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Centres of Competence and Christian Doppler Laboratories

How do we get knowledge out of university research and into industry so that it leads to innovations?

Source: TU Graz - Lunghammer
Andrea Hoffmann, Vice Rector for Human Resources and Finance

I am proud of the fact that TU Graz is participating in the most COMET projects of any institution. We have been ahead of the field when it comes to approval of K1 competence centres for some years now. In the competence centres, TU Graz works together with industry and ensures transfer of innovations from the university into commercial application. The effects on the employment market are huge. Through competence centres and third-party funded research projects we have created 1,800 highly-qualified jobs in Styria in the last 10 years.


TU Graz owns shares in companies in order to enter into strong partnerships with businesses and with other academic institutions.

In Christian Doppler Laboratories, researchers of TU Graz work alongside corporate partners to develop solutions for applied research problems.

COMET Centres of Competence

The COMET programme of the Research Promotion Agency (FFG) has established itself as a bridge between research and product development. COMET stands for Competence Centers for Excellent Technologies. Together with the corporate partners, TU is an active participant in the COMET programme of the federal government.  

Competence centres and research companies

Grafic illustration showing the participation of TU Graz in the COMET competence centres and K-projects in Austria. Photo source: TU Graz

TU Graz is Austria's leading university in the COMET programme. The programme sponsors the setting up of centres of competence each centred around a research programme defined jointly by the university and corporate partners. The goal is to promote applied research and to strengthen collaboration between business and university research, to develop and exploit shared research competence.  

Most of the centres of competence and K-projects in Austria are in Styria. TU Graz is involved in all of these, in many cases as the leading academic partner. As a participant in 33 COMET projects, TU Graz is the leading Austrian university in this area. In 13 of these projects, TU Graz is also a shareholder in the companies set up as legal vehicles for the centres.

Christian Doppler Laboratories

Christian Doppler Laboratories are centres for basic research related to solution of industrial problems. They have been set up successively since the year 2000 at various Austrian universities, and are funded for a maximum of 7 years. The funding is provided by the public purse and the industry partners.  

The CD laboratories are places where outstanding scientists collaborate with innovative companies, and they are an important component of the research activities of TU Graz.