"The support from Baden-Württemberg has given us the opportunity to establish a promising research field in an area connected with information technology, biology and materials science. This will not just enhance our international scientific appeal, but also strengthen the sustainability of our industry on a local and regional level," said Peter Gruss, President of the Max Planck Society.
The Founding Directors include Bernhard Schölkopf, who previously worked as a researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics in Tübingen, Joachim P. Spatz from the Max Planck Institute for Metal Research, and Michael J. Black from Brown University, USA. With Black's appointment, a leading world expert for machine vision will be at the helm of the Institute. The computer scientist took up his work in Tübingen on January 1, 2011. Further appointments are planned.
Steeped in materials science and engineering technology, the Stuttgart location will play a crucial role in the institute's scientific reorientation. The site enjoys close ties with the University of Stuttgart, the Fraunhofer institutes and the Max Planck Institute for Solid State Research. The Tübingen campus – with the Max Planck Institutes for Biological Cybernetics and Developmental Biology – will contribute its know-how in the field of life sciences. Cooperative partners include the University of Tübingen, the University Hospital and non-university research intuitions in the region. "The spatial and thematic linking of these establishments will increase the potential and appeal of the newly-oriented Institute, and give it a competitive edge on the international stage," said Bernhard Schölkopf.
Whereas existing infrastructure can, for the most part, be used in Stuttgart, a new institute building is part of the planning in Tübingen. The Baden-Württemberg state government has promised a separate financing package worth over 41 million euros for the project, and the state cabinet made a decision approving these funds on 15 February 2011.
CB / BA