February 16th 2024

Innovative project ideas for a sustainable future

66 master’s students of Industrial Engineering & Management explore the high-potential continent of Africa

Africa is a continent with many challenges, but also many opportunities. Africa's growth market is highly relevant for our industrial engineers and will become increasingly important in the coming years. The first innovative project presentations were presented on January 19 within the master's program in Industrial Engineering & Management. 18 teams consisting of a total of 66 students presented their group work to a broad-based jury consisting of MCI lecturers, representatives from the Africa First Network and Dr. Lester Sigauke from Zimbabwe. The aim of the projects was to identify and develop business opportunities, which were presented during a one-day pitch. This involved taking a closer look at 12 African countries, focusing on the 17 sustainability goals of the United Nations. In the subsequent feedback discussions, additional aspects were critically examined and given to the students for further elaboration. The presentations were a great success and demonstrated the high standard of the students in the master's program Industrial Engineering & Management.


This is how attendees experienced the project presentations:

"It was an exciting start to our Africa project, where we had the opportunity to talk about our business models for the African market with fascinating guests from various disciplines. These should not only have an economic impact, but also show how innovation, sustainability and social added value can go hand in hand. I am looking forward to what the next semesters have in store for this project, now that an exciting new continent with opportunities for change and progress has opened up for me. Thank you for the inspiring exchange!" - Clément Arends, student in Industrial Engineering & Management, year 2023)

"Africa is the future!" - Ulrich Rieger, Executive Board; Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs, Senior Ministerial Councilor

"Congratulations to Gerhard Hillmer and his dedicated team on getting this transformative program off the ground. The initiative not only equips students with invaluable real-world skills but also underscores MCI’s commitment to fostering global collaborations for a sustainable future and social impact. I look forward to seeing the students’ SDG projects come to fruition in partnership with our esteemed partners in Africa.” - Mag. Regina Obexer, Center for Responsible Management & Social Impact at MCI

"Developing successful global business starts with individual values - connected to a global ethos. Business is embedded in a nexus of social, economic, technological, ecological, cultural and spiritual sub-areas. It is a pleasure to work with students and colleagues on this integration with all its facets for the case of African countries!” - Prof. Dr. Harald Bolsinger, Guest lecturer from THWS Business School, Germany