The Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften can continue its work in Bad Homburg
Goethe University, the Werner Reimers Foundation, the city of Bad Homburg and the municipality of Hochtaunus create a new foundation for their collaboration
Alexander Hetjes (Lord Mayor of Bad Homburg, v.l.), Thorsten Schorr (deputy administrative director, municipality of Hochtaunus), Iris Helene Koban (managing director, Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften), Dr. Albrecht Graf von Kalnein (chairman, Werner Reimers Foundation), Prof. Matthias Lutz-Bachmann (director, Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften), Prof. Enrico Schleiff (president, Goethe University) on the staircase of the Kolleg. (Photo: Stefanie Wetzel 2021)
Four collaborative partners have agreed on the future of the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften in Bad Homburg: Goethe University in Frankfurt am Main, the Werner Reimers Foundation, the city of Bad Homburg v. d. Höhe and the municipality of Hochtaunus. They have entered into contracts stipulating that they will continue to jointly support the Forschungskolleg. By signing the contracts, the four partners - University President Professor Enrico Schleiff, Administrative Board Chairman Dr. Stefan Ruppert, Lord Mayor Alexander Hetjes and District Administrator Ulrich Krebs - confirm the great significance of the Forschungskolleg both for the promotion of excellent research and for the dialog between academia and society in the region. The city of Bad Homburg and the municipality of Hochtaunus will also begin to support the Forschungskolleg financially with 25,000 euros each per year. Up to now, their support had been dedicated primarily to the construction of the building and to specific projects. The Reimers Foundation provides the buildings free of charge and also contributes 25,000 euros annually. The largest share of the funding is borne by Goethe University, which pays some of the personnel costs and provides the funds for the Goethe Fellowships. In addition, the Forschungskolleg generates income by renting out rooms for events, among other things.
The director of the Forschungskolleg, Professor Matthias Lutz-Bachmann, is pleased that the cooperation agreement creates a good framework for the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften to further expand its role as an Institute for Advanced Studies. Central to the success of the Kolleg in Bad Homburg is its excellent four-way integration - in the current research contexts of the Goethe University, in the tradition of the Werner Reimers Foundation and in the scientific and cultural life of the city and region. He also attributes its success to the lovely grounds of the Foundation on the edge of the Kurpark that the Forschungskolleg is permitted to use.
Four collaborative partners – four perspectives
Professor Enrico Schleiff, president of the university, has stated that the Forschungskolleg is a very important institution for Goethe University, in particular with regard to the topic of excellence. The Kolleg offers creative minds the freedom to collaborate and develop new research ideas and methods. The Wissenschaftsrat, which advises the German government on academic policy issues, has also stressed how important it is that the Institutes for Advanced Studies (IAS) provide time for free basic research under the best working conditions in a stimulating intellectual environment. Schleiff stated that Goethe University is preparing for the next round of the Excellence Initiative and one key to success in this is strong interdisciplinary research alliances with international appeal. The Kolleg is one of the places where the seeds for such alliances are sown, and in the future it will be one of the places where, to an even greater extent, the expertise of international scientists on current research topics will be brought together with that of scholars at Goethe University – so to speak where top international research will be integrated into the university.
Dr. Albrecht Graf von Kalnein, chairman of the Werner Reimers Foundation, confirmed that by continuing to support the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften, the Foundation is fulfilling its purpose as defined by Werner Reimers in the best possible way - namely by promoting interdisciplinary research into human behavior and the workings of human institutions.
Ulrich Krebs, district administrator of the municipality of Hochtaunus stated that the FKH is also an important asset for the municipality. The public lecture events are enjoyed by visitors far beyond the borders of Bad Homburg and the FKH enriches the cultural life of the city and the municipality in a unique way.
According to Alexander Hetjes, Lord Mayor of Bad Homburg, the FKH always addresses topics that are important to the city, meaning that the focus on democracy in the Atlantic region also offers points of connection to Bad Homburg's postwar transatlantic history and thus a chapter of the city’s history that should remain in active memory.
* abbreviated version of the Goethe University press release, March 31, 2022
(FKH - 04.04.2022)
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