The University of Freiburg is a high-performing research university and an attractive place to study, situated in one of Germany’s most beautiful cities and charming landscapes. It is a place where a wide variety of disciplines and people come together. Here, tradition meets forward thinking, the fundamental meets the extraordinary, and regional roots meet internationality.
The University of Freiburg, founded in 1457, has produced outstanding and remarkable things – yet also things requiring reconsideration and reappraisal. Our long history and our future are based upon a capacity to confront societal challenges again and again and to grow from them. Our University is a place for renewal and change – nothing is good simply because it has always been that way.
We connect quality – in studies and teaching, in research, and in all other areas of our work – with responsibility for science and research, the environment, and society, and with an openness to new questions, diversity, and equal opportunities. It is against these values that we aim to measure what we do, who we are, and everything we still want to become.
Our passion and our core competence: Knowledge
We generate, reflect upon, convey, acquire, and communicate knowledge. For us, quality in academia means constantly developing and incessantly questioning knowledge. This enables us to address societal challenges – even those that are not yet foreseeable. Our basic research and the development of problem-solving expertise are indispensable in this endeavour. Our wide variety of academic disciplines and degree programmes is unparalleled among universities of comparable size. The University of Freiburg is shaped by interdisciplinary bridges between and within the humanities, natural sciences, life sciences, environmental sciences, and engineering.
First-rate humanities, social sciences, and cultural studies disciplines are at the heart of the University of Freiburg. We draw on a rich tradition of natural sciences, life sciences renowned for their research, and internationally visible medicine with an outstanding medical centre. Our Faculty of Environment and Natural Resources is unique in the German higher education landscape. A law degree from Freiburg is amongst the most prestigious in Europe. The University of Freiburg is one of the few traditional universities to combine these strengths with an innovative Faculty of Engineering. All of our faculties contribute to the University-wide sustainability profile, which represents our interdisciplinarity and responsibility. We, together with numerous non-university research institutions and the surrounding universities, are part of an extraordinary academic landscape in the border region between Germany, France, and Switzerland. For us, science implies a continual striving for quality and reflection.
When studies and research are intrinsically motivated, they facilitate personal development and open up a space for discovery and cognition. Knowledge is generated and cultivated in laboratories and seminars, in the library between books, in discussions with one another, and in our own critical reflection. We see ourselves as part of society and seek to engage in dialogue with it. We aspire to strengthen transparency, independence, and credibility in science and research. We protect plurality and scientific knowledge from anti-scientific and undemocratic currents. That is why it is so important for us reflect upon and communicate science and research.
Our strength and our potential: Togetherness
The University of Freiburg is a place shaped by knowledge and encounters. This place should be accessible to all. Freiburg was the first university in Germany to admit women formally as students. Now as then, we are proud of the diversity of all those who come to Freiburg and enrich our University community. There should be no place for exclusion and discrimination here.
We are many. Currently more than 30,000. We are diverse and not always of the same opinion, for example about the extent to which our actions should be oriented toward the current expectations of society. We strive to always be open for discussion. We want to resolve conflicts in a constructive manner. That is an essential element of academic success and personal collaboration.
Our goal is to interact with even more appreciation, integrity, and inclusivity. This enables us all to trust each other and to rely on each other: all those who study here on their classmates and their teachers; all those who work and research here on responsible leadership and supervision, on fair working conditions and mutual collegiality. The contribution and the action of each and every one of us counts. The University bears special responsibility as an institution with almost 6,500 employees. We want to design our working conditions in research, teaching, and research-support services to be compatible with diverse personal and family circumstances.
A symbiotic relationship: The University and Freiburg
The city and the University of Freiburg are both big enough to have a lot to offer yet small enough to have a personal atmosphere; locally rooted yet well-connected at the European and global levels. The close relationship between the two has a long tradition: The friendly city attracts a lot of students, and that was the reason for the University’s rapid growth 150 years ago. Citizens and members of the University have come together again and again to stand up for change: #mildandwild
Today, it is no longer possible to imagine the city without its University: Its buildings shape the cityscape, its ideas for sustainability, health, and culture the community, its graduates the job market and the demography of one of Germany’s youngest cities. The University, its spin-offs, and its cooperation with companies make for a dynamic hub for business and industry.
Freiburg’s location in the border region facilitates international mobility by public transportation and bicycle. The University attracts outstanding minds from around the world. Those who come here experience that good work and well-being belong together: It is impossible to quantify the many ideas – ideas for research, for student initiatives, for the development of the University – that have been born on a hike to Schauinsland, with a view to Kaiserstuhl, or on a stroll through the streets of the old town with their picturesque little streams. Each of these ideas, however, can transform into a new story that shapes the University.