Public Release: 

DFG approves 14 new research training units

Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft

Better scientific training for medics

The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) is setting up 14 new Research Training Units, two of which are going to be European Rersearch Training Units. The new institutions, which will commence work on the 1st October 2000, raise the total of such units supported by the DFG to 305. One of the new Research Training Units aims at providing a novel type of academic qualification for medics. At the "Molecular and Structural Foundations of Tumour Stability" unit, which is located in Würzburg, medics who have passed their third state examination work together with doctoral candidates from the natural sciences, in particular pharmacologists and human geneticists. They intend to find out how tumours can damage human hereditary matter and have an impact on cell structures. The medical scientists will subsequently publish their results in internationally renowned specialist journals. The DFG regards this as a step towards reforming doctorates for medics.

The DFG has been promoting collaboration among specially qualified doctoral candidates from all disciplines in the Research Training Units since 1990. Under the supervision of professors who have attained special levels of proficiency in research and teaching, groups of 15 to 20 doctoral candidates work in co-ordinated research programmes that are usually of an interdisciplinary nature. Currently, around ten percent of all doctoral candidates in Germany do their PhDs at Research Training Units. On completing their courses, they are as a rule more comprehensively qualified and are on average two years younger than their fellow students at other institutions.

The 14 new Research Training Units in detail:

— Molecular and Structural Foundations of Tumour Stability, Würzburg University

— Sensor Photo-receptors in Natural and Artificial Systems, Regensburg University

— Analytical Topology and Meta-geometry, Münster University

— An Interdisciplinary Outline of Reliable Multi-technology Systems, Erlangen Nuremberg University

— Software for Communications Systems, Aachen Technical University

— Mathematical and Engineering Science Methods of Safe Data Transfer and Information Development, Essen University and Comprehensive University, Bochum Ruhr University, Dortmund University

— Non-linearity and Non-equilibrium in Condensed Matter, Regensburg University

— Assessing and Preserving Biodiversity: Implementing Nature Conservation Strategies in the Framework of the Biodiversity Convention, Göttingen University

— Bio-informatics, Bielefeld University

— Interaction of Model Construction, Numerical Mathematics and Software Design for Technical and Natural Science Problems, Hanover University

— Quantitative Economics, Bonn University

— Image.body.medium. An Anthropological Perspective, Karlsruhe State College, Heidelberg University

European Research Training Units:

— Pseudomonas: Pathogenicity and Biotechnology, Hanover Medical College, Technical University Denmark, Copenhagen University

— Neuroplasticity. From Molecules to Systems, Göttingen University, University College London


For further details, contact Dr. Robert-Paul Königs (head of the Research Training Units Department), Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, Kennedyallee 40, 53 175 Bonn, Tel: 0049-0-228-885-2424. Email:

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