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Initiative for Excellence Competition: Clusters of Excellence and Graduate Schools of Freie Universitaet Berlin

With its future concept of the “International Network University,” Freie Universitaet Berlin was one of nine German universities selected in 2007 to receive funding in the Excellence Initiative jointly sponsored by the German federal government and the governments of the German states.

The follow-up proposal “Veritas – Justitia – Libertas. International Network University” was approved in the Excellence Initiative in 2012 and will be funded for another five years until 2017 together with five other German universities.  

The goal of the initiative is to further develop top university research, identify new, forward-looking fields of research, and ensure that research at German institutions is on a firmly competitive footing at the international level. 

Since as far back as 2003, Freie Universität Berlin has maintained an interdisciplinary network of socially and academically important, new and forward-looking fields of research. With this restructured research concept as a basis, the excellence clusters supported by the Excellence Initiative pool outstanding scientific and academic expertise and are home to interdisciplinary areas of research focus that serve to establish the university’s profile. 

Since 2012 the Freie Universitaet Berlin hosts two clusters and participates in three clusters of excellence. This university hosts four graduate schools of excellence and participates in five graduate schools.

Within the Focus Areas, the research performed at Freie Universität Berlin is not divided into fixed institutional units, but rather is brought together in an interdisciplinary structure with a specific focus, with the aim of creating working areas to generate overarching topics having to do with global future developments and for various areas of social, economic, or political importance. Within the Focus Areas, a network of partner institutions both within and outside of academia and in Germany and abroad is created, even as junior scholars and scientists receive extensive support.

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NeuroCure - Towards a Better Outcome of Neurological Disorders
(2007 - 2017)

Spokesperson: Univ.-Prof. Dr. Christian Rosenmund
Address: Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Charitéplatz 1, 10117 Berlin

Unifying Concepts in Catalysis
(2007 - 2017)

Spokesperson: Prof. Dr. Matthias Drieß (Technische Universität Berlin), Phone (+49 30) 314 29731
Address: Technische Universität Berlin, Straße des 17. Juni, 10623 Berlin

Topoi - The Formation and Transformation of Space and Knowledge in Ancient Civilizations
(2007 - 2017)

Spokespersons: Univ.-Prof. Dr. Michael Meyer (Freie Universität Berlin); Phone (+49 30) 838-55078, Prof. Dr. Gerd Graßhoff (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin)
Address: Dept. of History and Cultural Studies, Institute of Prehistoric Archaeology, Fabeckstraße 23-25, 14195 Berlin

Image Knowledge Composition. An Interdisciplinary Laboratoy
(2012 - 2017)

Spokesperson: Univ.-Prof. Dr. Horst Bredekamp (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin), Phone (+49 30) 2093-66257, Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Schäffner
Address: Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Unter den Linden 6, 10099 Berlin
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Graduate School for North American Studies
(2006 - 2017)

Spokespersons: Univ.-Prof. Dr. Ulla Haselstein
Address: Freie Universität Berlin, John-F.-Kennedy-Institute for North American Studies, Graduate School, Lansstr. 5-9, 14195 Berlin
Contact: Dr. David Bosold, Phone (+49 30) 838-528 65

Berlin Mathematical School
(Graduate School together with: Technische Universität Berlin and Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin,
2006 - 2017)

Spokespersons: Univ.-Prof. Dr. John Sullivan (Technische Universität Berlin), Univ.-Prof. Dr. Konrad Polthier (Freie Universität Berlin), Univ.-Prof. Dr. Jürg Kramer (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin)
Dept. of Mathematics and Computer Science; Institute of Mathematics, Arnimallee 6, 14195 Berlin
Univ.-Prof. Dr. Konrad Polthier, Phone (+49 30) 838 75871, Univ.-Prof. Günter Ziegler, Tel. (+49 30) 838 75668

Friedrich Schlegel Graduate School of Literary Studies
(2007 - 2017)

Spokesperson: Univ.-Prof. Jutta Müller-Tamm
Freie Universität Berlin, Friedrich Schlegel Graduiertenschule, JK 33, Habelschwerdter Allee 45, 14195 Berlin
Dr. Anja Hallacker, Tel. +49 30 838-750 44

Berlin Graduate School Muslim Cultures and Societies
(2007 - 2017)

Spokesperson: Univ.-Prof. Dr. Dr. Gudrun Krämer
Freie Universität Berlin, Dept. of History and Cultural Studies; Institute of Islamic Studies, Altensteinstr. 40, 14195 Berlin
Dr. Bettina Gräf, Phone (+49 30) 838 53260

Berlin-Brandeburg School for Regenerative Therapies
(Graduate School  of the Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, together with the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, 2007 - 2017)

Spokesperson: Univ.-Prof. Dr. Georg-N. Duda (Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin)
Augustenburger Platz 1, 13353 Berlin
Dr. Sabine Bartosch Phone (+49 30) 450 539 418

Berlin School of Mind and Brain
(2007 - 2017)

Spokesperson: Univ.-Prof. Dr. Michael Plauen (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin)
Luisenstr. 56, 10115 Berlin
Annette Winkelmann Phone (+49 30) 2093-1706

Berlin Graduate School of Social Sciences
(2007 - 2017)

Spokesperson: Prof. Dr. Silvia von Steinsdorff (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin)
Unter den Linden 6, 10099 Berlin
Phone (+49 30) 2093-5340

Berlin School of Integrative Oncology
(2012 - 2017)

Spokesperson: Prof. Dr. Clemens Schmidt (Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin)
Address: Molekulares Krebsforschungszentrum, Charitéplatz 1, 10117 Berlin
Phone (+49 30) 450 553 896

Graduate School of East Asian Studies
(2012 - 2017)

Spokesperson: Univ.-Prof. Dr. Verena Blechinger-Talcott 
Freie Universität Berlin, Japanese Studies, Hittorfstraße 18, 14195 Berlin
Contact: Katrin Gengenbach, Phone (+49 30) 838-53599
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