Working in Karlsruhe

Pursue a Career in the Digital Industry

As one of Europe’s leading IT locations, Karlsruhe offers everything that today’s (and tomorrow’s) professionals could wish for. Whether it’s a start-up, medium-sized company, large corporation, university, non-university research institution or public authority – the multifaceted digital industry in the region of Karlsruhe opens up career and further education opportunities in a wide variety of fields for students and professionals. The self-employed naturally play their part in the fan-shaped city, with its numerous coworking spaces and creative rooms.

Likewise, companies in Karlsruhe have the opportunity to reach out to young talents early on and get them interested. The proximity to universities such as the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) or the HKA – Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences with its internationally outstanding achievements in the natural and engineering sciences are a decisive location advantage for IT companies. The same applies to the direct contact with renowned research institutions such as the FZI Research Center for Information Technology or the Fraunhofer Institutes for the development of joint projects.

Either way, cooperation is prioritised in Karlsruhe. More than 4,800 innovative companies in the region work hand in hand with science, public administration and culture. The resulting cross-institutional knowledge and technology transfer makes it possible to implement new ideas and projects that are difficult or impossible to realize elsewhere. In addition, there are strong networks such as the CyberForum and the initiative, which bring all the stakeholders together and consistently develop the location further.

In this open community of kindred spirits, people, companies, professionals, students and trainees alike can develop their full potential – and shape digital change together.

Beacon of IT Security

Digitalization brings numerous benefits, but also poses challenges. Year after year, the number of cyberattacks on critical infrastructure, data centers and companies increases. The theft of intellectual property and targeted sabotage of individual companies causes billions of Euros in damage.For small and medium-sized enterprises as well as start-ups and research institutions, protection against cyber attacks has therefore become an important location factor. Karlsruhe has reacted accordingly and pooled its resources in the field of cybersecurity.

Four initiatives and centers, each with different competencies, have teamed up in the Karlsruhe IT Security Region: the Competence Center for Applied Security Technologies (KASTEL), the Competence Center IT Security (KIS), the DIZ | Digital Innovation Center, and the Karlsruhe IT Security Initiative (KA-IT-Si). Subdivided into the areas of research, research transfer, awareness-raising and networking, the association is concerned with the emergence of and protection against digital threats.

Meanwhile, IT security start-ups are working, in close cooperation with established companies and research institutions in the House of IT Security, on viable solutions to the increasingly complex challenges posed by cyberattacks.

Closely linked to IT security is the topic of digital sovereignty. As a shaper of the future and one of the leading digital hubs, Karlsruhe took up the issue of Europe’s digital sovereignty at an early stage. As early as 2017, the Office for Information Technology and Digitalization of the City of Karlsruhe addressed the question of what options remain for municipalities to maintain digital sovereignty.

In 2018, leading scientists from the field of IT security published the highly regarded “Karlsruhe Theses on Europe’s Digital Sovereignty” – outlining what is required to remain capable of acting autonomously in the age of digitalization and to avoid dependencies.

Finally, in 2020, the Seal of Quality was initiated in Karlsruhe, which represents the fair treatment of users and the the promotion of the digital sovereignty of people and companies. Only products and services that respect users’ sovereignty over their personal data and ensure transparency are awarded the seal.

(Digital) Infrastructure

In addition to access to well-trained specialists and strong networks, companies and start-ups in the digital industry competing on a global level need one thing above all: a first-class (digital) infrastructure. This applies equally to universities, research institutions, public administration and society as a whole.

The true lifeline of digitalization, and at the same time one of the most important advantages of a region, is broadband expansion. In Karlsruhe, 98 percent of households already have an internet connection with 100 Mbit/s or more. At the same time, the region is pushing ahead rapidly with comprehensive fiber-optic expansion. In July 2021, a further 11,000 households in Karlsruhe received an FTTH connection. In the Alter Schlachthof, Killisfeld and RaumFabrik business parks, 33 kilometers of fiber optic cable will soon be laid, guaranteeing high bandwidths for 750 companies.

However, future topics such as cloud computing, AI applications and autonomous driving require not only fast internet, but also high computing power. In the Karlsruhe region, companies have access to several of the most modern, powerful and, above all, secure data centers in Germany. At the same time, the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) is home to HoreKa, one of the 15 fastest high-performance computers in Europe. Researchers from all over Germany can use it to tackle problems and data volumes from different subject areas where the previously available computing power had reached its limits.

But the Karlsruhe region also excels outside the IT landscape with its first-class infrastructure. For example, with one of the most modern and well-connected public transportation systems in Europe: almost all relevant facilities in the fan-shaped city can be reached within a few minutes. Appropriate mobility solutions, such as public transport, bike or car sharing, can be conveniently used with the Karlsruhe multifunction app. The digital citizen’s office, among other things, guarantees up-to-date contact with public authorities