Frequently asked questions

What can we help you with?

What is the Collective Incubator?

To pursue your project as an individual in the Collective Incubator, all you have to do is create a user account for the Collective Incubator Cloud. There you can also request your 24/7 access.

To become part of the community as a team of a student initiative or a start-up, you can then register a team in the Collective Incubator Cloud. After your team has been confirmed by us, other resources, such as conference rooms, will be available to you free of charge.

We aim to create the perfect environment for student engagement and academic entrepreneurship. All offers and services of the Collective Incubator are designed to support the projects of students and employees of RWTH Aachen University and FH Aachen.

Our main focus is on student initiatives and start-ups or spin-offs. Especially teams in the founding and early stages receive broad support from us.

Unfortunately, we are not able to support ventures by alumni or outsiders. It is therefore a prerequisite that your team consists mainly of students or staff from RWTH Aachen University and FH Aachen and that there is a recognisable connection with these universities, e.g. because the project is related to your studies or is being carried out in cooperation with a chair from these universities.

Projects cannot be registered if they are designed as a sideline activity alongside studies and have little connection to RWTH Aachen University, FH Aachen and the topics of technology and entrepreneurship.

The Collective Incubator is above all a platform where committed students and employees of RWTH Aachen University and FH Aachen come together. We offer a strong community and promote an active exchange among the teams.

For this purpose, we provide the Collective Incubator Space, a co-working space with 2.400 m² area. Here you can use workplaces according to the flex desk principle, book conference rooms, organise events and (subject to availability) move into fixed offices.

We also offer broad consulting services for student initiatives and we organise regular events with different focuses ranging from socialising to lectures by experienced founders and cultural events.

Especially in the founding phase, we support you with the necessary bureaucracy for officially registering as an association, the search for team colleagues, the development of a public appearance and the arrangement of contacts to RWTH Aachen University and FH Aachen or large companies. In addition, we organise consultation hours and workshops with relevant experts on cross-cutting topics such as law, taxes and PR.

However, we do not provide legal advice ourselves.

We regularly organise events that provide valuable tips and knowledge for founders and in particular promote a close exchange within the community. Beyond that, however, we would like to refer to the extensive advisory services offered by the [RWTH Innovation Entrepreneurship Center] (https://www.rwth-innovation.de/en/for-start-ups-investors/offerings-founders).

Yes! Membership of the community, use of the office infrastructure, booking of conference rooms and participation in the events and expert meetings are free of charge for the target group mentioned.

Therefore you do not have to give up any shares of your company for this.

No! Our offer is explicitly directed at all ventures and projects, even if the incorporation is not yet foreseeable.

The Collective Incubator is a initiative of the Excellence Startup Center.NRW (ESC.NRW) and is funded by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Innovation, Digitisation and Energy of the State of NRW. It is operated by the Chair of Economics for Engineers and Natural Scientists (WIN Chair) at RWTH Aachen University.

The Collective Incubator e.V. supports the RWTH Aachen University in the operation, development and supervision of the community and offers services for student initiatives that go beyond the grant programme.

How do I find my way around the Space?

The Collective Incubator Pop-up is located at Jülicher Str. 191-209, 52070 Aachen.

You can reach us e.g. by bus via the bus stop Talbot. We also have a spacious bicycle garage.

Access to the building is possible for students and staff of RWTH Aachen University and FH Aachen and their guests. In order to have access, setting up a 24/7 access via app is required. For this, you have to register an account.

Afterwards, you can apply for the 24/7 access under Settings24/7 access with a simple button click.

You can request 24/7 access under Settings24/7 access. There you will receive a code that you can scan with the app dormakaba mobile access (free of charge in the Google Play Store and Apple App Store) to set it up. Access is then possible immediately.

Access to fixed offices is also managed via the app, if your team has one. Access rights are assigned automatically, but we have to program the locks manually. The process can therefore take up to 1-2 working days.

Yes, for collaboration with others it is of course also possible to bring external people into the Collective Incubator, e.g. for team meetings or meetings with customers.

However, it is not allowed to book rooms for other teams or to use the Collective Incubator as a learning room.

If your team has been assigned a permanent office, each team member is automatically assigned locking authorisations via the app dormakaba mobile access (free of charge in the Google Play Store and Apple App Store). However, this requires that 24/7 access has been set up beforehand.

As soon as you are member of a team, you can book a conference room for activities that occur while working for that team (e.g. team meetings, customer meetings, etc.). To do this, book a room via the Cloud.

Please cancel your booking via the cloud if it is foreseeable that you won't need it after all. Conference rooms are a scarce resource at the moment and it is possible that another team will not be able to get a room due to a missed booking.

We reserve the right to limit the booking options for teams that do not use booked conference rooms.

Yes, free conference rooms can be used.

However, existing bookings must be given priority. Even if a booking is made in the meantime or a team arrives later for the booked room, this group has priority and you must clear the room.

We offer conference rooms for up to 16 people.

Currently the following room capacities are available:

  • Lilientahl: 10 people
  • Lovelace: 10 people
  • Spencer: 12 people
  • Flex Office: 16 people

Yes, the Event Space can be booked for larger events. Please contact us for this, as the decision will be made in each individual case. For example, a concept is needed to minimise the disturbance for other users in the Collective Incubator.

The Event Space can be used as an open space, with stand-up tables or with row seating for up to 80 people. It has a 75" screen with HDMI connection for presentation.

You can request a new activation code. To do so, go to Settings24/7 access and click on Deactivate access to remove the existing 24/7 access. As we have to manually remove the access from the system, the process can take up to 1-2 working days.

You can then set up 24/7 access again for your new device.

The check-in via QR code at the entrance area is mandatory. Please enter your contact details in the digital form.

Mouth and nose coverings must be worn in the space. OP masks or masks according to the FFP2 or KN95/N95 standards are permitted. Not permitted are everyday masks, scarves etc. or masks according to the FFP3 standard (masks with valve). The mask can be taken off at the workplace and for eating in the community area.

In addition, the legal protective distances of 1.5 m must be observed at all times. Where this is not possible (e.g. when the conference room is very busy), the 3G rule must be followed, i.e. all participants in the conference must be vaccinated, recovered or have tested negative on the day.

As a team, you are responsible for the compliance and, if necessary, control of these rules with your team members. In case of violations, we reserve the right to deny you access to the space.

How does the Collective Incubator Cloud work?

The Cloud is our online platform for everything concerning the Collective Incubator. On the one hand, it is intended to facilitate all administrative processes, such as booking conference rooms or setting up 24/7 access.

On the other hand, we want to create a network with which start-ups and student initiatives can exchange ideas, communicate with each other and grow together as a community. The digital version of the Collective Incubator ;-)

Our services are available to all students and staff of RWTH Aachen University and FH Aachen, and it is our aim to make the access hurdles as low-threshold as possible.

At the same time, however, we have to ensure the affiliation with the university. Some resources, such as conference rooms, are only available to registered start-ups and student initiatives.

First you need your own user account, which you can create here if you don't have one yet. Once you have confirmed your e-mail address, you can register your team at DashboardRegister a new team.

We will check your registration and activate your team if there are no further questions. Therefore, please choose a description for your project that is as meaningful as possible.

As the person responsible for the team you can view the current list of members on the team page under Manage members. Below the list you will find a form for inviting new members and a possibility to import a member list e.g. as Excel file.

Members who have already registered an account will receive a notification and can accept or decline the invitation.

Invited members without a user account will receive an e-mail with a link to register. In order to avoid spam, we do not send out a new reminder. In addition, invitations that are not accepted will be deleted after some time for data protection reasons.

Invited members must first accept the invitation to actually become a member of your team. Until then, they will not appear in the publicly visible member list. However, as the responsible person, you can see invited members who have not yet decided upon the invitation. To do this, go to the team page and then to Manage members.

Invited members who don't have an account yet also have to register first. If they do not do this within a certain time, the invitation will expire.

If you are logged in, you will see open invitations to teams in the dashboard. If you have declined the invitation by mistake, a responsible person from the team will have to invite you again.

If you don't have an account yet, you need to register first. Please contact support if you have not received an e-mail about this. Please also check your spam folder first.

As the person currently responsible, you can grant this status to other people. To do this, go to the team page and then to Manage members. In the member list you can now appoint individual members as responsible for the team.

Afterwards you can – if you wish – revoke your own team responsibility. In this case, you will no longer receive notifications about new members, for example.

To make it more difficult for possible attackers to crack passwords, a password you have assigned must be at least eight characters long. Longer passwords with 16-20 characters are recommended. In addition, your password should contain numbers and special characters** in addition to **capital letters and lower case letters, or be particularly long.

Furthermore, we compare new passwords with the database of Have I Been Pwned? when you register or change your password. This database lists so-called hash values of passwords that were part of a publicly known data leak, i.e. can already be exploited by potential attackers. Attackers use such lists to guess passwords faster. Therefore the corresponding warning is displayed.

Important: In this case it is recommended not to use the password for other accounts as well and to change it if necessary.

By the way, the comparison is carried out in a secure procedure, which does not expose the password you have used. For more information click here.

Two-factor authentication (2FA) adds an additional layer of security to your account by requiring more than just a password to log in. With 2FA enabled, you will be prompted for a six-digit code when logging in that is generated using a mobile authenticator app, similar to the TAN process used for online banking.

Go to SettingsTwo-factor authenticationActivate to configure 2FA. You are then guided through the setup procedure.

In case you do not have access to your authentication app (for example, if the battery is low), you can use one of the recovery codes created during setup. Each code can only be used once. Keep these codes safe and protect them as well as passwords!

All apps that use the so-called OTP method are supported.

Compatible apps are e.g.

And what else is important?

Please contact our support. In urgent cases, you can also contact space management on site on the 3rd floor.

You! We want to offer you the best atmosphere to work on your idea, project, initiative or start-up, creative or concentrated, in the morning, at noon or in the evening. In order for the Collective Incubator to work around the clock, we depend on everyone's participation. Therefore, please put dirty dishes in the dishwasher, start it when it is full or clear out the clean dishes when it has run through. Please keep the kitchen clean and tidy.

The same applies to the other rooms ;-)

Unfortunately, we only have a small number of permanent offices at the moment and are unable to deal with all enquiries. Therefore, we allocate the offices on a semesterly basis according to previously requested requirements. In case of doubt, the decision is made by drawing lots.

For student initiatives, we also offer to share offices with other teams. So that you can still store your own things in the office, additional lockers will soon be installed.

Too bad you want to go! Of course you can easily delete your user account. Go to SettingsDelete account and confirm the deletion with your password.

You will be automatically removed from all teams. Your 24/7 access to the Collective Incubator will be deactivated and your bookings of rooms or vehicles that lie in the future will be cancelled.

Note: Due to legal regulations or internal rules we have to store some data for a certain period of time. This applies especially to booking data of rooms and vehicles.

For more information on the processing and storage of data, see the Privacy policy.

We try to collect as little data as possible in order to be able to operate our service and at the same time enable a lively community. The data you provide on the Collective Incubator Cloud will therefore not be merged with other data from RWTH Aachen University or FH Aachen, for example.

Nevertheless, in addition to the data that you disclose about yourself in your profile (and whose visibility you can control at any time in the settings), the collection, storage and processing of further data is necessary. This is the case, for example, when booking rooms or vehicles and when keeping track of which teams you are a member of.

The data collected for the Corona contact tracking is not linked to user accounts and is only used for the specified purpose.

For more information on the processing and storage of data, see the Privacy policy.

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