The Excellence Strategy

The German Excellence Initiative will be continued as an Excellence Strategy as from 2019. Kiel University has submitted three full applications.

  • After two successful funding phases, the Cluster of Excellence "Inflammation at Interfaces" will submit a full application for a future cluster “Precision Medicine in Chronic Inflammation”.
  • With "Future Ocean Sustainability", the Cluster of Excellence "The Future Ocean"  pursues the goal of further expanding the strong interdisciplinary research into ocean and climate changes in Kiel. For the first time, this will be linked directly with the sustainability goals of the UN Agenda 2030.
  • "ROOTS - Societal, Environmental and Cultural Connectivity in Past Societies" is the new Cluster which aims to explore the "roots" of current crises and their different social, cultural, ecological and economic aspects through a better understanding of the dynamic environmental-societal relationships of the past. Based on the experience gained in the Graduate School "Human Development in Landscapes", six new topics will be tackled: environmental hazards and their effects, changing nutrition, knowledge production, technology and innovation, urban spaces, social inequality and conflict and mediation.

If these are successful, the CAU will apply for the official title of University of Excellence. This requires at least two successful Cluster applications - a decision on this will be made in September 2018.

Research and Priortity research area news

Group picture of about 20 scientists

Stronger partnership with Kobe University

Kiel University delegation visits Japanese partner institution .

Expedition POS496 in March 2016

GeoSEA array records sliding of Mount Etna’s southeastern flank

Volcano flank moves under water – Tsunami is a possible consequence

Venice and its lagoon

World Heritage Sites threatened by rising sea levels

Kiel-based study shows: danger posed by storm surges could increase by up to 50 percent

Menschen stehen in einer Eingangshalle

Career Day at Kiel University

200 young researchers informed themselves about funding opportunities for their research projects.


About the Excellence Strategy

With the German Excellence Strategy, the DFG and the Wissenschaftsrat (Council of Science and Humanities) are building on the Excellence Initiative started in 2005. The fundamental objective of the Strategy is sustainable strengthening of Germany as a science location, and improving its international competitiveness.

Funding lines

Based on the administrative agreement reached with the federal and state governments on 16 June 2016, the DFG and the Council of Science and Humanities jointly carry out the Excellence Strategy in two funding lines:

  1. Clusters of Excellence for project-based funding of internationally-competitive research fields, for universities or university groups. This funding line is coordinated by the DFG.
  2. Universities of Excellence for permanent funding of universities, and enhancing their international leading role in research on the basis of successful Clusters of Excellence. The prerequisite for applying to become a University of Excellence is the approval of at least two Clusters of Excellence. The development and implementation of the process for the Universities of Excellence funding line is coordinated by the Council of Science and Humanities.