Europe’s Largest Organization for Applied Research Focuses on Israel

On May 21, the German-based Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft inaugurated two new Project Centers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem: The “Fraunhofer Project Center for Cybersecurity” and the “Fraunhofer Project Center for Drug Discovery and Delivery”.

The two Project Centers combine the expertise of the Israeli partners from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem with the competencies of the Fraunhofer Institute for Secure Information Technology SIT, as well as the Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology IGB. These are the first project centers of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft in Israel. 

Both cybersecurity and health research play a central role in the German-based application-oriented research organization whose research efforts are geared entirely to people’s needs: health, security, communication, energy, and the environment.

The “Fraunhofer Project Center for Cybersecurity” will serve as a bilateral R&D platform for companies, and form the core of an excellence network in the field of cybersecurity. The Project Center is to become an international hub for security innovation and is located at the Faculty of Computer Science. In the collaboration between scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Secure Information Technology SIT and the Hebrew University, new strategies are to be developed to protect data, IT systems and critical infrastructures from unauthorized access. 

The “Fraunhofer Project Center for Drug Discovery and Delivery” is a cooperation between the Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology IGB and scientists from the School of Pharmacy's Institute for Drug Research. The aim of the Project Center is to use innovative and efficient methods to identify lead structures and nano-carriers for new drug candidates in order to make them accessible for the treatment of infectious diseases, inflammatory processes, and auto-immune diseases. To this end, various innovative technologies are combined to support pharmaceutical companies in the development of new active substances and bring them to the target location by means of targeted formulations.

“Science knows no borders and international cooperation has long been a cornerstone of today's cutting-edge research. By cooperating with excellent partners around the globe, we are strengthening the transfer of knowledge and setting new impulses for Germany and our international partners,” explains Prof. Reimund Neugebauer, President of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft “we look forward to continuing our close cooperation with our Israeli partners in two strategically important research areas. The new collaborations in the fields of cybersecurity and health research will soon have positive effects for all those involved, thanks to their complementary competencies.”

Dr. Susanne Wasum-Rainer, German Ambassador to Israel, who also participated in the ceremony, said “New technologies and the digitalization regarding all aspects of life provide coexisting chances and challenges. It is crucial to handle them responsibly – and I am convinced that this obligation is in good hands at the Hebrew University and at the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft.”

HUJ President Professor Asher Cohen praised the partnership adding, “We work hard to strengthen the link between scientific research and its applications in real life and industry.  Today, we’re taking the next step towards this goal and are honored that Fraunhofer chose us to be their academic partner.”