If some of these needs apply to you, the ImpactLab at the FHNW is the place for YOU!

At our ImpactLab, you come with your passion, dedication and ambition. We take care of the rest to help shaping your impactful start-up.

You are going to be continuously supported through our unique approach in which we, from the FHNW University of Applied Sciences and Arts of Northwestern Switzerland, are best at: The combination of updated theoretical state-of-the-art with best practices from the industry.

Find out about our specialized offers for you and apply to become a member right now.

What do we offer?


You can participate in our training modules, in which you learn everything related to your new venture, from developing your business model to writing a business plan, accounting, funding, digitalisation and eventually pitching.


Coaching plays an important part in many entrepreneurial success stories. You will be assigned with a coach that fits your needs that will accompany you for up to six months with regular one-on-one sessions.

Entrepreneur-Domain/IT Experts Matchmaking

We offer the Entrepreneur-Domain/IT Experts Matchmaking service. Whether you are an entrepreneur, a domain expert or an IT expert you can find the most suitable partner to make your business dream a successful reality.


For many start-ups, funding is the biggest hurdle. You can get advice on choosing the best opportunities for your business and support on the way from choosing your possible investors to filling in applications and practicing your pitch.

Learning material (pre-recorded webinars, checklists etc)

From time to time, you will need a tool or a checklist to develop part of your business. You can choose between a broad range of checklists, tools, case studies and recorded webinars in our database. As a member you will get access to all of them – whether you want to learn about the Blue Ocean Strategy or the 7-Keys-Modell, we got you covered.


You as an entrepreneur can only benefit from being part of a strong community with a working support structure. ImpactLab strives to create a network of entrepreneurs, industry partners and employees of the university with mutual benefits for every party. Therefore, we organise several events for you throughout the year – monthly networking events, round table discussions or hackathons.


Our expertise At our ImpactLab, we strive to support you at best with what we know best.
Our expertise focuses on the following three areas:

Digitalisation & Information Systems

Our pool of experts consists of researchers, lecturers and practicioners in the area of digitalisation and information systems. With their expertise they can help you to boost your prototpye till it becomes an innovative and sound MVP.

Expertise with which we can support are: Knowledge-based Systems, Knowledge Management, Case-Based Reasoning, Business Modelling, Digitization of business processes, Decision support, Business Intelligence, Machine Learning and Natural Language Processing.

We host the first Swiss OMiLab Node.

As the first Swiss OMiLab Node, and together with an increasing international OMiLab network of other innovating OMiLab Nodes we are an open lab committed to foster the Digital Transformation through Design Thinking, Conceptual Modeling of cyber-physical systems and Digital Innovation.

The Swiss OMiLab Node is part of the non-profit organization OMiLab, which envisions an active global community for conceptual modelling that benefits from open artefacts to enable innovation and solutions for the transformation of society, business and industries. As an OMiLab Node we:

  • provide knowledge, open technologies and expertise to all those who value models.
  • support conceptual modelling of organizations and individuals with tools, knowledge and education.
  • Are open to all application domains and use Enterprise Modelling, Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things, and Cyber-physical Systems to enable model-driven value creation in disruptive business models, digital products, innovative processes and IT-architectures.

Other current OMiLab Nodes are located in St. Etienne (France), Bergamo (Italy), Berlin (Germany), Vienna (Austria), Sibia (Romania) and Chonbuk (South Korea). Each OMiLab Node is a dedicated research and experimentation space for the conceptualization, development and deployment of modelling methods, tools and models.

Responsible for the Swiss OMiLab Node: Emanuele Laurenzi

E-mail: emanuele.laurenzi@fhnw.ch


The FHNW has long been supporting a sustainable approach to business and management. One example being the Swiss Sustainability Challenge, with which we promote sustainable business ideas by young people. Therefore, also the InnoLab is focusing on businesses aiming to have an impact in society beyond profit-making.

Get to know more about the Swiss Sustainability Challenge

Young people have a whole host of ideas on issues in our society, whether they relate to social matters such as healthcare and education, the environment or infrastructural issues like public mobility and sustainable building. Since 2017 the Swiss Sustainability Challenge focusses on supporting students and young people in developing and implementing their ideas and projects, to help them succeed in their commitment to the good of their community. The best projects are awarded with the Pax Sustainability Awards and win a total of CHF 20,000 in prize money.

Participating individuals and teams will benefit for free from

  • Individual advice from trained coaches
  • Workshops and seminars
  • Access and training for the Sustainable Innovation Plan on the platform getlaunched
  • Exchange and networking with experienced entrepreneurs

In Edu-Tech, different technologies are used in teaching and learning. It is a combination of physical hardware, education software and education theories. As it is a rising field in research and practice, we use our expertise to support new ideas in this area.

Sign-Up Please fill in below application form to become a member of our ImpactLab@FHNW. We will evaluate your application and contact you as soon as possible.

Please describe your idea

Membership We would love to have you as a member!

You are eligible for a membership, if you are either an FHNW student/Alumni or an FHNW employee.

Activate your one-year free-of-charge membership. How to do that?

  1. You have a good business idea. No matter at which stage your business idea is, whether it just exists in your brain, you already have an MVP or you just started to run your start-up. We are here to empower you!

  2. You don’t have a business idea, but you are a domain or IT expert who wants to make her/his knowledge available for a potential start-up.

Just enter your details when signing up and we will be pleased to reach out to you.

Become a Partner

Are you interested to become one of our partners? Whether you want to be part of our coaching team or become an event sponsor, send us an e-mail here info@innochance.ch and we will get back to you as soon as possible.



Steering Committee

  • Prof. Dr. Knut Hinkelmann Lecturer, Programme Head MSc in Business Information Systems, Co-Founder ImpactLab
    Lecturer, Programme Head MSc in Business Information Systems
  • Prof. Dr. Arie Hans Verkuil Head of Institute for Management, Co-Founder ImpactLab
    Head of Institute for Management
  • Dr. Barbara Eisenbart Lecturer in Entrepreneurship and Innovation
    Lecturer in Entrepreneurship and Innovation
  • Prof. Dr. Rolf Meyer Lecturer in Entrepreneurship and Innovation
    Lecturer in Entrepreneurship and Innovation


FHNW is one of Switzerland’s leading Universities of Sciences and Arts, actively involved in teaching, research, continuing education and service provision – both innovative and practice-oriented. Its broad range of degree programmes, hands-on concept, innovative, application-oriented research and global network make FHNW a diversified and appealing educational institution, a sought-after partner to industry and an attractive employer in Northwestern Switzerland.

The university has over 12’000 students in 29 Bachelor and 17 Master programmes, whereof 5 respective 2 are offered at the School of Business.