Health technologies are a research focus at Empa's St.Gallen site. Here, Empa focuses on the development of soft materials (polymers, hydrogels, etc.) for medical applications in and on the human body. It researches new materials and systems that protect and support people in their everyday lives. In the fields of bioanalytics and process technologies, Empa has invested several million francs in St.Gallen in recent years.

Empa not only maintains close contacts with the ETH in Zurich and Lausanne, as well as with cantonal universities and hospitals. It also has an excellent international network, including the World Materials Research Institutes Forum (WMRIF). This network of 50 institutes promotes innovation in the materials sciences.

Empa Building


The Cantonal Hospital St.Gallen is the only non-university hospital in Switzerland with a high performance record in research. In 2019 alone, the more than 85 habilitated employees, who conduct research primarily in the clinical area, published more than 400 publications. The Medical Research Center of the Cantonal Hospital comprises the following units:

  • Clinical Trials Unit – support for translational and clinical research projects.
  • Institute of Immunobiology - Focus: Tumor Immunology, Infectious and Autoimmune Diseases
  • Research laboratories to support clinical studies

In the field of research, the Cantonal Hospital St.Gallen is well connected. The Cantonal Hospital is a founding member of the Swiss Clinical Trial Organization, which coordinates national and international multi-center studies, and holds an important position in the Swiss Working Group for Clinical Cancer Research. Researchers at the Cantonal Hospital raise about 10 million Swiss francs annually in third-party funding for research and continuing education, including from the Swiss National Science Foundation, Innosuisse, the European Research Promotion Program or the Human Frontiers Program.



The Medical Research Center of the Cantonal Hospital St.Gallen works closely with research teams from the «Health and Performance» division of Empa St.Gallen.

The scientific excellence and the technological and organizational conditions at the Cantonal Hospital and Empa make projects and product developments in these areas possible:

  • wound treatment and hygiene
  • healthy environment and food
  • personalized medicine
  • telemedicine
  • aging in society


The University of St.Gallen (HSG) is one of the leading business universities in Europe and is also a university for law, social sciences and international relations. The close networking of studies, continuing education and research enjoys high priority. The largely autonomously organized institutes of the HSG are largely self-financing.

In connection with Park Ost, these institutes and centers are particularly relevant:

  • Institute for Business Informatics IWI-HSG
  • Institute of Computer Science ICS-HSG
  • Institute for Technology Management ITEM-HSG
  • Center for Digital Health Interventions (Collaboration with Mobile Health Systems Lab at ETH Zurich)
  • Center for Innovation

The HSG has an excellent national and international network. It maintains contacts and cooperations with around 200 universities around the world. In research, the University of St.Gallen cooperates with globally active companies such as BMW (Customer Foresight Center), BASF, Bosch (IoT Lab), Bühler, Daimler, SAP, Hilti, SBB, and Swisscom.


OST – Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences

Various institutes of the OST conduct research in areas that are also central to the Innovation Park. Cooperation can be assumed here:

  • Development and deployment of management systems
  • Digitalization, ICT, IoT
  • Digital Health
  • Metrology
  • Development and application of sensors and actuators
  • Development and processing of materials
  • Optical and photonic systems
  • Use of modeling and simulation

Here are examples of OST's current reference projects in the areas of healthcare technologies, digitalization and the MEM industry:

  • Personalized medicine: A cancer tumor reveals through its DNA which drugs will best help against it – as long as the genetic material can be determined quickly and accurately. At HSR, a method has been developed that beats all current solutions worldwide. Learn more
  • Disinfection with light: Reliable disinfection is essential in medicine, animal husbandry or drinking water. UVC radiation from mercury-containing lamps is often used for this purpose. In the future, mercury-free UVC LEDs will offer an alternative. Learn more
  • Washable e-textiles: Thanks to a special technology, LEDs can now be electrically connected to textiles in a very robust way, making it possible to wash the without any problems.
OST – Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences


RhySearch's precision manufacturing division operates a research center for high- and ultra-precision machining, with high-accuracy machine tools and measuring equipment in a temperature-controlled manufacturing laboratory. 

The Optical Coating unit is a center of excellence with high-end coating equipment and a highly specialized laser laboratory for coating analysis.

Precision Manufacturing (

Optical Coating (



Startfeld is part of the Innovation Park Ost. In the Innovation Park, research is carried out together with scientific institutions, while in the Startfeld the start-ups find the business expertise for implementation in marketable products.

The Startfeld network was founded in 2010 by Empa, the University of St.Gallen, the FHS St.Gallen and the City of St.Gallen.