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Applied Research & Development (ARD)

Research: a top priority | Partnerships between science and industry | Swiss Center for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM) | EPFL Institute of Microengineering (IMT-EPFL) | Haute Ecole Arc | Neuchâtel University | Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) | Swiss Foundation for Microengineering Research (FSRM) 


Research: a top priority


One of Neuchâtel’s strengths lies in its capacity for innovation, from product design right through to industrialisation. Research here is a top priority, supported by a longstanding economic policy that seeks to encourage development in sectors with strong added value such as electronics and microengineering, nanotechnologies, biomedical technologies, information and communication technologies (ICT), or environmental technologies.



Partnerships between science and industry


By encouraging the growth of local applied research institutes, academic structures and innovative companies, Neuchâtel leverages synergies between science and industry, thus promoting technology transfer (‘TT’) and organisational best practice. These partners enable researchers to finance their work and industrialise their inventions, whilst companies can develop novel products at low costs.


The Neode Science and Technology Park offers a perfect complement to this knowledge hub by housing start-ups and innovative project developers on two sites (Neuchâtel and La Chaux-de-fonds), placing a wide network of specialists at the service of fledgling companies and innovators.


Some of the research centres and academic structures that work hand-in-hand with companies based in Neuchâtel include.


Swiss Center for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM)


The core mission of CSEM is technology transfer (TT) and the Center plays a key role in innovation. A true platform for technology, CSEM’s competitive advantage lies in its interdisciplinary approach, providing high level scientists and engineers the necessary structures to develop products of the future.

From rapid prototyping to small series production, via creation of start-ups and spin-offs, CSEM offers a whole spectrum of services to researchers and industries facing challenges or who are keen to innovate. CSEM is particularly active in the domains of micro- and nanotechnology (MEMS, MOEMS), system and surface engineering and ultra low power electronics.



EPFL Institute of Microengineering (IMT-EPFL)


Located on two sites, in Neuchâtel and Lausanne, the EPFL Institute of Microengineering (IMT-EPFL) hosts 23 laboratories and nearly 400 employees. Renowned the world over, IMT-EPFL develops technologies and works closely with industry through research mandates. The key areas of expertise are electronic circuits, electric motors, MEMS for space applications, microsystems, micro-vision and 3D, plasma processes for photovoltaics, and silicon sensors and actuators.

In Neuchâtel, these capabilities are developed for applications in the field of ‘green industrialization’. The site is also home to the renowned laboratory of Photovoltaics and Thin Film Electronics headed by Professor Christophe Ballif. The Lausanne site deals in other areas of specialization such as biomedical technology.



Haute Ecole Arc


The Haute Ecole-Arc contributes to innovation in the field of economics through its activities in applied research and development (aR&D), their overall service offering as well as knowledge and technology transfer (TT). The School’s activities in the field of engineering are organized around eleven research groups :

- User-Centered Product Design
- Production Equipment Design
- Lean and Industrial Processes
- Metrology & Industrial Vision
- Watch and Precision Engineering
- Medical Devices
- Surface Engineering
- Embedded-Computing Systems
- Interaction Technologies
- Data Analytics
- Image Processing & Computer Graphics



Neuchâtel University


With an international reputation, the University of Neuchâtel houses five faculties: economics, law, humanities, literature, theology and science.

By placing a key emphasis on research, the university encourages exchanges between civic, academic and economic groups. This promotes valuable partnerships between companies and institutions active in areas such as technology, sustainable development and social sciences.



Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL)


EPFL, one of the world’s leading technical universities, based in Lausanne (40 minutes from Neuchâtel city), enjoys world renown and comprises over 340 laboratories organized in 30 institutes. Research carried out here often lead to practical applications in fields as diverse as biomedical technology, energy, processing and transmitting information, microelectronics and microsystems, new materials, robotics and other mechanical systems.



Swiss Foundation for Microengineering Research (FSRM)


With a mission to promote micro-technology and its applications, FSRM provides services that help support the development of engineers and research institutes. Through its extensive network of relationships, FSRM plays a leading role in promoting Swiss research. It is home to the Swiss network of micro and nanotechnology – the Swiss MNT Network  - and the inter-cantonal promotional platform, Micronarc.