Leuphana among top universities for start-up support

November 15, 2011 – Lüneburg. Leuphana University of Lüneburg is the number one university for prospective business start-ups in Northern Germany. According to a recently published ranking of 63 universities, Leuphana ranks #4 in Germany for best support of business founders. The ranking is based on a study conducted by Prof. Dr. Jürgen Schmude from the Department of Economic Geography and Tourism Research at Ludwig Maximilians University in Munich. Compared to the previous ranking check, Leuphana jumped up ten places. This is particularly due to its attractive course offerings for students.

In their study on “From student to entrepreneur. Which university offers the best opportunities?”, Schmude and his team looked at eight different aspects. These included the quality of qualification of potential business founders, external networking activities of the university as well as communication, mobilization, and the actual number of start-up businesses. Leuphana scored particularly high in the area of start-up related course offerings and mobilization. The researchers evaluated course offerings that particularly encouraged students to deal with the issue of self-employment, for example by recognizing start-up related courses as coursework. Leuphana, along with the winning Technical University of Munich, got a full score in this area and, as a result, ranked #1 in Germany.

As early as in 2002, the Lüneburg University established a Foundation Professorship for Start-up Management. Prof. Dr. Reinhard Schulte, who since then has been actively promoting the idea of a university providing start-up support, is pleased with the recent success: “Other universities have more staff and resources available to deal with this topic than a small university like ours does. All the nicer then that we are still among the front-runners, on an equal footing with the Technical Universities of Munich, Berlin and Aachen.”

A strong impetus for the start-up approach of Leuphana is expected from the Lüneburg Innovation Incubator launched in 2009. This project promoting regional development through science is unique in Europe and is strongly supported by the European Union. One of its sub-measures is designed to initiate start-ups. The project team headed by Carsten Wille has already notched up initial success: So far, about thirty start-ups have been established in the region in collaboration with the start-up service.

The profile of Leuphana in the field of entrepreneurship and academic start-up support has been sharpened not only by Professor Schulte, but also by the economist Professor Gerd Lischke, by Michael Frese, Professor of Entrepreneurship, and by Junior Professor Markus Beckmann, an expert in the field of social entrepreneurship.