Industrial Innovation Strategies

The Business Unit is coordinated by Dr. Christian Lerch.

Projects of the Business Unit Industrial Innovation Strategies

The Business Unit Industrial analyzes innovation and competition strategies of manufacturing companies and their economic and political framework conditions and impacts. The Business Unit focuses on the following research topics:

  • Dissemination and impacts of new production and organization methods as well as new services on the competitiveness of companies and the identification of innovation strategic success patterns in different industries, markets and technological contexts,

  • Development and application of concepts and instruments to measure and assess the innovativeness and competitiveness of companies for internal management and to improve innovation processes in companies themselves as well as to assess them from an external perspective (e.g. associations, investors, politics),

  • Analysis of the cooperation of actors from industry, society and politics in industrial innovation systems and its impacts on the ability to innovate and the competitiveness of industrial companies. This includes accompanying research on innovation and technology policy support measures on the national and international level.

Due to the increasing complexity of the innovation process as well as the shifts in actor constellations and their functions in the industrial innovation system there is an increasing need by industry and particularly by policy-makers for evidence-based – i.e. derived from investigating structures and interdependencies in the empirical reality - recommendations for action how sustainable and competitive competition and innovation strategies and political instruments of science, innovation and technology policies can be designed. The Business Unit has conceptualized and coordinated the representative survey Modernization of Production since 1991 in Germany, since 2011 the European version European Manufacturing Survey (EMS) respectively on the most detailed and widest survey on industrial value-added processes and modernization strategies of companies in the manufacturing industry. Today the European EMS network comprises 15 European partner organizations as well as partners in BRIC countries (China and Russia). Depending on requirements and research questions these quantitative approaches are complemented and consolidated by qualitative approaches of empirical innovation research (e.g. workshops, expert interviews, action research).

Our services for our clients include:

  • Assessment and (further) development of innovation and competition strategies of companies particularly of medium-sized enterprises,

  • Measuring industrial innovation capacity and innovation benchmarking,

  • Supporting the development of services and new business models,

  • Supporting operational decisions on location and in/outsourcing,

  • Accompanying the strategic design of organizational framework conditions for innovation (e.g. competence development, Open Innovation, risk assessment of innovation co-operations),

  • Studies on future viability and competitiveness of companies, industries and sectors of the manufacturing industry in Germany, Europe and internationally,

  • Evaluating and designing support instruments of industrial innovation, technology and economic policy making.