Elmos Semiconductor AG, Nemak and Rogers Germany GmbH impressed the jury with their sustainable practices for implementing new IP management structures. The award ceremony took place as part of the “Patente 2015” congress on March 3.

  • 2015

    Electromobility made fun


    What suits me better? An electric car, an e-bike, or maybe a pedelec? There are many ways to be electrically mobile – and new products are coming out all the time. Elektr-O-Mat is an online game that helps people get a better overview and find out which option is best for them and their individual transportation needs.

  • 2015

    Developing smart services in the cloud


    More and more manufacturing companies are looking to build on their success by expanding their core business to include services. Particularly promising are smart services, which provide intelligent ways of connecting people, things and data. As part of an EU-funded project entitled Manufacturing Service Ecosystem (MSEE), a total of 19 partners had a hand in designing a cloud-based software platform that helps companies develop smart services.

  • 2015

    Recognizing promising new technologies early


    As companies strive to identify the new technologies with the most potential, they are bombarded with a growing torrent of information. New smart software solutions can pick out these technologies and provide innovative methods of evaluating and implementing them into working processes. Now companies can tap the relevant information and feed it efficiently into the decision-making process.

  • 2015

    Better prospects through equal opportunity


    On May 7-8, 2015, Fraunhofer IAO is hosting the Gender and diversity management in research conference as part of the EU-funded project STAGES (Structural Transformation to Achieve Gender Equality in Science). The conference focuses on equal opportunity in the workplace, specifically in the research environment.

  • 2014

    Visualizing technology networks


    Research collaborations and related networks are becoming increasingly important in developing new technologies, particularly since more and more of these activities are interdisciplinary. Fraunhofer IAO’s new “ResearchLandscaping” method makes it easier to find suitable partners.

  • 2014

    Milestones in Human-Machine Cooperation


    Just a little over a year has passed since BBC News ranked the Robo-Mate exoskeleton at No. 2,right after the announcement of the new iPhone, and major technical progress has been made on several fronts.

  • 2014

    Energy efficiency you can count on


    The building sector accounts for 40 percent of primary energy consumption in Europe. Home owners seeking for energy efficiency are faced with confusing and sometimes contradictory information. Now, Fraunhofer IAO has developed a smartphone app in the EU project ENBUS! that helps home owners calculate the tangible benefits of energy efficiency measures before investing.

  • 2013

    Change in leadership at Fraunhofer IAO


    Prof. Dr. Dieter Spath, long-standing director of Fraunhofer IAO and of the IAT at the University of Stuttgart, will become chairman of the Management Board for the WITTENSTEIN Group on October 1, 2013. Prof. Dr. Wilhelm Bauer, previously deputy director, will take over as acting director of both institutes. Apl. Prof. Dr. Anette Weisbecker will assume the role of deputy director.

  • 2013

    Winning ideas for the cities of tomorrow


    Morgenstadt (city of the future) and the “Fraunhofer IZS elektromobilisiert” living lab honored in 2013 competition as Landmarks in the Land of Ideas

  • 2013

    "Working environments 4.0" survey


    For more and more people, work extends beyond the office – whether it’s on the move, at home or in the co-working space just around the corner. Now, Fraunhofer IAO has launched a new survey to investigate the impact these different work arrangements have on our wellbeing, motivation and performance, and to identify the technologies that will help us work efficiently alongside our customers and colleagues in the future.

  • 2013

    Publication of Banks & Future 2013 trend survey


    More than 460 banking experts took part in Fraunhofer IAO’s Banks & Future 2013 trend survey. According to the respondents, the biggest challenge stems from the current politically induced, historically low interest rates and their impact on banks and financial service providers. The survey also reveals the measures being implemented by banks to counter this volatile market situation.

  • 2013

    New service concepts for plant and machinery


    The SPM (“service platform machine”) innovation network consists of a group of companies in the machine tools and plant engineering sector who are working together on future service concepts. They will start on the second phase of their research, focusing on support for sales teams and service technicians, at the end of October 2013.

  • 2013

    Open Innovation - a fad or a phenomenon?


    The Garwood Center for Corporate Innovation at the University of California, Berkeley, and the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft have conducted the first large-sample survey of open innovation adoption among large companies. Their study of European and U.S. companies gives an extensive overview of the ways that companies are now practicing open innovation, along with the trends that can be discerned.

  • 2013

    Making research visible


    When the “Zentrum für Virtuelles Engineering” ZVE opened in Stuttgart just over a year ago, we saw how Fraunhofer IAO had combined laboratory and office areas to create an architectural eye-catcher. A new publication provides insight into the innovative story of how this research building came about and features striking pictures that acknowledge its remarkable architecture and sustainability.

  • 2013

    Volunteering via companies


    Fewer and fewer people are committing themselves to dedicated volunteering organizations, with many preferring to support causes on an ad hoc basis. Many companies also encourage their staff to support non-profit projects. Fraunhofer IAO is using an online survey to study the importance companies attach to employees’ voluntary work.

  • 2013

    New trade fair concept for "manufacturing services"


    Munich trade fair MAINTAIN is to team up with Fraunhofer IAO for a second time to showcase manufacturing services. Europe’s leading trade fair for industrial maintenance will be opening its doors from June 3-6, 2014, giving trade visitors the opportunity to learn about service trends and service innovations in mechanical and plant engineering from a pavilion dedicated to the topic.

  • 2013

    Electric Vehicle Fleet for Garmisch-Partenkirchen


    As part of the “” project, the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO and the Institute for Human Factors and Technology Management IAT at the University of Stuttgart are examining the effects of integrating electric vehicles into Garmisch-Partenkirchen’s existing fleet. The project complements the e-GAP activities of Garmisch-Partenkirchen in its role as an electromobility model community.

  • 2013

    Interfaces for tomorrow’s manufacturing


    Fraunhofer IAO has looked into the effects that developments in the field of manufacturing will have on the interface between humans and technology. The study highlights the potential for future-proof human-machine interfaces (HMIs) and discusses the challenges that will have to be overcome in designing tomorrow’s HMIs and HMI engineering tools.

  • 2013

    Guideline study into the future of manufacturing


    Fraunhofer IAO is laying the foundations for building the 4th industrial revolution. In its study entitled “Manufacturing Activities of the Future – Industry 4.0”, some 600 production managers and over 20 top-class experts sketch out a vision of work in tomorrow’s factories. You can download the study for free from June 2013. An Industry 4.0 innovation network is scheduled to be launched on July 2.

  • 2013

    Canadian collaboration kicks off


    Fraunhofer IAO and McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario are pooling their expertise in the field of technology and innovation management. In future, the partners will collaborate on both research and teaching in order to boost the transfer of research findings and innovative solutions into business practice.

  • 2013

    Hotel of the future – a chance to learn


    Together with its partners in the FutureHotel joint research project, Fraunhofer IAO is busy building a hotel of the future. The new Hotel Schani in Vienna is scheduled to open its doors in fall 2014 and will serve as a practical field lab, testing the suitability of the latest offers and services

  • 2013

    Electric cars in action


    Imagine a number of different companies sharing a single fleet of electric vehicles... Fraunhofer IAO and eight project partners are busy working out just how to make this vision a reality. Funded by the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology, the Shared E-Fleet research project aims not only to work up suitable IT solutions, but also to design the smart energy management and profitable business models that are called for.

  • 2013

    Digital tools for the factory of the future


    Fraunhofer IAO and software company Dassault Systèmes will now be pooling their digital factory know-how. By combining a knowledge of scientific techniques with software expertise, they aim to communicate and build on the potential offered when integrating product and production development.

  • 2013

    Putting research into pratice


    Without research, progress and innovation would grind to a halt. But how research findings are put into practice is a subject that must be investigated in detail in its own right. This was the focus of work carried out by Fraunhofer IAO, together with Fraunhofer ISI, the Heinz Nixdorf Institute at the University of Paderborn and the company Research and Innovation VFI, belonging to the German Engineering Federation VDMA.

  • 2013

    Managing development projects more productively


    According to a recently published study carried out by Fraunhofer IAO and Drees & Sommer Process Consulting GmbH, manufacturing companies could dramatically improve their development and design processes by considering them from a services point of view.

  • 2013

    Two IAO scientists awarded honorary titles


    The Technical University of Cluj-Napoca (UTC-N), Romania’s second largest technical university, has conferred an honorary doctorate upon Professor Dr. Dieter Spath, institute director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO. Spath was awarded the honor in recognition of his outstanding scientific achievements and his long standing commitment to teaching at UTC-N. Dr. Carmen Constantinescu, scientist at Fraunhofer IAO and lecturer at UTC-N, was awarded an honorary professorship.

  • 2013

    Understanding, measuring, and shaping service productivity


    With the right services, companies can improve their performance and be more competitive. But is there a reliable way to measure how productive the services offered really are? The Productivity of Services Strategic Partnership has now published recommendations and guidelines.

  • 2013

    Cloud Advice for SMEs


    Business-Software-as-a-Service living lab offers cloud expertise to companies in Baden-Württemberg

  • 2013

    Girls’Day 2013


    Marking Girls’ Day at the Fraunhofer institutes in Stuttgart

  • 2013

    Lab on demand


    New collaboration opportunities for SMEs in Baden-Württemberg

  • 2013

    Go volunteers!


    German national research project “INKA” devises ways to manage volunteers in crisis situations

  • 2013

    Best Research 2012


    Fraunhofer IAO awards prizes for innovation in technology management

  • 2012

    FutureID: bringing Secure Identities to the Internet


    Stuttgart, Germany, November 14-16: The EC-funded three-year project, FutureID, commenced work with a kick-off meeting hosted by its coordinator, Fraunhofer Gesellschaft. It addresses the challenges of bringing secure identities to the Internet.

  • 2012

    The House of Knowledge Work


    On June 20, over 200 guests from the worlds of politics, business and science celebrated the official opening of Fraunhofer IAO’s "Zentrum für Virtuelles Engineering ZVE" in Stuttgart.