Lower Saxony has a diverse research landscape with clear priorities, which boasts a close cooperation between universities and non-university institutes. These include 21 public universities, 18 supra-regional non-university research institutes, 14 other research institutes that are jointly funded by the Federal Government and the Land, as well as numerous innovative enterprises.
With topics from the disciplines of the life sciences, energy, mobility, marine and climate research, production technology, the humanities and social sciences, and agricultural sciences, Lower Saxony’s research policy emphasises the systematic involvement of the scientific community in pressing issues of social relevance. Gender and diversity aspects are taken into account on an ongoing basis.
Specific funding policy adopts a two-pronged approach in supporting the diverse research landscape in Lower Saxony, comprising internationally renowned institutes dedicated to basic research, universities with different profiles, institutes of higher education and universities of applied science that are firmly rooted in the region and research institutes that are administered by the Land: firstly, participation is encouraged in the major calls for tender and programmes of the EU’s research funding, for example. Secondly, the Land maps out its own funding policy course, for instance, with regard to research for sustainable development or topics of particular interest to the Land, like innovation and economic development.
Sustainability in research and teaching is one of the guiding principles of its higher education development.
Moreover, Lower Saxony is committed to increasing the research capabilities of its universities of applied science and developing its research infrastructure. Technology funding and transfer are major issues, featuring heavily in the Land’s research, structural and economic policies. A key objective is to improve innovation and competitive potential, particularly that of small and medium-sized enterprises.
Networks and cooperation projects between universities, research institutes and companies have proven to be highly successful instruments.