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8th AC21 International Forum 2016 starts at TU Chemnitz

Rich program for national and international participants from 30 April to 3 May 2016

Only a few days are left till the start of the 8th AC21 International Forum 2016, the largest and most important event of the „Academic Consortium 21“-network that Technische Universität Chemnitz is honored to host this time. More than 100 guests expected from Technische Universität Chemnitz and other AC21-member universities, partner universities as well as participants from extramural research partners, politics, and economy will take part in a rich program. It includes keynote speeches, panel discussions, workshops, and a broad social program.

The official program of the AC21 International Forum 2016 will start with the meeting of the AC21 Steering Committee on Saturday, 30 April 2016, which – together with the AC21 General Assembly – is responsible for strategic decisions for the future development of the network. The 8th AC21 International Forum will be officially opened with the Spring Gala on the evening of that day under the patronage of the Saxon State Minister of Science and the Arts, Dr. Eva-Maria Stange.

On Sunday, 1 May 2016, the participants of the AC21 International Forum will have the opportunity to enjoy a cultural program including a guided tour through the Industrial Museum Chemnitz and an excursion to the vineyard “Schloss Wackerbarth” near Dresden.

On Monday, 2 May 2016, the conference starts with welcome addresses of the Acting Rector as well as the Chancellor of Technische Universität Chemnitz as hosting university, Prof. Dr. Andreas Schubert and Dr. Eberhard Alles, the State Secretary of the Saxon State Minister of Science and the Arts, Uwe Gaul, and the Director of the AC21 General Secretariat, Trustee and Vice-President of Nagoya University, Prof. Dr. Yoshihito Watanabe. Furthermore, the Federal Minister of Education and Research, Prof. Dr. Johanna Wanka, will address the audience of the Forum via video stream. Keynote speakers of the festive event will be the President of the German Academic Exchange Service, Prof. Dr. Margret Wintermantel, and Dr. Michael Korte, Head of Predevelopment of Car Concepts at AUDI AG.

Following that, sessions start dealing with different aspects of the overarching theme of the AC21 International Forum 2016 “Networks of innovation for the transformation of society through science”. There will be panel discussions and workshops on “best practices” to achieve excellence in research and research transfer, on how to stimulate innovation and a “transfer culture” within transdisciplinary, crosssector networks, and on next steps to be taken in international academic networking. Furthermore, the participants of the AC21 International Forum 2016 will be introduced to the Federal Cluster of Excellence “Merge Technologies for Multifunctional Lightweight Structures” (MERGE) located at Technische Universität Chemnitz since 2012. During the whole day, visitors will have the opportunity to visit an exhibition with regard to the mentioned overarching topic of the AC21 International Forum 2016 at the vestibule of the main lecture hall building.

At the beginning of the next conference day, Tuesday, 3 May 2016, the audience will be introduced to the research and research transfer initiatives of the Fraunhofer Gesellschaft which is a very important extramural research partner for Technische Universität Chemnitz with the Institutes for Machine Tools and Forming Technology as well as the Institute for Electronic Nano Systems located on the campus. The program continues with three parallel sessions offering the topics “Identifying key innovation drivers and creating appropriate framework conditions and infrastructures“, „Developing a network for policy exchange on renewable energy among policy leaders in Germany and Minnesota“ as well as „Creating comprehensive networks across academia, culture and society“.

In the afternoon, the AC21 General Assembly will meet in order to take decisions for the development of the AC21 network in the next years. After a guided tour through the Fraunhofer Institute for Machine Tools and Forming Technology, the 8th AC21 International Forum 2016 will closed with the ceremonial handover of the symbol of the AC21 presidency from TU Chemnitz to Jilin University Changchun as hosting university of the next AC21 International Forum in 2018.

As of now, Technische Universität Chemnitz is very much looking forward to welcoming the world to this event and wishes to each participant an inspiring and lasting experience!

For further information on the program of the 8th AC21 International Forum 2016, please access the following link:

For further information and registration for the event, please access the following link: or email: (Important notice for members of TU Chemnitz: it is possible for academic staff members of TU Chemnitz who participate in the conference to claim a reimbursement of the registration fee within their travel expense report. The faculties are too provided limited resources for financial support. In case of further questions (including to the registration code for academic staff members of TU Chemnitz), please contact: Please register for the event until 20 April 2016.)

Also read the article „A Network for Shaping the Role of Universities in the 21st Century“.

Further information on the „Academic Consortium for the 21st Century“ (AC21):

(Author: Dr. Wolfgang Lambrecht)

Mario Steinebach

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