Bremen's InnoVision 2010 programme aims to make it one of Germany's top ten technology locations in 2010. This innovation policy is a major element of Bremen's economic and science policy. Bremen's profile is to be enhanced by the strengthening of existing fields of innovation (e.g. aerospace, design) and the development of new fields of innovation (e.g. blue biotechnology, t.i.m.e. [telecommunications, information technology, multimedia and entertainment]). Further areas of innovation include the health sector, the environmental industry and logistics.
The European Union is participating financially in Bremen's innovative policy via funding from the European structural funds. Since 1989, Bremen has received roughly € 285 million from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). Most of the money comes from Objective 2 assistance, the fifth period of which is now being implemented in Bremen. The aim is sustainable promotion of the economy, competitiveness, innovation and employment in the region.
Counsellor of State Dr. Färber highlighted the fact that, despite all the success it has achieved so far, Bremen will continue to be exposed to pressures of economic adjustment and that further structural assistance will continue to be needed in both Bremen and Bremerhaven. It is therefore most important that, firstly, financial support continue to be provided to the state from the European structural funds and that, secondly, sufficient scope for autonomous regional support be retained. For this reason, the recently published proposals of the European Commission on European structural policy from 2007 are welcome. Bremen's economics department regards them as an appropriate response to the challenges of the enlarged Community. The Commission has succeeded in presenting a concept which takes account of the Community's Lisbon objectives in the framework of future cohesion policy. European cohesion policy will therefore make its contribution towards competitiveness, employment and sustainability and thus towards enhancing economic growth in Europe.
With its past successes and experience in implementing an innovative regional policy, Bremen is extremely well placed, with support from the European structural funds, to continue to make an independent contribution towards growth and employment in Europe.
Dr. Anja Turkowsky, director of innoWi GmbH presented her company, which is a special instrument of Bremen's innovation policy. This project marks an interface between regional innovation policy and regional economic policy with the help of Objective 2 funding.
Dr. Stefan Graul of EADS Space Transportation presented the PHOENIX project, a test model for the future re-usable European space transporter "Hopper", which is planned for around 2020. The PHOENIX project has opened up the great opportunity for the space industry in Bremen to undertake a major element of the national ASTRA programme by 2004. The development of a re-usable space transport system necessitates a range of additional, fundamentally new capabilities compared with today's conventional launcher systems. "With Phoenix, we are preparing the future of the next generation of launchers in order to consolidate our market position in European competition," said Dr. Stefan Graul at the presentation in Brussels. So far, EADS SPACE Transportation has invested € 8.2 million of its own capital in the project, and the state of Bremen and the European Union have contributed € 4.3 million. In addition, there is funding from partner companies like OHB in Bremen, the German Aerospace Centre and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The total budget for the project is roughly € 16 million.
Both projects create skills in Bremen which raise expectations of a clear technological and competitive advantage in the region.