ZEF "Location of Progress" in North Rhine Westphalia

October 17, 2011.  

Svenja Schulze, Minister of Innovation, Science and Research of the State North Rhine Westphalia (NRW) appointed the Center for Development Research (ZEF) a „Location of Progress“ (Ort des Fortschritts) in the context of its initiative “Progress NRW” (Fortschritt.NRW) on October 17.


In her speech she pointed out that ZEF’s overall goal is to create interdisciplinary solutions to urgent issues in and for developing countries and to educate a young generation of scientists who can contribute to local sustainable solutions.


“ZEF's international collaboration and interdisciplinary set up, the triangle of research, consultancy and training and its ambition to find answers to the questions of the future in its function as think tank – all this is an ambitious implementation of the philosophy of “Progress NRW”, said the minister in her speech during the inauguration ceremony at ZEF. “ZEF empowers people to help themselves by finding local answers to global challenges”, said Svenja Schulze, “therewith it is representing the basic idea of “Progress NRW”.


The Rector of the University of Bonn, Jürgen Fohrmann, emphasized the importance of development research for the University: “Honoring ZEF means honoring the University of Bonn”. ZEF’s executive Director, Joachim von Braun, envisaged the scenario that NRW will develop into a “Landscape of Progress” and that ZEF is eager to contribute to making NRW visible as an international hub of science.


„Progress NRW“ focuses on ideas and concepts with people as a central point. Sustainable progress implies innovations beyond the realm of pure technology and aims at social processes, services and solutions, taking into consideration the impact on man, society and the environment. Progress therefore embraces social issues and connects economy and ecology.


„Locations of Progress“ are locations in North Rhine Westphalia where sustainable progress „made in NRW“ are made visible. The award endorses the contribution of the institution to sustainable progress in NRW, and at the same time it shows that NRW as a location of science and industry, with strong regions and a lively culture, has excellent opportunities to organize and create progress.


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Alma van der Veen


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