On 17th January 2018, Fraunhofer IMW’s Research Day was held for the third time. As director Professor Thorsten Posselt remarked in his welcoming speech, the researchers’ start to the new science year can now justifiably be described as a start-of-year tradition. Scientists at Fraunhofer IMW presented their new and planned projects and gained insights into the work of their colleagues. As in the previous year, invited guests from the fields of economics, society and science also took part in the Research Day and gave feedback on individual presentations and overarching issues. The special role of Fraunhofer IMW at the interface between technology and society was emphasized by Professor Hans Wiesmeth, President of the Saxon Academy of Sciences, Professor Christian Wilhelm, biologist at the University of Leipzig, and Markus Garn, CEO of the Platform for Innovation, in their closing remarks.