The Excellence Strategy of the German federal and state governments has the aim of strengthening Germany as a centre for science and research in the long term and further improving its international competitiveness. It thus continues the development and strengthening of German universities already begun with the Excellence Initiative of the German federal and state governments. The programme is implemented jointly by the German Research Foundation (DFG) and the German Science and Humanities Council (WR).
The programme includes the two funding lines Clusters of Excellence and Universities of Excellence and is designed to run for an indefinite period. Further information is available on the websites of the German Research Foundation (DFG) and the German Science and Humanities Council (WR).
In the ongoing first round of the Excellence Strategy, the University of Freiburg received approval in the first funding line for the Clusters of Excellence ‘CIBSS – Centre for Integrative Biological Signalling Studies’ and ‘livMatS – Living, Adaptive and Energy-autonomous Materials Systems’. These two Clusters of Excellence took up their work on 1 January 2019.
Draft proposals in the Clusters of Excellence funding line of the Excellence Strategy
The calls for proposals for the second round of the Excellence Strategy of the German federal and state governments are currently open. The University of Freiburg submitted draft proposals for seven new Clusters of Excellence for review to the German Research Foundation (DFG) on 31 May 2023.
This milestone was preceded by a joint process involving the university leadership and more than 200 researchers: The university’s participation in the Excellence Strategy of the German federal and state governments has been in preparation since February 2021, embedded in the strategy ‘University of Freiburg 2030’.
Seven draft proposals for new Clusters of Excellence submitted: Participation of all eleven faculties
Initial concepts for possible Cluster of Excellence initiatives were reviewed last year. As a result, the university leadership asked seven initiatives to further develop their concepts in July 2022. All seven of these initiatives have now submitted draft proposals.
The university will submit renewal proposals for the two existing Clusters of Excellence, Centre for Integrative Biological Signalling Studies (CIBSS) and Living, Adaptive and Energy-autonomous Materials Systems (livMatS), in summer 2024.
As a whole, the seven Cluster of Excellence initiatives and the two Clusters of Excellence already receiving funding are a clear reflection of the university’s research profile and proven research strengths: All eleven faculties are participating in the highly interdisciplinary proposals.
Emerging technologies can mitigate large-scale problems, such as global warming or public health challenges, but may also add new and unforeseen risks. They are characterized by complex innovation dynamics, so innovation may outpace political and legal adaptations.
The aim of Adaptive Futures is to develop a comprehensive adaptive governance architecture for disruptive new technologies to promote the common good and protect rights. This will involve developing analytical, descriptive, and normative methods to reduce uncertainties with regard to the impacts of new technologies. An important element will be a toolbox based partly on artificial intelligence. The key challenge is to make the governance framework contextual, fast, and adaptive to incorporate solutions for unknown effects.
It is necessary in doing so to weigh risks and potential benefits of these technologies under conditions of uncertainty. It may be assumed that, in contrast to static governance, adaptive governance is based on a set of rules and procedures that are frequently updated through the inclusion of new information and may thus be adapted more quickly to new and previously unforeseen challenges and circumstances.
To this end, we will analyse the complex landscapes of technology governance, develop new tools and assessment models, and test and validate these models in realistic scenarios in a multidisciplinary AdFutures Lab. Artificial intelligence (AI) and genome editing will be important use cases for illustrating the feasibility and legitimacy of the adaptive governance framework. This approach will use innovative methods such as generative AI for measuring and analysing risks and potential advantages as well as mechanisms for adaptively updating governance and regulatory schemes to foster the common good as well as individual and collective rights. AI is therefore one important tool for evaluating and governing emerging technologies, including AI itself.
Participating faculties (in alphabetical order): Faculty of Economics and Behavioural Sciences, Faculty of Engineering, Faculty of Environment and Natural Resources, Faculty of Humanities, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Mathematics and Physics, Faculty of Medicine
Spokespersons: Prof. Dr. Silja Voeneky, Prof. Dr. Rolf Backofen, Prof. Dr. Oliver Müller
Prof. Dr. Silja Voeneky holds the Professorship of International Law and Comparative Law with a focus on legal ethics at the Faculty of Law. She served from 2012 to 2016 as a member of the German Ethics Council, where she headed the biosecurity working group. In 2017 she was appointed to the International Law Advisory Board of the Federal Foreign Office. In addition, she is a member of the Ethics Council of the Max Planck Society. Her research focuses on international law, including international environmental law and human rights, legal ethics, and the regulation of new technologies.
Prof. Dr. Rolf Backofen holds the Chair of Bioinformatics at the Faculty of Engineering. He is coordinator of the Performance Centre for RNA Bioinformatics in de.NBI and conducts research in the areas of CRISPR & RNA bioinformatics, particularly detection and analysis of CRIPSR systems, analysis of high-throughput sequencing data, protein-RNA and RNA-RNA interactions, recognition of RNA sequence-structure motifs, prediction and evaluation of alternative splice forms, and description and recognition of regulatory sequences.
Prof. Dr. Oliver Müller is Professor of Philosophy with a focus on the present day and technology at the Department of Philosophy. His work centres particularly on the genesis and topicality of technical relations of self and world and on phenomenological anthropology. His research foci include philosophical reflection on human-machine interactions as well as current bio- and neurotechnologies and artificial intelligence. In addition, he investigates philosophical questions of post- and transhumanism.
The world around us is constantly changing. Humans, animals, and intelligent artificial systems like autonomous robots use internal representations to react to these changes. These internal world models are indispensable for the planning and the prediction of events. The models are constantly updated via sensory information, new discoveries, past experiences, and emotional states. Internal world models are thus of prime importance for all higher brain functions, but they are not faithful representations of the world. Rather, they are abstract representations anchored in the circuits, cells, and molecules of the nervous system.
Incorrectly constructed or adapted world models can lead to neuropsychiatric symptoms and dysfunctional artificial systems – with far-reaching consequences for people, families, and societies. BrainWorlds investigates the mechanisms that contribute to the development, adaptation, and function of internal world models in humans, animals, and artificial intelligence (AI). Building on the proven scientific strengths of the participating research groups in basic and clinical neuroscience, neurotechnology, and AI, the scientists are pursuing an AI-based cross-species strategy that includes AI itself as a species.
The objective of BrainWorlds is to gain integrated mechanistic insights into internal world models in biological and artificial individuals – from deep networks to autonomous robots – thus enabling the development of next-generation AI and AI-based neuromodulation in personalized medicine.
Participating faculties (in alphabetical order): Faculty of Biology, Faculty of Economics and Behavioural Sciences, Faculty of Engineering, Faculty of Humanities, Faculty of Medicine
Spokespersons: Prof. Dr. Ilka Diester, Prof. Dr. Andreas Vlachos, Prof. Dr. Thomas Brox
Prof. Dr. Ilka Diester holds the Professorship in Optophysiology at the Faculty of Biology. She has received an ERC Starting Grant for her research, among other awards. Her research foci include the neuronal basis of motor and cognitive action control and the further development of optogenetic and neurophysiological tools. She is spokesperson of IMBIT and for the area of neurosciences and neurotechnology at the University of Freiburg. She has been a member of the FENS Kavli Networks of Excellence since 2016.
Prof. Dr. Andreas Vlachos is Professor of Neuroanatomy at the Institute of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Faculty of Medicine. His research foci include cellular and molecular mechanisms of non-invasive brain stimulation, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), and the role of associative and homeostatic structure-function relationships in the central nervous system under physiological and pathological conditions.
Prof. Dr. Thomas Brox is Professor of Pattern Recognition and Image Processing at the Department of Computer Science at the Faculty of Engineering. He has received an ERC Starting Grant for his work, among other awards. His research focuses on deep learning für visual data, as well as video analysis and the development of methods allowing computers to interpret image content. He is currently a member of the DFG research project ‘Training Deep Networks for Real-World Computer Vision Scenarios with Rendered Data’ and the ELLIS Unit Freiburg of the European network European Laboratory for Learning and Intelligent Systems.
Modern constitutions are at the centre of sociopolitical hopes and conflicts. Often understood as foundational documents of modern nation-states, they are associated with permanence and stability. However, the limits of the modern conception of constitutions become apparent when it comes to understanding the basic orders of societies and communities across space and time. Constitutions are based on social practices, making them a factor in the process of adaptation of social orders. This dimension becomes especially prominent in times of economic, social, and political change and crisis but has so far been neglected. This implies the need for a consistently interdisciplinary approach.
To this end, ConTrans brings perspectives from different disciplines together for the first time – from law and history to literary studies and psychology – in a comprehensive and sustained endeavour to investigate constitutions as social practices. Only in this way is it possible to comprehend variations of constitutionality across space and time. They range from symbols, rituals, and procedures to the discursive function of ‘ancient constitutions’ in modern debates. This requires an innovative analytical framework to explore communicative and institutional practices of different actors.
The goal of the participating researchers is to establish an international and interdisciplinary constitutional research programme in the humanities and social sciences through ConTrans and to give it concrete form in a Freiburg Centre for Interdisciplinary Constitutional Studies (FreiCIC).
Participating faculties (in alphabetical order): Faculty of Economics and Behavioural Sciences, Faculty of Humanities, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Philology, Faculty of Theology
Spokespersons: Prof. Dr. Matthias Jestaedt, Prof. Dr. Jörn Leonhard, Prof. Dr. Sitta von Reden
Prof. Dr. Matthias Jestaedt is Professor of Public Law and Legal Theory at the Institute of Political Science and Philosophy of Law, where he serves as director of the Department of Legal Theory at the Faculty of Law. He is also an international correspondent of the Hans Kelsen Institute in Vienna, as well as a member of its board of directors since 2012. He is head of the Hans-Kelsen-Forschungsstelle. He has been a member of the Academy of Sciences and Literature since 2014. His research foci are constitutional law and constitutional comparison, European human rights protection, state-church law, legal theory and theory of legal science, child and youth welfare law, and Hans Kelsen. He is a member of the ‘GE Commission to Address Sexual Abuse in the Archdiocese of Freiburg’.
Prof. Dr. Jörn Leonhard is Professor of Modern and Contemporary Western European History at the Department of History, Faculty of Humanities. He was the founding director of the School of History at the Freiburg Institute of Advanced Studies (FRIAS). His work has been recognized with the Baden-Württemberg State Research Prize, among others. His research focuses on comparative European and global history of the 19th and 20th centuries, particularly in relation to the topics war and peace, violence and politics, and empires and nation-states. He is a full member of the Heidelberg Academy of Sciences and Humanities, an honorary fellow at the University of Oxford’s Wadham College, and a member of the academic advisory boards of the House of History Baden-Württemberg in Stuttgart and the German Historical Institute London. He is currently directing the research project ‘The World Crisis, 1918–1941’, funded by the Volkswagen Foundation’s Opus Magnum Programme.
Prof. Dr. Sitta von Reden is Professor of Ancient History at the Department of History. She also teaches at the University College Freiburg and in the Interdisciplinary Anthropology master’s programme. She is principal investigator of the project ‘Beyond the Silk Road’, funded by the European Research Council with an ERC Advanced Grant. Her research foci include Greek history, ancient economic and global history, Hellenistic Egypt, and the political culture of Greece and Athens, as well as comparative history of ancient empires.
Coloniality is not a phenomenon of the past. Since the Russian attack on Ukraine, for example, a growing number of activists from Central Asia have drawn on the vocabulary of colonialism, decolonisation, and coloniality to describe political, economic, and linguistic dependencies. Restitution of art objects and human remains to formerly colonised countries is a subject of heated controversy, and China’s hegemonic aspirations in Africa have sparked a debate about neocolonialism.
De/Coloniality Now takes up the relevance and topicality of the phenomenon revealed in these examples and explores the question of how people and institutions in all regions of the world process, perpetuate, and contest the legacy of colonialism. The participating researchers understand coloniality as the persistence of social hierarchies that originated in the age of colonialism and continue to shape global economic, political, cultural, and epistemic asymmetries today. However, they are also interested in resistance against coloniality, described by the term decoloniality, as well as in processes of hybridisation and creolisation.
The research agenda of De/Coloniality Now is characterised by two key components. First, the project aims to develop research practices that seek to overcome colonial hierarchies within the system of global knowledge production. Second, it systematically adopts a global perspective that defies regional categories such as ‘the Global South’ and includes the reflective examination of coloniality in European societies and institutions.
By creating multilateral, transnational research contexts, forging innovative links between the social sciences and humanities, and collaborating with non-academic partners, De/Coloniality Now takes a fresh inter- and transdisciplinary perspective on the complex and often conflicting dynamics of the contemporary world.
Participating faculties (in alphabetical order): Faculty of Environment and Natural Resources, Faculty of Humanities, Faculty of Philology, Faculty of Theology
Spokespersons: Prof. Dr. Johanna Pink, Prof. Dr. Manuela Boatcă, Prof. Dr. Andreas Mehler
Prof. Dr. Johanna Pink is Professor of Islamic Studies and the History of Islam at the Department of Oriental Studies. She conducts research on Muslim exegesis of the Qur’an with a focus on transregional dynamics and translation processes. She is particularly interested in the consequences of colonisation, decolonisation, and global mobilities. Currently, she is the recipient of a Consolidator Grant from the European Research Council as principal investigator in the project ‘GloQur – The Global Qur’an’ and is co-subproject head of SFB Helden – Heroisierungen – Heroismen: ‘Upheavals and Reinterpretations’.
Prof. Dr. Manuela Boatcă is Professor of Sociology with a focus on Macrosociology. She studies inequalities at the global level, such as unequal access to visa-free travel and to international migration. She works in a historical and comparative perspective, addressing issues of development, migration, and racism in the context of Europe’s colonial expansion since the 16th century. Among other things, she is a member of the research network ‘Postcolonial Hierarchies in Peace and Conflict’ and ACT – Africa Centre for Transregional Research.
Prof. Dr. Andreas Mehler is Director of the Arnold Bergstraesser Institute and Professor of Development Theories and Development Policy. He is a member of the board of the African Studies Association Germany and co-editor of the ‘Africa Yearbook’. He conducts research – with a regional focus on Central and West Africa – on power sharing after peace agreements, violent conflict, crisis prevention, state and statehood, and German and French Africa policy. He is a member of the research network ‘Postcolonial Hierarchies in Peace and Conflict’ and the international research school ‘Merian Institute for Advanced Studies in Africa’ with the University of Ghana in Accra. He serves, among other things, as an academic advisor to the German Foundation for Peace Research.
Forests cover approximately 30 per cent of the global landmass and render numerous essential ecosystem services (ES): They provide renewable resources, mitigate the impact of climate change, support human health, and preserve biodiversity. In the face of rapid climate change, novel ecosystem disturbances, and the introduction or loss of species, large expanses of forests are evolving towards novel ecosystems that are unprecedented in evolutionary history. It is highly uncertain to what extent these novel ecosystems will be capable of rendering the desired ES and preserving biodiversity. The changes will occur so quickly that natural adaptation processes will not be able to keep pace with them.
Parallel to this development, major societal changes are to be expected, resulting from processes such as urbanization, globalization and trade, land use, and changing demands regarding nature’s services to humans. The natural and social spheres are closely interlinked, interact in a complex way, and thus present unexpected risks. With a better understanding of these system dynamics, it will be possible to devise strategies to prevent undesirable developments. The researchers of Future Forests thus aim to make novel contributions to conceptualizing and analysing forests as new social-ecological systems (SES).
The approaches of Future Forests to analysing and developing transformation pathways for forest-based SES will provide the basis for more adaptive forest systems and more sustainable transformation pathways than in the past. These approaches will be transferable to other world regions and a broad spectrum of ecosystem services.
Participating faculties (in alphabetical order): Faculty of Biology, Faculty of Environment and Natural Resources, Faculty of Humanities, Faculty of Medicine
Spokespersons: Prof. Dr. Jürgen Bauhus, Prof. Dr. Friederike Lang, Prof. Dr. Marc Hanewinkel
Prof. Dr. Jürgen Bauhus heads the Chair of Silviculture at the Faculty of Environment and Natural Resources. His research focuses on controlling the structure and dynamics of forests for the provision of ecosystem services, on the impact of silvicultural measures on the ecosystem, and on the adaptation of forests to global change. He received the ‘Scientific Achievement Award’ from the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) for his research. He is chair of the Scientific Advisory Board on Forest Policy at the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture.
Prof. Dr. Friederike Lang heads the Chair of Soil Ecology, located at the Institute of Forest Sciences, Faculty of Environment and Natural Resources. Her research foci are the coupling of carbon and nutrient dynamics in forest soils, soil conservation (mechanized forestry), and the ecology of soil structure. Among other projects, she is currently conducting research on the quantification of ecosystem processes across scales by means of smart autonomous sensor networks in the Collaborative Research Centre ECOSENSE (SFB 1537) and serves as spokesperson of the Forest Floor (FOR 5315) research group. She is a member of the Soil Conservation Expert Panel at the German Environmental Agency and the Scientific Advisory Board on Forest Policy at the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture.
Prof. Dr. Marc Hanewinkel is Professor of Forest Economy and Forest Planning at the Institute of Forest Sciences, Faculty of Environment and Natural Resources. Among other things, he investigates the topics of risk analysis (risk identification, modelling, and assessment), impact of climate change on Europe’s forests, development of adaptive management strategies, economic analysis of climate changes, bioenergy, impact of changes in forest management strategies, and forest restructuring. A project he is currently working on in the ClimXtreme research network is ‘Module C: Impacts – Subproject 11: WIND – Winter Storm Impacts in Central Europe’. He is a member of the European network for forest sciences NFZ.forestnet.
Immune cells are traditionally understood as a very heterogeneous class of haematopoietic cells, i.e., stem cells that form blood cells, which contribute in different ways to the maintenance of tissue homeostasis and to immune-mediated diseases. However, immune functions are not reserved for haematopoietic cells alone: Many of the endogenous organ-specific cell types also exhibit basic defence mechanisms against pathogens. With the aim of fundamentally redefining the general understanding of immunology outside of the haematopoietic system, the researchers at INSTRUCT intend for the first time to systematically investigate heterocellular interactions of haematogenous immune cells with typical structural cells in different organs.
The highly complex interactions between organ-specific structural and haematopoietic immune cells, which are crucial to systemic immune reactions, remain poorly understood. The scientists now aim to devote themselves to the study of the various functional interactions of cells with immune functions in different organ compartments, as a more profound understanding of this complex cellular communication would greatly extend therapeutic options. The organ-specificity of the innovative ‘structural immunity’ approach will open up new pathways to understanding disease pathogenesis and provide novel and fundamentally groundbreaking therapeutic and organ-specific options for the individualized therapy of patients.
Participating faculties (in alphabetical order): Faculty of Biology, Faculty of Chemistry and Pharmacy, Faculty of Economics and Behavioural Sciences, Faculty of Engineering, Faculty of Medicine
Spokespersons: Prof. Dr. Marco Prinz, Prof. Dr. Robert Thimme, Prof. Dr. Susana Minguet
Prof. Dr. Marco Prinz is Medical Director of the Institute for Neuropathology at the Freiburg University Medical Center. The awards he has received for his research include the Novo Nordisk Prize and the Ernst Jung Prize for Medicine. He was awarded the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize in 2020 for his work in the area of neuroimmunology, which led to a fundamentally new understanding of the immune response in the brain. His approaches point the way to new possibilities for the treatment of inflammatory and neurodegenerative diseases of the central nervous system.
ProProf. Dr. Robert Thimme is a specialist in internal medicine, gastroenterology, and endocrinology. He is medical director of the Department of Medicine II at the Freiburg University Medical Center, where he founded the Gerok Liver Center and the IGE (Interdisciplinary Gastrointestinal Endoscopy). His research focuses on the immune response to hepatitis viruses. Among other things, he was in the Emmy Noether Programme of the German Research Foundation, was offered a Heisenberg Professorship, and was awarded the Thieme Prize by the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina. He was also accepted into the American Society of Clinical Investigation (ASCI) and is a member of the Leopoldina.
Prof. Dr. Susana Minguet García has held a Heisenberg Professorship from the German Research Foundation (DFG) in synthetic immunology at the Faculty of Biology since 2023. Her research foci are the nano-organization of the plasma membrane in T and B lymphocytes and the understanding of T cell activation to develop translational and synthetic applications for the improvement of T cell immunotherapies against cancer. She is a member of the Center for Chronic Immunodeficiency (CCI) at the Freiburg University Medical Center and a member of the board of the Spemann Graduate School of Biology and Medicine (SGBM) at the University of Freiburg. In 2021 she was awarded the Novartis Prize for therapy-relevant immunological research by the German Society for Immunology.
(collaborative project with Heidelberg University and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology)
Since the dawn of modern physics, the answer to the question of what holds the world together at its core has been driven by the interplay between experiment and theory, supported by advances in instrumentation and methodology. The discovery of the Higgs boson in 2012 was an important milestone in this process. The current Standard Model (SM) of particle physics agrees with all experimental data collected so far, yet it cannot be said to be complete. After all, researchers are still confronted with unexplained phenomena, such as the existence of dark matter. It is thus necessary to conduct new experiments to find concrete evidence of physics beyond the SM, which can appear as widely different signals.
In PARTICLES, the University of Freiburg, Heidelberg University, and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, as well as the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg, will harness their collective experimental and theoretical expertise and methodologies to find such signals of new physics. To this end, the participating research groups, all known for their research in particle and astroparticle physics, will leverage their combined expertise in instrumentation, data processing, analytical methods, and phenomenology. This cooperation, as well as international collaborations, will make it possible to initiate experiments that are constructed, operated, and analysed entirely within the context of this project. In addition, the researchers will continue to analyse data from existing large-scale experiments. They also plan to provide crucial support for new large-scale projects in their realization. The researchers will confront new experimental results with theoretical predictions and combine results from various experiments to obtain an overarching interpretation.
PARTICLES will also devote attention to the societal impact of its research, the sustainable use of resources, and new approaches to generating and linking knowledge.
Participating faculty: Faculty of Mathematics and Physics
Spokespersons: Prof. Dr. Stephanie Hansmann-Menzemer (Heidelberg University), Prof. Dr. Markus Klute (KIT), Prof. Dr. Marc Schumann (University of Freiburg)
Some of the participants (Freiburg): Prof. Dr. Marc Schumann, Prof. Dr. Karl Jakobs, Prof. Dr. Stefan Dittmaier
Prof. Dr. Marc Schumann is Professor of Experimental Astroparticle Physics at the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics. His research revolves around the search for dark matter. He is participating in the project ‘Direct Search for Dark Matter with CRESST, XENON, and DARWIN’, among others. He received an ERC Consolidator Grant for his project ‘ULTIMATE – Towards the Ultimate Dark Matter Detector’. At the University of Freiburg, he is spurring the development of DARWIN, a future ultra-sensitive detector for the search for dark matter.
Prof. Dr. Karl Jakobs is Professor of Experimental Particle Physics. In 2017 he was elected as spokesperson of the ATLAS Experiment at CERN. He is a member of the research training group ‘Mass and Symmetries after the Discovery of the Higgs Particle at the LHC’ and he conducts research on the Higgs boson and searches for extensions of the Standard Model. In addition, he works on the upgrade of the ATLAS Experiment for operation at the high-luminosity phase of the LHC. In 2015, he received the Stern-Gerlach Medal from the German Physical Society (DPG) for his contributions to the discovery of the Higgs boson.
Prof. Dr. Stefan Dittmaier is Professor of Theoretical Physics. His research field is the phenomenology of elementary particles at particle accelerators, with a focus on precision physics with electroweak gauge bosons as well as Higgs bosons in the Standard Model and its extensions. In particular, this includes aspects of perturbation-theoretical quantum field theory and the calculation of radiation corrections to strong and electroweak interactions. He is deputy spokesperson of the research training group ‘Mass and Symmetries after the Discovery of the Higgs Particle at LHC’.
Information on the University of Freiburg’s participation in the previous programme, the Excellence Initiative, is available here:
The German federal and state governments enacted the Excellence Initiative in June 2005 with the goal of consolidating Germany’s position as a center for research in the long term, enhancing its international competitiveness, and training future leaders for universities and research institutions. Organized as a competition among all German universities, the initiative consisted initially of the three funding lines Institutional Strategies, Clusters of Excellence, and Graduate Schools, for which a total of 4.6 billion euros was made available in the course of two funding periods (2005–2012, 2010–2017).
Spemann Graduate School of Biology and Medicine (SGBM)
The Spemann Graduate School of Biology and Medicine (SGBM) offers a dynamic interdisciplinary training program that prepares students for future scientific challenges. Its ultimate goal is to create a top notch “Life Scientist of the Future” who can assimilate knowledge and techniques from various disciplines as well as combine basic with translational research, biotechnology and drug development. Go to the SGMB Website
Centre for Biological Signalling Studies
Biological signalling processes are the key regulators of cellular activity in all types of cells in living organisms. The BIOSS – Centre for Biological Signalling Studies in Freiburg uses modern analytical methods and strategies of synthetic biology to study biological signalling processes in a creative and playful way. The main focus of research at BIOSS is to initiate and promote a dialectic process between scientists using analytical and synthetic approaches in signalling research. Go to the BIOSS Website
BrainLinks-BrainTools unites life sciences, engineering, and clinical applications in Freiburg, thus anchoring neurotechnology as a research axis between three faculties of the University – Biology, Medicine, and Engineering – and various cooperation partners. These emerging opportunities for strong joint research and education between neuroscience and engineering deliver novel interdisciplinary results in an area highly relevant for society as a whole. Go to the BrainLinks-BrainTools Website
Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies (FRIAS)
The Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies (FRIAS) is the international research college of the University of Freiburg. As an integral part of the university, the Institute unites under its roof the humanities and social sciences, medicine, the natural and life sciences, and engineering. FRIAS offers leading academics as well as outstanding early-stage researchers from Freiburg and around the world the opportunity to concentrate exclusively on their individual or joint research projects for a certain period of time. It is in this way that the Institute creates a unique space and atmosphere for research within the university. Go to the FRIAS Website