R. Shishoo: The Textile Research Institute, TEFO, at Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden, was one of the first research institutes in Europe to focus on technical textiles and nonwovens already in the late 1970'ies. Supported by the Swedish textile industry and the Swedish state, TEFO and later IFP could initiate many research programs in various fibre based sectors such as medical and hygienic products, automotive textiles, bicomponent fibres, plasma processing, electrospinning etc
NWI: You are now conducting industrial projects in applied research. What is the basis for good research?
R. Shishoo: The key task for research institutes is to generate, and what's more important, to transfer scientific and technical knowledge to industry, thereby connecting research and industrial applications. In reality, this means that innovation and scientific research generates growth and profits. Besides, many textile companies, especially SMEs, need support in transforming their businesses from traditional to technical textiles.
NWI: Earlier you have been project leader for some Swedish national projects financed by Vinnova, the Swedish Governmental Agency for Innovation Systems, as well as for some European projects. What does this mean?
R. Shishoo: Vinnova is a State authority that aims to promote industrial progress and growth in Sweden through new thinking and innovations. Vinnova in Sweden and the EC as a whole are putting tremendous efforts to support the research community to generate knowledge in many fields of science and technology. These activities have helped to create well-functioning and efficient research institutes and university institutions in Europe making them capable of transferring knowledge to industrial partners. As a comparative example, based on research activities carried out at MIT in the US, it is estimated that around 140'000 jobs are created and / or added each year in the US. We should strive at learning and implementing new strategies for sustainable growth in the textiles and technical textiles industries in Europe.