For the current issue of “WIRTSCHAFT – die regionale Wirtschaftszeitung der Rhein-Zeitung”, Prof. Dr. Holger Ernst gave an interview on the importance of investments in research and development (R&D) during the Corona crisis.
In the interview, Prof. Ernst emphasized that innovations form the basis for Germany’s economic strength. Especially in times of crisis, like the Corona crisis, innovations and investments in R&D are essential, “because only innovative companies with a strong business model will survive in the long term.” Research has also shown that successful companies hardly reduce their investments in R&D in times of crisis to emerge from the crisis faster and stronger with innovations.
With regard to the decline in innovators in medium-sized companies, Prof. Ernst stated that medium-sized companies often lack a modern, business-oriented innovation management. The necessary willingness to take risks is also not always sufficiently developed. “But no innovation without risk,” emphasized Prof. Ernst. In addition, the digitalization as a fundamental change poses new challenges for medium-sized companies.
When asked about recommendations and solutions to increase the innovator quota, Prof. Ernst sees the companies themselves as responsible: “In addition to higher investments in R&D, [companies] should implement an innovation management to increase their own innovative strength. A cultural change with more willingness to take risks would also be desirable. Imitations instead of innovations ─ that’s not enough.”
You can read the full interview by Prof. Ernst here (in German).