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Profile of Freie Universität

The Philological Library contains the books and other media of eleven sublibraries.

The Philological Library contains the books and other media of eleven sublibraries.
Image Credit: Jonah Langkau

Freie Universität Berlin in the Excellence Initiative and the Excellence Strategy

Freie Universität Berlin performed successfully three times in the German government’s Excellence competition for universities. As a result of the latest competition, the German Excellence Strategy, the university will receive long-term funding beginning in 2019 as part of the Berlin University Alliance, which is made up of Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Technische Universität Berlin, and Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin. Freie Universität was the only university in Berlin and one of six universities nationwide to be recognized as an excellent university in both rounds of the previous competition, the German Excellence Initiative, in 2006/2007 and 2012.

Interdisciplinary Work within Research Alliances

The main features of Freie Universität’s research activities include the broad variety of global academic and scientific cooperation arrangements in place as part of alliance projects and networks with other entities active in research, alongside the university’s innovative support concepts for junior scholars and scientists and the scope of the external funding the university raises.

The various areas of focus in the research conducted at Freie Universität are organized into various structures, including interdisciplinary focus areas, excellence clusters, collaborative research centers, and research centers.

Wide Variety of Academic Offerings and Excellent Support for Junior Scholars and Scientists

Freie Universität is a full-spectrum university, comprising twelve departments and three Central Institutes that together offer more than 150 different academic programs in a broad range of disciplines. Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin is the joint medical school of Freie Universität Berlin and Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin.

Dahlem Research School (DRS) at Freie Universität Berlin offers the framework encompassing a range of outstanding structured doctoral programs. By establishing the DRS, Freie Universität Berlin broke new ground in the field of graduate education in Germany, all with the aim of offering junior scholars and scientists the best possible conditions for their academic development. At the DRS, strategies to support doctoral candidates and postdoctoral students at Freie Universität are developed, research within interdisciplinary and international alliances is fostered, and established graduate schools and research training groups receive support alongside new initiatives.

International Alignment

Freie Universität owes its founding, in 1948, to international support, and international impulses have shaped the university’s research activities and student life ever since. As an International Network University, Freie Universität thrives on its many contacts with higher education institutions and organizations in Germany and abroad, which provide critical impetus for the university’s research and teaching activities.

Today, Freie Universität has more than 200 bilateral partnerships worldwide and more than 400 university partnerships within the Erasmus+ (EU and worldwide) mobility network. The university's various departments and research institutes themselves have over 75 partner agreements with other institutions.

Each year, about 600 international scholars and scientists contribute to the variety of teaching and research activities pursued at Freie Universität. One groundbreaking development that demonstrates the way the university takes international cooperation to the next level is the four international liaison offices of Freie Universität that were founded beginning in 2007 – in Cairo, Eastern Europe (Tbilisi, Georgia), New Delhi, and São Paulo. Another is the establishment of special arrangements with selected universities in the form of strategic partnerships.