Prof. Dr. Joachim Spranger took over as Dean of Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin on January 1, 2023. His new role comes with a seat on Charité’s Board of Directors, where he is responsible for research and teaching. He succeeds Prof. Dr. Axel Radlach Pries, who led the Medical Faculty for eight years. The ceremonial handover of office took place today.
Prof. Spranger was appointed Heisenberg Professor at Charité in 2008 and has headed Charité’s Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism as well as the Endocrinology and Metabolism Unit at Labor Berlin – Charité Vivantes GmbH since 2011. On July 4, 2022, the Faculty Council elected him as the new Dean of the Medical Faculty for a term of five years. He takes over from Prof. Pries, who held the post from January 2015 to December 2022 and who stepped down for personal reasons at the end of the year. The Dean of Charité is responsible for all affairs related to research and teaching. He is a member of the Board of Directors, chairs the Faculty Council, and also heads the Faculty Board. The latter body represents Charité’s Medical Faculty in both internal and external academic matters, while also setting the direction and focus of research and teaching and ensuring their quality. Prof. Spranger served on the Faculty Board as Vice Dean of Education from 2017 to 2022.
Ulrike Gote, Berlin’s Senator for Higher Education and Research, Health, Long-Term Care and Gender Equality, and Chair of Charité’s Supervisory Board: “Prof. Dr. Axel R. Pries did exceptional work and achieved an enormous amount during his eight years as Dean of Charité. He brought people together, attracted new partners to the institution, and developed and implemented numerous strategies. Berlin is a grateful beneficiary of his many scientific successes. I wish Prof. Pries the very best in his future work, which will include serving as President of the World Health Summit. I also wish Prof. Dr. Joachim Spranger every success in his new role. I am in no doubt that he will be a worthy successor. His election by an overwhelming majority of the Faculty Council reflects the trust that the representatives of research and teaching at Charité place in him. I am very much looking forward to working together.”
Prof. Dr. Heyo K. Kroemer, Chief Executive Officer of Charité, thanked Prof. Pries for his services as Dean: “In his time as Dean, Prof. Pries consistently fostered the scientific strengths of Berlin’s university medicine landscape. On behalf of the entire Board of Directors, I would like to thank Prof. Pries for his outstanding services and for the many years he has commited to our faculty, the Berlin Institute of Health, and the Charité as a whole. Prof. Kroemer continued: “In Prof. Spranger, we have a remarkable department head and excellent scientist as the new Dean of Charité. I am certain he will continue to develop and expand the outstanding research, the teaching and learning, and the partnerships that are already under way at Charité. The Board of Directors wishes him all the best in his new role.”
Prof. Spranger said: “Charité is a highly impressive institution with many excellent scientists. I am looking forward to taking up my role as Dean. A broad variety of topics will require attention. Among those, I will focus on further developing our study programs, establishing structures to support young researchers, and improving research infrastructure. I will also aim to expand and support our collaborations with university and non-university partners in Berlin, across Germany, and further afield.”
Short biography of Prof. Dr. Joachim Spranger
Joachim Spranger was born in Cologne in 1970. He completed both his studies in human medicine and his doctorate at Ruhr-Universität Bochum. In 2005, he qualified as a professor in the field of internal medicine at Charité. In 2008, he was appointed Heisenberg Professor of Diabetology at Charité. Since 2011, Prof. Spranger has headed Charité’s Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism as well as the Endocrinology and Metabolism Unit at Labor Berlin – Charité Vivantes GmbH. He sat on the Faculty Board as Vice Dean of Education from January 2017 to April 2022, and was also a member of the Faculty Council for many years, serving as its spokesperson from 2015 to 2017. He was spokesperson of the Clinical Research Unit at the Berlin Institute of Health at Charité (BIH) from 2014 to 2018. Prof. Spranger has been Dean of Charité since January 1, 2023.
About Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin
Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin is one of the largest university hospitals in Europe, boasting 3,099 beds and approximately 100 departments and institutes spread across 4 separate campuses. At Charité, the areas of research, teaching and medical care are closely interlinked. With a total of 20,921 members of staff employed across its group of companies (17,615 of which at Charité), the organization is one of the largest employers in Berlin. 5,047 of its employees work in the field of nursing, with a further 4,988 in research and medical care. Last year, Charité treated 123,793 in- and day case patients, in addition to 682,731 outpatients. In 2021, Charité recorded a turnover of approximately € 2.3 billion (including external funding and investment grants) and set a new record by securing more than € 215.8 million in external funding. Charité’s Medical Faculty is one of the largest in Germany, educating and training more than 9,000 students across the subjects of medicine, dentistry, health sciences and nursing. Charité also offers 730 training positions across 11 different health care professions, in addition to 111 training positions in a further 8 professions. Within the field of academic medicine, Charité’s priorities are highlighted by its main areas of research focus: infection; inflammation and immunity including COVID-19 research; cardiovascular research and metabolism; neuroscience; oncology; regenerative therapies; and rare diseases and genetics. Examples of the work conducted by Charité researchers include involvement in 28 DFG Collaborative Research Centers (of which seven are led by Charité), three Clusters of Excellence (of which one is led by Charité), 10 Emmy Noether Independent Junior Research Groups, 14 European Research Council grants and 8 European collaborative projects (coordinated by Charité).