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The department is in close cooperation with two external institutes that have a strong focus on application-oriented research and technology transfer.

The first is the Fraunhofer Institute for Software and Systems Engineering (ISST) which is headed by Prof. Dr. Boris Otto, a co-opted member of the Department of Computer Science.

On the other hand, there is a close connection to the Informatik Centrum Dortmund (ICD) which was originally founded out of the Department of Computer Science. The ICD is currently operated in close cooperation with the Department of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology at TU Dortmund University.