Commission for Technology and Innovation CTI: Portrait and mandate

The CTI is the federal innovation promotion agency responsible for encouraging science-based innovation in Switzerland by providing financing, professional advice and networks.

The CTI operates on the principle of subsidiarity, supporting innovation projects which, due to lack of funding, would not otherwise be possible, or whose market potential could not be realised. It is active in cases where initiatives in the private sector can be supported by state measures. By helping to transfer research results into concrete marketable products, the CTI helps to improve the competitiveness of Swiss businesses, particularly SMEs, thereby contributing to a strong, innovative economy in Switzerland.

The CTI innovation chain
The CTI innovation chain

The CTI innovation chain

The three CTI funding areas are closely linked. The R&D project funding area promotes basic research, whilst Knowledge and Technology Transfer (KTT) and Start-up and Entrepreneurship concentrate on applied research. The CTI identifies obstacles to innovation and its instruments help to overcome barriers existing between public research institutions and the private sector.

R&D project funding

The CTI’s task is to help innovative products and services onto the market to the benefit of the Swiss economy, by encouraging higher education institutions and businesses to carry out joint research and development projects. Companies, especially SMEs, can thereby benefit from the infrastructure in the research institutions and bring their innovative products and services to market.

More on R&D project funding

Start-up & Entrepreneurship

The CTI is tasked with promoting entrepreneurship and supporting innovative business ideas. The CTI programmes and networks provide the skills and methods necessary to successfully turn a business idea into a new company. The instruments used include training courses for potential and active young entrepreneurs and coaching and support in searching for investors.

More on Start-up and Entrepreneurship

KTT Support

KTT stands for knowledge and technology transfer between businesses and research circles. This funding area brings together businesses, especially SMEs, and public research institutions in cases where contact has not otherwise been established. The aim is to create partnerships which will then act as drivers of innovation in Switzerland.

More on KTT support

Special task: Energy research

In order to achieve the Federal Council’s and parliament’s objective of gradually phasing out nuclear power by 2035, a stronger focus is being placed on energy research between 2013 and 2016. Research networks among universities, named the Swiss Competence Centres for Energy Research (SCCERs), have been set up to establish the potential for efficiency savings and the opportunities presented by renewables. The CTI is responsible for creating and funding the SCCERs, supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF). The CTI is also funding extra R&D projects relating to energy.

More on energy research

Further Information

Job vacancies

The CTI is a streamlined organisation. About 30 employees work in the secretariat, managing applications, preparing the documentation on which the Board makes its decisions and carrying out other organisational tasks. Are you interested in working in the field of innovation? CTI job vacancies are published here.

Legal bases

Legal bases: One act, one ordinance and two regulations form the legal bases for the promotion of research and innovation in Switzerland.

Legal bases


The CTI is an efficient and effective organisation. You can read about the Board, Commission, Secretariat, coaches and mentors here.


Last modification 03.02.2015

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Secretariat CTI

Commission for Technology and Innonvation CTI Einsteinstrasse 2
3003 Bern
+41 58 462 21 29


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