The German-Israeli research cooperation in respect to new materials and nanotechnology arose from earlier research projects on magnesium alloys for use in batteries. In 1995, the German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Ministry of Science, Technology and Space (MOST)’s established cooperation on materials research, which had existed since 1981, was restructured. The emphasis was – in accordance with the then BMBF’s materials research programme, Ma-Tech – on developing magnesium alloys and materials for a new generation of batteries.
During the sixth German-Israeli government consultations in 2016, BMBF and the Israel Innovation Authority (IIA) Avi Hasson agreed to cooperate in the fields of applied nanotechnology. A bilateral announcement was published in November 2016. Together, 12 '2+2' projects were selected for funding. The projects ran from 2018 to 2022. Funding for the projects on the German and Israeli sides amounts to approximately EUR 8 million each.
In 2003, a new cooperation model for international projects was introduced with the publication of the BMBF programme WING (Material Innovation for Industry and Society). This model provides for at least two partners from both countries, and from industry and research institutes, to collaborate on the joint project ('2+2').
In 2007, the Israel National Nanotechnology Initiative (INNI) was established as a shared initiative of Israel's Forum for National Infrastructures for Research & Development (TELEM) and Israel's Ministry of Economy. Today these endeavours are continued under the name NANO Israel.
In December 2012, an agreement on battery research was signed with MOST during the German-Israeli government consultations. The first German-Israeli Battery School (GIBS) for young scientists was held in October 2014 in Israel. The 6th edition of GIBS is scheduled for 2022 in Israel.
In September 2016, the first joint initiative 'New Materials for Battery Systems - Promoting German-Israeli Research Cooperation' was published. Five joint projects with a total volume of EUR 1.5 million started in October 2017. Four further projects with a total volume of EUR 1.4 million euros launched in October 2019.