Münsterland is a rather rural region. This raises social challenges and questions, e.g. of how health care, participation and well-being can also be guaranteed in the future. These are aspects to which the FH Münster, together with more than 75 partners in the project "münster.land.leben" (münster.county.life) is dedicated.
On the intermediate conference, the individual sub-projects presented after the first year of acting to around 100 participants first results. "The Münster University of Applied Sciences takes its role as a driver of innovation in the region very seriously. And our university also likes to expend frontiers", said President Prof. Dr Ute von Lojewski.
The duration of the project is five years. The project is organized into 13 subprojects, which use the interim conference to explain the current project procedure and progress to the interested participants from science and society in the context of panel discussions and the "market of possibilities" and to get in touch with them.
This exchange process is particularly important, since the university does not only create knowledge for societies but also aims to actively integrate it into innovative societal projects.
During the pannel discussion, Dr Christian Junker, Director for Business Engagement of the Science-to-Business Marketing Research Centre, answered the tricky question of the moderator "What is innovation?" succinctly: "Innovation is when the market screams 'Hurrah'". "And we want to address that life in rural areas is at least as good as in metropolitan regions," Dr Junker added in the panel.
In order for innovations from the university to be successfully carried into society, however, the concept of transfer must change in the sense of "Science with and for Society". "The transfer of ideas, knowledge and technology is understood as a recursive process in the sense of an exchange between university and society. Only together - if we bring science, business and society together and integrate them right from the beginning - can we manage to fulfil our social responsibility as a university and address the really important social challenges of our time." stated Dr Kerstin Kurzhals, Junior Professor at Science-to-Business Marketing Research Centre and Research Line leader "Science-to-Society".
Here is also the subproject 5 "Science Marketing" anchored, which accompanies and supports the individual subprojects of the münster.land.leben entire project on a scientific-analytical level. Part of this role is to support the other sub-projects with methods, tools and instruments, to successfully implement the transfer of innovative concepts from the university to society, and thus to overcome transfer obstacles. Additionally, a UBC (University-Business-Cooperation) ecosystem developed by the research centre for the European Commission will be applied to health- and social sector and a USC (University-Society-Cooperation) ecosystem will be modelled.
The attendees of the conference expressed their substantial interest to join in for the next one in spring 2020.