The DAAD currently funds twenty interdisciplinary Centres for German and European Studies at outstanding foreign universities in twelve countries with funding from the Federal Foreign Office. The centres train German and European experts and bring together science, politics and the public in their work with Germany and Europe.
In the anniversary publication you will find further information about the programme as well as the individual profiles of the Centres for German and European Studies. The , our newest centre in Porto Alegre, Brazil, presents its profile as well.
The first three centres were founded in 1990 as Centres of Excellence in the United States at the Universities of Berkeley, Harvard and Georgetown on the initiative of the then Federal Government in order to intensify German-American relations, in particular scientific cooperation. In the mid-nineties, the first centre in Europe was inaugurated in Birmingham, in the United Kingdom, with the Institute for German Studies. In the late 1990s, several centres followed in the east and midwestern US as well as in Canada. The move to another continent took place in 2000 with the opening of the centre at Tokyo University. In 2001, the CIERA in France, which coordinates a nationwide network, and the Duitsland Instituut Amsterdam were added. The Willy Brandt Centre in Wrocław (Breslau) followed a year later, which was the result of a call for tenders for an initiative of the then Federal Chancellor Gerhard Schröder to be implemented. At the St. Petersburg State University in Russia and at the Peking University in China, established bilateral university cooperations in individual subjects have been further developed into interdisciplinary centres with German project partners. Over the following years, two more centres were established in Israel, at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and at the University of Haifa. In addition to this, a centre was initiated at Chung Ang University in Seoul. Since 2016, the network has also been supplemented by a research centre at the University of Cambridge called the Research Hub for German Studies. The most recent centre, a collaborative project between the University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS) and the Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul (PUCRS) was opened in 2017 and is located in Porto Alegre, Brazil. The central element of the programme, in addition to the DAAD funding, is the involvement of the host universities, which is reflected in the Matching Funds principle, among other things.
In the Anglo-Saxon area (Canada, USA, Great Britain and Ireland), in view of the comparatively strong presence of interdisciplinary German and European studies and a high potential of qualified applicants, a project-based funding programme has also been used as a successor to comprehensive centre funding. "Promoting German (and European) Studies" and the "German Studies Lectures" together with the Centre Programme within the framework of the Foreign Cultural and Educational Policy as well as the Foreign Science Policy of the Federal Republic of Germany are one of the cornerstones in the promotion of interdisciplinary research in Germany and Europe and teaching abroad.
The aim of the programme is to train new generations of experts with sound German and European knowledge who shape the scientific and social discourse about Germany and Europe in the regions. Therefore, apart from research, teaching with markedly innovative master's and doctoral programmes at the centres also plays a key role.
Another important task is the public relations work: The centres should assume a lighthouse function by broadcasting to the region and the partner country - on the one hand as a “Reference Centre" for German and European Studies, but also through events and in the field of policy advice.
Key topics are post-war and contemporary Germany and European integration. The promotion of the German language is part of the concept, both implicitly and through specific language support measures. More interregional cooperation is to be established through intensified measures for centres to network with each other and with scientific institutions in Germany.
Use our interactive map to get an overview of the location of DAAD-funded Centres for German and European Studies for the current network or use the list of the 20 centres ordered alphabetically (). Here, not only can you see which universities the centres are located at, but you can also get directly to their individual websites.
DAAD actively supports the creation of a network of centres by promoting various measures and initiatives.