University of Heidelberg
Homepage University Adress and Phone Search Sitemap Deutsch
Visitors, International Relations, Heidelberg and RegionHomepages of FacultiesServices, Staff, AdministrationCourses in Overview, Information for Foreign StudentsProjects, Publications, Transfer
Home > Press Office > Press Releases >
31 May 2001

University of Heidelberg Top Choice for Highly Qualified Visiting Scholars and Scientists from Abroad

Humboldt Foundation presents new evaluation results for German universities — Rector Prof. Dr. Jürgen Siebke: "Heidelberg University's international standing impressively reaffirmed" — "Nation-wide top ranking is both a distinction and an obligation "

The University of Heidelberg is one of the most attractive German universities for highly qualified visiting scholars and scientists from abroad. This is the result of an evaluation by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. The findings were announced today in Berlin. With 111 visiting scientists and scholars on Fellowships or Research Awards from the Humboldt Foundation in the five-year period 1996-2000, the University of Heidelberg ranks second among all German universities, bettered only by the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich. Rector Prof. Dr. Jürgen Siebke was highly gratified by this excellent showing: "It impressively reaffirms the University of Heidelberg's standing as an extremely attractive university for visiting scholars and scientists," he said, adding that this top ranking was both a distinction and an obligation.

The purpose of the evaluation survey was to establish which universities the scholars and scientists with Humboldt Fellowships and Research Awards chose for their research work in Germany in the last five years. Between 1996 and 2000, half of these visiting scholars and scientists (just under 3,000 in number) concentrated on 20 German universities as the main location for their long-term research work. The other half was spread out over 228 further institutions.

The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation also weighted these absolute figures in terms of the number of German professors working with the guests from abroad at the individual universities. In this ranking half of the visiting academics were distributed across 24 universities. Here again, the University of Heidelberg ranked second (after the University of Konstanz), as in the unweighted evaluation.

Among non-university research institutions the most attractive destinations for scientists and scholars abroad are the Jülich Research Center, the Fritz Haber Institute of the Max Planck Society, and the Max Planck Institutes for research on metals, polymers and solids.

The method

The survey took into account the main research sojourn locations of the Humboldt Fellowship- and Research Award-holders, leaving aside brief sojourns at other universities. The average length of stay for Humboldt scholars and scientists at their main host university is 15 months. This procedures provides an appropriate reflection of the Humboldt Foundation's principle of free choice of host institution. A spot-check evaluation of short-term guest sojourns (renewal of Fellowship and/or re-invitation to Germany) largely reduplicates the findings of the main survey.

To exclude random results and highlight long-term developments the survey covered the five-year period from 1996 to 2000 (and not just the year 2000 itself).

The absolute figures per host university were additionally qualified in terms of the size of the individual institutions. The weighting factor here was the number of C3 and C4 professorships at the universities as listed by the Federal Statistics Office for 1999.

The 20 German universities with the highest number of scholars/scientists with Humboldt Fellowships and Research Awards *
absolute figures — from 1. 1.1996 to 31.12.2000

rankuniversitynumber of visiting scholars/scientists with Humboldt awards
3Munich (Technical University)109
4Berlin (Free University)103
5Berlin (Humboldt University)84
12Berlin (Technical University)63
16 Münster52
17Aachen (Technical University)48
* Ranking lists universities at which a total of 50% of all scholars/scientists with Humboldt Fellowships or Research Awards spent their main research sojourns.

The 24 universities in Germany with the highest number of scholars/scientists with Humboldt Fellowships or Research Awards *
weighted in terms of the number of C3 and C4 professorships**
from 1. 1.1996 to 31.12.2000

rank university number of Humboldt award-holders number of visiting scholars/scientists per 100 professorships
1 Konstanz 43 23.63
2 Heidelberg 111 22.11
3 Munich (Technical University) 109 21.21
4 Bayreuth 38 20.77
5 Stuttgart 60 20.07
6 Ulm 45 19.82
7 Tübingen 84 19.49
8 Göttingen 81 17.09
9 Bielefeld 43 16.54
10 Karlsruhe 45 15.96
11 Erlangen-Nürnberg 83 15.34
12 Munich 120 15.06
13 Freiburg 67 15.04
14 Darmstadt (Technical University) 45 15.00
15 Berlin (Free University) 103 14.88
16 Berlin (Technical University) 63 14.35
17 Bochum 60 13.76
18 Mainz 47 13.09
19 Clausthal (Technical University) 12 12.97
20 Bonn 70 12.84
21 Hanover (Medical University) 12 12.37
22 Aachen (Technical University) 48 12.21
23 Kaiserslautern 18 12.16
24 Berlin (Humboldt University) 84 12.02
* Ranking lists the universities which a total of 50% of all Humboldt award-holders chose for their main research sojourn.
** According to figures from the Federal Statistics Office for 1999

Please address any inquiries to:
Dr. Georg Schütte,
phone 0228 833118, fax 833216,

Dr. Michael Schwarz
Press Officer of the University of Heidelberg
phone: 06221/542310, fax: 54317

Page maintained by Pressestelle der Universität Heidelberg,
Copyright © Pressestelle der Universität Heidelberg. 
Updated: 03.06.2001


University | Faculties | Facilities | Courses | Research and Cooperation
Jobs | Events | News | Alumni/Friends | Project IMPULSE
Contact | Search | Sitemap | Deutsch