Hasso Plattner Institute

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Hasso Plattner Institute
Hasso-Plattner-Institut für Digital Engineering gGmbH
Hasso-Plattner-Institut - logo and wordmark.svg
MottoDesign IT. Create Knowledge.
Typeprivately financed university institute
EstablishedOctober 1998[1]
DirectorProf. Dr. Christoph Meinel
Administrative staff
about 80[2]
Studentsabout 550[2]
Colors     Orange
     Vivid orange
     Dark pink
AffiliationsUniversity of Potsdam
A-B-C building (former main building)
Campus panorama view
Lecture halls (old picture without main building in the background)
Mr. Net: interactive sculpture designed by the Spanish artist Jaume Plensa

The Hasso Plattner Institute (Hasso-Plattner-Institut für Digital Engineering gGmbH), abbreviated HPI, is a German information technology institute and faculty of the University of Potsdam located in Potsdam near Berlin. Teaching and Research of HPI is focused on "IT-Systems Engineering". HPI was founded in 1998 and is the first, and as of 2018 the only entirely privately funded faculty[3] in Germany. It is financed entirely through private funds donated by its founder, Prof. Dr. h.c. Hasso Plattner, who co-founded the largest European software company SAP SE, and is currently the chairman of SAP's supervisory board. Director and CEO of HPI is Prof. Dr. Christoph Meinel.[4]


The HPI was founded in October 1998 as a public-private partnership.[1] The private partner is the "Hasso Plattner Foundation for Software Systems Engineering", which is the administrative body responsible for the HPI and its only corporate member. The foundation’s legal status is that of a GmbH, a limited-liability company according to German law. As the public part of the partnership, the Bundesland Brandenburg provided the estate where several multi-storey buildings were built to form a nice campus. Hasso Plattner declared to provide at least 200 million Euros for the HPI within the first 20 years.[5] He is also actively involved as a lecturer and head of the chair on Enterprise Platform and Integration Concepts,[6] where the in-memory technology was developed. In 2004 he received his honorary professorship from the University of Potsdam.

Teaching and Research[edit]

The Bachelor and Master programs of the joint Digital Engineering Faculty of the Hasso Plattner Institute (HPI) and the University of Potsdam (UP) are characterized by their practically-oriented education and enables students to learn in small groups with the special supervision by professors.

Degree Programs[edit]

The bachelor's program IT Systems Engineering (80 places per year) is an alternative to classical computer science. The Master programs Cybersecurity (30 places per year), Data Engineering (30 places per year), Digital Health (30 places per year) and IT Systems Engineering (60 places per year), specifically train students for management and leadership positions.

Bachelor of Science: IT Systems Engineering[edit]

The HPI offers a six-semester Bachelor's program in IT Systems Engineering. It is concerned with the conception, design, and deployment of complex IT systems based on findings and developments in the field of computer and information science as well as on experience with their practical application in the business world and society at large. Engineering-based methods are used to teach students about the models, processes, architectures, and performance of such systems and enable them to gain initial practical experience in this area. It is most comparable to other Software engineering programs.

Master of Science: IT Systems Engineering[edit]

Graduates from the Master's program IT Systems Engineering are given the academic and practical tools needed to take up leading industry positions such as system architects and project managers. The focus lyes on the analysis, planning, construction, implementation and further development of complex IT systems, IT infrastructures and IT solutions.

Master of Science: Digital Health[edit]

The interdisciplinary, English-language, Master’s program Digital Health is aimed at students of computer science and medical students, who want to work as highly qualified experts in the health sector at the interface between IT, computer science and medicine. The master’s program in digital health is composed of fundamental concepts and methods in IT systems engineering, data engineering, medical foundations as well as the knowledge of different systems of healthcare.

Master of Science: Data Engineering[edit]

The Master’s program Data Engineering is aimed at the next generation of highly talented IT engineers who wish to complete a practical and research-oriented computer science study program and to focus on big data systems; that is, the collecting, linking and analyzing of large and complex data volumes.

Master of Science: Cybersecurity[edit]

The main focus of the Cybersecurity master's program centers on researching and developing a new generation of security policies, methods and techniques for monitoring and securing complex IT infrastructures. Whether the issue concerns the characteristics of different types of attackers, cryptographic algorithms, data protection aspects or open-source intelligence - the degree program is foremost oriented towards practical problems and features engineering-inspired IT security solutions.

HPI School of Design Thinking[edit]

The HPI School of Design Thinking[7] – established in 2007 – provides each year 160 students from many different fields of study the opportunity of working in multidisciplinary teams where they learn to become invatores and to develop particularly userfriendly, IT-related products and services. HPI cooperates closely with Stanford University, in Palo Alto, home of the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design. In 2008, the Hasso Plattner Foundation launched a joint innovation research program, the HPI-Stanford Design Thinking Research Program. Via its HPI Academy, the Hasso Plattner Institute also offers professionals an education in Design Thinking and various fields related to information technology.

HPI Research School[edit]

Since October 2005, the HPI’s Research School[8] for "Service-Oriented Systems Engineering" has been offering a PhD program modeled to support a more interdisciplinary PhD education. All professors of the HPI with their research groups are supporting pillars for this PhD school whose interdisciplinary structure interconnects the HPI research groups and fosters close and fruitful collaborations. Every year, up to ten new PhD candidates and postdoctoral researchers are admitted and awarded a scholarship. In 2009, the Research School opened a first international branch in South Africa, the "HPI research school at Cape Town University", with up to 15 PhD students. 2010 another branch was opened in Haifa, where up to 15 PhD students joined the research team of the “HPI Research School at Technion.” In 2011, the “HPI Research School at Nanjing University” was opened as a third branch with up to 15 PhD students.

HPI Future SOC Lab[edit]

The research facility, HPI Future SOC Lab,[9] provides a platform for researching how the potential of the newest multicore computer architectures combined with massive main memory resources can be used for new software solutions. The lab was opened in 2010. Using the latest hard- and software, which comes straight from the R&D departments of large IT corporations, HPI scientists and guest researchers from other academic institutions explore and develop new concepts for Service Oriented Computing (SOC). Included in this computing infrastructure is e.g. a 1,000 core computer cluster or a system with 6TB main memory.


In 2012, based on HPI's long lasting tele-TASK[10] research project, openHPI[11] has started to work. openHPI is an Internet educational platform for offering massive open online courses (MOOCs), which is embedded in a global social network. It offers free interactive online courses about different topics in information technology. Everyone is welcome to take part in the open online courses and thereby unlock a new world of knowledge. Participants can become familiar with basic topics of computer science, and IT systems engineering as well as with advanced current research topics in IT. They also have the benefit of discussing issues and developing solutions in a virtual community with participants from around the globe.

Rankings and awards[edit]

The Center for Higher Education Development (CHE) is an independent private non-profit organization, founded by the German Rectors' Conference and the Bertelsmann Foundation.[12] According to its university ranking in 2018, HPI's Bachelor's and Master's programs are among the four best-ranked computer science programs in the German-speaking countries.[13]

In 2012, HPI and SAP received the German Innovation Prize (Deutscher Innovationspreis), a prize awarded by Accenture, EnBW, Evonik and Wirtschaftswoche, for the development of the in-memory database SAP HANA.[14]


  1. ^ a b "Organization". HPI website. Retrieved 5 October 2019. ...founded in October 1998 as part of a public-private partnership...
  2. ^ a b "People". HPI website. Retrieved 5 October 2019. ...over 550 students are enrolled in the bachelor and master degree program...; ...nearly 80 employees work in the HPI administration...
  3. ^ Mallwitz, Gudrun (4 April 2017). "Bundesweit erste privat finanzierte Fakultät an Uni". Berliner Morgenpost (in German). Archived from the original on 29 June 2019. Retrieved 29 June 2019.
  4. ^ "Management". HPI website. Retrieved 5 October 2019. Prof. Dr. Christoph Meinel: Institute Director and CEO, HPI gGmbH
  5. ^ Wilkens, Andreas (5 November 2004). "Hasso-Plattner-Institut soll "Weltklasse-Niveau" erreichen". heise online. Archived from the original on 4 September 2018. Retrieved 4 September 2018.
  6. ^ "Founder Hasso Plattner". HPI website. Retrieved 5 October 2019. Plattner not only finances HPI, as head of the 'Enterprise Platform and Integration Concepts' department...
  7. ^ HPI School of Design Thinking Archived 11 May 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ "HPI Research School". Archived from the original on 11 November 2012. Retrieved 21 March 2013.
  9. ^ HPI Future SOC Lab Archived 4 February 2013 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ HPI Internet Lecture Video Archive
  11. ^ openHPI: The MOOC platform of the HPI
  12. ^ "Funding of the Center for Higher Education Development (CHE)".
  13. ^ "HPI in the CHE ranking". HPI website. Retrieved 5 October 2019.
  14. ^ Behme, Henning (17 March 2012). "SAP und HPI erhalten Deutschen Innovationspreis 2012". heise online. Archived from the original on 29 June 2019. Retrieved 29 June 2019.

External links[edit]

Media related to Hasso-Plattner-Institut at Wikimedia Commons

Coordinates: 52°23′37″N 13°07′56″E / 52.39361°N 13.13222°E / 52.39361; 13.13222