The ZEISS Promotion Fund was established in 2011 to mark the 20th anniversary of the reunification of the East and West German parts of the company. The aim was to promote regional projects at the individual sites. By setting up the ZEISS Promotion Fund, the company is pursuing a tradition that goes back to the establishment of the Carl Zeiss Foundation in 1889.
The focus of the ZEISS Promotion Fund is on initiatives to promote education among young people, primarily high school students who have not yet chosen a degree and college graduates who have not entered the world of work, and to encourage them to develop their scientific skills and take part in projects and initiatives at universities and research institutes. The focus is on the natural sciences and engineering, particularly optics and photonics.
The ZEISS Promotion Fund was initially set up at the company's main German sites in Jena, Oberkochen and Aalen. The sites in Göttingen and Wetzlar have been part of the funding program since 2013 and 2014, respectively.