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Press Release

Creative Destruction Lab launched at ESMT Berlin

Brandenburg Gate, Berlin
ESMT Berlin will lead the new Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) in Germany’s most vibrant startup ecosystem Berlin.

The site is the first CDL in the country and will launch with a Health program stream, which aims to greatly improve personal and planetary health by engaging founders working at the leading edge of life sciences.  

CDL is a nonprofit organization that delivers an objectives-based program for massively scalable, seed-stage, science- and technology-based companies. Its nine-month program allows founders to learn from experienced entrepreneurs, increasing their likelihood of success. There are more than 10 CDL sites globally, including the founding program at the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management, Oxford Saïd Business School, and the University of Tartu, Estonia. 

The new Health stream at ESMT Berlin will focus on translational science and technology innovations that improve human health and wellness, including digital health, medical devices, diagnostics, bioinformatics, genomics, as well as biotechnologies, such as therapeutics and synthetic biology.  

ESMT President Jörg Rocholl said, “CDL is a great addition to our entrepreneurship and tech portfolio at ESMT and will give our students who are interested in founding access to an experiential program and opportunities for hands-on experience. In cooperation with world-class health institutions based in Berlin, we would like to make a lasting impact within the thriving healthcare ecosystem. We are very pleased to have won over Thorsten Lambertus with his strong expertise in deep-tech innovation to lead our CDL site and look forward to announcing a renowned academic director in the near future.”   

The CDL-Berlin’s Health stream will integrate CDL’s worldwide network of mentors, investors, and entrepreneurs with Germany’s globally renowned health care and research systems. Berlin is home to several leading institutions and programs with a strong focus on health care, including: 

  • Charité, the fifth-best hospital worldwide and a leading hospital in Europe. 

  • A health care ecosystem ranked No. 3 in the World Index of Healthcare Innovation in 2021 (Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity). 

  • The yearly World Health Summit, bringing together experts from academia, industry, and politics. 

  • Eight life science technology parks, approximately 40 research facilities focusing on life sciences, and 170 health-related programs of study (Life Science Report Berlin 2019/2020). 

“We will only be able to address the most pressing unmet needs and challenges in healthcare by leveraging the power of new technologies,” said CDL-Berlin site director Thorsten Lambertus. “By bringing the CDL to Germany, the emerging, new generation of deep tech entrepreneurs will get the support needed for living up to their global ambitions.”  

Join a CDL Health Webinar to learn more. Companies and founders interested in applying to the Health stream can contact for more information. Applications will be accepted online until August 31, 2022. 


About ESMT Berlin

ESMT Berlin is the highest-ranked business school in Germany and Top 10 in Europe. Founded by 25 leading global companies, ESMT offers master’s, MBA, and PhD programs, as well as executive education on its campus in Berlin, in locations around the world, online, and in online blended format. Focusing on leadership, innovation, and analytics, its diverse faculty publishes outstanding research in top academic journals. Additionally, the international business school provides an interdisciplinary platform for discourse between politics, business, and academia. ESMT is a non-profit private institution of higher education, accredited by AACSB, AMBA, EQUIS, and FIBAA, and is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion across all its activities and communities.