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Future City Lab_Stuttgart


University of Stuttgart starts “Reality Lab for Sustainable Mobility Culture“

As of January 2015 new forms of knowledge transfer will be implemented at the University of Stuttgart with the research project “Future City_Lab Stuttgart: Reality Lab for Sustainable Mobility Culture” that is to run for three years.

Together with reality labs at six other universities in the state, the Stuttgart reality lab is one of the projects funded in the framework of the state program “Strengthening the contribution of science for a sustainable development“. In so doing the innovative research format “Reality Lab“ is not only intended to promote the integrability of scientific findings for politics and business but above all to increase the capacity of society to act towards a sustainable development overall.

“Today science can only work out solutions for important questions of the future together with society. For this purpose the reality labs will enable a new innovative form of know-how transfer“, explained Minster of Research Ms Bauer.

The Ministry of Science, Research and Art Baden-Württemberg funds projects up to 7 million Euros to establish so-called reality labs at universities in the state. With this support program Baden-Württemberg is taking on a pioneering role since this approach has been relatively rare up to now. The invitation to tender also met with great interest on a national level.

The exemplary trans-disciplinary research approach by the Stuttgart reality lab is based on the principle of linking research and teaching and the direct inclusion of urban society in the research process: people are no longer mere sources of information for the researcher but individuals with whom the researcher embarks on a joint quest for knowledge.

Prof. Antje Stokman, Head of the Institute of Landscape Planning and Ecology at the University of Stuttgart, explained in this respect: “In our reality lab we place the mobility culture and with this the people and their motivation, their thinking, their possibilities, their ideas on mobility in space as the focus of observation. In this way civil society players become co-researchers involved in the process of acquiring knowledge, generating research data and the development of scenarios and pilot projects.“

The willingness of people is to be promoted via a large number of research and participatory formats in order to reflect their own mobility behaviour and to discuss testing new forms of mobility individually and collectively.

The reality lab thus becomes a future laboratory and cooperative platform that bundles the generated knowledge in the form of an interactive website as well as through the real interlinking of different initiatives and players through joint projects, public events and happenings, as well as making them accessible and topics of discussion. The objective thereby is to strengthen transformation consciousness, own initiative and civil society co-determination in terms of promoting the social change process in the direction of a sustainable mobility culture.

Involved at the University of Stuttgart along with the International Centre for Culture and Technology Research (IZKT) and the Centre for Interdisciplinary Risk and Innovation Research (ZIRIUS) are also the research initiative Human Factors in Ageing and Technology as well as four specialist fields from four different faculties: the Urban Planning Institute (SI) and the Institute for Landscape Planning and Ecology (ILPÖ), the Institute for Human Factors and Technology Management (IAT), the Chair for Sport and Health Sciences (INSPO) and the Chair for Transport Planning and Traffic Control Systems (ISV). In addition to this interdisciplinary and trans-disciplinary setup, the project is working together with a large number of cooperation partners, such as the City of Stuttgart, the Verband Region Stuttgart (Stuttgart Regional Association), Education and Cultural Institutes as well as student and citizens’ initiatives.

In cooperation with the university and science region of Stuttgart the reality lab team has already initiated its first large event: “>free space – urban space – storage space< – an exchange on the mobility of the future“ on 23rd October 2014 in the Theaterhaus Stuttgart. 

Moreover, in cooperation with the IZKT, several institutes from the University of Stuttgart, the City Museum and the City Library of Stuttgart an initial teaching program will already be taking place from 15th -18th January 2015 at the University in the form of an interdisciplinary key qualification on the topic of “Sustainable Mobility Culture. Urban Space. Mobility. Health“.

Further information:
Dr. Hans-Herwig Geyer, University of Stuttgart, Head of University Communication and Press Spokesperson,
Tel. 0711/685-82555, Email: hans-herwig.geyer (at)

Andrea Mayer-Grenu | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
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