Lightweighting is of crucial importance for the competitiveness of many sectors and the thorough modernisation of the industrial sector in Germany. For this reason, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action is continuing to expand the support available for this forward looking technology. The Lightweighting Initiative Coordination Office and the Lightweighting Forum offer expert contacts for businesses and a platform for cross-technology and cross-sectoral networking.
The contact point for businesses: the Lightweighting Initiative Coordination Office
The Lightweighting Initiative Coordination Office (Organisational Chart (PDF, 372 KB)) is a national and international network hub for German companies, and especially SMEs, supporting the implementation of lightweighting and fostering the cross-sectoral transfer of technology – with activities ranging from backing for initiatives to a more widespread industrial roll-out of lightweighting and its use in mass production.
The Lightweighting Initiative Coordination Office is a central contact point for interested stakeholders from business, science and government. It coordinates the approach to digital structural change in industry in terms of lightweighting in Germany. It provides practical recommendations and examples of best practice for companies and policymakers, as well as customised support, thus giving a decisive boost to the sector and activating suitable multipliers to get the message out. Cooperation between experts at national and international level is helping to enhance Germany’s reputation as a lightweighting centre.
A platform for transferring expertise: the Lightweighting Forum
The Economic Affairs Ministry regularly hosts a Round Table together with the Lightweighting Initiative Coordination Office. This Lightweighting Forum is a platform for a cross-technology and efficient transfer of expertise between the various stakeholders around Germany. The Forum focuses on technology trends, the activities of the Federal Government and the German Länder, and the opportunities and risks associated with foreign markets. The 9th session of the Forum will take place on September 29, 2022.
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Lightweighting Strategy for Germany’s industrial sector
Germany is to become the lead market and lead provider for lightweighting. Lightweighting ideally combines the three dimensions of sustainability: economy, ecology and social aspects. The BMWK's Lightweighting Strategy was developed to further strengthen this technology and set the appropriate policy framework. For this purpose, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action asked 350 experts from different industries to actively contribute their specific expertise in an extensive process and within the framework of 3 workshops from March 2019 to March 2020. Based on the impulses and fields of action contained therein, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action has developed the goals and measures for the Lightweighting Strategy for Germany as an industrial sector.
The objectives and measures of the Lightweighting Strategy for Germany as an industrial sector are to be adapted to current developments in a 3-year cycle and updated accordingly.
Central Innovation Programme for SMEs (ZIM)
The Central Innovation Programme for SMEs (ZIM) is the Economic Affairs Ministry’s core programme for the market-based funding of technology for innovative German SMEs. More.
The Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action's Innovation Vouchers (go-inno)
The Innovation Vouchers from the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action fund external management and advice from authorised consultants to help with preparing and implementing product and technical process innovations in companies with technological potential. The funding is not restricted in principle to specific technologies, products or sectors. The only precondition is that the company has fewer than 100 employees and an annual turnover of not more than €20 million. More (in German).
Start-Up funding pays off
The Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action is using the EXIST programme to support the establishment of high-tech start-ups in science. After a start-up is created, the German Accelerator programme provides further support for its internationalisation and market expansion. Celonis SE is a great example for the success of such activities. More.