The white paper published today announces the initial considerations of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) and the German Science Council on the continuation and further development of the Excellence Initiative. The scientific community deliberately chose this early date to deliver some proposals and to make a contribution to the public debate.
The key points of the three-page white paper represent the scientific community’s ideas on the continuation of the Excellence Initiative beyond the year 2011 as a process that remains competitive and guided by science. The DFG and the German Science Council are in favour of retaining the three funding lines and of enabling fair competition between continuation applications and new applications. The scientific community also proposes that total funding be increased for the next round by about 20 to 30 percent, and that the flexible finance options be made wider in scope for all funding lines.
The considerations summarised in these key points are based on numerous discussions with university managers, spokespersons of the clusters of excellence and graduate schools, the funded and non-funded scientists and academics of the Excellence Initiative, representatives of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, and the responsible state ministers, and can also be traced back to intensive discussions in the DFG and German Science Council.
To recapitulate: A total of 39 graduate schools, 37 clusters of excellence and 9 institutional strategies have been funded since 19 October 2007. In this relatively short period, it has been shown that the Excellence Initiative has the same significance for an institution’s profile and structure formation that a fresh breeze has for a sailing boat – it provides momentum. It has been demonstrated that the Excellence Initiative is not only a competition for science; it also brings out the best in a university’s administration and organisational bodies. The federal states too are not only striving for a higher education legislation that is more science-oriented, they are also supporting the Excellence Initiative with additional measures.
All institutions have experienced their first big successes, but there have also been problems in the set-up phase, for example, in the recruitment of scientific personnel or the implementation of the new organisational forms within the universities. At the same time, all expectations on the structural level have already been surpassed. The research institutions have redoubled their efforts to form networks, to make their administrative structures more flexible, to be more international and to place greater emphasis on the promotion of young researchers, on equal opportunities and cooperation. These are all major steps in the direction of modernisation, which show that the entire science system in Germany is undergoing a major change. All participants are agreed that the previously negotiated five-year funding scheme, which was to last until 2011, is not sufficient to firmly and effectively establish the newly created structures.
Jutta Hoehn | alfa
Starting school boosts development
11.05.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung
New Master’s programme: University of Kaiserslautern educates experts in quantum technology
15.03.2017 | Technische Universität Kaiserslautern
University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event
On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.
Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....
Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).
When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...
Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.
How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...
Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.
It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...
17.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
18.10.2017 | Materials Sciences
18.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
18.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy