Energy in the future and entrepreneurship – EIT Digital Summer School

Under the heading “Smart Energy Systems & Entrepreneurship,” the international summer school of the EIT Digital took place from July 27 to August 7, 2015 in cooperation with the KIT Institute for Entrepreneurship, Technology Management and Innovation (EnTechnon). The goal of the summer school was to promote innovations in the energy sector. Around 40 participants from around the world participated in the two-week summer school in Karlsruhe.

Through expert lectures and workshops, master students, scientists, and young professionals dealt with the energy systems of the future and potential business ideas in this segment such as new energy systems, e-mobility, or storage systems. One highlight of the summer school was the excursion to juwi in Wörrstadt. In addition to a guided tour of the company grounds and a tour of the wind facilities, Matthias Willenbacher, co-founder of juwi, was available to answer participants’ questions at the founder’s talk.

 

The focus of the first week of the summer school was on energy-relevant topics. During the second week, potential business ideas were created in various workshops. These ideas were then developed in small groups lead by mentors. At the end of the summer school, the teams presented their developed business ideas during a seven-minute pitch to an expert jury. After long consultation, the jury named the ‘Multi-Family Homes Flexibility Monetization’ team the winner. Participants were also able to rank each other. In this ranking, the ‘Power Check Plug’ team received the most votes. The final pitch ended with satisfied teams and enthused jury members.

 

Looking back, the participants draw a very positive verdict. Anca Solacolu of the KTH Stockholm explained, “After my Bachelor’s degree, I thought that I would never be able to build a company – because I lacked the entrepreneurial skills. My Master’s degree at KIC Inno Energy and the summer school helped me a lot in developing these skills.” She valued the cultural and information technological exchange during the summer school and was able to gather valuable experiences. Simon Salis of University of Brighton also sees the summer school as a positive experience and responded to the question of whether he would recommend the program straightforward with, “Just two words: Yes, 100 percent!”

Founder of the Month May: Falquez, Pantle und Pritz GbR

Nuberisim_Logo_RGB_150_ppiThe company Falquez, Pantle und Pritz GbR offers software-as-a-service for flow and noise prognoses in technical device development. With the help of the cloud-based platform NUBERISIM, complex high performance simulations can be driven and operated easily via browser. Therefore, potential sources of noise are found as early as product development and measures for noise minimization can be taken early on. In an interview, we asked Dr. Iris Pantle about the idea, the startup time, and the future prospects.

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Team of NUBERISIM (f.l.): Balazs Pritz, Iris Pantle, Carlos Falquez (Source: KIT / Markus Breig)

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KIT Entrepreneurship Talk with Prof. Stork – Pioneer of technology transfer at the KIT

Prof. Stork bei den KIT Entrepreneurship TalksOn April 23, 2015, the opening event of the Entrepreneurship Talks for the summer semester 2015 took place. Prof. Dr. Wilhelm Stork, multiple founder of KIT spin-offs, collegial leader of the Institute for Information Processing Technologies (ITIV), and director of the area of embedded systems and sensor engineering at the Research Center for Information Technology was invited as a guest. He talked about his professional career, which impressively combines science and entrepreneurship.

Prof. Stork already began to deal with entrepreneurial thought early on alongside to his pure research activities. His motivation in doing so was his curiosity regarding whether there was a possibility to realize his research results and whether there were already companies on the market that could manufacture products from them. The question about realization or even utilization of research results on the market was not self-evident at the time. It was a novelty and wasn’t viewed very positively. Consequently, Prof. Stork had to initially pursue his project relatively unnoticed.

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Entrepreneurship for Researchers – Satisfied participants of the Summer School 2014

 Scientists discover the world of entrepreneurship and convince at the final pitch

Under the title “Entrepreneurship for Researchers”, the Institute for Entrepreneurship, Technology Management and Innovation organized the summer school of the KIT Founders Forge from September 22nd to 26th, 2014. The school took place again in cooperation with the HECTOR School of Engineering & Management.

A total of 16 participants from technical or scientific areas faced the entrepreneurial challenge and worked on specific business ideas based on technical inventions of the KIT in the five day school.

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The first PhD Spring School on Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship comes to an end successfully

Doctoral candidates become tomorrow’s entrepreneurs

The founder city Karlsruhe and especially KIT offer the perfect platform for emerging entrepreneurs to develop their ideas into a potential business idea and found their own business. In light of this fact, the Institute for Entrepreneurship, Technology Management and Innovation (EnTechnon) developed the first “PhD Spring School on Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship”: The focus was on technological inventions as a basis for startups.

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In cooperation with the HECTOR School of Engineering & Management, the School took place from March 26th to March 31st with 21 participants. The participants mainly came from the technological and scientific area. With the help of technical lectures and workshops, they were able to acquire the foundational know-how for the startup of a business. In addition to the theoretical foundations, the scientists were taught how to develop business ideas from research results and technologies. In different workshops, such as creativity, business model development, and financial planning, participants were able to apply their newly acquired stills to practical examples in smaller groups. Among other things, the subject matter to practice on was the technology offerings at KIT, from which the participants created business ideas. These results were presented to a jury at the concluding pitch event on March 31st and the individual groups received feedback about their business ideas.

Andreas Przybilla is a doctoral candidate at KIT. The PhD Spring School was able to strengthen his determination to found his own business. “I received a lot of help in developing my idea into a business idea because there are many aspects in the process of starting up a business that we don’t tend to consider by ourselves.” Przybilla recommends this ‘101’ to all doctoral candidates who seek starting up a business.
Fabian Graf of the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg also gives a positive summary of the intensive workdays. The PhD School has given him knowledge of the expectations, preparation, and important topics in business startups. The workshops helped him acquire techniques and tools in order to better realize his creativity and frame his thoughts in a more structured way. “It was a total of four days, so you don’t sacrifice too much PhD working time. But considering such a short amount of time, it was very intensive, all culminating in a pitch event. Here, one can use everything one has learned throughout the past days.”
After the successful end to the School, the preparations for the next round are already underway: the second School will take place in September 2014. For questions and more information, please contact Anja Wahl.