In order to further strengthen Germany’s position as an outstanding place for research in the long term and to further improve the country’s international competitiveness, the government designed a program to continue the development of German universities successfully begun with the Excellence Initiative (2005 to 2017).
The Excellence Strategy comprises two funding lines: Through Excellence Clusters, internationally competitive research fields will be funded with up to 10 million euros annually. Universities that win funding for several clusters can also receive additional funding enabling them to continue to develop their Excellence position. Altogether 533 million euros are available annually in the two funding lines. Proposals in the Excellence Strategy may be submitted by individual universities as well as alliances of universities within Germany. The German Research Foundation (DFG) and the German Research Council are conducting the review and selection process.
Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Technische Universität Berlin, and Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin performed very well in the preliminary decision regarding the Cluster proposals. Through this funding line the German federal and state governments will promote strong university research fields, at first for a seven-year period. A total of nine research projects from Berlin were invited to submit full proposals, which must be submitted to the DFG by February 2018. Five initiatives are based at Freie Universität Berlin or with participation by Freie Universität. The projects were selected from a total of 195 proposal outlines for Clusters that were submitted by 63 universities from all 16 German states. The final decision on the allocation of Excellence Clusters will be made in September 2018.
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