Karlsruhe is among Europe's elite when it comes to business, science, and research. Thanks to its location at the heart of the continent – with the Palatinate, France, and the Black Forest practically just around the corner – the city of Karlsruhe is an attractive place to live.
Karlsruhe – At the Heart of Europe
Boasting an almost Mediterranean climate at the center of the continent, Karlsruhe tends to evoke a special kind of joie de vivre in its citizens and visitors. The city is also a leading location for business, science, and research as part of the greater Karlsruhe TechnologyRegion. In the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), for example, it can claim one of the most renowned universities not only in Europe, but the entire world. This has led countless innovative firms to establish their headquarters in Karlsruhe and its environs.
With around 300,000 citizens, Karlsruhe is the second-largest city in the state of Baden-Württemberg. It is also one of the youngest major cities in the Federal Republic of Germany: In 2015, Karlsruhe will celebrate its birthday 300 years after its foundation. Back then, founder Margrave Karl-Wilhelm von Baden-Durlach took Karlsruhe's Baroque palace as his point of origin in designing the city with 32 streets and avenues that would radiate outwards from the palace tower. Nine of them form the fan-like layout for which Karlsruhe has come to be called the "Fan City".
Karlsruhe is, however, perhaps better known as Germany's seat of justice: As the home of the Federal Constitutional Court and the Federal Court of Justice, the city boasts two of the country's highest judicial institutions.
On the 50th anniversary of the Federal Constitutional Court's inception, Karlsruhe dedicated a monument – the Platz der Grundrechte (“Square of Fundamental Rights”), located between the palace and Marktplatz – to the crucial role the court has played in the democratic development of our nation since the Second World War.
Meanwhile, Karlsruhe is also a city of art and culture. Along with the Badisches Staatstheater, Badischer Kunstverein, the Badisches Landesmuseum (located at the palace), and the Staatliche Kunsthalle, the Center for Art and Media (ZKM) features prominently in the international cultural landscape. It enjoys a sterling reputation around the world and houses several museums and research facilities.
Finally, the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) is respected the world over as one of Europe's foremost institutions of learning and research. The total number of students at Karlsruhe's nine universities now exceeds 40,000 – and let's not forget all those studying at the other distinguished educational and R&D establishments in the region! All things considered, it comes as no surprise that the IT industry, the energy sector, and a creative cultural scene have long been drawn to Karlsruhe and have shaped its image as an ideal location for business.
Always on the cutting edge of research and innovation
Karlsruhe's impressive history of innovation and research reaches back to names like Carl Benz, Karl Freiherr von Drais, and Heinrich Hertz, who changed the world with inventions and discoveries including the automobile, the bicycle, and electromagnetic waves.
The city remains committed to this rich tradition to this day: Our universities regularly occupy the highest echelons of related rankings, with KIT leading the way as the very best institution for computer science in the German-speaking countries. And just so you know, Germany's first e-mail was received right here in Karlsruhe!
The city's significance as a hotbed of research is further underscored by the local presence of the Fraunhofer Institute of Optronics, System Technologies, and Image Exploitation (Fraunhofer IOSB). This facility is part of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, one of Europe's most prominent research and development societies. In its work, Fraunhofer IOSB focuses primarily on industrial applications of information and communication technology.
Another key component of this leading landscape is Cyberforum, which interconnects more than a thousand members in forming Europe's largest network of IT companies. It considers itself a platform for advice, support, and the sharing of ideas – particularly for entrepreneurs looking to start their own businesses. Within Karlsruhe's Steinbeis Transfer Center, Cyberforum has also been highly successful in organizing knowledge-sharing among the realms of science, technology, and business. These efforts are designed to help transform innovative ideas and developments into market-ready products.
The home of global market leaders
Today, Karlsruhe is home to the headquarters of numerous small and midsize companies, many of which lead the world in their respective markets. PTV Planung Transport Verkehr AG, for example, offers software solutions and consulting on transport, mobility, and logistics to customers across the globe. The traffic planning software PTV Vision has propelled the company to the top of the market for traffic modeling and the calculation of traffic flows. Another Karlsruhe company in the transport sector is init AG, which produces electronic and IT systems for personal transportation. It currently has subsidiaries in Australia, Dubai, the United States, and several other locations.
Meanwhile, the subject of energy is also an important mainstay of Karlsruhe and the surrounding region. EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg, one of Germany's largest energy companies, is headquartered right here in the city. EnBW's current efforts include promoting both renewable sources of energy and electrical means of transport. Through KIT, Karlsruhe is at the forefront of energy research, as well. KIT houses one of the largest energy research institutes in Europe and is already hard at work on the energy provision models of tomorrow. Rather than focusing on particular technologies, the institute covers a wide range of possibilities in its research – including in the production, transformation, and storage of energy. Anyone seeking answers to energy-related questions in Europe is sure to find solutions for the challenges that lie ahead in the Karlsruhe TechnologyRegion.
|Coordinates||49° 00' 54'' N , 8° 24' 18'' E|
|Population||299.103 (as of: 31.12.2013)|