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Cross-border interfaith research under one common institutional roof enters pilot phase
Having signed the "Letter of Intent" a year ago, the Frankfurt-Tel Aviv Center for Interreligious Studies has now been officially launched with a two-day conference held in Israel. The program included lectures by Christian, Jewish and Islamic scholars from the fields of theology, religious studies, philosophy and history, exploring the interconnections, relationships, similarities and differences between these three religions of the book. The highlight of yesterday's conference kick-off was the signing of the cooperation agreement by the two universities' presidents.
FRANKFURT. Multicultural societies, religious conflicts, migration, fundamentalism – and not least interreligious dialogue: These are just some of the important and potentially also socially controversial topics the new cross-border research institute could focus on. Since research on these topics can only be conducted from multiple perspectives, Tel Aviv University (TAU) and Goethe University Frankfurt have joined forces to give this research an institutional framework. Having signed the "Letter of Intent" in December 2021, an inaugural conference was held on the German side in June. The conference in Tel Aviv, titled “Thinking Interreligiously: The Many Faces of Interreligious Interaction", held yesterday and today, marks the cooperation's official start in Israel.
The past years have seen frequent collaborations between individual scholars from both institutions. In particular, the Martin Buber Professorship at Goethe University's Faculty of Protestant Theology maintains intensive contacts to TAU, and a strong network also exists between the Buber-Rosenzweig Institute for Modern and Contemporary Jewish Intellectual and Cultural History and the Center for Religious and Interreligious Studies at Tel Aviv University. The new center now combines not only theologies, religious studies, Jewish studies and Islamic studies, but also subjects such as history, philosophy and political science. At the kick-off in Israel, Goethe University is represented by Prof. Christian Wiese, holder of the Martin Buber Professorship, philosophy professor Prof. Matthias Lutz-Bachmann, Islamic Studies scholar Prof. Armina Omerika and historian Prof. Hartmut Leppin.
The ceremonial highlight of the conference was yesterday's signing of the cooperation agreement by the two university presidents, Prof. Ariel Porat (TAU) and Prof. Enrico Schleiff (Goethe University), as well as the center's initiators and founding directors Christian Wiese (Goethe University) and Menachem Fisch (TAU). The research center will now enter a three-year pilot phase, funded with 50,000 euros annually by Goethe University and 20,000 euros annually by Tel Aviv University. The new center will be led by a joint directorate and is intended to connect experienced scientists with researchers just starting their careers. In that spirit, a joint symposium for young scientists was held this past summer semester, and joint English-language courses are scheduled to begin in April 2023. In the long term, the agreement also envisages intensive cooperation between master's programs in religious studies on both sides.
Prof. Enrico Schleiff, Goethe University President:
“Our joint center is more than a scientific institution. In times of rising nationalism and anti-Semitism, this center's opening is also an important sign of friendship and cooperation that we are sending out into the world. The academic topic we are jointly focusing on is highly relevant to both Germany and Israel: the history and current challenges of religious diversity, differences and conflict in pluralistic societies. Both our universities were already well positioned on this topic. Now they are combining their strengths to form a joint center that marks the start of an even more intensive cooperation – a development I am very pleased about. I would like to thank our partners in Tel Aviv and especially Prof. Wiese for their tireless efforts to establish this groundbreaking institution."
Prof. Christian Wiese, Martin-Buber-Professorship at Goethe University:
“There is no better way to inaugurate a joint German-Israeli research center than with an intensive public discussion of its underlying theoretical objectives. This conference marks the beginning of an exciting joint scientific and science policy journey in which we place great hope."
Prof. Milette Shamir, TAU Vice President in charge of international academic collaboration:
“Tel Aviv university has a wide network of collaboration with German universities, more than with any other country in Europe. This collaboration includes hundreds of joint research projects as well as hundreds of German students who come to our campus each year. The joint center expands this collaboration in an important new direction and tightens our existing partnership with Goethe University Frankfurt, one of the leading universities in Germany. We hope that in the near future GUF and TAU will expand collaboration to several other areas of common strength."
Prof. Menachem Fisch, co-initiator of the Center, and TAU professor:
“I am thrilled to be part of the establishment of a unique, first-of-its-kind center for the interreligious study of the monotheistic faiths and their mutual development. This is a worthy initiative, and one more building block in the academic collaboration between the two countries."
Images for download: https://www.uni-frankfurt.de/130011971
(1) Left to Right: Prof. Ariel Porat, President of Tel Aviv University, and Goethe University President Prof. Enrico Schleiff. (Copyright: Tel Aviv University)
(2) Left to Right: Prof. Ariel Porat, President of Tel Aviv University, and Goethe University President Prof. Enrico Schleiff. (Copyright: Tel Aviv University)
(3) Left to Right: Prof. Menachem Fisch and Prof. Christian Wiese. (Copyright: Tel Aviv University)
Prof. Christian Wiese
Martin-Buber-Professorshio for Jewish Religious Philosophy
Faculty of Protestant Theology
Phone: +49 (0)69 798-33313
Editor: Dr. Anke Sauter, Science Editor, PR & Communication Office, Tel: +49 (0)69 798-13066, Fax: +49 (0) 69 798-763 12531, firstname.lastname@example.org
New publication series of the LOEWE research cluster "Architectures of Order" with contributions on interdisciplinary architectural research / Series starts with an essay on Siegfried Kracauer
What is the connection between modern architecture and capitalism? This question is explored in an essay by architectural historian Carsten Ruhl, which focuses on the sociologist, philosopher and journalist Siegfried Kracauer. The essay has been published in the new publication series "Architectures of Order." Since 2020, more than 20 scientists from Goethe University and the Technical University of Darmstadt have been conducting research on this topic – which is at the same time one of the research initiatives funded by the federal state of Hessen's offensive for the development of scientific and economic excellence, known by its German acronym LOEWE.
FRANKFURT. The first volume of the series “Architectures of Order" has now been published under the title “Kracauer's Architecture." The essay's author is Carsten Ruhl, professor of Architectural History at Goethe University Frankfurt and spokesman of the LOEWE research cluster “Architectures of Order". In the essay, Ruhl focuses on the reflections of German sociologist, philosopher and journalist Siegfried Kracauer on architecture. Whereas Kracauer's texts in general are often the subject of sociological and media studies research, so far they have hardly been examined from the perspective of architectural studies. Thus, it is also little known that Kracauer studied architecture, worked as an architect during World War I, and received his doctorate in 1915 with a thesis on the history of architecture. After the war – by now Kracauer was an editor at the “Frankfurter Zeitung" – he frequently commented on contemporary architectural developments in his journalistic texts. From these contributions to his autobiographical novella “Ginster" published in 1928, a strong interest in architectural phenomena can be discerned. In “Ginster", the question of ornament is central to Kracauer's analysis of society and its architecture. Carsten Ruhl argues with Kracauer that the absence of ornament in modern architecture can be understood as an ornamental concept of the new social order of capitalism.
The publication series is published in English within CCSA Topics, the publication series of the Center for Critical Studies in Architecture, a cooperation of Goethe University (Institute of Art History), the Technical University of Darmstadt (Department of Architecture) and the Deutsches Architekturmuseum. The volumes of the “Architectures of Order" series are published in print and, with a time delay, as Open Access publications. The next titles in the series are already being planned: They will deal with topics as diverse as the architecture of the Herrnhuter Brüdergemeine or the topos of the glass house in female-coded designs in modernist literature and architecture. The series thus reflects not only the range of research topics addressed in the research cluster, but also the disciplinary diversity of the scholars researching the project. In addition to the history and theory of architecture, the topics of digital design, design and urban planning, history of the early modern period, sociology of culture and knowledge, art history, media studies, and legal history are represented.
“Architectures of Order" is a four-year (2020-2023) interdisciplinary research project undertaken by Goethe University Frankfurt and the Technical University of Darmstadt, with the Max Planck Institute for Legal History and Legal Theory and the Deutsches Architekturmuseum as associated partners. Comprising 26 members, the project is concerned with an investigation of architecture as a cultural practice of ordering that manifests aesthetically, materially, spatially, and discursively, as well as epistemologically.
Carsten Ruhl: Kracauer's Architecture. The Ornamental Nature of the New Capitalist Order, with a response from Philip Ursprung, edited by the Center for Critical Studies in Architecture (CCSA), Weimar: M BOOKS, 2022.
The book's cover can be downloaded at: https://www.uni-frankfurt.de/129252505
Caption: The first volume of the new publication series within the LOEWE focus "Architectures of Ordering" is dedicated to the writings of Siegfried Kracauer.
Dr. Lena Holbein
Coordinator of the LOEWE research cluster “Architectures of Order"
Institute of Art History
Tel: +49 (0)69-798-28705
Editor: Dr. Anke Sauter, Science Editor, PR & Communication Office, Tel: +49 (0) 69 798-13066, Fax: +49 (0) 69 798-763 12531, email@example.com
Research project offers psychotherapeutic help to traumatized refugees of war and violence
FRANKFURT. People who have fled to Germany to escape war and violence often suffered traumatic experiences. Torture, rape or attacks can lead to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD): Those affected suffer from symptoms such as nightmares, vivid memories of the trauma, sleep disorders, concentration problems, anxiety and other distressing negative feelings. That is why many refugees urgently need psychotherapeutic help. The research project Brief Imagery Rescripting for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in Refugees (ReScript) at Goethe University's Department of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy helps to improve the care of adult refugees suffering from PTSD. The project, led by Prof. Regina Steil (Frankfurt), Prof. Thomas Ehring (Munich) and Prof. Nexhmedin Morina (Münster), investigates the effectiveness of an innovative treatment for traumatized refugees. Affected people aged 18 and above are offered psychological diagnostics and therapy; if needed, an interpreter can support. The flight may have taken place in recent years, for example due to the war in Ukraine, but may also have happened decades ago; refugees affected by the war in the former Yugoslavia or Russia can also come forward.
The treatment consists of ten double sessions, held over a 12-week period, with a comparison group receiving the same treatment after a waiting period. The therapy's success is recorded diagnostically in both groups before and after treatment, as well as three and 12 months later.
Goethe University currently has several free treatment places. The project is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research.
Registration for affected refugees and further information
Julia Reuter, M. Sc. Psychologist
Goethe University Department of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy
Tel.: +49 (0)69 79825374
Economists from Goethe University and the Université Paris-Dauphine celebrate 30 years of partnership – Visit by delegation from Paris
The collaboration with the Université Paris Dauphine-PSL is one of the oldest and most intensive cooperations of Goethe University's Faculty of Economics and Business. Its distinguishing feature: two double-degree programs allowing participants to study for a degree of both countries. To mark the partnership's 30th anniversary, a large delegation visited Goethe University on Friday, December 9.
FRANKFURT. The two partner universities' contribution to the Franco-German friendship has at least 344 faces: that's how many students participated in the double-degree programs of the economics departments at Goethe University and Université Paris Dauphine-PSL over the past 30 years. Not included in this tally are the numerous students who have moved between the partner universities via Erasmus semesters abroad. What started in 1992 as a "trial balloon" for a double degree, says Lars Pilz, Deputy Dean for Study Matters at Goethe University's Faculty of Economics and Business, over the years has taken the form of a joint double bachelor's degree and, more recently, a double master's degree – making the partnership with Université Dauphine-PSL unique. In total, Goethe University's Economics and Business Faculty more than 140 international partnerships.
Nothing better represents this intensive and close cooperation with Dauphine-PSL than the visit from the Paris delegation to mark the anniversary: PSL University President Prof. El-Mouhoub Mouhoud and Vice-President Prof. Sophie Meritet were joined not only by all those responsible for the program. The cohort also included those students who will be starting the double bachelor's program next year. Additional goals of the cooperation were addressed in the exchange with Goethe University President Prof. Enrico Schleiff and those responsible for the partnership here.
"I am pleased about the great appreciation our economists enjoy among our partners. The commitment with which all those responsible have nurtured and developed this international partnership over the past 30 years is not something to be taken for granted. I would like to explicitly thank everyone involved for these efforts," said Prof. Enrico Schleiff. "In times like these, with accumulating crises, it is more important than ever to have more projects like this – which not only provide young people with intercultural knowledge and prepare them for entering an international job market. They also create an awareness for a Europe whose future viability can only be developed on the basis of knowledge and trust."
"Our students are taking part in the historical, political and economic continuity of the Franco-German cooperation", said Prof. El-Mouhoub Mouhoud. “They interpret a more modern and non-exclusive version of it, adapted to globalization and more generally open to Europe and the world. This is thanks to trilingual teaching and courses that increasingly include the major contemporary issues and the multipolar dimension of the contemporary world. The Franco-German cooperation remains alive thanks to concrete projects at the individual, academic and business levels. The cooperation between Dauphine and Frankfurt is all the more important for this reason."
To deepen the partnership, the two universities plan to intensify their cooperation in the field of artificial intelligence and with the Frankfurt House of Finance, whose scientific director and head of the double programs, Prof. Rainer Klump, accompanied the visit. With a branch in Tunisia, in the long term, the Université Paris Dauphine also opens up the possibility for Goethe University's German partners to extend the study programs to the African continent, too.
The double bachelor's program was included in the Franco-German University (Deutsch-Französische Hochschule, Université franco-allemande), an association of 208 universities, in 2019. With the seal of this association, students who spend two semesters in two countries and one joint semester in Frankfurt can receive an additional 300 euros for their stay abroad, in addition to their Erasmus funding. Starting this winter semester, students in the double master's program in economics and finance, first introduced in 2019, will receive scholarships from the BHF Bank Stiftung and the Willy Robert Pitzer Foundation Bad Nauheim, which also supports language programs. In addition, the two degree programs also include the possibility to complete professional internships in both countries, and to receive targeted language training in French, German and English.
The regular feedback from students and the "creativity" of everyone involved have been crucial to overcoming one or two administrative hurdles and developing a common understanding of the degree programs, Lars Pilz and his colleague Bianka Jäckel agree. The students describe their studies as quite demanding: "I have to admit that due to the workload and the organization, studying at Dauphine was anything but a walk in the park," one student says about his experience in Paris. "Nevertheless, it ... opened the doors to a cool internship abroad for me." At the same time, students point to the "wonderful challenge of developing both personally and academically," as double bachelor student Victor Schäfer from Goethe University writes. By contrast, students from Paris, such as Anita Poulou, who just completed her double master's degree, offer lots of praise for Frankfurt as a location: "Frankfurt is a wonderful city as it offers a wide range of professional opportunities that students can easily combine with their studies." The good reputation of the master's program among employers in the financial services sector also opened doors for her professional development, she adds.
Image for download: www.uni-frankfurt.de/129570622
Caption: Celebrating 30 years of partnership between the economics faculties at the Université Paris Dauphine-PSL and Goethe University: Visit by a delegation from Paris (including presidents Prof. El-Mouhoub Mouhoud and Prof. Enrico Schleiff, fifth and sixth from right) (Photo: Jürgen Lecher/Goethe University)
Goethe University joins Germany’s ATHENE National Research Center for Applied Cybersecurity
Protecting the cybersecurity of society, business and the state, and fending off threats: That is the goal of ATHENE, the National Research Center for Applied Cybersecurity. Through its research and development, Goethe University now is contributing to Europe's largest cybersecurity research center.
FRANKFURT. Almost every company at one point or another falls victim to IT-based attacks. In addition, online attackers are becoming increasingly professional, Germany's digital association Bitkom, which represents more than 2,000 companies of the digital economy, has found. The ATHENE National Research Center for Applied Cybersecurity already bundles the cybersecurity activities of several top research institutions. Goethe University recently joined these ranks and is now doing its part to strengthen and complement ATHENE's cybersecurity research.
The main topics of cybersecurity research at Goethe University are system and network security, secure identities, privacy-friendly technologies as well as legal issues surrounding IT security and data protection.
“The number of cyberattacks is rising significantly worldwide. Bitkom data show that German companies alone will suffer damages of more than 200 billion euros in 2022 due to data theft, espionage or sabotage. At the state level, too, we are increasingly confronted with new threats, and not just since the war in Ukraine," explains Prof. Reimund Neugebauer, President of Germany's Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft applied research organization. "The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft's National Research Center for Applied Cybersecurity ATHENE addresses current and future challenges through application-oriented, innovative and cutting-edge research, with a view to improving cybersecurity and privacy protection across all areas of life and critical infrastructures. By joining ATHENE, Goethe University Frankfurt not only contributes its complementary expertise in the fields of law, medicine and finance. It will also further expedite the advisory competence and innovative power of this unique cooperation model."
Goethe University President Prof. Enrico Schleiff adds: "ATHENE's innovative cooperation model offers us unique opportunities to research the challenges of an increasingly digital world and to develop solutions and answers for society, business and politics. Goethe University's contribution is particularly focused on system and network security, high-performance computing security, as well as data protection and legal aspects of cybersecurity. We also view ATHENE as a significant component in further strengthening the Rhine-Main location, which already is an international leader in IT security."
Goethe University is represented on the ATHENE board by Prof. Haya Shulman, who was appointed to a top LOEWE professorship in cybersecurity at Goethe University's Department of Computer Science in February of this year. She heads the Cybersecurity Analytics and Defenses department at the Fraunhofer Institute for Secure Information Technology (Fraunhofer-Institut SIT) in Darmstadt and coordinates the Analytics Based Cybersecurity research area at the ATHENE National Research Center for Applied Cybersecurity. Director of ATHENE is Prof. Michael Waidner, head of the Fraunhofer-Institut SIT and professor at the Technical University of Darmstadt, a Goethe University partner in the Strategic Alliance of Rhine-Main Universities (RMU).
The ATHENE National Research Center for Applied Cybersecurity is a Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft research center that brings together the Fraunhofer Institutes for Secure Information Technology (SIT) and for Computer Graphics Research (IGD), the Technical University of Darmstadt, Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences and now also Goethe University. With more than 600 participating scientists, including 50 professors, ATHENE is the largest cybersecurity research center in Europe and Germany's leading scientific research institution. ATHENE's roughly 100 research projects in currently 13 research areas are dedicated to the important challenges cyber security poses for society, the economy and the state. ATHENE works with leading research institutions from around the world; a special relationship exists with Israel, where ATHENE operates the Fraunhofer Cybersecurity Innovation Platform together with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
ATHENE is a permanent Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft research center funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Hessian Ministry of Science and the Arts (HMWK). In 2022, ATHENE's funding amounted to around 23 million euros.
Prof. Dr. Haya Shulman
Faculty of Computer Science and Mathematics
60486 Frankfurt am Main