The establishment of ODTÜ TEKNOKENT started at the end of 1980s. With the support of the World Bank, feasibility studies were initiated and examples from around the world, especially form the US and the UK were studied to mold public opinion related with the concept. As a result of these studies, with the goal of founding incubation centers for technology development, ODTu TEKMER was established in collaboration with KOSGEB. The successful outcomes from ODTU Tekmer, reinforced the foundation of a science park (technopark) in ODTU. In 2000, the first building of ODTU TEKNOKENT was put in service and in 2001, Technology Development Zones Law No.4691 that defines the legal framework for technoparks in Turkey was enacted. The infrastructure and know-how presented by ODTU coupled with the tax exemptions and incentives that are provided to the enterprises by this law turned ODTU TEKNOKENT into a center of attraction.
Being the first and the most innovative technopark of Turkey, ODTU TEKNOKENT’s goal is to provide contemporary infrastructure and superstructure to the researchers and companies that develop and produce the technologies which will elevate the international competitiveness of the country. With its activities to facilitate university-industry collaboration, ODTU TEKNOKENT is the catalyst for synergy between the parties.
With its 300 tenant companies, 60% of which were initiated in its premises and employ more than 5000 personnel, 90% of which have bachelor, master of PhD degrees and with the 120.000 square meters of closed area reserved for R&D operations, ODTU TEKNOKENT has undersigned exemplary success stories to serve as a model for other technoparks in Turkey.
The companies that are operating at ODTU TEKNOKENT are involved in R&D activities in software and information technologies (51%), electronics (19%), mechanics and design (15%), medical technologies (6%), energy and environment (6%) and advanced materials, agriculture, food, aviation and space, automotive that account for the remaining 3% altogether.
Among some of the R&D projects carried out in ODTU TEKNOKENT can be counted, aircraft/helicopter systems dynamic modeling and simulation, aircraft/helicopter control systems development, satellite systems development, alternative energy and fuel projects, wind and hydro turbine design, vehicle tracking systems, test and measurement systems design, power sources and energy feed systems, lase applications, sensor technologies, tissue and genetics research, e-government, e-commerce, distance education, e-learning and e-education software development, ERP-MRP solutions development, education management systems design, geographical information systems software, formatted message management systems, hospital software, advanced materials research and microelectromechanical systems design and application projects.
ODTU TEKNOKENT runs miscellaneous programs for the companies and entrepreneurs that it hosts. Among these are, “New Businesses New Ideas Contest” and “Animation Technologies and Game Development Center” namely the pre-incubation programs to promote technology-based entrepreneurship; ODTU KOSGEB TEKMER, Technopreneurship Incubation Center and ODTU-Halıcı Software House as Incubation Centers; “TeknoJump” accelerator program as an enabler for companies to open up to global markets; Business Angels Network “METUTECH-BAN Technology Investors Association” and “TeknoFund” technology fund that are developed as financial tools; “Technology Transfer Office” for the commercialization of academic know-how; Defence and ICT clusters as a an expeditor of collaboration among companies; and finally liaison offices abroad to pave the way for international cooperation.
Owing to the aforementioned services and its activities, ODTU TEKNOKENT ranked FIRST for three years in a row, according to the Technology Development Zones Performance Index for 2011, 2012 and 2013.