Maschinenraum cooperates with the Institute of Family Business and Mittelstand at WHU

Maschinenraum, an innovation ecosystem from Mittelstand for Mittelstand, and the renowned Institute of Family Business and Mittelstand at WHU are forming a partnership.

press release | 02.11.2020

Maschinenraum, an innovation ecosystem from Mittelstand for Mittelstand, and the renowned Institute of Family Business and Mittelstand at WHU are forming a partnership. The partnership is intended to build the urgently needed bridge between research and practice, thus enabling SMEs to understand and boldly shape the future together. In particular, questions of generational change, successful internationalization and digital transformation will be addressed in roundtables and cooperative projects.

The partnership between Maschinenraum and the Institute of Family Business and Mittelstand at WHU is a further important step in the mission of Maschinenraum to create the next generation of Mittelstand. The Institute of Family Business and Mittelstand at WHU is a thought leader in the field of science for family businesses and German SMEs. The Institute's current research projects aim, among other things, to deepen the understanding of innovation and leadership, employee satisfaction and succession, as well as business ethics and financing of family businesses. Together with the institute, Maschinenraum wants to meet challenges such as the shortage of skilled workers, innovation management or digitalization with general approaches from research.

"I am very pleased that with the Institute of Family Business and Mittelstand at WHU we have been able to gain another pioneer from the scientific community as a member of Maschinenraum. I have been following the activities of the Institute and Prof. Dr. Kammerlander for some time now and am therefore convinced that the partnership will provide important impulses for the transformation of family and mid-sized companies at Maschinenraum. The Institute is one of the pioneers in Europe and one of the largest research institutions worldwide in this field," says Tobias Rappers, Managing Director of Maschinenraum.

For the Institute, the partnership with Maschinenraum and the associated close connection to industry and practice is in turn essential, because this is how the scientifically founded findings can be transferred into practice and become effective. Through the numerous member companies of Maschinenraum, students are also given valuable first-hand insight into the workflows, culture and transformation processes.

"I am convinced that the newly initiated partnership has the potential to achieve great things. With our scientific knowledge as well as the creative approaches of our students, our approach is complementary to the impressive ecosystem created by Maschinenraum, so that many synergies can result from the cooperation", says Nadine Kammerlander, co-director of the Institute of Family Business and Mittelstand at WHU.

About Maschinenraum:

Maschinenraum is a shared innovation ecosystem, bringing together German Mittelstand and family-owned businesses in order to jointly develop new realities and drive their digital transformation. As a catalyst for industrial change, Maschinenraum supports companies by sharing resources, methods and infrastructures. With its network and knowledge from established companies, startups and innovators, Maschinenraum enables its members to learn from each other and shape the next generation of Mittelstand together. Originating from the transformation history of the Viessmann Group, Maschinenraum is an independent ecosystem from Mittelstand for the Mittelstand.

About Institute of Family Business and Mittelstand at WHU:

The Institute of Family Business and Mittelstand at WHU (ifbm@WHU) is a thought leader in the field of family business and small and medium-sized enterprises. With a dedicated team of scholars and practitioners, the aim is to study different aspects of family firms, hidden champions as well as small and medium-sized enterprises. Most current research projects, for instance, aim to advance understanding of innovation, leadership and employee satisfaction, succession, inertia, business ethics and financing of family firms as well as family offices. But creating new insights is not enough. The Institute of Family Business and Mittelstand at WHU also strive to discuss, transfer, and extend those insights in discussions with practitioners. This works out best by maintaining a continuous dialogue amongst scholars and practitioners. The aim is to generate impact for family businesses and small and medium-sized enterprises on a regional, national and international level.

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