Skip to content

Robonatives Initiative


With the Robonatives Initiative, the Robokind Foundation pursued a sustainable and long-term skilled labour strategy to strengthen the Hanover region and the state of Lower Saxony. Among other things, the establishment of a regional “Robonatives” network was promoted and two additional locations were initiated for the qualified development of a robotics factory. In addition, robotics curricula with IHK certification were developed and subsequently tested for robotics training in the Leine-Weser skilled workers’ alliance as well as corresponding training systems.

Project duration: 1.12.2019 bis 30.6.2022

Target groups

Our Robonatives initiative is active across the state to reach people from all over Lower Saxony. The focus is on three target groups:

Skilled workersIn the future, many activities in industry and trade can be automated with sensitive robots. However, trained specialists are indispensable for implementation!
TeachersTeachers carry the knowledge to the general public and are therefore essential multipliers! We train teachers and support them in establishing robotics in the classroom.
PupilsChildren are the future – especially when it comes to the responsible use of groundbreaking technologies! We offer formats for children and young people to get them excited about robotics.

As part of the Robonatives Initiative, the Robokind Foundation, in close cooperation with the Hanover Chamber of Commerce and Industry and funded by the Lower Saxony Ministry of Economics, Labour, Transport and Digitalisation and the Hanover Region, developed training courses that were specifically tailored to the needs of Lower Saxony companies. The initiative had a special focus on the Leine-Weser region.

The aim was to ensure the education and training of our skilled workers of tomorrow by training semi-skilled and unskilled workers to become robonatives.

Advisory Board of the Robonatives Initiative

The project was strategically accompanied by a top-class advisory board. The chairman of the advisory board of the TROIA model project was Dr. Oliver Brandt.

Dr. Oliver Brandt
Hanover region
Executive Board

“As team leader for employment promotion at Region Hannover, I have robotics at heart and always have people in mind. This also applies to the ‘Robonatives Initiative’ that we promote, which is an important component of our robotics activities.”

Dr Oliver Brandt, born in 1976, studied geography with a focus on economic geography at Leibniz Universität Hannover (LUH) and the University of Pretoria. As a research assistant at CAU Kiel, LUH and NIW, he devoted himself in particular to regional labour market research. At the end of 2008, he moved to Süderelbe AG, a PPP model for regional economic development, as project manager. Since 2017, he has been involved in employment-promoting projects of the Hannover Region Economic Development Agency – with a focus on social innovation and school-to-work transition. Since March 2019, he has been team leader for employment promotion at Region Hannover. The “TROIA model project” is a focus of Region Hannover’s robotics activities.”

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Sami Haddadin
Robokind Foundation
Founder and Chairman of the Foundation Board

Prof. Sami Haddadin is Director of the Munich School of Robotics and Machine Intelligence at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and holds the Chair of Robotics and Systems Intelligence. He has received numerous awards for his scientific work, including the Alfried Krupp Prize for Young University Teachers (2015), the German Future Prize of the Federal President (2017) and the Leibniz Prize (2019). He is the founder and chairman of the board of trustees of the Robokind Foundation.

Dr. med. dent. Jasmin Grischke, M. Sc.
Robokind Foundation
Senior physician MHH and co-founder and project leader of the Robonatives Initiative

Dr Jasmin Grischke is a senior physician at the Clinic for Dental Prosthetics and Biomedical Materials Science at the Hannover Medical School (MHH) and co-founder of the Robokind – Robotics for mankind – Foundation. In her work at the MHH, she researches peri-implant infections and combines this research with innovative approaches in the use of sensitive, collaborating robots in (dental) medicine.

Dipl.-Inf. Philipp Zimmermann
Robokind Foundation
Board of Directors

Mr Philipp Zimmermann is the managing director of the Robokind Foundation. He is also co-founder and managing director of FRANKA EMIKA GmbH, a company that designs, develops and manufactures sensitive, high-performance and cost-effective industrial robots. After studying computer science at the University of Applied Sciences in Munich, Mr Zimmermann initially worked in sales and project management before starting his own consultancy in Berlin. In 2014, he returned to Munich to work in a robotics start-up, a spin-off of the German Aerospace Center, which eventually led to the founding of FRANKA EMIKA GmbH in 2016. He is particularly passionate about educating and promoting the next generation of Robonatives, enabling everyone to have access to robotics technologies.

Heike Döpke
Employment Agency in Hanover
Chairwoman of the Management Board of the Hanover Employment Agency

“The Robonatives Initiative is an educational project that takes up current technical developments, keyword “Industry 4.0”, and helps to make them known to companies and young people. The Robonatives Initiative is an educational project that takes up current technical developments, keyword “Industry 4.0″, and helps to make them known and communicate them to companies and young people. It fits in with our social responsibility to support such an innovative project to secure skilled workers in the Hannover Region.”

Heike Döpke is Chairwoman of the Management Board of the Hannover Employment Agency. She is an expert on the training and labour market in the Hannover Region. With 1,600 employees, the Employment Agency advises and mediates employees and companies, on market issues and offers support. One of the main tasks is to support companies in training or recruiting skilled workers for their company. In addition, to enable young people to make the smoothest possible transition from school to work. Due to challenges facing society as a whole, such as digitalisation, structural change and demographic change, working life is changing for everyone: The demands on professions are changing, new professions are emerging or others are disappearing. Workers change jobs or occupations more frequently. This is why the Federal Employment Agency is increasingly focusing on individual career counselling for students, employees and job seekers.

Cornelia Frerichs
Lower Saxony Ministry for Social Affairs, Labour, Health and Equality
Department of Labour and Employment Promotion, Vocational Qualification

Ministerialrätin Cornelia Frerichs is head of Department 43 in the Lower Saxony Ministry of Education and Cultural Affairs. She is responsible for school-based vocational education and training in the fields of business, health and social affairs, inter-occupational learning and the digitalisation of vocational schools.

Stefan Friedrich
Lower Saxony Ministry for Social Affairs, Labour, Health and Equality
Department of Labour and Employment Promotion, Vocational Qualification

The ‘Robonatives Initiative’ makes an important contribution to sensitising regional industrial companies and SMEs in particular to the future topics of robotics and artificial intelligence and to improving the education and training of skilled and junior staff in Lower Saxony.

Stefan Friedrich is responsible in the Lower Saxony Ministry of Economics, Labour, Transport and Digitalisation in the department “Promotion of Labour and Employment, Vocational Qualification”, in particular for the promotion of continuing vocational training for employees and the regional skilled labour situation as well as the coordination of the Ministry’s ESF funding.

Torsten Temmeyer
Hanover Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Securing skilled workers and promoting young talent

Torsten Temmeyer has been the IHK’s vocational training officer at the Hanover Chamber of Industry and Commerce since 2004. The focus of his activities is on securing skilled workers and promoting young talent in the area of international education, in particular the development and initiation of EU projects. Furthermore, Mr. Temmeyer is responsible for the area management of the IHK training marketing as well as the promotion of young talents in the MINT area; among other things with the introduction of an IHK certificate course in the area of “Robotics” (start in October 2017).

Further links to the Robonatives Initiative

5. Bündnisversammlung des Regionalen Fachkräftebündnisses Leine-Weser | Amt für regionale Landesentwicklung Leine-Weser (

Digitales Angebot: Digital Dienstag | Stadt Braunschweig

“It’s all about Robonatives” Konferenz