The aim of the federation is the digital federated use of the respective locally issued smart cards. A member of a participating institution can use his "bwCard" at another participating institution for offered services. Participation in the bwCard Federation is open to all higher education institutions in Baden-Württemberg.
In order for one's bwCard to be recognized at other institutions, the reliability of the card status (valid/not valid) is important. Each institution must be able to rely on always receiving up-to-date information about a bwCard when the status is retrieved at the card's home institution. All participants in the bwCard Federation undertake to do this. The retrieval of the card status can only take place if the cardholder has previously agreed to it.
bwCards can also be used for local smart card federations. An example of an existing local smart card federation is the Federation of Karlsruhe Libraries KA-LIB: https://www.bibliothek.kit.edu/chipkarten-foederation.php.
The bwCard is not a stand-alone card; rather, it is features of a Hoichschule's chip card that distinguish a bwCard as such.