From the very beginning

DAAD/Lichtenscheidt

In 1922, a student from Heidelberg visited the United States and organised scholarships for fellow students in New York. It was a project that ultimately became the DAAD. A success story.

2015

In January, the new organisational structure entered into effect. The DAAD’s tasks would now be conducted in a process-oriented fashion, assigned to various departments: “Scholarships”, “Strategy”, “Communications”, “National Agency for EU Higher Education Cooperation” and “Central Administration”. The restructuring measures promised to improve the quality of individual scholarship funding for students, graduates, doctoral candidates and researchers, and support university partnership and structural programmes more professionally and efficiently. The new organisational structure also enabled the DAAD to bundle its expertise and make it available to member universities, their student bodies and political decision-makers.

The DAAD marked its 90th anniversary with an official ceremony at the Berlin Academy of Arts in June. Among the many guests in attendance was German Federal Foreign Minister Steinmeier who held the welcoming speech.

Germany saw the arrival of a massive wave of refugees from Syria and other crisis-ridden regions in 2015. In order to make it easier for refugees to gain access to higher education, the DAAD developed a four-year package of measures with funding from the BMBF. The purpose of the measures was to evaluate the skills and qualifications of the refugees, determine their academic aptitude and promote their integration at German universities in the long term. The first programmes placed calls for applications in December.

In November the DAAD launched the new campaign “study worldwide – EXPERIENCE IT!” to motivate German students to study abroad. The campaign replaced the “Go Out” programme.

2014

In April, the Turkish-German University (TDU) in Istanbul was officially opened by German Federal President Joachim Gauck and his Turkish counterpart Abdullah Gül, joined by Minister of Education Prof. Johanna Wanka and DAAD Secretary General Dr. Dorothea Rüland. The first German-Russian University in Kasan opened its doors in September with four engineering degree programmes offered at the “German-Russian Institute of Advanced Technologies” (GRIAT). The opening ceremony was performed by Dr. Dorothea Rüland, Secretary General of the DAAD, the Tatar President Rustam Minnikhanov and the Russian Deputy Minister of Education Alexander Pavalko.

The DAAD spent much of the year preparing for an extensive reorganisation of its internal structures which would go into effect at the beginning of the following year.

2013

In April, the DAAD presented its “Strategy 2020” outlining the most important goals for the coming years. By the year 2020, the DAAD envisioned 50% of each year’s graduating class gaining substantial academic experience abroad during their studies. Furthermore, it aimed to increase the number of foreign students at German universities to 350,000 by the year 2020.

The strategic orientation of the DAAD gained a new component with its focus on the area of “Expertise for Academic Collaborations”. The DAAD pledged to make use of its academic and regional expertise in order to provide “academic, scientific and cultural policymakers a basis for making well-informed strategic decisions”.

2012

The DAAD and German Federal Foreign Office affirmed their commitment to continuing the transformation partnership with Egypt with the opening of the German Science Centre (DWZ) in Cairo.

Due to the close relationship between higher education and sustainable development, the DAAD and GIZ concluded a “strategic partnership” in which both organisations agreed to coordinate their activities in these areas more closely.

In its 25th year running, the ERASMUS programme supported a record number of students in Germany. More than 25,000 German ERASMUS scholarship holders completed part of their studies abroad during the academic year of 2010/11. Another 5,000 students completed ERASMUS-funded foreign internships, bringing the total number of participants to more than 30,000.

2011

The DAAD took steps to promote the democratisation process in the Arab world by establishing “Transformation Partnerships” with Tunisia and Egypt. The programme of the same name provided financing to projects in all disciplines for a maximum of three years.

On 21 June, the General Assembly elected the president of the HRK, Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Margret Wintermantel as the new DAAD president. The trained psychologist would remain in office as HRK president until she assumed her new post on 1 January 2012. The General Assembly also elected Dr. Joybrato Mukherjee, an English Studies professor and president of the University of Giessen since 2009, as the new vice president of the DAAD.

Due to her appointment as Minister of Science, Research and Cultural Affairs of the State of Brandenburg, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Dr. Sabine Kunst resigned as DAAD president on 23 February.

Germany improved its competitive edge in attracting the world’s brightest minds. With respect to the number of German students studying abroad, Germany took third place with 6.3% of all international students. For the first time ever, over a quarter million foreign students were enrolled at German universities. DAAD President Wintermantel affirmed the goal of the DAAD to increase the number of international students in Germany “by 100,000 by the end of this decade”.

2010

As eventful as 2010 was for the DAAD, it began with a terrible loss. On 21 February, DAAD President Prof. Dr. Stefan Hormuth passed away at age 60 after a long illness. Professor Hormuth had served as president of the DAAD since January 2008. Following his death, long-standing DAAD Vice President Prof. Dr. Max G. Huber carried out the official duties of the president.

On 29 June, the DAAD General Assembly elected Prof. Dr.- Ing. Dr. Sabine Kunst as the new president of the DAAD starting on 1 July 2010. It would be the first time that a woman assumed the organisation’s highest office.

On 30 September, Dr. Christian Bode stepped down as secretary general of the DAAD after twenty years in office. The statistics speak for his achievements: In 1990, the organisation provided funding to 38,883 people with a total budget of 263.2 million DM. In 2009, the DAAD had increased its support to benefit 66,953 people (25,264 Germans and 41,689 foreigners) from a total budget of 347.9 million euros. The total number of employees had increased from 344 to 783.

On 1 October, Dr. Dorothea Rüland took over as secretary general. Ms. Rüland had served as deputy secretary general of the DAAD for several years before working at the International Centre at the Freie Universität Berlin. After graduating with a degree in German Studies, History and Musicology from the University of Freiburg, she had worked in various units at the DAAD and had been in charge of running the DAAD regional office in Jakarta for a time.

“PROMOS” became the most important component of the internationalisation strategy of the DAAD. This funding instrument, which promoted mobility among German students and doctoral candidates, was flexible in that universities could award scholarships themselves and also determine which fields required funding most.

2009

In April, the DAAD opened two Centres of Excellence in South Africa and Namibia as part of the “Aktion Afrika” campaign launched by the German Federal Foreign Office in 2008. The South African-German Centre for Development Research and Criminal Justice opened at the University of the Western Cape in Cape Town. The opening ceremony was attended by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the winner of the 1984 Nobel Peace Prize, and DAAD Secretary General Dr. Christian Bode.

The DAAD also strengthened its commitment to Iraq. During an official visit to Iraq by Federal Foreign Minister Frank Walter Steinmeier, DAAD-Secretary General Dr. Christian Bode and the Iraqi Minister of Education Dr. Abid Thyab Al-Ajeeli signed an agreement to establish a “Strategic Academic Partnership” in February.

In October, the DAAD congratulated the writer Herta Müller on receiving the Nobel Prize for Literature. The Romanian-born German writer had received guest-lectureship funding from the DAAD in the past. Herta Müller accepted the prize at a ceremony in Stockholm in December.

Ruth Ziervogel-Tamm, the first managing director of the DAAD, passed away in April at the age of 98.

2008

The year began with the new president of the DAAD, Prof. Dr. Stefan Hormuth, outlining a series of ambitious goals to advance the internationalisation of Germany’s institutions of higher education. He proposed that by 2012 one out of every two students in Germany would be able to gain “substantial foreign experience” during his or her studies. The number of German students abroad would increase from 25,000 at present to over 100,000, while the number of foreign students in Germany would increase to 300,000.

The programme “A New Passage to India” marked the beginning of a new regional focus. Its goal was to help intensify academic relations between Germany and India and reduce the great imbalance of academic exchange between both nations.

2007

Prof. Dr. Stefan Hormuth, president of the University of Giessen since 1997 was chosen to succeed Prof. Dr. Theodor Berchem as DAAD president. Prof. Dr. Theodor Berchem was honoured for his twenty years of service as president at a farewell ceremony on 11 December.

DAAD Secretary General Dr. Christian Bode accepted the Cassandra Pyle Award on behalf of the DAAD from the Association of International Educators in Minneapolis on 29 May. In his acceptance speech, Dr. Bode mentioned the key role that the USA played in the founding of the DAAD and emphasised that the challenges of the future could only be solved by leaders who had gained international and intercultural perspective during their education.

2006

Much of the year revolved around the Football World Championships, hosted by Germany in 2006. The DAAD prepared for the big event by organising the “Academic Football Cup”, held during the scholarship holder meeting in Cologne from 27 to 30 April. Sixteen teams comprised of international students battled to secure the title of “Student World Champion”.

The programme “go out! Study worldwide” marked a new phase in efforts to increase interest in study abroad. The campaign was launched at a ceremony at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin on 19 September. The campaign team visited universities throughout Germany in a “go-out infomobile” to generate interest in study abroad.

The International DAAD Academy (IDA) officially opened on 1 August to coordinate the numerous continuing education events offered by the DAAD.

2005

The DAAD intensified its operations in North America and China.

In April, liaison offices of seven university consortiums, to which 35 German universities and universities of applied sciences belonged, were established at the New York regional office.

The Centre for German Studies was established at the University of Beijing to promote the study of German language and culture in China. The staff at the new centre was comprised of 20 Chinese university instructors, most of whom had earned doctorates or conducted research in Germany.

2004

The importance of the work of the DAAD was impressively confirmed by the award of the Nobel Peace Prize which went to the Kenyan Deputy Minister of Environmental Affairs and DAAD alumna Wangari Maathai on 10 December, the first female African to win this prestigious prize.

On 26 December, a tsunami decimated coastal regions in southern and south-eastern Asia. Drawing on funding from the Federal Ministry of Economic Development and the “Stifterverband für die deutsche Wissenschaft”, the DAAD provided an additional 400,000 euros to those made destitute by the tsunami so that they could continue their studies.

2003

The DAAD commemorated the 40th anniversary of the Élysée Treaty and the founding of the Paris regional office with numerous events.

On 15 October, DAAD Secretary General Dr. Christian Bode opened a new regional office in Hanoi, which would be managed by Dr. Christa Klaus.

Two years after its cornerstone-laying ceremony, the “German University Cairo” (GUC) finally commenced operations in October.

The main building of the DAAD received a make-over. On 25 September, the employees celebrated the completion of the new DAAD façade.

2002

The DAAD reacted to the terror attacks of 11 September 2001 with a series of measures aimed at intensifying dialogue with the Islamic world. Its central component was the “Afghanistan Stability Pact”, launched by the German Federal Foreign Office. As part of this special programme, the DAAD was commissioned to coordinate efforts to rebuild Afghanistan’s higher education infrastructure.

In June, DAAD President Prof. Dr. Theodor Berchem and Federal Minister Edelgard Bulmahn met in Berlin to officially launch the campaign “Go East – Study, Research, Internships in Eastern Europe and CIS Countries”.

2001

On 1 January, the DAAD and HRK founded “GATE Germany”, a consortium for international university marketing. The consortium was created to support and coordinate the international marketing activities of its member universities. Integrating the administrative operations of the concerted action programme “Hi!Potentials”, a new department was established at the DAAD called “International Marketing for Education and Research”. Dr. Rolf Hoffmann was appointed director of the new department. DAAD Vice President Prof. Dr. Max G. Huber, federal commissioner for international university marketing since 1998, was chosen as spokesperson for the consortium.

At the end of August, the new DAAD regional office in Mexico City officially opened. Dr. Anette Pieper was chosen as the first director of the regional office.

On 21 October, the cornerstone of the “German University Cairo” was officially laid.

2000

The DAAD celebrated its 75th anniversary.

On 2 June, Secretary General Dr. Christian Bode presented the three-volume commemorative publication titled “Spuren in die Zukunft” at the annual DAAD press conference in Berlin. This was followed by an official ceremony at the Haus der Kulturen der Welt, attended by numerous dignitaries including e.g. Federal Minister of Education Edelgard Bulmahn.

In June, the General Assembly approved the “Second Action Programme” to promote the attractiveness and internationalisation of Germany as a place of higher education. On 30 October, the Federal and State Commission for Educational Planning and Research Funding established the Concerted Action “International Marketing for Higher Education in Germany”. The commission also announced plans to organise a worldwide umbrella campaign titled “Qualified in Germany” with support from the political, economic and scientific sectors.

In November, the German-French University Days took place for the first time.

1999

Dr. Karl Roeloffs, who managed the DAAD as secretary general from 1979 to 1990, died on 31 January at the age of 72.

The number of scholarship recipients increased to over 60,000 (25,817 foreigners and 34,237 Germans) – a new record.

On 19 June, thirty state and government leaders of the European Union signed the Bologna Declaration, which would pave the way toward creating a uniform European higher education area by the year 2010. The most important provisions of the “Bologna Process” included funding student mobility and establishing compatible study programmes and university degrees.

In September, the DAAD organised a conference on international higher education marketing in Bonn, attended by over 200 representatives from universities, government ministries, research institutes and the business sector. DAAD Vice President Prof. Dr. Max G. Huber presented a memorandum titled “Qualified in Germany – A Campaign for the 21st Century”, in which he proposed guidelines for orientating future international marketing activities at German universities.

1998

The French, German, Italian and British ministers of education jointly issued the “Sorbonne Declaration” calling for a harmonisation of existing structures in higher education. This was followed by the introduction of the first bachelor’s and master’s degree programmes at German universities. These new programmes were an integral component of the standardised European Higher Education Area, introduced by European leaders the following year in the Bologna Declaration. In cooperation with the HRK and the Stifterverband, the DAAD organised four international conferences in Bonn addressing this issue.

On 9 June, the DAAD regional office in Warsaw was officially opened with a ceremony in the large auditorium of the Warsaw School of Economics.

DAAD Vice President Prof. Dr. Max G. Huber was appointed German federal commissioner for international higher education marketing.

1997

The DAAD launched two new programmes which aimed to improve international courses of study at German universities.

The “Internationally Oriented Courses” programme supported degree programmes which also offered English-language and integrated periods of study abroad in their regular curriculum. The programme was oriented to both foreign and German students.

The Master Plus programme offered foreigners, who had previously earned an undergraduate degree in their home country, the chance to continue studying at a graduate level to earn a Magister or master’s degree in Germany.

The programme “Partnerships with Universities in Developing Countries” (Southern Partnerships) further strengthened the DAAD’s involvement in the area of development policy.

1996

The DAAD intensively participated in the discussion on how to strengthen Germany’s reputation as a place of study and research. This led to the establishment of the “Action Programme to Promote International Students at German Universities”. Its recommendations focused on making German universities more attractive to young international professionals. 

A ceremony at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin on 16 December marking the closure of the DAAD office in Berlin-Mitte also marked the end of a DAAD-specific chapter of German reunification. By 1996, 477 out of 488 DAAD scholarship recipients from former East Germany had received a university degree, 27 of whom had earned doctorates. This represented more than a 90-percent success rate among East German scholarship holders after reunification.

The DAAD selected Bosnia-Herzegovina as its regional focus in 1996. Following the signing of the Dayton Accords, the DAAD supported the normalisation process by significantly expanding the scope of its exchange programmes with that region.

1995

On 20 April, the DAAD officially opened a regional office in Beijing, underlining the growing economic and political significance of Asia. The first director of the new regional office was Dr. Hansgünther Schmidt.  

On 20 June, the General Assembly confirmed Prof. Dr. Theodor Berchem as president of the DAAD and elected Prof. Dr. Max G. Huber, president of the University of Bonn, as successor to Prof. Dr. Jürgen Salzwedel, who chose to resign as vice president after fifteen years in office.

The new DAAD building, affectionately called the “Spange”, was officially opened on 7 December. It formed a connection between the Wissenschaftszentrum with the main building, thereby bringing all DAAD employees under one roof.

1994

Counting the former East German programmes, the DAAD granted funding to 12,600 academics in Central and Eastern Europe (8,861 foreigners and 3,371 Germans). The political transformation throughout Europe had caused the number of scholarship recipients in this region to quadruple compared to that of 1984.

In March, Dr. Hubertus Scheibe, secretary general of the DAAD from 1955 to 1979, passed away at the age of almost 80 years.

1993

The regional office in Moscow, headed by Dr. Gregor Berghorn, commenced operations in January. Its responsibility extended to all of the successor states of the former Soviet Union, an area comprising more than 900 higher education institutions across eleven time zones.

On 29 June, the most important European academic exchange organisations merged into the Academic Cooperation Association (ACA) in Brussels. The DAAD was a founding member representing Germany. Secretary General Dr. Christian Bode was elected vice president of the ACA.

Significant progress was made in “winding down” the East German programmes. Only 3,200 people continued receiving funding, down from approximately 11,000 scholarship recipients in 1990/91. A total of 759 out of 863 outgoing recipients achieved their intended degree during the reporting year.

With extra funding of 13 million DM provided by the Federal Foreign Office, the DAAD launched a special programme called “German Language in Central and Eastern European States”. The programme aimed to establish 23 German language departments in universities in those respective countries.

1992

 In June the German parliament resolved to move the seat of government to Berlin. The Executive Committee of the DAAD decided to keep the organisation headquartered in Bonn.

The integration process of the former East German universities formally concluded. All East German universities became members of the DAAD and all DAAD programmes were opened to East German universities.

Numerous attacks on foreigners strained the political climate in Germany. The DAAD launched an advertising campaign and joined German research organisations in an appeal for open-mindedness and tolerance toward foreigners.

1991

The DAAD began integrating the East German universities into its organisational structure. By year’s end, 28 universities and 14 student bodies in the new German states joined the DAAD, including the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, the TU Dresden and the University of Greifswald.

A number of new programmes were established to address the specific needs of universities in former East Germany. Special language courses helped increase the foreign-language proficiency of eastern German students to the standard level required of students in western Germany. The programme “Western Partnerships” enabled eastern German universities to maintain their contacts with universities in Western countries.

German unification also resulted in a significant increase in the operating budget of the DAAD.

The Federal Foreign Office increased its share of funding from 164.4 to 226 million DM, while the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) increased its share from 48 to 61.6 million DM.

The political transformation of Eastern Europe reached a climax at the end of 1991 with the dissolution of the Soviet Union, which also had a significant impact on the academic relations with the affected region.

1990

The DAAD welcomed a new secretary general and contributed to shaping German reunification.

On 1 August, Dr. Christian Bode, former secretary general of the West German Rectors’ Conference, was elected to succeed Dr. Karl Roeloffs, who retired on 31 July.

The DAAD offered to open its programmes to the universities of East Germany and appoint East German professors to its selection committees. In October, twenty representatives from the DAAD headquarters in Bonn visited the most important East German universities to lay the groundwork for expanding the selection committees.

The DAAD agreed to continue the East German exchange programmes. The DAAD thereby assumed responsibility for 8,000 foreign scholarship holders in eastern Germany and some 1,600 German scholarship holders of the former GDR, most of whom were studying in Eastern European countries. These programmes were placed under the supervision of the “Berlin-Mitte office”, which was opened on 4 October by DAAD President Prof. Dr. Berchem and DAAD Secretary General Dr. Bode.

1989

The year was dominated by dramatic political developments.

The brutal suppression of the democratic movement in China was followed by a mostly peaceful political upheaval in Poland, Hungary and East Germany which effectively opened the door to German reunification the following year.

Even before the fall of the Berlin Wall, the “work plans”, drafted in accordance with the inner-German cultural agreements, had already become obsolete. A total of 556 West German students ignored the pre-arranged quotas and established contact with East German institutions, amounting to five times the originally planned volume. Over 490 of them visited East Germany in student travel groups. The East German government sent 269 students to West German universities for short-term stays and 64 for study visits of up to six months.

After the Berlin Wall fell, the DAAD president emphasised the political importance of higher education cooperation with East Germany in its ability to strengthen the reform movement.

In response to the violent turn of events in the People’s Republic of China, the General Assembly appealed to Chinese leaders in June to abstain from further retaliation.

1988

In January, Prof. Dr. Theodor Berchem, former president of the West German Rectors’ Conference, took office as the new president of the DAAD.

In order for to conduct university-level exchange with East Germany, the DAAD had to amend its charter and add a representative from the Federal Ministry for Inner German Relations to its Board of Trustees. On 28 June, the General Assembly approved the amendment to the charter. From this point onward, the DAAD was responsible for “cultivating academic relations with foreign countries and the German Democratic Republic”.

As of 1 January, the “Programme-Commissioned Offices” in Rio de Janeiro, Nairobi, Tokyo and San José became regular DAAD regional offices.

1987

The DAAD became the National Agency for the European Union’s ERASMUS Programme. It was responsible for managing the funds allocated to Action Area 2 – “Student Mobility Funding”. In the first year, the DAAD estimated that approximately 1,000 students participated in the programme and concluded 102 funding agreements with ERASMUS representatives at participating universities.

Based on the 1986 cultural agreement, West and East Germany defined student exchange quotas for 1988 and 1989.

The DAAD also expanded its range of scholarship programmes to include “Development-Related Postgraduate Courses”.

1986

On 6 May, West and East German government officials signed an accord to promote bilateral cultural cooperation and agreed to support the exchange of researchers and students. It was the first contractual agreement on academic exchange concluded between the two German states.

The Soviet Union stated that it would allow (West) German instructors (Lektoren) to teach at Soviet institutions of higher education. The first DAAD Lektor sent to the Soviet Union in the 1986/87 academic year was Dr. Peter Hiller, who later headed the Moscow regional office.

1985

The DAAD discussed its funding programmes for South Africa amid growing international protests against the Apartheid regime. The Board of Directors supported the efforts of the German federal government in concluding a new cultural agreement which aimed to promote stronger participation by South Africa’s black population.

The DAAD office in San José, Costa Rica, opened on 8 January. Its task was to coordinate a special programme to support universities in Central America. The programme aimed to promote academic exchange between Central American universities and increase the pool of qualified personnel at these universities through improved continuing education programmes for junior researchers.

The regional offices in New Delhi and Cairo celebrated their 25th anniversaries.

1984

A new funding programme called “Language and Practice in Japan” aimed to make Japan more attractive to German students. The scholarship combined intensive foreign language training with a one-year internship at a Japanese firm.

1983

The DAAD successfully lobbied for easing immigration restrictions which were hindering academic exchange.

In negotiations with the Federal Foreign Office, the Conference of State Ministers of the Interior and the KMK, the DAAD succeeded in achieving a temporary exemption for foreign student applicants, which would allow them to enter the country before receiving notification of admission from their German universities.

1982

The upward trend in “Integrated Foreign Study Visits” continued with the number of scholarship recipients increasing from 490 to 553. The United States and France remained the most popular destinations with 177 and 128 participants, respectively.

The DAAD succeeded in significantly improving the internship exchange with the United States. In future, the Council on International Education Exchange (CIEE) would be responsible for issuing residence and work permits to German interns. This removed a major bureaucratic hurdle in securing employment for German interns in the USA.

1981

The tradition of an organised alumni culture was revived.On 24 November, friends and former scholarship holders gathered to establish the “Association of Alumni and Friends of the German Academic Exchange Service”. It was the first time since 1927 that the DAAD had an alumni association.

The New York regional office celebrated its 10th anniversary with a ceremony, attended by numerous DAAD alumni, representatives of American universities and the Minister of State at the Federal Foreign Office, Ms. Hildegard Hamm-Brücher.

The construction of an additional floor to the DAAD headquarters at Kennedyallee 50 was completed.

1980

On 18 July, the German parliament passed a resolution pertaining to study abroad.

The resolution explicitly referred to the DAAD by name and mandated that “beyond granting scholarships, it should become a comprehensive advising centre for all interested students and researchers”. It also mentioned its Integrated Study Course programme as meriting particular support.

The Executive Committee decided to allow private, state-accredited universities of applied sciences to participate in the funding programmes of the DAAD.

The DAAD published the first four issues of its new alumni magazine “LETTER”.

1979

On 11 June, the General Assembly re-elected Prof. Dr. Hansgerd Schulte as president of the DAAD. Prof. Dr. Jürgen Salzwedel from the University of Bonn was elected vice president. Dr. Hubertus Scheibe resigned as secretary general of the DAAD, a post he had held since 1955, and was replaced by Dr. Karl Roeloffs, who transferred to the DAAD from the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). At the going-away ceremony, Hubertus Scheibe was presented with the Grand Cross of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany by State Minister Hildegard Hamm-Brücher.

1978

The DAAD developed an important new scholarship programme called “Integrated Foreign Study Visits”. It enabled students to study abroad for one semester as part of their regular curriculum at home. In these courses, the standard period of study would no longer pose a hurdle to academic mobility.

A DAAD delegation, headed by President Hansgerd Schulte, visited the People’s Republic of China for the first time after the Chinese leadership passed a resolution at the National Science Congress to open their country to academic exchange.

The Tokyo regional office opened on 1 June.

1977

Cutbacks in the Federal Foreign Office’s Cultural Fund forced the DAAD to cancel all summer school and language course scholarships. This budgetary measure caused enormous disappointment in the affected countries.

The London regional office celebrated its 25th anniversary. A ceremony was held at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London on 4 March, attended by DAAD President Hansgerd Schulte, German ambassador von Hase and Sir Robert Birley, who played a key role in reviving academic contacts between Germany and Great Britain shortly after the war.

1976

The new organisational structure of the DAAD was put in place on 1 April.The Programme Area I now contained all superregional tasks (e.g. supervision, information services, IAESTE), while Programme Area II comprised the “traditional” fields of scholarships, study visits, exchange of university staff, educational development projects and special programmes, divided up by region.

Now that universities of applied sciences were included in the IAESTE programme, the DAAD began integrating them into its funding programmes.

The Standing Task Force for German as a Foreign Language (STADAF) was formed in October. Its members included a representative of the DAAD, the Federal Foreign Office, the Goethe-Institut and the Central Office for German Schools Abroad. The task force was responsible for coordinating the activities of the intermediary organisations in the field of German Studies.

1975

On 8 October, a ceremony was held in the auditorium of the University of Bonn marking the 50th anniversary of the (first) DAAD. Laudatory speeches were held by German Federal President Walter Scheel, DAAD President Prof. Dr. Hansgerd Schulte and Prof. Dr. Alfred Grosser.

The DAAD dispatched a “zbV” Lektor to Tokyo, who would coordinate and make preliminary preparations for establishing a regional office in Japan.

1974

The integration of pedagogical academies (teacher education colleges), which had begun in 1968, was finally concluded. On 23 October, the General Assembly voted to amend the DAAD charter to induct the pedagogical and educational science academies in the states of Berlin, Lower Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatinate, Saarland and Schleswig-Holstein as regular members of the DAAD. The pedagogical academies in Baden-Württemberg were represented by the universities of applied sciences in Freiburg, Heidelberg, Ludwigsburg and Weingarten.

1973

A coordination office was set up in Nairobi, financed by the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). The main task of the new office was to manage the DAAD Sur-Place scholarship programme.

In April, construction began on the Wissenschaftszentrum in Bonn on Ahrstrasse.

1972

From a budgetary perspective, it was a difficult time for the DAAD as its finance department had to operate almost all year on a “preliminary budget”. Expenses could only be paid if they were legally binding or indispensable for “maintaining the administration” of the organisation. The tight financial situation resulted in the DAAD postponing its plans to establish regional offices in Brazil and Japan.

1971

On 1 April 1971, the DAAD opened its New York regional office. Roland Mohrmann was selected to be its first director.

Prof. Dr. Hansgerd Schulte, former director of the Paris regional office, was elected president of the DAAD by the General Assembly on 5 July. Peter Wapnewski, a distinguished professor of Old German Studies, was elected vice president.

A DAAD coordination office was established in Rio de Janeiro in October and was headed by the former DAAD Lektor Dr. Friedhelm Schwamborn.

The Hungarian writer George Tabori and the Austrian writer Ernst Jandl were guests of the DAAD Artists in Berlin Programme.

1970

Academic “brain-drain” in Germany, i.e. the increasing tendency of German academics moving away to work abroad, was publicly debated for the first time on a large scale.

With regard to higher education policy, the DAAD was chiefly concerned with the admission restrictions at German universities and the effects of the “numerus clausus” on foreign student applicants in 1970.

1969

The DAAD entered the era of electronic processing with the purchase of the “N.C.R. 500” computer system.

1968

At the meeting of the Board of Trustees, the state ministers of education expressed their agreement in principle to incorporate the pedagogical and theological academies in Germany “into the DAAD’s scope of responsibility”. It would take several years to implement this fundamental resolution.

The DAAD established a new department devoted to “regaining” German academics who had moved abroad to conduct research.

1967

A new executive committee was elected at the ordinary meeting of the General Assembly on 7 July 1967 for instatement in March of the following year. Dr. Gerhard Kielwein was newly elected as president of the DAAD, and Prof. Dr. Franz Patat was elected vice president.

1966

The number of German scholarship recipients increased significantly for the first time. The DAAD granted 418 full-year scholarships and 617 short-term scholarships, amounting to a total of 1,035 German beneficiaries. This “breakthrough” was due to an increase in funding from the Federal Ministry of the Interior and support from the Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft.

1965

A works council was established at the DAAD in 1965. At the general staff meeting, the employees voted to establish the committee and elected five members to serve in a so-called “Consultative Council”.

1964

Nineteen years after closing its headquarters in Berlin, the DAAD opened a new branch office in Berlin on Kurfürstendamm 14/15.The most important task of the Berlin office was to manage the “Artists in Residence Program”, formerly administered by the Ford Foundation and now the responsibility of the DAAD.The Berlin office was also put in charge of organising information seminars for outgoing German scholarship holders.

1963

DAAD President Lehnartz officially opened the Paris regional office, located on rue de Verneuil in the 7th arrondissement, at a ceremony attended by the German ambassador Klaiber. Among the numerous guests was the poet Paul Celan, who was working as a German language instructor at the Sorbonne at the time.

At the request of the Ford Foundation, the DAAD assumed responsibility of its invitation programme which hosted academics and artists in Berlin for short-term stays. It marked the beginning of the DAAD Artists-in-Berlin Programme.

The Board of Trustees agreed to support a proposal to offer African students Sur-Place scholarships, i.e. funding measures carried out at the candidates’ home universities.

1962

The DAAD moved into its new headquarters at Am Frankengraben, later renamed Kennedyallee. The move ended a long phase of limited office space and improvisation.

1961

Dr. Klaus Wyneken, who had been supervising the internship exchange programme of the IAESTE at the DAAD since the 1950s, was elected secretary general of the IAESTE at its annual assembly in Rome and would begin his term in Stockholm in January 1962.

For the first time, a mass mailing was sent to DAAD scholarship holders “around the world”. It contained information about the activities of the DAAD, reports by scholarship holders and news about higher education policies in Germany.

1960

The DAAD celebrated its 10th anniversary of its re-founding in 1950. The ceremony took place in the main auditorium of the University of Bonn in the presence of German Federal President Lübke and the Italian ambassador Dr. Pietro Quaroni.

In 1960, the DAAD awarded scholarships to 1,305 foreign and 189 German applicants.

In response to the large number of applications it was now receiving, the DAAD decided to modify its selection process and replace the Central Review Board with four separate selection committees.

The DAAD opened two new regional offices at the end of the year, one in Cairo and the other in New Delhi. Dr. Heßberger was assigned to head the New Delhi regional office, and Dr. Geisler was chosen to manage the Cairo office. Because the Cairo regional office was responsible for Egypt’s neighbouring countries, its official name was the “DAAD Near and Middle East Office”.

1959

The General Assembly convened on 28 February and elected Prof. Dr. Emil Lehnartz as president and Prof. Dr. Ernst Bizer as vice president of the DAAD.

On 30 May the representatives of the Federal Republic of Germany and the Soviet Union signed an agreement to promote cultural and technical-economic exchange. The first scholarship recipients from the Soviet Union arrived in Germany the following year.

1958

At the 2nd (extraordinary) meeting of the General Assembly on 18 April, the members approved the new DAAD charter.The most significant change to the charter was the introduction of institutional association memberships. Prior to this, only individual people were allowed to be members of the DAAD. From now on, all universities and universities of applied sciences in the West German Rectors’ Conference were members of the DAAD.

1957

The Ford Foundation commissioned the DAAD to manage its endowment-based Hungary Programme. The programme was established to support Hungarian academics who were forced to flee their home country after Soviet troops marched in to quell the uprising in 1956.

An issue of the magazine “Souvenir” was sent to all foreign DAAD alumni around the world at Christmas time.

1956

At the beginning of November, the DAAD moved into the “extended student house” at Nassestrasse 11.

1955

Dr. Ruth Ziervogel-Tamm left the DAAD for a new position as managing director of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. Dr. Hubertus Scheibe was her successor at the DAAD, On 27 October, the General Assembly convened at the Bonn city theatre to mark the fifth anniversary of the DAAD’s re-founding. The ceremony was attended by German Federal President Theodor Heuss.

1954

At an extraordinary meeting on 29 May, the General Assembly passed a resolution stating that the post of association chairperson shall only be filled by someone who has a close connection to academic life. In future, the office would bear the title of “President”. On the basis of this resolution, the former rector of the University of Bonn, Prof. Dr. Werner Richter, was elected the first president of the DAAD.

1953

For the first time, the DAAD assumed the task of placing and suggesting applicants for vacant lectureships at foreign universities.

1952

The DAAD regional office in London opened on 7 May – one year before West Germany and Great Britain resumed diplomatic relations. Gerhard Müller was appointed as the first director of the regional office.

The Federal Republic of Germany was accepted into the Fulbright Program.

On 18 July, West Germany and the US government signed an agreement named after Senator Fulbright to promote bilateral academic exchange of students and lecturers. To mark the occasion, the DAAD, in the presence of Federal Chancellor Adenauer, presented the American High Commissioner John Jay McCloy with an “Adolf Morsbach Scholarship”, in honour of the first director of the DAAD and financed by former exchange students.

1951

In January, the DAAD firmly integrated the trainee exchange programme into its organisational structure. The former programme committee became a Board of Trustees committee and its administration was converted into a DAAD section. Germany was granted full IAESTE membership at the annual IAESTE conference, held in Paris that same month.

1950

The DAAD was re-established on 5 August at a meeting held at the Rector’s Office of the University of Bonn and chaired by the State Minister of Cultural Affairs Christine Teusch. Professor Theodor Klauser, Rector of the University of Bonn, who headed the Rector’s Commission to re-establish the DAAD, was appointed first chairman. Government director August Fehling from the Ministry of Education in Kiel, who had played a key role in preparing and drafting the association charter, was chosen for the post of deputy chairman. Dr. Ruth Ziervogel-Tamm was appointed as the DAAD’s first managing director (secretary general).

The DAAD was allowed to operate from the headquarters of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation on Lennéstraße 24 in Bonn.

1949

It was the British military government which expressed its wish to establish a German organisation to serve as the central contact partner for all matters of academic exchange and be responsible for awarding scholarships. At the Conference of Education Ministers in Munich, Professor Theodor Klauser, rector of the University of Bonn, was entrusted with the task of re-establishing the DAAD.

1946 - 1948

Initial steps to re-establish the DAAD were taken by the Allied occupational forces in order to end Germany’s academic isolation. Sir Robert Birley, headmaster of Eton College and later adviser to the British military government, worked intensively to re-establish academic contacts. A delegation from the American Council on Education recommended that Germany be allowed to participate in the new Fulbright Program in the near future.

Herman B. Wells, a high-ranking member of the cultural department in the American military government, described academic exchange as indispensable for the democratisation of German society.

1943 – 1945

During the night of 22 November 1943, all of the files of the DAAD and the German Student Association for Foreigners were destroyed in an aerial bombardment. Both organisations discontinued most of their regular operations. In the final years of the war, most of the work at the DAAD concentrated on coordinating the supervision of foreign students on behalf of the Academic Foreign Offices (Akas). In autumn 1944, this also included enlisting foreign students for work assignments and organising “volunteer associations”.

1942

The operation of the DAAD was taken over by the Imperial Student Leadership following the resignation of Wilhelm Burmeister. In October, Imperial Student Leader Scheel became DAAD president following the death of General von Massow. Scheel appointed Werner Braune, the former head of the Foreign Student Leadership Office, to replace Wilhelm Burmeister. At the Einsatzgruppen trial in Nuremberg in 1948, the Allied military tribunal sentenced Werner Braune to death for the mass execution of Ukrainian Jews. Braune was executed in 1951.

1941

By establishing the “German Student Association for Foreigners” (DSA), the Imperial Student Leadership finally succeeded in undermining the DAAD’s sole responsibility for academic exchange. Wilhelm Burmeister responded by handing in his resignation.

1940

Following Germany’s victory over France, Karl Epting, former director of the Paris branch office returned to the French capital in September to head the new “German Institute”. With fourteen branch offices, the organisation became the largest cultural-political institution of the Third Reich in the German-occupied countries. It also demonstrated the determination of the National Socialists to assert Germany’s “cultural superiority” over France.

1939

In summer, the DAAD branch office and Goethe Haus in Paris were closed.

Following the outbreak of war, the DAAD continued accepting scholarship applications for study visits to Denmark, Iceland, Italy, Japan, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Hungary and Yugoslavia. Because the war made exchange on a mutual basis almost impossible, the DAAD began awarding more unilateral scholarships to applicants from friendly or allied countries.

1938

Despite resistance from its American partner organisation, the Institute of International Education (IEE), and against the recommendation of the Germany embassy in Washington, a National Socialist cultural official succeeded in establishing a regional office in New York. By the end of 1938, American authorities closed down the office on suspicions of espionage.

1937

The Foreign Office centralised its own foreign cultural policies. From now on, they were to have a uniform objective and were no longer to be influenced by the DAAD branch offices. In March, Adolf Morsbach, the first managing director of the DAAD, succumbed to pneumonia at age 47.

1936

The DAAD took responsibility for the so-called “Germany Scholarships”, granted to students from southeastern European countries by the new “Germany Foundation of the Central European Economic Forum”. The increasing cooperation with the corporate and industrial sectors was also evident in the reorganisation of the DAAD executive committee. The director of the People’s Association for German Culture Abroad and the chairman of the Association of German Universities resigned their positions at the DAAD and were replaced by the presidents of the Advertising Council of the German Economy and the Central European Economic Forum.

1935

The DAAD entered a new field of activity with the establishment of the trainee programme. Upon the initiative of its own Pedagogical Department, the DAAD assumed responsibility for trainee exchange. The first exchange agreements were concluded with Finland, Hungary, Yugoslavia and Poland.

1934

After the murder of Ernst Röhm, the managing director of the DAAD, Adolf Morsbach, was arrested by the Gestapo and imprisoned for two and a half months. Due to his contacts with Röhm, Morsbach was accused of plotting against the regime. Morsbach was eventually released, but did not return to the DAAD.

Wilhelm Burmeister was appointed to succeed him. This top-level appointment effectively brought the DAAD in line with the political ideology of the NSDAP.

1933

In June 1933, two prominent National Socialists assumed positions in the Executive Committee: Alfred Rosenberg, head of the NSDAP Foreign Political Office and Ernst Röhm, commander of the “Storm Battalion” (SA). Retired Major General Ewald von Massow was selected as the new president of the DAAD.

On 13 June at the constitutive session of the new Executive Committee, all of the participating ministries voted to make the DAAD the “Imperial Office for Academic Foreign Relations”. However, the DAAD was able to consolidate its position with regard to the German Student Association, which also claimed responsibility for academic exchange in the same area.

The new rulers tried to preserve the appearance of normality and calm the fears of the foreign students. The Prussian Minister of Science, Art and Education, who later became the Imperial Minister of Education, Bernhard Rust, assured the foreign scholarship holders that they would continue to be “welcome” in Germany and be treated with “sincere hospitality”.

1932

The financial crisis took its toll on the funding activities at the DAAD. The DAAD frequently replaced scholarship payments in cash with exemptions and free room and board.

1931

As of 1 January 1931, the Academic Exchange Service, the German Academic Foreign Office of the Association of German Universities and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation merged to form the “Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst e.V.” (German Academic Exchange Service).

1930

In May, the DAAD opened a regional office in Paris, the “Office Universitaire Franco-Allemand”. Its first director was Dr. Hans Göttling.

1929

The director of the Academic Exchange Service (AAD), Dr. Adolf Morsbach, embarked on two extended fact-finding missions in the United States – one from January to June 1929 and the second from March to June 1930 – during which time he visited some 70 universities. The AAD and the Office National des Universités et Ecoles Francaises (ONUEF) agreed to jointly support the exchange of German and French students as well as teacher trainees who would later teach at “secondary boys’ and girls’ schools in both countries”.

1928

The AAD established its first contact with France. In May, the AAD negotiated an agreement with the director of the Office National des Universités et Ecoles Francaise (ONUEF) to fund the exchange of six “young academics” on both sides.

1927

On 1 May, Dr. Adolf Morsbach, former director of the Emperor Wilhelm Institute for the Promotion of the Sciences, assumed the position of AAD director. On 1 June, the AAD opened its first branch office in London. Prof. Dr. Eduard Brenner was chosen to manage the new office, called the “Anglo-German Academic Bureau“. The “Association of Former Exchange Students” was established – the AAD’s first alumni organisation. In 1930, membership was obligatory for all former scholarship holders.

1926

The managing director of the AAD, Dr. Werner Picht, travelled to Great Britain in the spring. In summer, the “Anglo German Academic Board” was founded – the English partner organisation of the AAD. The first five English scholarship holders commenced their studies in Germany in the winter semester of 1926/27.

1925

The “Akademischer Austauschdienst e.V.” (Academic Exchange Service, AAD) was founded in Heidelberg on 1 January.

The idea originated from a student named Carl Joachim Friedrich who studied Social and Political Studies in Heidelberg. On a visit to the United States in 1922 and 1923, he, together with the Institute of International Education (IIE) in New York, organised scholarships for 13 German students of Social and Political Studies. Shortly thereafter, a “Political Studies Exchange Office” was opened in Heidelberg in affiliation with the university’s Institute of Social and Political Studies. This became the AAD, which was initially limited to granting scholarships to students of Social and Political Studies. 

In October, the new organisation transferred its operations to Berlin, changed its charter and declared its mission to organise student and academic exchange in all disciplines.

The first managing director was Dr. Werner Picht.