Africa Institute

Our focus: Africa

The Neu-Ulm University of Applied Sciences (HNU) has integrated all activities in research, teaching, learning, innovation and transfer on the African continent in its Africa Institute. Founded in 2013 by Prof. Dr. Rainer Burk, the HNU´s Africa Institute includes activities and academics from all of its faculties of Healthcare Management, Information Management and Business and Economics.

The projects focus on the development and implementation of practice-oriented and interdisciplinary projects with African partners in the areas of health care, entrepreneurship, logistics and resource management, and commercialization of research.

Our Partner Countries

  • Botswana
  • Burundi
  • Cameroon
  • Ethiopia
  • Kenya
  • Malawi
  • Namibia
  • South Africa
  • Tanzania
  • Tunisia

Project Portfolio

Topics for collaborative projects with African partners

transformation management and commercialization of research, healthcare management, applied entrepreneurship, logistics and resource management, e-learning, excursions, joint research, joint master's programmes, networks, student exchange, guest lecturers

Service Portfolio

Services and expertise for German companies and institutions

Market & contract research, partnering & workshops, training, talks & key notes

Information about the Project Portfolio

Transformation management and commercialization of research

  • Network development and qualification measures based on the model of the German universities of applied sciences
  • Development of entrepreneurial universities & university-industry co-operations
  • Interdisciplinary & inter-university workshops for commercialization of co-operation

Healthcare management

  • MSc Health Information Management
  • MBA Healthcare
  • International leadership training
  • Hospital management for health professionals
  • Expert network Healthcare Management in East and Central Africa

Applied entrepreneurship

  • Applied entrepreneurship education programme/academy
  • Interdisciplinary master programme
  • Entrepreneurship & renewable energies
  • Capacity building & lecturer education programmes

Logistics and resource management

  • Big data in logistics
  • Development of business models based on the application of renewable energies
  • Showcases for best practice of decentralized electrification for productive use

Information about the Service Portfolio

Market & contract research

  • Economic analyses of African markets or concept development by professors of the Africa Institute
  • Analyses of African markets within the framework of Bachelor/Master theses or market entry strategies developed by competing study groups in project-based seminars

Partnering & workshops

  • Arranging contact to reliable business and cooperation partners in select countries
  • “Africa Day for Companies” with lectures, discussions, and exchange of experiences: Africa Day 2019 and 2020
  • Implementation / evaluation of in-house workshops on all market and environment-related issues of business activity in Africa
Africa Day for Companies @ HNU: 28th January, 2020

Africa Day for Companies

Pragmatic solutions for growing African markets

> Africa Institute of the HNU in cooperation with Bayern Innovativ - Nürnberg <

Save the Date: Tuesday, January 28, 2020, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm

University Center Vöhlinschloss, Illertissen

Dear Sir or Madam,

The well-attended Africa Day of the HNU in January 2019 dealt with the opportunities of the dynamic, fast-growing African markets with its 1.3 billion consumers. The possibilities of regional companies to use these markets were discussed vividly.

The Africa Day for Companies 2020 focuses on which types of products are particularly successful in African markets and can even become a profitable "winner" across national borders.

For this we work with you in lectures, Q & A-rounds as well as focus groups with the following topics:

    · Importance of and examples for successful frugal innovation in African markets

    · How to successfully develop frugal innovations?

    · To what extent must products for distribution in Africa be adapted to the local market requirements?

The final programme will be published in due time. Do not miss out on assessments and tips from business practitioners on successful entry into fast-growing markets!

We appreciate your interest and your participation.

Best regards,

Prof. Dr. Thomas Bayer                  Dr. Petra Blumenroth

Africa Institute HNU                       Bayern Innovativ GmbH - Nuremberg

Trainings, talks & key notes

  • Customized personnel training for your Africa business for decision-making, business entry, or expansion
  • Topic-related lectures or keynote speeches for workshops or conferences

A. Examples of general topics related to Africa

Africa - Problem continent or important future partner?
Possibilities and limits of strategic cooperation benefitting both partners. [These topics are also suitable for a heterogeneous audience.]


1. Introduction to Africa today: a world of interwoven contrasts

2. Current socio-economic development trends in Africa - opportunities and difficulties

3. Kenya and Ethiopia, situation and development of these countries as positive reference examples

4. Entrepreneurship projects of the University of Applied Sciences Neu-Ulm in Kenya and Ethiopia since 2012 - Examples of a successful cooperation with benefits for both sides

5. Critical population development in Africa - Causes and influencing factors

6. "Generation departure" - the key role of educated urban youth - opportunities, challenges and threats

7. Options for long-term economic cooperation between Europe and Africa

8. Impact of Chinese development and investment policy on Africa

9. China as a strategically operating, increasingly dominant power factor in Africa and Asia ("Silk Road Project") - Possibilities of a response from Europe

10. Long-term effects of Chinese expansion in Africa on the geopolitical and European situation - in particular Germany as a trading nation

B. Offer for economic and political lectures
[The following topics are aimed at economists and business practitioners.]

Overview of the current development of Africa

1. Africa's rapid development - How German SMEs can profit from it and how risks can be managed

2. Promoting entrepreneurship as a strategy for economic development in Africa:
Approach, experience, state of development

3. Investment promotion of SMEs in Africa - a new economic policy mechanism
Opportunities for European companies in Africa

4. Trilateral cooperation: Benefiting from major Chinese projects in Africa - selective cooperation with Chinese and African project partners

5. Adapted base products for fast-growing markets in emerging and developing countries (frugal product innovation) - a neglected opportunity in the EU to open up new markets and secure growth in recessionary times

6. Entry strategies into African markets - foundations and prerequisites for a successful approach

7. Rural, decentralized electrification as a development prerequisite: Energy supply through solar home systems and mini-grids (small solar village power plants) as well as through large "stand-alone solar systems" for self-supply of companies

8. Risk management of mini-grids* in the context of off-grid electrification in rural areas of Africa (* grid-independent solar power plants for villages)

China's engagement in Africa - the importance for Europe

9. China's engagement in Africa: welcome economic development for our neighbouring continent or threatening challenge for the Western world?

10. China's Africa offensive: Security implications and strategic options to safeguard European interests

C. Topic selection and customization

The exact title formulations for the lectures can be adapted to the wishes of the client. Individual topics can be combined. Alternatively, it is possible to limit lectures to specific sub-topics.


Topics for Student Theses

  • E-mobility in Kenya - market potential and market analysis
  • Manufacturing value-chains in Kenya for E-mobility technology
  • Shared & circular economy business models in rural Kenya
  • Innovative and sustainable social business models in Kenya
  • Marketing for incubators – a comparison of German and Kenyan providers
  • What makes German and Kenyan incubators successful?
  • How to brand German and Kenyan start-ups from the renewable energy sector?
  • Business models für German and Kenyan start-ups from the renewable energy sector
  • A comparison of German and Kenyan consumers – using archetypes
  • A comparison of German and Kenyan companies in terms of image – using archetypes
  • A comparison of Germany and Kenya as brands – using archetypes
  • What data do German companies need to launch a product or service in Kenya successfully?
  • How to promote & support business incubation in developing rural areas in Namibia [Experiences, difficulties, & opportunities]
  • Concepts to generate social & economic wealth in remote rural areas of Namibia – A critical analysis [Examination of experiences and deduction of forward-oriented opportunities
  • Site analysis for local production and supply chain management in Kenya
  • 'Smart simplicity' as criteria for innovative product development - The adaption of products to the specific needs of the huge and rapidly growing markets in Africa and Asia.

Members of the Africa-Institute

photo of the members of the Africa Institute
top from left: Prof. Dr. Thomas Bayer, Prof. Dr. Carsten Prenzler, Prof. Dr. Bernard Wagemann, Prof. Dr. Olaf Jacob;
bottom from left: David Manetsgruber, Sylvia Göbel, Vanessa Miller, Razaq Bashorun, Prof. Dr. Jens Pätzmann


Professor Dr.
Thomas Bayer View Profile

Vice President for Internationalization and Transfer
Director of the Centre for Research on service science (CROSS)

Send E-Mail to Professor Dr. Thomas Bayer
Main Building B,B.1.21


Sylvia Göbel View Profile

Coordination of third party projects

Send E-Mail to Sylvia Göbel
Main Building B,B.1.18


Professor Dr.
Olaf Jacob View Profile

Vice President for Research and Digitalisation
Head of the degree programme Master of Business Intelligence and Business Analytics
Head of the Centre for Data Science & Business Analytics

Send E-Mail to Professor Dr. Olaf Jacob
Main Building B,B.1.19


David Manetsgruber View Profile

Research Assistant

Send E-Mail to David Manetsgruber
Edisonalle 7,DREI 4. EDISON 7


Vanessa Miller View Profile

Coordinator Africa Institute

Send E-Mail to Vanessa Miller
Main Building B,B.1.18


Professor Dr.
Jens U. Pätzmann View Profile

Head of the Centre for Marketing & Branding

Send E-Mail to Professor Dr. Jens U. Pätzmann
Edisonalle 1,EINS, 3 EDISON 1


Professor Dr.
Carsten Prenzler View Profile

Professor for Business Administration in the area of Industrial Management

Send E-Mail to Professor Dr. Carsten Prenzler
Main Building A,A.2.27


Ronald Robertson View Profile

Research Assistant Centre for Digitalization / Africa Institute

Send E-Mail to Ronald Robertson


Professor Dr.
Elmar Steurer View Profile

Dean of the Department of Business and Economics

Send E-Mail to Professor Dr. Elmar Steurer
Main Building A,A.2.34


Professor Dr.
Bernard Wagemann View Profile

Head of the Centre for Corporate Management
Co-Director 'Institute for Decentral Electrification, Entrepreneurship and Education'

Send E-Mail to Professor Dr. Bernard Wagemann
Edisonalle 7,ZWEI, 5 EDISON 7

Accreditations and Certificates