The mission of NEST is the promotion of innovation in the building sector in order to meet pending challenges such as decarbonization of the energy system, closing the material cycle or the ever increasing demand of flexible use of space. This can only be achieved in a joint effort by industry, academia and the public sector. NEST has successfully created a platform for all players to collabo-rate in the upscaling phase of the development of new concepts and solutions. The NEST ecosystem consists of more than 140 partners which actively participate in the development and operation of the units, the energy hub and the water hub. This is a clear prove of the fact that NEST has established its place as a research and innovation accelerator for buildings and energy related products and services. Over 1'000 visitors per month from mostly experts in the field and numerous awards for NEST or NEST units show the importance and relevance of NEST. While first products, which were installed as prototypes in NEST for the first time, already found their way into the market, the market pull is in other areas still weak. One of the main obstacles is the lacking inclusion of external costs in energy prices. Another important point is the fact that many construction projects are still governed by investments costs rather than by full life cycle costs. However, changes in both areas are ongoing and technically proven solutions will eventually become successful as the boundary conditions change. On the other hand, new concepts such as circular economy or the energy hub approach generate a lot of interest and the implementation in real cases is steadily increasing. For the future, the role of digitalization will gain even more attention. Presently, the dfab house and machine learning based technologies around the energy hub are already illustrating the potential for substantial innovation based on digitalization. However, much more can be achieved if this approach is applied to the complete life cycle of buildings from the first idea all the way to the demolition. Systemic innovations will be needed in order to capitalize on this opportunities and NEST will keep on playing a pioneering role in this regard.