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Technical University of Applied Sciences Augsburg receives Doctoral Center DigiTech

Milestone for THA: Young researchers can now pursue their doctoral studies directly at THA

Prof. Dr. Björn Häckel, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Dominik Merli, Prof. Dr. Christoph Buck, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Alexandra Teynor, Prof. Dr. Nadine Warkotsch, Prof. Dr.-phil. Alessandra Zarcone (front), Prof. Dr. habil. Eva Lermer (back), Prof. Dr. phil. habil. László Kovács, Prof. Dr. Michael Kipp, and Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Gordon Thomas Rohrmair. (Not present: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Michael Finkel, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Carsten Markgraf, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Hon. Dr. of ONPU Thorsten Schöler, and Prof. Dr.-Ing. Reinhard Stolle).
Oct 4, 2023
The Technical University of Applied Sciences Augsburg (THA) has been granted the doctoral center 'Digital Technologies and their Applications (DigiTech),' as announced by the Bavarian Ministry of Science today. This enables young researchers to pursue their doctoral studies directly at THA. With DigiTech, THA is part of a network with TH Deggendorf and the University of Landshut. In total, eleven doctoral centers have been awarded to Bavarian universities, with the majority operating in collaboration. 'Our universities of applied sciences and technical universities have established themselves as outstanding research institutions. It is a logical consequence that they now also receive the right to confer doctoral degrees,' says Markus Blume, Bavarian Minister of State for Science and Art.

Since February 2023, universities have been able to apply for the limited right to confer doctorates in particularly research-intensive areas based on the new Bavarian Higher Education Innovation Act. The applications received were evaluated through a scientific process by an expert commission consisting of five external, independent, and renowned representatives from academia, non-university research, and industry.

Eleven professors from THA, based on their research strength and scientific expertise, are part of DigiTech and are authorized to independently supervise doctoral candidates. This marks a milestone in the development of the Augsburg University of Applied Sciences: 'With the doctoral center, we now have the opportunity to finally support young researchers towards the third academic degree, the doctorate,' says Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Gordon Thomas Rohrmair, President of the Augsburg University of Applied Sciences. 'This enables us to bridge the gap between teaching and research, and we now have the chance to restructure and expand our applied research. The doctoral center offers THA tremendous development potential and excellent conditions for our young researchers.'

In the DigiTech Doctoral Center, doctoral candidates conduct research on the megatrends of digitization – from processes to products and services – as well as their application in society, economy, and the environment. Interdisciplinary research aims to enable young researchers to contribute to the solution of urgent societal, economic, and ecological problems through digital technologies. 'In recent years, we have significantly expanded and strategically linked research at the Augsburg University of Applied Sciences, focusing on 'Digitization in Production and Services' and 'Resource Efficiency.' The DigiTech Doctoral Center is evidence of the quality of these efforts and proof of our research strength in the field of digital technologies and their applications,' says Prof. Dr. Nadine Warkotsch, Vice President for Research and Teaching at the  Technical University of Applied Sciences Augsburg, who is responsible for the application for the doctoral center at THA.

In Augsburg, doctoral candidates are dedicated to research fields such as Digital Business Models, IT Security, Resource Efficiency, Machine Speech Recognition, Smart Grid & Smart Market, Autonomous Systems, Digital Transformation, and Innovation. THA offers a wide range of scientific institutions and research groups that have continuously expanded their research activities in recent years, tailored to the needs of the region: The Institute for Innovative Security, HSA_innos, in close cooperation with regional partners from industry, trade, and commerce, addresses current questions about IT security technologies and security processes. At the Technology Transfer Center (TTZ) Nördlingen, the automated and sustainable production of the future is being researched and developed. Researchers at TTZ Donauwörth focus on the analysis and evaluation of large amounts of data, collaborating with industry to develop digital services and business models to provide new value for the manufacturing sector. Data Science and Autonomous Systems are the focus of research at TTZ Landsberg.

Scientists from the Institute for Resource-Efficient Data Transmission and Processing, HSA_ired, are working on ways to quickly transmit, process, and distribute electronic data, while the Institute for Agile Software Development, HSA_ias, is researching solutions in the areas of agile software development, programming languages and security, process digitization, and AI applications. In collaboration with the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology FIT and in close cooperation with the FIM Research Institute for Information Management, researchers are exploring new digital business models for companies and industries arising, for example, through the use of Artificial Intelligence.