Municipal Innovation Partnerships (Kommunale Innovationspartnerschaften)

Due to urbanisation, rural regions suffer from a loss of attractiveness for businesses as well as for citizens. This leads to a widespread separation of rural regions. However, studies show that communities located close to universities and those which cooperate with institutions of higher university are prospering sustainably. H-BRS concluded a partnership agreement with the local municipality Neukirchen-Seelscheid in order to initiate the pilot project “Municipal Innovation Partnership” (German: Kommunale Innovationspartnerschaften). By collaborating with the local municipality, this project will serve as a multiplier of positive effects of the university into rural areas (repeater effect).
Hochschule Bonn-Rhein-Sieg

The aim of the project is to develop an innovation and transfer management system that promotes the transfer between universities, rural areas and the resulting innovations.

Holistic concept for sustainable cooperation

Although the partners, the university and the municipality, appear to be different at first glance, the cooperation has advantages for both sides. Within the partnership, all stakeholders interact with each other and work out institutionalised ways and joint projects to promote sustainable cooperation. This holistic concept is institutionalised within the entire process, from the first contact between university and municipality, through the realisation of a strategic partnership, to concrete operational cooperation at local level.

Developing specific sets of measures

Hochschule Bonn-Rhein-Sieg

At the beginning of the pilot project the current situation of the municipality Neunkirchen-Seelscheid will be analysed by surveys and events, such as workshops and other dialogue formats, which are performed together with actors from economy, society as well as politics and administration of the municipality. In a parallel step, transfer measures are scientifically developed and adjusted to the resources, skills and needs of both the municipality and the university, which were elaborated in the first step. The result is a specific set of measures, from which selected ones are implemented on a trial basis in close cooperation with the pilot municipality and then evaluated for their effectiveness.

The developed innovation and transfer management system should subsequently be used by other universities and rural municipalities to increase their attractiveness.