About the DC Network
About the DC Network
Baden-Württemberg is the 3rd largest federal state of Germany, both in size (35.752 km²) and in population (10.75 million). In 2007 Baden-Württemberg had a Gross Domestic Product of 353 billion Euro, making it one of the strongest economies in Europe with a market size of international level. Baden-Württemberg is known not only for brands like Mercedes, Porsche, Bosch and Zeppelin, which were named after inventors and fundamental innovations, but also for famous poets and creative thinkers like Schiller, Hesse, Hegel and Einstein.
Baden-Württemberg is one of the most competitive and innovative regions in Europe and the world, featuring the highest innovation index with 127 patent applications per 100,000 inhabitants. A broad, networked economy and the penetration of all sectors by high-tech contribute to this success – as do the high investments in research and development (R&D). In fact, 4,2 % of GDP go directly into R&D – more than in any other region in Europe and more than in other major OECD countries like Japan or the USA. In addition, 17,3 % of all employees have high tech jobs, which is the no. 1 position in Europe. Today, innovation is a precondition of competitiveness, growth and jobs. Baden-Württemberg’s regional innovation system is enabled by government, industry and research institutions acting in concert. The government provides the framework via its advanced science and technology policy. Cluster initiatives and innovation networks are the very heart of this systemic innovation policy.
Baden-Württemberg has more institutes of higher education than any other German federal state. Outstanding results in different higher education league tables and evaluations have testified over many years to the quality of higher education in our state - not just in one or two top institutions but right across the board. This unique scientific and technological infrastructure ensures a high educational level of workers and employees. As a consequence, 52,7 % of all employees in Baden-Württemberg have a certified diploma of vocational training. And this figure does not even include employees with a bachelor’s or master’s degree! The latest research results effectively find their way into the economy through a close cooperation with 45 research institutes of Fraunhofer Society, Max Planck Society and other contracted research institutes and over 330 technology transfer centers of the Steinbeis Foundation.
Baden-Württemberg’s key industries are mobility (e.g. automotive), process and production technology (e.g. mechanical engineering), TIME [telecommunication, IT, media, electronics] (e.g. software), Health Care (e.g. pharmaceuticals) and environment technology (e.g. solar energy). It is the world champion in exports: 41,5 % of GDP is being exported. Apart from so-called global players with headquarters in Stuttgart (Daimler-Chrysler), Heidelberg (Heidelberger Druckmaschinen) and Mannheim (SAP), Baden-Württemberg also features entrepreneurship and “hidden champions” of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) to a great extend: Baden-Württemberg has the highest rate of high tech start ups in Germany. Even so the government has a long tradition in supporting SMEs and successfully provides initiatives to support start ups, entrepreneurs and successions. Finally, the strength of Baden-Württemberg’s economy leads to highest purchasing power in Europe and traditionally to the lowest unemployment rate in Germany.
The Stuttgart Ballet is world class, and the State Opera in Stuttgart has enjoyed a reputation as the premier venue in the German speaking world for many years, voted "Opera of the Year" many times in succession. And Stuttgart's Staatsgalerie is famous for one of the most important Classic Modern collections. Baden-Württemberg is the ideal place for rest and recreation. Delightful landscapes such as the Black Forest, Lake Constance and the Swabian Mountains, famous gastronomy, festivals and spa culture, are part of the particular attraction of Baden-Württemberg. Old university cities such as Heidelberg, Freiburg and Tübingen, which are steeped in tradition, as well as numerous castles and fortresses, churches and monasteries invite you to make excursions between the Rhine and the Neckar. 20,4 % of Baden-Württemberg’s population is younger than 20 years, so it has got the youngest population relative to the other German federal states. All this leads to an environment enhancing creativity and the spirit of innovation: if a high potential or researcher feels comfortable in his working environment he can perform exceptionally!
Baden-Württemberg is a location with a very special mixture of tradition, innovation, regional variety and cultural diversity. So creativity and technology form a unique alliance hardly found anywhere else in the world. In 2009, Baden-Württemberg hosts the 6th Creativity World Forum where this alliance between creativity and technology can be experienced in a very close and global way. Come to feel the spirit!
Coördinator of the DC Network
Members of the DC Network