Established in 2002, the AutoUni offers high-level training courses throughout the Group in conjunction with individual departments of Volkswagen AG and cooperating universities. The AutoUni courses are geared towards members of the different vocational groups in the Volkswagen Group and are supplemented by interdisciplinary courses, plus seminars oriented at the general public. The AutoUni courses include lectures, conferences, or further education programs lasting several months in nine areas: sales and marketing, products, production, procurement, quality, human resources and organization, finance and controlling, corporate and IT issues. In 2009, over 10,000 participants attended the seminars organized by the AutoUni.
Over the past few years, a number of specialist institutes have been established within the AutoUni, most recently the Volkswagen Institute for Work and HR Management (IFAP). Others are the Volkswagen Institute for Purchasing (IFB), the Volkswagen Institut for Finance and Controlling (IFFC) and the Volkswagen Institute for Marketing and Sales (IFMV).
The AutoUni collaborates with 40 universities worldwide, most notably with the Lower Saxony Research Centre for Vehicle Technology (NFF), an interdisciplinary center for research into vehicle technology that has set up the “metropolitan car” project to explore intelligent, low-emission and flexible vehicle concepts and study the general conditions for these in the automotive industry. The NFF’s Wolfsburg arm was opened on February 13, 2009.
The AutoUni is also intensively involved in Volkswagen AG’s doctoral student program, in which 234 young researchers participated last year. Students’ mostly automotive-related theses are generally completed within three years. During this time, the doctoral students are employed at Volkswagen and work closely with their own university department, which also appoints a supervisor for them. The program is supported by transdisciplinary development courses and a network of active doctoral students and alumni, in addition to the AutoUni’s publication series in which completed theses can be published.