Getting the concept paper right

To participate in the first stage of the competition, a completed application form and a concept paper of up to three pages (PDF, DIN A4, font size 11, simple line spacing) of a research-based product or business idea must be submitted. 

Application can be submitted in German or English. Final pitches can be held in German or English.

The concept paper is supposed to include the following information at the top of the first page:

  • Name of the project
  • Category the idea is submitted to (Digital & Technologies / Life Sciences & Health / Cultural & Social)
  • A contact person for queries

Please send TWO PDFs to:

What are the two PDFs?

  1. Completed application form as a PDF file (10MB max.) for both rounds – download the application form here
  2. Concept paper as a PDF file (10MB max.)
    • 1st round: Up to three pages
    • 2nd round: Up to five pages – please mention “round 2” at the beginning!

What’s new to the second paper? – After your customized business model workshop, you will for sure be able to better understand and describe your business model. Of course, you can optimize every aspect of your paper as you wish!

Applications possible in German or English!

Structure of the concept paper

Affiliated people

Please briefly describe the participants involved as well as their positions.

Connection to research

Describe the connection between your idea and the research of your university/research institution.

Idea and product innovation

Describe your idea and the product innovation and, if necessary, the technology.

Customer value and market

Please indicate the potential benefits of potential customers. If possible, also describe in which specific market (e.g., FinTech, software industry, health technology, education, …) you could be active with your idea.


Please provide a brief overview of the practicability of your idea: Where can development and research risks arise? What is needed for a transition into the market?

AI specific questions

Please note: This paragraph is only necessary if you want to enter the competition for the special award in Artificial Intelligence only.

  1. Describe how AI is embedded in your product and how much impact it has. What kind of technology are you using? What algorithms etc.?
  2. What data is your model trained by? What data is used to generate new results? Where do you get your data from?
  3. Describe the Competition: Are there others that are using the same technology in your field of market? Name 5 and name what you are doing different/better regarding AI.

What is the right category for my idea?

Ideas can be submitted in the categories “Digital & Technologies”, “Life Sciences & Health” and “Cultural & Social”.  In addition, a check mark can be placed in “Artificial Intelligence” if the idea is relevant to this field.

Examples are below. If you are not sure whether your idea qualifies for any one of these categories, feel free to contact us:

Digital & Technologies

The category “Digital & Technologies” is open to all ideas based on information and communication technologies. Including but not limited to:

  • Telecommunication infrastructure/services
  • Apps & mobile applications
  • Web & software applications, such as games, web portals, databases, social media devices, e-commerce, business iIntelligence solutions
  • Big Data applications
  • IT hardware, such as technical devices or accessories
  • IT based network solutions
  • IT providers
  • IT based solutions concerning logistics, traffic and mobility
  • IoT based solutions
  • IT security
  • Fin-tech solutions
  • Virtual-reality applications
  • Geo information systems
  • Energy industry
  • Materials
  • Process engineering
  • Nanotechnologies
  • Photovoltaics
  • Magnetic material
  • Magnetoelectronics
  • Materials systems
  • Analysis & measurement processes
  • Technical environmental protection  

Life Sciences & Health

The category “Life Sciences & Health” is open to all ideas based on theories and methods of engineering, natural and life sciences. Including but not limited to:

  • Development of medical devices
  • In-vitro diagnostics
  • Drugs
  • eHealth
  • Geriatrics
  • Animal welfare
  • Physical medicine and rehabilitation
  • Biotechnology
  • Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Food products

Cultural & Social

The category “Cultural & Social” is open to all ideas related to cultural and creative economy and social entrepreneurship. Including but not limited to:

  • Digital media and service, such as broadcasting (radio, TV, etc.), news (online, print, etc.), advertising, media management, publishing
  • Creative and cultural products related to music, writing, arts, movies, design, architecture, theater, dance

Social Entrepreneurs want to achieve sustainable social change with innovative ideas and entrepreneurial concepts. Common topics are:

  • Welfare related innovations
  • Education
  • Inclusion (disability rights)
  • Integration of refugees
  • Equal opportunity
  • Sustainability
  • Fair trade including services
  • International aid

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