2nd SESSION – The new smelters of the coal heartland


How dedicated Innovation Hubs Accelerate the Smart and Sustainable Transition in Essen

Slot 1: How Facilitation of the Start-Up Scene can help to Blend the Smart and Sustainable Agenda of Cities: The Case of Camp-Essen

Essen, the former capital of coal and steel industry has already undergone a Cinderella story by having been rewarded European Green Capital 2017. Now Essen is trying to use this international spotlight on its urban transition to establish herself as the regional hotspot for the start-up scene. Several Start-Up Hubs are already in place, such as impacthub Ruhr,:agile accelerator and ruhr:hub or the financing facility Gründerfonds Ruhr. Another prime example is the Camp-Essen. The collaboration of the City, the Economic Development Agency, The University and of course young entrepreneurs creates a competence of change that exceeds the urban borders and affects the whole region.

Speakers:  Andreas Kaminski: Essen Economic Development Agency, Co-ordinator Camp-Essen

Sector: Entrepreneurship

Stakeholders: Essen Economic Development Agency (Public-Privaten partnership), City of Essen (Public), University Duisburg-Essen (Academia), Thysenkrupp, Innogy, Sparkasse, open grid Europe (private)


Slot 2: Impacthub Ruhr: Connecting Communities for Change

We are on our way to tomorrow‘s Essen – from the heartland of coal and steel industry to a more liveable city that is going to be more social, low-carbon, resilient and smarter. This transformation needs innovation. Essen created a strong supporting landscape for innovative entrepreneurship. The impacthub Ruhr offers a platform where public and private partners as well as academia find together to solve the urban challenges of the future. It is exceptional that the impacthub Ruhr as most of Essen’s Start-Up Hubs focus their attention on the smart and sustainable transition of cities

Speakers: Ulrike Trenz: Co-founder of the impacthub Ruhr

Sector: Innovation, Entrepreneurship

Stakeholders: impacthub Ruhr (Entrepr/Act), City of Essen (Public), e-on (Private), State of Northrine-Westfalia (public)


Slot 3: Essen 51. How a brownfield turns into a showcase for the smart and sustainable future of cities

Essen 51 is a landmark project not only due to its impressive dimensions (52 hectars of brownfield regeneration, 1500 new homes and 500.000 squarmeters of new business space), but also due to the integrative smart concept. Smart means quality of life through the interaction of technical innovations and sustainability: green spaces form the heart of the city disctrict, and an innovative drainage system uses natural open water surfaces and rainwater decoupling. ESSEN 51 will integrate modern environmental technologies for the generation of renewable energies, higher energy efficiency and energy saving. Mobility functions automatically and networked, adapts dynamically and is available via ESSEN 51. App as required: Pooling of car pools by bus; high-speed collective taxi or private car; sharing offers for e-cars and bicycles offer full flexibility; start-ups, pop-ups, urban farming, beekeeping, brewery, technopark, gastronomy…. Individualized and communicative production processes are characteristic for the companies in ESSEN 51. The office offers a variety of structures for different activities: individual offices, open space, co-working, different design and always with integration of technology and comfort.

SpeakersNorman Sahl Poynor, Managing Partner SV Gebäudeautomation GmbH (A Thelen-Gruppe company)

Sector: Energy and mobility

Stakeholders: City of Essen (Public), Thelen-Gruppe (Private)