Merger Creates Powerhouse Research Centre in Luxembourg

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2015 got off to an exciting start in Luxembourg as two outstanding research centres merged to form the Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST). This is excellent news for companies and entrepreneurs around the world that would like support for their innovation projects.

In 1987, two public research centres were created in Luxembourg to conduct scientific research, develop new technologies, transfer knowledge and provide training. One was the Centre Gabriel Lippmann, named for a Luxembourg-born physicist who was awarded the Nobel Prize for his work on the phenomenon of interference and its application in colour photography. The other was Centre Henri Tudor, which took its name from a Luxembourgish engineer who developed the industrial process for the production of lead batteries.

Recently, I had the pleasure of talking with Marc Lemmer, formerly CEO of Centre Henri Tudor, and currently Chief Strategy & Innovation Officer for LIST. He told me that, while working in parallel, these institutions achieved international recognition for outstanding contributions in innovation and research. By joining forces, they have been able to strengthen the focus on targeted research topics in Luxembourg. Now, with increased critical mass, LIST is able to effectively enhance the international visibility of research in Luxembourg, while giving new momentum to potential local projects.

Marc went on to describe how LIST has 630 employees, with 75% being directly engaged in research. Its research has been published in over 350 scientific publications and it counts 50+ patent families in its portfolio. A key priority for LIST is to develop and share new technologies and expertise within public and private sector partnerships. This enables LIST to help create new companies in Luxembourg and serve mature companies that set up a European office in the country.

I was intrigued to hear Marc emphasise that Luxembourg is now a premier location for companies looking to gain a competitive advantage through “incremental” or “disruptive” innovation. Here they will find the R&D excellence, financial support and business resources to develop new products and services – and take them to market worldwide. Clearly, LIST is a powerful player in this innovation eco-system, with over 300 projects currently in progress.

LIST research focuses on 3 areas. I’ll give you some detail about each:

  • Environmental Research and Innovation
    Areas of activity include water security and safety, plants for biomass/biopolymers/bioenergy, life cycle sustainability, risk assessment, plus e-Science for environmental and biological applications
  • Materials Research and Technology
    Research covers nanomaterials and nanotechnologies, and composite and advanced materials
  • IT for Innovative Services
    Areas of research include decision knowledge dynamics, trusted service systems and service engineering

LIST works in collaboration with other RTOs, universities, large industrial groups, SMEs and public bodies, and participates in selected national, European and international networks.

If you would like information about the different levels of partnerships offered by LIST, or to learn more about how your company can take advantage of the innovation eco-system in Luxembourg, please contact me. To learn more about LIST, please click here.