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ERIC Number: ED537668
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Nov
Pages: 10
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
The German Excellence Initiative: Update. Go8 Backgrounder 24a
Frohlich, Ellen
Group of Eight (NJ1)
As described in "Go8 Backgrounder 24: Answering the Global Challenge--Experiences from European Excellence Initiatives," Germany began a debate about how to strengthen its position as an excellent location for science and research in 2004. This debate focussed in particular on the competitiveness of the country's universities and research centres with respect to international standards. The German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG), a self-governing organisation funding the bulk of research projects in Germany was the primary leader of this debate. The most important outcome of this debate was an agreement on the Excellence Initiative by the German federal and state governments. This took the form of a contract between the German federal government and the federal states, signed in 2005 with the specific aims of funding top-level research, enhancing the international visibility of research activities, and driving fundamental structural change. University research funded through the Excellence Initiative has to be conducted in large networks and in cooperation with non-university research institutions. The initiative also established a structured system of education and training for doctoral students, to make Germany more attractive to young international scholars. The German Research Foundation and the German Council of Science and Humanities (Wissenschaftsrat) were given responsibility for implementing the Excellence Initiative, which had three streams of funding: for graduate schools, for clusters of excellence, and for institutional strategies to promote top-level research in the whole institution (so-called "future concepts"). The success of the initiative has led to a renewed discussion about how universities in Germany with their renewed focus on excellence can compete against outstanding institutions abroad in funding competitions; and on how they can play an enhanced role in Germany becoming a preferred location for science and innovation. (Contains 1 figure.)
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Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Group of Eight (Australia)
Identifiers - Location: Germany