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Press Invitation: Official Opening of First German-Israeli Research Training Group

Joint Project of Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Freie Universität Berlin Deals with Human Richts / Evening Event on June 26 and Summer School from June 25 to July 5

№ 190/2015 from Jun 23, 2015

The first German-Israeli joint doctoral program “Human Rights under Pressure” will be officially opened on June 26. The interdisciplinary doctoral program is a joint project of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem's Minerva Center for Human Rights and Freie Universität Berlin. It aims to attract doctoral students and postdoctoral researchers from such social science disciplines as law, political science, or sociology, as well as philosophy and history. The opening ceremony will be attended by the Israeli ambassador to Germany, His Excellency Yakov Hadas-Handelsmann. It is one of the events taking place this year in recognition of the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Germany and Israel. The participating graduate students of both universities will then meet for a summer school, where they will give presentations about their doctoral research projects, as well as visit various memorials to German-Jewish history and the House of the Wannsee Conference. Media representatives are cordially invited to both meetings. RSVP to presse@fu-berlin.de using the heading “Menschenrechte.”

Currently 12 graduate students are working toward their doctorate, and 12 more will begin in October. Two postdoctoral research fellows are also involved in the interdisciplinary program. The graduate students are based either in Berlin or in Jerusalem and are supervised by professors from both universities. A stay at the partner university is part of the training, and upon graduation, the students can receive a joint PhD from both universities. The project is being funded by the Einstein Foundation Berlin and the German Research Foundation (DFG). Another partner is the Human Rights Center at the University of Potsdam.

The research training group is a component of the strategic partnership between Freie Universität Berlin and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. An important focus of this extensive cooperation is the joint promotion of junior researchers. The two universities recently signed a joint doctoral degree agreement, the first of its kind between German and Israeli institutions of higher learning, and they set up the joint Berlin-Jerusalem Postdoctoral Fellowship Program.

The summer school will include a public evening lecture in the “Meeting Einstein” series of the Einstein Foundation Berlin. The lecture will be given by Avner de-Shalit, Professor of Democracy and Human Rights at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Advance registration is requested under www.einsteinfoundation.de.


Opening Ceremony

  • Friday, June 26, 3:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
  • Harnack-Haus, Ihne Strasse 16-18, 14195 Berlin


  • Prof. Dr. Peter-André Alt, President of Freie Universität Berlin
  • H. E. Yakov Hadas-Handelsmann, Ambassador of the State of Israel to Germany
  • Gabriele Hermani, Science Cousellor, German Embassy in Israel


  • Prof. Dr. Tomer Broude, Spokesperson for the Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program , Hebrew University of Jerusalem
  • Prof. Dr. Klaus Hoffman-Holland, Spokesperson for the Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program, Freie Universität Berlin

Keynote Address

Can Human Rights Law Prevent Torture?

Prof. Dr. Stephen J. Toope, Director of the Munk School of Global Affairs – University of Toronto

Public Evening Lecture of the Einstein Foundation Berlin in the “Meeting Einstein” series

  • “Of milkshakes and boxers: How inclusion can work” – Lecture and discussion with Avner de-Shalit, Professor of Democracy and Human Rights at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (in English)
  • June 29, 2015, 7 p.m.
  • Centrum Judaicum, Oranienburger Str. 28-30, 10117 Berlin
  • RSVP: www.einsteinfoundation.de

Summer School of the Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program

  • June 25 to July 5
  • Restricted; press appointments can be scheduled.

Further Information



Press Contact

Dr. Nina Diezemann, Office of News and Public Affairs, Freie Universität Berlin, Tel. +49 30 838-73190, Email: nina.diezemann@fu-berlin.de