And it all comes together with Stefan Klade. In his role as Director of Research and Innovation at TUM’s research platform TUMCREATE in Singapore, he controls project flows, establishes networks with partner institutions and is the central contact point for the researchers. He discovered that he might grow into this kind of work during his days as a chef in a Michelin star restaurant in Munich. "My skills weren't outstanding enough for that cuisine’s quality, my colleagues were better and faster with it," he recalls. "My strengths are planning and managing, organizational things."
In 2006, the Nuremburg native decided to study Food Chemistry at TUM, followed by a doctoral thesis on coffee bitterness. He continued as project manager at the TUM Chair of Food Chemistry and Molecular Sensory Science and switched to science management at the TUM Office for Research and Innovation (TUM ForTe) in 2020. Working at the interface between science and administration, he helped establish the Proteins4Singapore project and has been coordinating it ever since. For six months, Stefan Klade transferred between Bavaria and Southeast Asia every four weeks: "I felt like I was tossing things up in Freising and catching them again in Singapore."
At the same time, he completed the "Science Manager" certificate course at the TUM Institute for LifeLong Learning, designed as in-service training. "This means it's easy for me to put myself in the shoes of the various people involved," he says. "I can understand the needs of the researchers and at the same time I know which strategic and administrative requirements are part of an international research project."