Jan Knippers is a practising consulting engineer and since 2000 has also been head of the Institute for Building Structures and Structural Design (ITKE) at the University of Stuttgart. His interest is in innovative and resource-efficient structures created at the intersection of research and development and practice.
In 2001 he co-founded „Knippers Helbig Advanced Engineering“ with offices in Stuttgart, Berlin and New York and was co-lead for the first years of the practice’s growth. Some of his key projects from this time are the EXPO Axis for Shanghai in 2010, the Thematic Pavilion at EXPO 2012 in Yeosu, South Korea and the Gallery at the Staatsoper Berlin, completed in 2017. In 2018 he founded „Jan Knippers Ingenieure“ to give more personal attention to innovative projects from concept to completion . The current focus of the practise is on the design and construction of novel fibre composite and timber structures.
From 2014 to 2019 Jan Knippers was the lead coordinator of the DFG collaborative research centre TRR141 „Biological Design and Integrative Structures“, a collaboration between the Universities of Stuttgart, Tübingen and Freiburg. Since 2019 he is Vice Rector for Research at the University of Stuttgart and Deputy Director of the Cluster of Excellence „Integrative Computational Design and Construction for Architecture“
Jan Knippers is German member of the European code committee CEN/TC 250 „Fibre Reinforced Polymers“.
He is author of several books, numerous scientific publications, is a member of various advisory boards (i.e. German Science Foundation) and is frequently invited to speak at national and international conferences.