How to Work with Us

For more than three decades, the FZI has been providing businesses and public institutions with the latest research findings in information technology as practical solutions. In cooperation projects as well as by direct orders, the FZI develops innovative concepts as well as software, hardware and system solutions and prototypically implements these for its partners. Key transfer instruments of the FZI are to conduct research by direct orders of companies but also cooperative research projects together with companies. Our guiding principles constitute the central pillars. Lawful and value-oriented conduct provides for us the basis of trust for our cooperation both with our partners in companies and public institutions as well as at the FZI. For this reason, we have set our own rules in form of a Code of Conduct. Please note that the Compliance Management System of the FZI is still under construction.

In 2018, 184 projects were carried out at the FZI both for and in cooperation with companies. The different projects can be divided into two classes:

  • Contract research, in which orders and funding are provided directly by an interested party (usually a company but also by ministries, associations etc.), and
  • collaborative research projects, usually involving several corporate partners and often funded in part by government bodies.

Contract research

In order to carry out research challenges in a customised and individual way for a company, without time delay and uncertainties about funding opportunities or requirements imposed by the funding body, contract research is the means of choice. Researchers of the FZI develop a target-oriented scientific solution, usually for a concrete application problem, and thus help the customer in finding innovative solutions to implement recent scientific findings in a practical way. Technology scouting, feasibility studies and training in innovative technologies are additional contract forms by which the FZI supports companies in innovation processes.

Funded contract research

In order to support the innovation capacity and the growth orientation of small and medium-sized enterprises, there are funding programmes at European, federal and state level that promote the commissioning of research institutions to research and develop new products and services.

Like other contract research projects, the projects carried out in this framework are also customised to the requirements of one or more customers that contribute their own share to the project costs. Through the necessary formal processes during the application for research funding for collaborative projects, it is important to plan sufficient lead time for publicly subsidised research projects.

Collaborative research

In collaborative research projects, a network of partners works on a defined research tasks. The funding for the implementation of the project (collaborative project) will be provided pro rata by a public funding body.

In collaborative research, knowledge is not only transferred from the research partner to the customer but all project partners support each other with their competences in order to achieve a common research aim. In the application phase, even before the actual project starts, the partners develop a common vision for the innovation which is to be developed within the framework of the research projects. After the approval for the research funding, this knowledge and technology transfer, which has already begun in the application phase, will continue, primarily along the actually addressed research challenge. However, new cooperations as well as ideas for innovations often emerge through the collaborative work within the research association and well qualified researchers establish contact to possible future employers.

In collaborative research, the funding body often prescribes that the results of the research work has to be systematically disseminated and made available to the public during the project term.

If you have any further questions, please contact us!

Either by mail or by phone with our foyer/lobby that will be pleased to put you in touch with a suitable contact person:

FZI Forschungszentrum Informatik
Phone: +49 721 9654-0
Fax: +49 721 9654-909

The contact persons for research topics, the FZI House of Living Labs and the press can be found on the particular pages.