Diversity promotes intelligence

Greenteam Uni Stuttgart e.V. – Taking team spirit to the top

The Greenteam at the University of Stuttgart makes electric racing cars for Formula Student – a large, international construction competition aimed at students. For one year, students from a wide range of subjects swap the lecture room to work in a team to develop, design and build racing cars.
[Photo: GTUS-Max Partenfelder]

The Stuttgarter Weg (Stuttgart Way) is defined by the guiding idea of networked disciplines and this is an integral part of the University of Stuttgart’s special profile. Cultural diversity and consistent cooperation between complementary disciplines fosters different approaches and perspectives. The Greenteam students show how diversity can lead to success.

Introducing the team

We have approximately 50 active and 50 passive members from more than 15 different study programs and numerous nations.

If you take a look at our team, we have sub-teams with people of different nationalities and from different study programs; we have both men and women and people from different religions and cultures. We also have sub-teams where the members are all the same nationality, sex and religious orientation. No constellation is better than the other. The different constellations work, but they do, of course, have different strengths and weaknesses. They complement each other and work with each other, which contributes to the success of the whole team. Each sub-team benefits from the others. The willingness of the different teams to help each other is immense – and at the end of the day, all the teams share the same dream. Team spirit and a common goal unites us.

The Greenteam Uni Stuttgart e.V. was founded in 2009 as a not-for-profit student association, with the aim of investigating the trend of electromobility and taking on the associated challenges of establishing this in racing. Since it was created, the Greenteam has always been listed in the top 10 in world rankings.  The team is currently working on the 11th edition of its electric racing car, the E0711-11, and the 4th edition of an autonomous and electrically powered racing car, the D0711-04.

Alongside the ambition to succeed in student motorsports, the goal of our association is to promote research and development in the field of innovative electric drive vehicles, and to act as a training center for young students in the fields of research, technology, business and team building.

In our opinion, a general understanding of diversity is not as developed as it should be. Quotes and campaigns are not necessarily a sign of true diversity, but they do at least suggest a willingness to do something positive in this context. If diversity is forced upon a society it can backfire and even create more divisions, stoking prejudices, limiting equality and equal opportunities, as well as reducing openness to strangers and those who might think differently. In order to ensure that values such as diversity can truly be pursued, we think it is important to create a space where similarities and people with a similar ethos are greeted with openness, equal opportunities, equality – a space free of prejudice. In such a space, people have the chance to exchange ideas and enjoy meeting people with similar interests, regardless of their background. This helps a community to develop and encourages unity, where differences enrich the experience, rather than being met with resentment.

Anyone who has a passion for motorsports, aspires for success, innovation and research, who is committed and prepared to help, who wants to learn and understands team spirit and openness, who holds no prejudices and supports equal opportunities is welcome, nothing else is important. This attitude often leads to the development of rather colorful and diverse teams and to discussions about other topics aside from motorsport, such as food in other countries, political values, or other languages. This happens naturally and enriches the team experience, as well as opening up new horizons.

This can be felt at competitions all over Europe. Teams from all over the world come together to celebrate successes, to help each other when something goes wrong, to cook for each other or just to enjoy the atmosphere. People from different cultures come together and they create one big Formula Student family. For us, that is true diversity.

About the series “Diversity Promotes Intelligence”

In a series of articles, we will be introducing teams who view diversity as a matter of course. The motivation behind this series, is the University of Stuttgart’s new diversity concept, initiated by the Vice Rector for Early Career research and Diversity.

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