HELMIZ innovation center

A driving force behind the transfer of knowledge and technology

Collage: Solarpark, digitale Landwirtschafrt, Circular Economy
© V.l.n.r.: Unsplash, vxnaghiyev, adobe.stock.com, Parradee, adobe.stock.com
One aim of the innovation center is to reinforce local change in the areas of technology and services for the energy transition, resource efficiency through the circular economy, and sustainable digital agriculture.
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Challenge: Sustainable structural change in the former lignite mining area  

The safeguarding of existing jobs and the creation of new ones is a key element in the implementation of economic, social and ecologically sustainable structural change in the former Helmstedt mining district. One major driver is innovation, as this is a prerequisite for the long-term strengthening of enterprises and small, medium and large companies in the region.

Solution: An innovation center for the Helmstedt economic region

In order to drive forward the transformation in the former lignite mining region of Helmstedt, the Fraunhofer IST is working together with the Fraunhofer IKTS and in close cooperation with Wirtschaftsregion Helmstedt GmbH on the development and establishment of an innovation center for measures addressing the transfer of knowledge and technology. The main areas of focus are:

  • Technologies and services for the energy transition
  • Resource efficiency through the circular economy
  • Sustainable and digital agriculture

The aim is to boost value creation in the region. Within the framework of this project, projects addressing the sustainable transfer of knowledge and technology are to be initiated which will be implemented with regional partners from business, science and politics. This should not only strengthen regional companies, but also make the region more attractive to new businesses. In close cooperation with the TU Braunschweig and Ostfalia Braunschweig/Wolfenbüttel, the innovation center furthermore provides advice and support to start-ups and young companies.

Added value for the region

Moreover, since 2018, the Helmstedt mining district has been participating in the nationwide model program “Unternehmen Revier”, which is organized by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action. This provides the former lignite mining region of Helmstedt with the opportunity to implement innovative projects in order to drive forward structural change in the district of Helmstedt and to facilitate the transformation towards a sustainable economic region. 

Further information



A look behind the scenes of the planned innovation center in Helmstedt

Dr. Guido Hora, Business Development Manager at the Fraunhofer IST, will be responsible for the internal Fraunhofer coordination and will initiate the establishment of a contact office. In this interview, he presents the goals, tasks and requirements of the project.


Press release, November 21, 2023

Fraunhofer IST founds innovation center in Helmstedt

The funding notification has been delivered and now things are moving forward in the economic region. The funding sum of more than one million euros will be used for the project of the Fraunhofer IST and IKTS "Development and establishment of an innovation center by the Fraunhofer IST as a catalyst for knowledge- and technology-transfer measures".


Press release, November 22, 2022

Structural change in the “Helmstedter Revier”

How can an economic, social and ecologically sustainable structural change be achieved in the former opencast mines near Helmstedt? This question is being addressed also by the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft.

Funding reference

Logo of the Federal Ministry for Economics and Climate Action
(formerly Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy)



Grant agreement No: 46SKD213X

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