Mission and Vision



Copyright: Cluster of Excellence Integrative Production Technology for High-Wage Countries

The Cluster of Excellence stands for high quality and integrative research in the field of material and production technology at RWTH Aachen University.

Our aim is to assure the production in High-Wage Countries and to develop new production strategies, precisely in the context of the dynamic framework of a world affected by globalization.

Our research focuses on sustainable approaches for the implementation of new technologies, especially in respect of individualization, virtualization, hybridization and self-optimizing production.

In over 25 research departments interdisciplinary scientific work is highly valued and supported.

We esteem and seek active cooperation with manufacturers. Several international operating companies have already joined us.




Competition between producers in high-wage and low-wage countries is typically carried out in two dimensions: economy of planning and economy of production.

In terms of production economy, low-wage countries focus solely on exploiting volume effects in production (economies of scale); high-wage countries position themselves in-between scale and scope, i.e. satisfying customers‘ specific product desires and requirements, while simultaneously assuring minimum production quantities.

In the second dimension, the planning domain, manufacturers in high-wage countries attempt to optimize their processes more and more, using demanding, capital-intensive planning methods and tools as well as technologically superior production systems, while low-wage countries find their solutions in simple, robust and value stream oriented process chains.

Better positioning within the two dichotomies of scale/scope and planning orientation/ value-orientation is no longer enough to obtain a sustainable competition advantage for production locations in high-wage countries. Research must instead aim to resolve these dichotomies as far as possible. Ways must be found to increase product variability while at the same time manufacturing at mass production costs.

This requires product adapted, value-optimized process chains, whose profitability is not endangered by excessive planning efforts. Tomorrow‘s production technology therefore needs a fundamentally new understanding of these basic relationships – a theory of production science.