Research Collaborations

Humboldt University

Humboldt University was the first university in Berlin and is ranked 6th in Germany in the QS World University Rankings (2010). It contains 11 faculties, including Law, Theology and Philosophy (including departments of social Sciences and Cultural Studies) and 1,756 staff.

Humboldt University was awarded the German Universities Excellence Initiative in 2007 for the Berlin Graduate School of Social Sciences (BGSS). The Excellence Initiative of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the German Research Foundation aims to promote cutting-edge research and to create outstanding conditions for young scientists at universities, to deepen cooperation between disciplines and institutions, to strengthen international cooperation of research, and to enhance the international appeal of excellent German universities.

The BGSS also includes the WZB, the Free University of Berlin – ranked 70th in Times Higher Education rankings of 2010 – 2011, and the Technical University of Berlin. The BGSS is Germany’s largest initiative among doctoral programs in the social sciences. It will provide our PhD students within the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Stet access to research-orientated training and development of their skills as researchers within a large and dynamic program located within a vibrant global city.


The WZB is Germany’s leading social science research centre, and the largest of its kind in the European Union. It has over 150 German and international researchers working within the Centre in all areas of social science, including sociology, political science, history and law.

WZB has a well-established reputation for publications and other research outputs and offers our PhD students the chance to study within a theory-based, problem-oriented environment with access to some of the best facilities and libraries in Europe. The WZB’s main areas of research include:

  • education, training and the labour market
  • social inequality and problems of the welfare state
  • democracy and civil society
  • migration and integration
  • markets, competition and governance
  • innovation and science policy
  • global governance, law and cosmopolitanism

The WZB has extensive links with such institutions as the Leibniz Gemeinschaft (Leibniz Association), which is an umbrella organisation of 87 institutions participating in research programs across Germany, with over 16,000 staff and 1.3 billion Euro in funding per annum.