Cooperation models

Innovation and development are the cornerstones of a promising corporate future. In order to create a competitive edge, Fraunhofer offers tailored options for cooperation, so that companies can work together in the best possible way. This also allows to utilize development skills at short notice and as needed.

One-off contracts

The classic cooperation model is the one-off contract. A company perceives a need for research or development. A discussion with Fraunhofer IKTS identifies possible solutions and clarifies the form the partnership could take and the estimated cost.


Large-scale projects

Some challenges are so complex that they require multiple partners to develop a solution. Clients in this situation have access to the full range of Fraunhofer Institutes. It is possible to incorporate external partners and additional companies.


Strategic partnerships and innovation clusters

Pre-competitive research which starts off without any ties to specific development contracts often results in long-term partnerships with companies on a regional and international level.



Fraunhofer researchers often take the step towards independence by founding their own company. Fraunhofer itself only participates in these kinds of start-ups up to a certain extent. Sometimes the customer who commissioned the new development is interested in taking a stake in the spin-off company.


Licensing models

Licenses are a way to give third parties permission to use certain industrial property rights under defined terms and conditions. This means that industrial clients can use Fraunhofer innovations for their products and portfolios.


Fraunhofer IKTS offers flexible licensing models for company-wide use, optimizing one’s own portfolio, or for marketing one’s services to third-party clients. The design of a license agreement depends on the boundary conditions of commercialization for the company in its respective market segment, and on the type of cooperation with Fraunhofer. Therefore, such offers are always negotiated on a case-by-case basis.