Anke Kleinschmit, Head of Group Research & Sustainability at Daimler AG
“Turning excellent technologies into products and opening up markets worldwide—this goal set by the Federal President for the Deutsche Zukunftspreis is obviously one that is shared by DaimlerChrysler. Securing a leadership role in technology and innovation is a fundamental obligation to us. We can make our best contribution toward this goal in our core business, automotive engineering.
In light of limited resources and a rising demand for vehicles, for DaimlerChrysler technological commitment means guaranteeing an individual and sustainable means of mobility for our customers. In the final analysis, it is not the number of innovations that is relevant but rather how the innovation itself is of use to mankind. The challenge lies in getting the new technologies to the market at the best possible moment. When it comes time to making the best possible decision in this respect, DaimlerChrysler can depend on its global network of knowledge. Long-term investments are necessary in order to be able to set trends worldwide with groundbreaking innovations and developments. We are investing heavily in alternative drive systems and electromobility. In 2015, Daimler AG invested more than € 6bn in research and development projects. This figure has climbed to € 14.5bn in 2016 and 2017 - more than half of this money going into 'green' technologies.
Therefore, our commitment to the Federal President’s Prize for Technology and Innovation is self-evident. We encourage technological excellence in our country today in the hope of achieving a brighter and better tomorrow for everyone. The Deutsche Zukunftspreis honors outstanding scientific work that is both ready for use as well as marketable. It introduces the people behind the ideas to the public and sheds some light on the considerable amount of scientific and technical innovation potential that exists in Germany. The knowledge and creativity of the people in research and development are a prerequisite to economic action. We are also keen on encouraging young people to develop an interest in the natural sciences and engineering and on providing the best education for the next generation of scientists. This is the only way to maintain success in competition at a global level. And finally, DaimlerChrysler can only profit when science and business work hand in hand.”