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News | Bosch at Christopher Street Day

News | Customer service with an e-bike

Bosch has launched a customer service pilot project in Vienna

For drivers, inner city mobility poses challenges every day because of high traffic density, long traffic jams, and a limited number of parking spots. To reach customers flexibly, without stress, and with low emissions, Bosch Thermotechnology technicians now use e-cargo bikes. “Traffic in city centers continues to increase, and this puts our service technicians under time pressure,“ says Uwe Rohr, a customer service representative at Bosch Thermotechnology Austria. “This is why we sought a sustainable solution that would allow our technicians to move through dense city traffic easily, all the while taking the tools and materials they need with them. An e-cargo bike makes all of this possible.”

 

Manuel Tichy, customer service technician and one of four e-cargo bike riders

 

Specially produced e-bikes

Bosch had already initiated a successful pilot project with e-cargo bikes in Brussels in 2016. Customer service technicians in the Belgian capital can use bikes produced by the manufacturer Butchers & Bicycles. The electric bicycles feature a drive designed by Bosch and the Nyon navigation system, which Bosch developed especially for e-bikes. This enables technicians to get to their customer appointments quickly and safely. At the end of the test phase, Bosch is currently considering to expand the project to more Belgian cities.

With regard to the positive response in Brussels, Bosch also started a pilot project with e-cargo bikes in Austria’s capital Vienna in June 2018. Customer service technicians can use the bikes, which are made by the Dutch bicycle manufacturer Urban Arrow, voluntarily. The bike is equipped with a high-performance Bosch electric motor and two 500 Wh Bosch batteries. The transport box was specially made by Heavy Padels, a Vienna-based company. The cover’s sliding mechanism offers an extra storage space for tools, measuring devices, and replacement parts.

 

 

The e-bike fleet is being expanded in Austria

In the first few weeks since the project was launched, feedback has been very positive. “Everyone benefits from this model,“ says Uwe Rohr. “Customers are satisfied because they can get quick support. Associates are physically active, experience less time pressure, and are more motivated.” At the end of the test phase in Vienna, Bosch is planning to roll out the project in other cities in 2019.

More information on Bosch e-bikes can be found here.

Impressions of the pilot project in Brussels are given in this following video

News | Bosch at Christopher Street Day

The Bosch RBgay associate network celebrated in Stuttgart and Munich.

Raising the rainbow flag to celebrate diversity: for the fifth time, Bosch took part in the Christopher Street Day festivities in Stuttgart. On the last weekend in July, around 100 associates participated in the parade to express their support for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights. Participants included members of RBgay (RBg), the Bosch LGBT associate network.  A few weeks earlier, Bosch also took part in Munich’s CSD events for the first time.

 

 

Promoting an environment that is free of prejudice

RBgay aims to create a work environment that is free of prejudice. Its members are committed to raising awareness on issues related to sexual orientation and gender identity at the company, reduce fear, and build networks between colleagues. LGBT Allies plays an important role in this regard. Launched last year, the project reaches out to open-minded allies at all Bosch business sectors, who can then actively support their RBg colleagues by speaking openly about LGBT issues.

“RBg contributes to making our corporate culture even more open by allowing associates to be themselves and feel appreciated – regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity,” says Christoph Kübel, the director of industrial relations at Bosch. “The members of the network thus play an important role in promoting diversity at our company. For associates to reach their full potential and contribute creative ideas, they need to feel safe.”  

 

 

Chapters around the world         

RBg was founded by six Bosch associates in 2006. Today, the network counts more than 400 members in Europe, Asia, and the Americas. In 2016, Bosch associates in the United States founded a chapter of RBg, which has since held events on a regular basis. A group was also formed in Japan this year, where LGBT are still now widely accepted in local society. Members meet for an LGBT lunch on a regular basis and raise awareness with a range of events.

 

More information about the Bosch LGBT network can be found here.

News | Startup drive for better air quality

Bosch is increasingly promoting the innovative strength of startups

According to a study of the World Health Organization (WHO), 90 percent of the world population is exposed to poor quality air, with the worst conditions in the poorer countries of Africa and Asia as well as in megacities around the world. Bosch has responded to tackling this enormous challenge not only with its own solutions – among them air-measuring devices, virtual power plants, and mobility services – it has also stepped up its cooperation with startups. In May, Bosch engaged in dialog with startup founders at the “Pioneers’ 18” tech event in Vienna, where 2,500 young entrepreneurs from around the world with established companies convened.

 

Participants of the Bosch pitching challenge (Source: Robert Bosch AG/APA-Fotoservice/Schedl, photographer: Ludwig Schedl)

 

Better ambient air thanks to smart devices

In an ideas competition, startups competed for the best way to turn real-time data from air measuring sensors into concrete measures. With the “Bosch Pitching Challenge”, participants were asked to come up with creative approaches related to the Internet of Things. The winning technology aims to ensure good ambient air quality. “Clairy”, an Italian startup, developed a smart flower pot that naturally keeps ambient air clean: a small ventilator aerates the plant’s roots so that they can better absorb hazardous substances and turn them into oxygen. The jury was convinced of the idea’s potential and gave the startup the opportunity to keep working on it with Bosch experts.

 

Paolo Ganis, one of the founders of the startup Clairy (Source: Robert Bosch AG/APA-Fotoservice/Schedl, photographer: Ludwig Schedl)

 

Bosch is increasingly becoming a startup founder itself for sustainable solutions, for instance with Triffix. The company’s start-up specializes in “virtual traffic signs” that are currently being tested in Stuttgart, Germany. The city’s traffic control center transmits relevant information, including recommended action, to Triffix, which then forwards data directly to users’ smart phones via push notifications. In brief: everyone receives the most important information in the right place and at the right time, thus allowing drivers to avoid obstacles and stay on the most eco-friendly route. 

 

More information on the Pitching Challenge can be found here

Further information on startup ideas that Bosch promotes can be found on the Bosch Startup Platform

News | Robert Bosch Junior Professorship 2018: species protection and the sustainable use of resources in Africa

Robert Bosch Stiftung’s Junior Professorship for the “Sustainable use of natural resources” goes to Dr. Jacqueline Loos

How can the natural environment be protected without causing the local population to go hungry? When it comes to species protection and the maintenance of biodiversity in developing countries, this is a central question. The environmental scientist Dr. Jacqueline Loos of Leuphana University in Lüneburg, Germany, aims to answer this question with her research. The recipient of the Robert Bosch Junior Professorship 2018 is working on a research project entitled: “Wildlife, Values, Justice: Reconciling Sustainability in African Protected Areas.” Her research focuses on the effectiveness of nature reserves in Zambia and Tanzania, where more than a third of the surface area is protected.

 

Dr. Jacqueline Loos, Robert Bosch Junior Professorship 2018 (Photo: Robert Bosch Stiftung / Robert Thiele)

 

Conservation and the sustainable use of resources

Addressing population growth in Sub-Saharan Africa is a major challenge. Loos has concluded that a nature reserve can only function and fully serve its purpose if the local population does not suffer as a result of it. A balance must thus be struck between protecting the environment and making sustainable use of local natural resources. With her research, Loos aims to help draw a realistic picture of local realities, and to reconcile them with conservation and species protection initiatives.  “The fight to maintain biodiversity cannot succeed if the local population is starving,” says Dr. Loos. “If we want to ensure that nature reserves function properly, the local population must also benefit. We must thus take their needs into account and involve them in decision-making process.” Loos also uses modern technology for her research, such as drones and automated image processing. Her aim is to gather information on animal populations at her study site. Loos is set to receive a total of one million euros in funding from Robert Bosch Stiftung over a period of five years.

More than a million euros in funding

Robert Bosch Stiftung aims to strengthen sustainability science in Germany. To this end, it has offered the Robert Bosch Junior Professorship for the “Sustainable use of natural resources” since 2008. The initiative funds research at German universities or research institutions with up to a million euros over a period of five years, and aims to help solve urgent socio-ecological challenges that are relevant especially in developing or emerging countries. The research findings should contribute to achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The following video presents more information about the research project.

News | Sparking enthusiasm for learning: 80 years of Bosch Jugendhilfe

Bosch Jugendhilfe is celebrating its 80th birthday

Since 1938, Bosch Jugendhilfe has been helping associates of limited financial means and their children. Until now, it has supported 3,465 young people. The initiative aims to help youth complete higher education. “It is well known that the level of education a person achieves in Germany is highly dependent on their family background,” says Marion-Oertel Nau, head of the program. “Now, more than ever, a successful career requires a formal qualification and lifelong learning.”

Marion Oertel-Nau, Head of the Bosch Jugendhilfe

Scholarship opens up new perspectives

Bosch Jugendhilfe supports talented employees or their children with scholarships. Depending on the individual needs, the initiative offers young people a variety of different programs for personal and professional development. For instance, students can apply for financial support for tutoring, take part in a mentoring program and participate in workshops. Scholars receive a monthly payment to provide for books and other university supplies, as well as a subsidy for a semester abroad and the chance to attend classes hosted by Bosch Jugendhilfe.

The story of an employee’s daughter from Remseck, Germany, is a perfect example for the impact this scholarship can have on a student’s career. The 23-year-old Gizem Dülger has been supported by Bosch Jugendhilfe since she was in school. A time, as she now remembers, when she was looking for a purpose: “I didn’t believe in myself at the time. I wasn’t motivated, had no perspective.” Bosch Jugendhilfe provided said perspective and gave Gizem a goal worth working towards. Lately, she graduated from college and is looking for a job in Human Ressources. When asked what she benefited from the most, she says that the annual workshops for scholars helped her develop her talents. At these seminars, scholars extend their network and get in touch with other scholars and professionals. Moreover, they strengthen soft and hard skills which are important for their future careers. For Gizem these courses were a highlight of her scholarship: “At the workshops, I learned how to give a presentation – and so much more.”  

Gizem Dülger, scholar of the Bosch Jugendhilfe

Employees support employees

One thing that stands out with regard to the different programs of Bosch Jugendhilfe is the employees’ commitment. Bosch associates work as honorary mentors who spend two hours a week with their mentee. In this role, they act as tutors who guide and motivate their students. They offer support in all life situations and give advice on any problems and concerns.

A detailed interview with Marion Oertel-Nau, the head of Bosch Jugendhilfe, can be found here.

The story about Gizem Dülger can be found here.

More information on Bosch Jugendhilfe can be found here.