Institute for Resource Management
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Hydrogen Technology for China’s "Automotive Quantum Leap" – Scenario Project on the Future of Automotive Transport

The car of the future: China’s chance at the "automotive quantum leap"

Kurt F. Domnik  /

Kurt F. Domnik /

How is the Chinese car industry developing? What is the fuel of the future for Chinese cars? The worldwide testing of hydrogen as a transport fuel presents enormous possibilities. The Asian Giant currently possesses a narrow window of opportunity to make an automotive quantum leap in the next two decades. inter 3, together with a network of partners, is coming up with various development scenarios on this subject.

China has the prerequisites and all the means to jump past the automotive technologies and problems of the 20th Century. It has the opportunity to develop 21st Century vehicle concepts to catapult itself to the front of the global car industry.

What role does hydrogen play?

This cooperative scenario project aims to appraise the risks and opportunities of an automotive quantum leap as quickly and precisely as possible. The central question to this is what role hydrogen technologies can play in the process.

Three scenarios for the future

It is difficult to gauge the role of hydrogen as a future transport fuel for the automotive industry. Thus the project will have two focuses. The research focus will be in the formulation of three scenarios: 1. a short-term and 2. a middle-term scenario for an automotive quantum leap and 3. an alternative scenario in which conventional automotive technology remains dominant.  The second project focus will be on communication. The research results from the three scenarios will be presented in such a way as to be taken seriously by the key political entities and the public, and so that they initiate the broadest possible national and international discussion.

International cooperation for innovation

This double focus demands very tight interdisciplinary, international and inter-institutional cooperation. It will also yield the possibility to develop and test new forms of innovation management and intercultural communication.

Project Name:
Hydrogen technology for China’s "automobile quantum leap"

Helke Wendt Schwarzburg
Phone: +49(0)30 34 34 74 46


Field Partner:
Social Science Research Centre Berlin   Berlin  Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences (SASS) Center for Policy and Strategic Studies  BMW Group München

Location: Berlin/Shanghai

Duration: January 2004 - Marz 2006