Mittelstand.innovativ! Initiative – Innovation Assistant

a programme of the federal state of North-Rhine-Westphalia

The "Science to Business" transfer strategy in North Rhine-Westphalia aims to improve interaction between science and industry. In addition to large companies, which have their own strong research departments, the strategy targets small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

In order for companies in North Rhine-Westphalia to work more closely with universities and research institutions in future and implement innovations in company routine more quickly, the Ministry of Innovation, Science, Research and Technology has established the funding programme "Innovation Assistants" as part of the Mittelstand.innovativ! Initiative. The Innovation Assistants programme aims to support small and medium-sized enterprises with hiring and employing young, highly motivated graduates of universities and universities of applied sciences.

The programme provides for "de minimis" aid of €15 000 or € 22 500 per year for SMEs if they hire and employ an innovation assistant either additionally or for the first time for a minimum of 24 months. This direct funding is flanked by a coaching programme for these innovation assistants financed and organized by NRW.

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