MVPro gets the inside track on the recently-launched education establishment Schaffhausen Institute of Technology
For more than a century the Swiss Canton of Schaffhausen has managed to provide the energy to drive change and innovation.
Emboldened by the power of the River Rhine, which flows through the city, the development of the Moser dam back in 1863 gave it power to be at the heart of industry.
Industrial pioneers of that age – still thriving today – include Georg Fischer and the International Watch Company (IWC).
Fast forward to today and it also boasts the likes of ABB, Johnson & Johnson and Garmin amongst a plethora of businesses that have been drawn to this small, but charming city, that sits north of Zurich and to the south of the German border.
It has, through its economic policies, become an appealing location for businesses at the forefront of developing the technologies of the future.
But what the city didn’t possess was a university to play an active role in supporting the city and the businesses with additional research, knowledge and education.
That has all changed with the arrival of the Schaffhausen Institute of Technology, which is the creation of Dr Serguei Beloussov, founder and CEO of Acronis, which has headquarters in the city.
Very much in its early stages, SIT has set up educational links with the National University of Singapore, where Acronis also has headquarters, and Carnegie Mellon University in the USA to begin tutoring its first students. Educationally, it will focus on three areas advanced technology: software, physics and digital transformation.
Christian Wipf, SIT board member said: “The whole idea is that for an industrial technology eco system you need three things. Industry, people and educational facilities. Schaffhausen has industry, and a very longstanding history with industry, lots of technology companies are based here and there are also people with manufacturing and R&D facilities.
“What they are lacking is local education institution at a tertiary level that supplies them with educated graduates. It seems very logical because it is the missing piece.”
SIT has secured three million Swiss francs from the Schaffhausen Canton to enable its development, as it fills the vital missing link in the city’s infrastructure.
Christian Amsler, State Councillor of Department for Education of Schaffhausen said: “Schaffhausen could strongly benefit from SIT’s education, research and innovation offering. It will provide the region with new experts in the field of information and communication technology, technology transfer between the university and industry, and the establishment of start-ups in the SIT Tech Park.”
SIT has identified a site next to the famous Rhinefalls, in which to establish a permanent base for its students but also develop the SIT Tech Park.
Wipf added: “We’re only a few months old. We are looking to rent an old industrial area of Schauffhausen by the Rhinefalls. Heavy industry was situated there but with globalisation, that has changed and so the site is now being redeveloped and we’re looking to become a significant part of that redevelopment. Its location is attractive overlooking the falls, while having the old building renovated to modern standards gives it a special campus feeling.”