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Thüringer Clustermanagement (ThCM)

Landesentwicklungs­gesellschaft Thüringen mbH (LEG Thüringen)

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99084 Erfurt
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Healthy Living and the Healthcare Sector

The health industry is one of the most employment-intensive sectors with the greatest growth in Thuringia and is thus a significant part of the regional economy. The field of specialisation pertaining to healthy living and health economy covers the topics of medical technology, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, food industry and health economy.

The theme of "Healthy Living" appeals to a broad spectrum of industries. Traditional strengths in the field of optics make Thuringia an international innovation leader in the fields of microscopy, laser technology and ophthalmology. New subject areas, such as infection research and ageing research, have been established in recent years and brought to international attention. And the manufacture of pharmaceutical products is also proving to be an important specialist area for Thuringia.

Food industry actors are building competencies for topics such as "Healthy nutrition" and "Prevention of diet-related cardiovascular diseases". At the same time, they advance social issues of modern life and challenges of demographic change – such as social participation and health or occupational health management – on an interdisciplinary level and bring them to the public's attention.

The scientific expertise for this is found in six universities – including three universities and three universities of applied sciences – 15 research facilities, two technology and start-up centres and the University Hospital Jena.

The entire field is characterised by a particular strength of Thuringia's research institutions. Here it has been possible to attract further structure-building R&D initiatives to Thuringia in highly endowed and prestigious tenders in competition with the other German regions. These include the Cluster of Excellence "Balance of the Microverse" (approx. 47 million euros in funding for infection research) and the "Leibniz Centre for Photonics in Infection Research (LPI)" with a funding volume of 150 million euros.

The economy in the field of specialisation in figures

8.3 Turnover in billion euros
8450 Companies
165500 Employees subject to social security contributions

Data source: own calculation based on TLS data, as of 2020 (figures rounded)

Derived from the specialisation profile, four topics currently prove to have potential for this field:

  • Biophotonics/Bioinstruments
  • Infections/Diagnostics
  • Digital health
  • Healthy diet
  • Healthy ageing

Vision and goals

Health innovations from Thuringia have international appeal and create closed value chains locally through interdisciplinarity:

  • Existing lighthouses and top positions in analytics, diagnostics and infection research, as well as medical technology that shine beyond the region are being expanded and are exemplary for the expansion of the entire field of specialisation. Promising niches are identified and occupied, taking into account the competencies of neighbouring fields of specialisation.
  • Through close cooperation between top research facilities and industry, we develop innovative anti-infection strategies in Thuringia to combat infectious diseases. This opens up the possibility for participating companies to develop and market effective strategies and products in the sense of linking diagnosis and therapy.
  • Thuringia is once again becoming an innovative pharmaceutical location.
  • In the food industry, Thuringia offers healthy food from the region for Germany and Europe. In doing so, we improve our innovative strength and competitiveness by developing new processes and products.
  • As an attractive employer, the healthcare industry in Thuringia enables people to work and live healthily and contributes to value creation through the provision of healthcare services.

Cluster and network organisations

  • Networks


    medways e.V.

    medways e. V. is an industry association of leading German research institutes, industrial companies and universities with the aim of developing innovative methods for the diagnosis and therapy of severely age-related diseases, as well as medical technology products that are suitable for the global market.

    medways advises companies on the certification of medical devices, on the establishment and maintenance of quality management systems according to DN 13 485, and on market introduction. For the qualification of employees, the association continuously conducts further training events and offers individual in-house training courses and training programmes. In addition, medways takes on the complete project management for research projects, from the search for topics to the application for funding and coordination to controlling.


    InfectoGnostics – Research Campus Jena

    As a public-private partnership, the InfectoGnostics research campus in Jena is breaking new ground in the diagnosis of infections. More than 30 partners from science, medicine and industry are developing market-ready solutions for the rapid and cost-effective on-site analysis of infections, e.g. tuberculosis in human medicine, chlamydia in animal diseases and pathogen diagnostics in food, in a triad of technology, application and production.


    Thuringia Nutrition Network e.V. 

    Thuringia Nutrition Network e.V. is an alliance of currently 36 companies and players in the food industry who give their sector a strong voice. Supported by the Thuringian Ministry of Economics and the Thuringian Ministry of Agriculture, the association focuses on sector-relevant topics and represents the economy in the political arena. In addition to its function as a platform for dovetailing business and science for the transfer of knowledge and the promotion of innovation, the association is dedicated to public relations work. It wants to raise the profile of the industry representatives through image campaigns in order to positively influence their reputation in the long term and thus open up new markets. This is intended to secure employment and growth in the industry in the long term.

Your contact person

Dr. Britta Wlotzka

Dr. Britta Wlotzka Field of specialisation – Healthy living and health economy

Get in touch with us.