Berlin partners and the University of Oxford consolidate their cooperation

The research partnership between the University of Oxford and the four Berlin partners – Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Technische Universität Berlin, and Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin – is picking up speed: all five institutions have now approved 29 research projects, in which scholars and scientists from Berlin and Oxford jointly pursue research issues. The Berlin partners and the University of Oxford are funding the projects with 450,000 euros. In doing so, they want to consolidate their research partnership and invigorate new forms of cooperation. The projects will start on January 1, 2019.

The cooperation partners are funding projects in the humanities, social sciences, medicine, and the STEM subjects of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Including, for example, the poverty of Europe’s working population, a Berlin-Oxford graduate network in classical studies, biorhythms of the visually impaired as well as a physical comparison of natural and artificial intelligence in parrots and robots, the spectrum of topics covered by the new research projects is broad. Alongside psychiatric diseases, the digital economy, or the reproducibility of research results, challenges in family policy, mobility, and the energy transition are also being examined. Various academic formats such as workshops, conferences, and symposia are planned; funds have also been proposed for the exchange of young researchers, initial laboratory work, and travel grants.

The prerequisite for submitting a research proposal was that at least one of the four Berlin institutions and the University of Oxford needed to be involved. The projects are intended to support further efforts to raise third-party funding from the European Union and from donors in Germany and Great Britain. In a multi-stage process, 29 approved projects were selected by committees of experts from a total of 66 submitted proposals. During the review process, emphasis was placed on the proposed research project’s quality and innovative content, the level of cooperation, and the probability of future funding. A second round of funding calls is planned for 2019.

This new funding follows the joint letter of intent signed in December 2017 by the five institutions involved to establish a wide-ranging research partnership.