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Previous Science Years

Since 2007, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) has organised International Science Years as part of the internationalisation strategy (strategy of the German Federal Government for the internationalisation of science and research (2008)) with strategic key partner countries such as China, Brazil and Russia (BMBF overview of the international Science Years).

The over-arching goal of all International Science Years is to promote and strengthen long-term cooperation in education and research, be it through the expansion of university collaborations, the initiation of research and development projects, the funding of vocational training or the intensification of leading research. To achieve these goals, the ministries of research in both countries invite research institutions and educational facilities to get actively involved in the Year of Science.

To date, the BMBF has set up the following International Science Years with partner countries:

  • German-Egyptian Year of Science and Technology 2007
    With the motto "Linking Scientific Masterminds", the first International Year of Science focused on materials science, water, renewable energies, biotechnology, health research and arts and social sciences. Over 150 events were held.
  • German-Israeli Year of Science and Technology 2008
    The focus this year was on encouraging the younger generation and application-oriented collaborations in research and development. Other main topics included arts and social sciences, medical sciences and security research and environmental research.
  • German-Chinese Year of Science and Education 2009/10
    More than 200 events took place under the motto "Together Towards Knowledge", including the first "China weeks" at 47 German universities. The main focuses of the Year of Science were issues for the future, such as electromobility, climate research, researching renewable energies and environmental technologies and infectious diseases. Cooperation within vocational training saw a significant improvement.
  • German-Brazilian Year of Science, Technology and Innovation 2010/11
    Over 100 German-Brazilian events turned their attention towards the over-arching themes of sustainability and innovation, including 60 best-practice projects. Comprehensive environmental and sustainability research projects are currently being funded and run, especially within the field of bioeconomics.
  • German-Russian year of Education, Science And Innovation 2011/12
    The motto of the campaign was "Partnership of Ideas". The research priorities included optical technologies, marine and polar research, information and communication technologies and biological research and biotechnology. German-Russian cooperation in vocational education promoted the establishment of bilateral vocational education partnerships, and innovation partnerships were able to speed up the process of transferring research results to marketable products.
  • The German-South African Year of Science 2012/2013
    Operating under the motto "Enhancing research partnerships for innovation and sustainable development", the Year brought together scientists from both countries at over 200 events to focus on seven topic areas: climate research, bioeconomics, urbanisation research, the healthcare industry, astronomy, humanities and human capital development.
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Saying of the Day

„We don't get to know people when they come to us; we must go to them to find out what they are like.”

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe