Competences ISI

Fraunhofer Nanotechnology Alliance

Nanotechnology at Fraunhofer ISI

Already in a report from the year 1993 with the title – “Technologies at the beginning of the 21st century” – Fraunhofer ISI identified Nanotechnology as important future technology. Today all Competence Centers (CCs) at Fraunhofer ISI contribute to several projects with their corresponding fields of expertise to analyse research questions on innovations in nanotechnologies: from their emergence to applications and market diffusion.

Within the BMBF Foresight Process (2007-2009), Fraunhofer ISI and Fraunhofer IAO showed the increasing future relevance of nanotechnologies to cross-cutting fields, e.g. within the health care sector, medicine, neuro sciences, ICT, energy and environmental applications. These are topics, covered by the Competence Centers at Fraunhofer ISI.


Within our contract research and services for clients from policy, industry and science we make use of a broad number of methods, tools and techniques, which are constantly further developed:

  • comparative analyses of nanotechnological innovation systems at national, sectoral or technological level (e.g. on nanoelectronics or nanotechnologies in energy storage),
  • development of pictures of the future using scenario techniques or the roadmapping approach in order to forecast and assess future nanotechnological developments,
  • analyses of drivers and barriers to innovations and market diffusion of nanotechnological innovations,
  • asessment of technology and market potentials and impact assessment (e.g. via expert interviews, expert or focus group workshops, desk research, database analyses, indicator based analyses using bibliometrics, patents, etc.),
  • research on societal or user acceptance of emerging technologies by using qualitative and quantitative methods,
  • environmental asessment, LCA (e.g. on silver-nanoparticles in textiles), critical raw materials and resources (including substitution or recycling strategies),
  • support of technology transfer, and
  • consulting to enterprises and policy makers.

Projects (selection):

to overview "competences of involved institutes"

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