VR simulation with paper planes

Fostering Innovation and Entrepreneurial Dynamism

Innovation and entrepreneurial dynamism are key factors in advancing prosperity, competitiveness and positive societal change. We are committed to developing research-based strategies and actionable solutions that promote innovation and entrepreneurial activity – in the service of sustainable transformation.

Foto Daniel Schraad-Tischler
Dr. Daniel Schraad-Tischler
Foto Jan C. Breitinger
Dr. Jan C. Breitinger
Senior Project Manager
Foto Armando García Schmidt
Armando García Schmidt
Senior Expert
Foto Cornelia Nyssing
Cornelia Nyssing
Project Manager
Foto Julia Scheerer
Julia Scheerer
Senior Project Manager
Foto Birgit Riess
Birgit Riess
Foto Norbert Osterwinter
Norbert Osterwinter
Project Manager
Foto Daniel Posch
Daniel Posch
Project Manager
Foto Christian Schilcher
Dr. Christian Schilcher
Project Manager
Foto Marc Wolinda
Marc Wolinda
Project Manager
Foto Alexandra Schmied
Dr. Alexandra Schmied
Senior Project Manager
Foto Murali Nair
Murali Nair
Senior Project Manager
Foto Nicole Adams
Nicole Adams
Program Assistant
Foto Susanne Kreft
Susanne Kreft
Project Assistant
Foto Vanessa Tofing
Vanessa Tofing
Project Assistant

Our mission

With its outstanding universities, creative research institutions and a corporate landscape as diverse as it is dynamic – Germany offers all the essentials of a highly innovative society and economy. Every day, countless good ideas are conceived and new companies are founded here, and products and services made in Germany continue to be market leaders in numerous sectors. These conditions are crucial to fostering economic prosperity and positive societal change.

However, a closer look at the situation in Germany shows room for improvement: The country’s overall pace of innovation and entrepreneurial activity is too slow. This has muted our economic and technological competitiveness and could ultimately result in increased dependence on other global regions, especially with regard to key digital technologies. Moreover, we risk missing out on opportunities to solve the urgent problems facing society through innovation. Achieving sustainable transformation demands that we develop and apply innovative approaches and methods. Only by strengthening innovation and entrepreneurial dynamism will we be able to maintain our current levels of prosperity while building a sustainable economy and society.  

For these reasons, our project explores ways of enhancing this dynamic. What policies and institutions are needed to promote values-based innovation? How can we make entrepreneurial activity more inclusive, and what kind of support is needed by founders pursuing societal objectives? And how can German SMEs become a driving force of innovation and sustainability?

In seeking answers to these questions, we develop evidence-based studies, identify good practices in Germany and internationally, formulate recommendations for actions to be taken by policymakers and business leaders alike, and bring together stakeholders from the worlds of business, academia, politics and civil society. Behind our efforts is always the belief that innovation and entrepreneurial dynamism are cornerstones of competitiveness and positive societal change.

Our approach

Given the broad range of areas relevant to innovation and entrepreneurial potential, which range from research and education to economic policy and corporate governance, we take a holistic approach to our work in focusing on four areas:

  • Innovation Policy: In this focus area, we examine the political and policy environments most conducive to innovation. In particular, we explore the creation and development of institutions that help implement a mission-oriented innovation policy across Germany.
  • SME Innovation Potential: In this focus area, we examine how German SMEs can better identify and exploit their potential for innovation – particularly when it comes to making the shift toward sustainable forms of economic activity.
  • Entrepreneurial Potential: In this focus area, we seek to stimulate entrepreneurial activity, with two main objectives. First, we aim to make the startup landscape more inclusive; second, we aim to improve the transfer of research findings into both commercial and non-commercial applications.
  • Founding with Impact: In this focus area, we aim to strengthen Germany’s impact ecosystem. To do so, we support founders who are targeting social or environmental objectives, thus helping them to realize their full impact.

Our focus areas at a glance

In the future, only communities ​that face up to global competition and repeatedly demonstrate their ability to innovate and perform ​can succeed and endure.

Reinhard Mohn