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Perspectives on the bioeconomy

The sustainable economic system known as the bioeconomy is based on two main pillars: the use of renewable raw materials rather than fossil raw materials, and biobased innovations. The aim of the bioeconomy is therefore not only to replace fossil raw materials, but also to develop completely new products and processes. In so doing, it contributes to and creates the conditions for a closed circular economy. Baden-Württemberg has the skills necessary to do this and the political will to promote the development of the bioeconomy.

It is often a long journey from an idea to industrial implementation and marketability. The first step involves perceiving a problem, because problem awareness can open the door to solutions. In the case of the bioeconomy, completely new ideas and technological perspectives are required, along with new approaches to existing technical systems. Political framework conditions and social dialogue on the environment, climate and sustainability are forces that can drive the transition to a biobased economy.

A growing understanding of global biological systems has led to many innovation success stories in the life and engineering sciences. The main focus of these activities is the benefits for humans and the environment. Research and development in research institutes and universities, start-ups, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and large-scale industry make important contributions to the development of a sustainable, internationally competitive economic system based on biological raw materials and processes. The idea is to apply new approaches along the entire value chain: raw material cultivation, process and product development as well as the recycling of residual materials. Examples include new cultivation methods, biotechnologically produced fine and specialty chemicals and the use of algae for energy production or as a source for pharmaceuticals.

A bioeconomy can create growth, prosperity and employment. But it does so on a different resource base. In Baden-Württemberg this is linked politically to a firm commitment to sustainability.

The work being done and the advances in the area of innovative processes, technologies and concrete products are described on the following pages.

Perspectives on the bioeconomy

  • Article - 19/09/2019

    Algae, for most of us, is something that lives in water courses that we occasionally find unpleasant. However, that is to do them a wrong. These extremely versatile and frugal organisms might in future prove to be extremely important. Scientists at the University of Stuttgart are investigating how algae can be used as microrobots in biomedicine and environmental remediation.

  • Dossier - 09/09/2019

    There is no way around it. Whether we like it or not, artificial intelligence (AI) has long been part of our lives, in traffic management, marketing campaigns or in the fields of medicine and life sciences. AI is omnipresent, often without us being aware of it. Baden-Württemberg is home to one of the largest AI research consortia in Europe and has recently become one of the European hotspots for this key technology.

  • Article - 02/09/2019

    While a cancer-free world may seem unrealistic given the increasing numbers of cancer cases, we need to reach a social consensus that cancer deaths are unacceptable and that everything possible must be done to prevent them. Leading cancer researchers around the world are calling for more investment in prevention research and cancer screening to move towards the vision of a near cancer-free world.

Website address: https://www.biooekonomie-bw.de/en/bw/definition/perspectives-on-the-bioeconomy