HSG engages in numerous strategic research collaborations with both industry partners and academic institutions around the world.

Being engaged in both fundamental and applied research, the University of St.Gallen (HSG) boasts a broad spectrum of research activities and maintains close partnerships with business, industry and academic institutions around the world. Strategic cooperation projects with partners from practice are essential for HSG research. These collaborations offer scientists of varying experience level attractive research conditions in terms of direct knowledge transfer. Below you will find an overview of selected industry partners:

Partner BMW Group

The University and the BMW Group cooperate closely on various research topics. A transfer of knowledge and technology is currently taking place in particular in the research field "Customer / Premium / Marketing".

Together, business and science can contribute to shaping the world of tomorrow in a sustainable way. Against this background, HSG and the BMW Group are intensifying their cooperation with the aim of a lively transfer of knowledge and technology in a broad range of topics. At the same time, the exchange between young academics and the corporate world is intended to provide mutual impetus.

Customer Foresight Centre

The scientific sponsor of the research cooperation between HSG and the BMW Group is the Customer Foresight Centre.

What drives customers? What factors play a role in the purchase decision? To be able to answer questions like these more precisely and to establish a longer-term strategic partnership, the University and the BMW Group established the Customer Foresight Centre (CFC), led by professors Torsten Tomczak and Wolfgang Jenewein, in November 2011.

Within the framework of this cooperation, researchers - in St.Gallen as well as at the BMW Group locations - conduct research on practice-relevant topics. The CFC works very closely with the HSG's Institute for Customer Insight, the Institute for Marketing and the Centre for Innovation and thus can count on a pool of around 80 research employees.

The cooperation takes place in the form of research projects (conducting research studies, thesis projects), collaboration in applied research projects, joint workshops, seminars and lecture series in St.Gallen and Munich. Currently, a total of eleven doctoral students are working on research projects in the areas of innovations, design and aesthetics, pricing and offer design, channel management, sales, aftersales, electromobility, and car sharing.

Bosch IoT Lab

The cooperation with Bosch aims to find and test business models in the field of Internet of Things and Services (IoTS). In addition, HSG and Bosch are working on the development of Internet-based products and services.

The Bosch Internet of Things and Services Lab (Bosch IoTS Lab) is a joint initiative of the Bosch Group and HSG. It was launched in September 2012. Both partners consider this cooperation between science and practice to be an ideal approach for exploring the numerous new opportunities offered by the Internet of Things.

The lab is tasked with generating ideas for the Internet of Things and services and evaluating them in real projects. The Lab is funded by Robert Bosch GmbH and is closely associated with Bosch Software Innovations GmbH. Accordingly, the team is active in Connected Mobility and Connected Building, areas that are of particular importance to the company.

Hilti Lab for Integrated Performance Management (IPM Lab)

The Hilti Lab for Integrated Performance Management is a cooperation between HSG and Hilti AG with the aim of promoting knowledge transfer between science and practice. The focus of the lab is on deepening the understanding of the interrelationships between control systems and the behavior of actors in the entrepreneurial environment. The goal is to effectively integrate leadership behavior and control systems into goal-oriented management processes (Integrated Performance Management) to enable quantum leaps in organizational performance.

Through empirical research, innovation and knowledge transfer, the IPM Lab develops, designs and implements management models that make a significant contribution to improving the performance of cooperating partners.


The SBB Lab is an international competence centre at IMP-HSG focusing on the topic of service and transport management between state and market. Through research, teaching and practice-based projects, we contribute to the ability of pluralistic organisations in network industries to act.

Transport organisations operate in the area of tension between entrepreneurial efficiency and state regulation. Worldwide, transportation services are increasingly developing into entrepreneurially provided services. In the process, providers on the market are subject to strong pressure to consolidate and internationalise. At the same time, however, they are not always subject to political forces and framework conditions that are in line with the market. The regulatory environment continues to develop dynamically, and individual submarkets, such as rail freight and public passenger transport, function according to different rationalities, which often have to be reflected in one organisation. The challenge for transport organisations is to design room for maneuver and development in this context.

We develop foundations for designing room for maneuver and development for companies and authorities through research, teaching and practical projects on management between state and market. In doing so, we maintain regular exchange with practice partners and a network of researchers from other European universities.

Rules on self-financing

The University Act enables HSG to generate additional funds to complement basic public funding and tuition fees. The University is aware of the fact that cooperation with sponsors and companies must not affect the academic freedoms of teaching and research. It therefore accords great value to precise rules and contractual regulations, which safeguard the following central principles in particular:

  • preservation of the freedom of teaching and research,
  • commitment to the HSG standards for subject matter and curricula,
  • compliance with international standards and the HSG rules for the appointment and employment of research and teaching staff.

Basic principles of self-financing (in German)