Our State of Curiosity

Is Curiosity in our DNA?

Since 2016, our Curiosity Initiative has communicated the benefits of increased workplace curiosity. But, are we (as a company) really curious? And, more importantly, how are we doing, when comparing our curiosity with employees from other companies. We invited our colleagues in 23 countries to share thoughts on curiosity’s role in the workplace. Explore the fascinating results and learn more about our commitment to curiosity in a foreword from our Former Executive Board Chairman and CEO, Stefan Oschmann.

Our 2020 State of Curiosity Report is a continuation of research carried out in a 2018 global study – which posed the same questions to 3,004 respondents in the US, Germany, and China. Respondents of the 2018 study came from five different sectors (Healthcare, Public Administration, Scientific R&D, Technology and Manufacturing), and were not associated with our company.

Merck Oschmann Portrait Merck Oschmann Portrait

“Cultivating curiosity and creating an innovation-friendly environment are essential for the discovery of ground-breaking inventions that address the most pressing needs of our society.”

Stefan Oschmann

Former Chairman of the Executive Board & CEO

Always Curious

We believe that curiosity is key to driving scientific exploration – and, ultimately, the innovations that address society’s current and future needs. This is why we continually seek answers to an important question: What is key to driving a culture of curiosity?


Explore the top insights from our study...

Our world is changing. Every day, we are faced with new challenges and presented with new opportunities. With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, our globalized world has been challenged by the most significant public health threat of our time. We have seen how crucial innovation is to tackle this crisis effectively. And how important it is that we collaborate both globally and locally to find and deliver such solutions.

Since our founding, everything we do has been fueled by a belief in science and technology as forces for good. A belief that has driven our success since 1668 and that – sparked by scientific curiosity – will continue to be our greatest source of motivation.

With this is mind, we are committed to ensuring that our people are best equipped to innovate. As a result, our quest to understand, measure and assess curiosity across different markets and workplaces (see our previous State of Curiosity Reports – 2016, 2018) has also evolved. In 2020, we conducted a survey among our own employees to better understand our culture of curiosity and its impact on our ability to drive innovation. The more we know, the more we can fuel our innovative strength in a sustainable way. And as we scout for and seize new growth opportunities, we will continue to develop and share strategies such as the ones highlighted in this report, to help our people (re-)discover and leverage their curiosity.

Our 2020 State of Curiosity Report highlights our unique, collective curiosity, our continued efforts to enhance this essential asset, as well as the innovations, the “fruits”, developed by our curious people. Through our efforts and learnings, we hope to set an example for the many innovative organizations around the world seeking to address global challenges. I am very proud of the work we do every day. Breakthrough innovations begin with curiosity, and we are curious minds dedicated to human progress.

Stefan Oschmann, Former Chairman of the Executive Board & CEO

Download Free Report

Still curious? Download Our State of Curiosity Report and take a closer look at how our colleagues across the globe perceive and value workplace curiosity.


  • Worlds of Curiosity

    Explore how a more curious society can change the world for the better.

  • How Curious are You?

    Take our 5-minute interactive test to discover your personal curiosity profile.

    Start Test!
  • 2018 Curiosity Report

    Employees from different business sectors in Germany, China, and the USA describe barriers and enhancers to workplace curiosity…