The Excellence Strategy of the Federal and State Governments
The aim of the Excellence Strategy is to strengthen Germany’s position as an outstanding place of research in the long term and further improve its international competitiveness. Continuing the development of German universities successfully begun with the Excellence Initiative in 2005, the Excellence Strategy aims at supporting research of the highest standard, enhancing research profiles, and facilitating cooperation in the science system.
The program covers two funding lines. “Clusters of Excellence” offers project-based funding in internationally competitive fields of research for universities or university consortia. The funding line “Universities of Excellence” is to strengthen and further develop the leading international role of German universities on the basis of successful Clusters of Excellence.
The funding decision for the program line “Clusters of Excellence” was made in September 2018. Submissions of proposal in the funding line “Universities of Excellence” require funding of two Clusters of Excellence at least. Thanks to the Cluster 3DMM2O and the second successful Cluster of KIT POLiS - Post Lithium Storage, the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) fulfilled the prerequisites for the funding line “University of Excellence”.
On July 19, 2019, the decision of funding for the funding line "University of Excellence" was announced. Both KIT and Heidelberg University are among the ten Universities and one University Consortium of Excellence selected by the Excellence Commission. Thus, both KIT and Heidelberg University receive permanent institutional funding as well as the renowned title University of Excellence.
Clusters of Excellence
In the “Clusters of Excellence” funding line, 40 German universities submitted 88 proposals. Of these, 57 have been selected for funding by the Excellence Commission. The funding available in this line totals about EUR 385 million per year. The initial funding period is seven years and started in January 2019.