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Our city has been undergoing constant change for years and is considered to be particularly social, digital, innovative and sustainable. Internationally, we have been able to coin a term and shape something with our "Dortmund Model" that has won several awards in the past and has been - and still is - a pioneer and role model for many other cities.

Indeed, in its transformation, Dortmund has taken an unusual but effective path to create new local ecosystems and platforms. To date, we have successfully integrated around 400 innovative projects into our innovation model. Together as a city, we have established knowledge and information networks and implemented structural changes - from overcoming the economic crisis in the German coal and steel industry to successfully developing locations for science and innovation. Citizens, science, business and politics come together here at various levels to take on the challenges together in a steady dialogue. These platforms are not only innovative, but also consensus-driven and thus successful approaches: our swarm intelligence approach!

But how does Dortmund achieve its innovative strength and structural change? Dortmund is first of all a completely normal city, like many other cities - with strengths and weaknesses. If you ask citizens and network partners about the working style and the road to success of our city, they usually come to the conclusion that people here talk to each other frequently and intensively. But doesn't that sound much too simple and normal? Is Dortmund the "normal one"?

Perhaps the best cultural explanation lies in our Westphalian stubbornness – the Westphalian region is famous in Germany for being especially stubborn and Dortmund is the capital of the Westphalian region. But for us stubbornness is the very first real form of sustainability. In our experience persevering with strategies or long-term thinking beyond fashion still works best. It is therefore hardly surprising that we answered in the competition for the European Capital of Innovation 2019 the question "Dortmund, how do you actually do it?" in our grounded, Westphalian way with "THIS IS HOW WE DO IT" - and have since been one of the TOP 12 innovation cities in Europe.

Our strategy can serve as a model for many large cities around the world that are neither capitals nor megacities, that have their own strengths and weaknesses - and that, like Dortmund, are simply "normal".

ON BEHALF OF OUR WHOLE CITY,
Mayor of the City of Dortmund
Ullrich Sierau

“This competition is a good opportunity to tell our story, which is both different yet normal, at an international level, and to answer the frequently posed question: “Dortmund, how do you do it?” with a “This is how we do it!”

Thomas Westphal
CEO of Economic Development Agency of Dortmund

THE DORTMUND MODEL

“Structural change, transformation - it’s like metabolism. It never ends.“

Ullrich Sierau
Mayor of the City of Dortmund
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SMART CITY ALLIANCE

  • High-powered advisory committee
  • Specialist teams with > 157 experts
  • > 20 projects since 2018
  • Support funding worth 34.5 million euros applied for
  • Name Germany’s “Most Digital City” in 2018
  • Winner of 2019 “Stadt.Land.Digital” competition
  • Host of 2019 German Digital Summit

To the website
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THE MASTERPLAN SCIENCE

  • 100 concrete projects
  • > 53,000 students
  • > 10,000 scientists/academics
  • 5 fields of special scientific expertise
  • 22 partner institutions
  • 7 universities
  • 19 non-university research institutes
  • 2018 overall evaluation result: “Excellent”
  • 2015 University Communication Prize (HRK)
  • Science Masterplan 2.0 in progress

To the website
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DORTMUND TECHNOLOGY CENTRE

  • Europe’s biggest incubator & Technology Park
  • > 300 business enterprises
  • > 11,500 employees
  • 3 major research institutes

To the website
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"NORDWÄRTS"

  • 234 projects
  • 10 subject areas
  • Population density: 1,992 inhabitants per km²
  • > 2,000 ideas submitted
  • 2017 European Public Sector Award (EPSA)
  • Total area of 12,839 hectares

To the website

PROJECT OVERVIEW

Here you can find an overview of all the relevant projects in Dortmund relating to our four core themes (Allianz Smart City, Science Masterplan, TechnologieZentrumDortmund, nordwärts) of the Dortmund Model.
01
4th Wave
To the project
02
Campus for Energy and Entrepreneurship
To the project
03
CIO (Chief Innovation/Information Office)
To the project
04
Digitale Werkbank Dortmund (digital workbench)
To the project
05
Digitale Woche Dortmund (digital week)
To the project
06
d-port-digital harbor
To the project
07
Drug Discovery HUB
To the project
08
DRZ – Deutsches Rettungsrobotik Zentrum
To the project
09
e:lab project
To the project
10
Emission-free city centre
To the project
11
European Academy for Digitality in Theatre
To the project
12
European Institute for Blockchain
To the project
13
Excellence Start-up Center
To the project
14
Fair Share
To the project
15
Heimathafen Nordstadt
To the project
16
IGA 2027 (International Gardening Exhibition)
To the project
17
Learning Factory 4.0
To the project
18
Master Plan Science – Evaluation
To the project
19
ML2R
To the project
20
NOX-Block
To the project
21
Playful City
To the project
22
PuLS
To the project
23
Ruhrvalley Cluster e.V.
To the project
24
SCMO (Smart City Management Office)
To the project
25
Smart City Data Hub
To the project
26
SmartRhino
To the project
27
Technologie-Schaufenster (technology showcases)
To the project
28
Tiny houses
To the project
29
User Innovation Center @ IDiAL
To the project
30
Systems Modeling (IfADo)
To the project
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