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Call for proposals BUA Joint Degree

Häuserübergreifend studieren mit den Joint Degree-Studiengängen der Berlin University Alliance

Häuserübergreifend studieren mit den Joint Degree-Studiengängen der Berlin University Alliance
Image Credit: Gerd Altmann

Application Deadline:

October 3rd, 2023

Start of Funding:

January 1st, 2024

Funding Duration:

2024 - 2025

Funding Amount:

Personnel funds equivalent to half a scientific position (pay scale E13), limited-term

Eligible Applicants:

Professors from BUA partner institutions in coordination with the heads of their respective departments/faculties


You can find the application form here

With the cross-sectional theme of Teaching & Learning, the Berlin University Alliance aims to further strengthen the connection between cutting-edge research and education, while advancing the exchange of excellent scholars and students. The partner institutions are committed to enhancing existing collaborations in study and teaching, as well as collectively establishing new degree programs and educational offerings. BUA Joint Degree programs, in addition to the Student Research Opportunities Program, BUA Certificate Programs, and BUA Modules, constitute one of the four pillars of the collaborative educational portfolio within the Berlin University Alliance. These are interdisciplinary collaborative degree programs that, due to their distinct focus, can be classified as BUA Joint Degree programs.

1.1. Funding Objective

The Berlin University Alliance aims to develop new interdisciplinary collaborative degree programs that are aligned with the content and strategic goals of the consortium. The funding intends to support the establishment of a consortium program with an implementation perspective for the winter semester of 2025/2026. The goal is to expand new, innovative, and high-quality collaborative teaching offerings that are derived from the research themes and achievements of the alliance (e.g., excellence clusters, grand challenge initiatives, SFBs, and other research initiatives).

The advertised BUA Joint Degree is being supported as an exemplary model program, contributing significantly to strengthening research orientation, didactic innovations, and synergies within the context of the Berlin Excellence Consortium. The BUA Joint Degree will exemplarily advance the development of consortium teaching offerings on both a content and infrastructural level in strategically important research fields of the BUA. Beyond the established criteria for BUA educational offerings, it will notably support the strategic and content-related goals of the BUA in an outstanding manner, serving as a best practice example for other collaborations.

1.2. Scope of Funding

The funding aims to alleviate the additional effort associated with establishing collaborative degree programs (e.g., during the conceptualization, setup, and commencement phases, as well as accompanying evaluations) through supplementary personnel resources.

The funding covers personnel resources for an E-13 position (without teaching obligations), equivalent to 50% of the regular weekly working hours, temporarily allocated for the calendar years 2024-2025. The position will be centrally situated at the BUA partner institution responsible for coordinating the joint degree program. If necessary, the position could be established through a potential increase of position(s).

1.3. Eligibility

The funding is open to all faculties, departments, and central institutes of the four BUA partner institutions. Eligible applicants are professors from all disciplines who intend to establish a joint Bachelor's or Master's degree program within the framework of the BUA.

1.4. Selection Criteria

For the selection of the model project, the following criteria are decisive:

Formal Criteria:

(1) Ideally, all 4, but at least 3 partner institutions of the Berlin University Alliance are involved, with one assuming the lead role. Furthermore, additional universities or institutions can be included, as long as the majority consists of BUA partner institutions.

(2) The schedule for establishment and cooperation agreements (including lead responsibility) is determined.

Contextual Criteria:

(1) The intended collaborative degree program focuses on global societal challenges.

(2) Research-based teaching and learning processes, along with the translation of cutting-edge research into education, are linked with didactic/program-related innovations.

(3) The planned collaborative degree program demonstrates interdisciplinary character. The faculties, departments, and central institutes of the participating BUA partner institutions collaborate in a particularly cross-university and cross-profile manner. The synergies realized through this cooperation represent a unique feature of the project within the context of the Berlin Excellence Consortium.

(4) The qualification profile of the intended collaborative degree program enhances the graduates' opportunities for entering professional fields or pursuing further studies.

(5) The planned collaborative degree program has an international orientation (e.g., in terms of its content or target audience, English-language courses, involvement of teaching and research staff with international profiles, engagement with international partner universities or research institutions, etc.).

Special emphasis is placed on the content criteria: (1) societal relevance, (2) research orientation linked with didactic/program-related innovations, and (3) interdisciplinarity, as well as the synergies and unique characteristics of the cooperation within the BUA context.

1.5. Application documents

(1) Application form with the contact details of the applicants and the cooperation agreements (including lead responsibility).

(2) High-level conceptual framework (up to 4 pages, plus any supporting visuals or similar to illustrate the project) containing:

  • A description of the planned collaborative degree program (including qualification objectives, capacity and resource information, potential external expertise, in the case of Master's programs, alignment with existing Bachelor's programs and qualification for subsequent programs, rationale and added value of the cooperation, market demand, international orientation, differentiation and connection to other programs in the region, research-based teaching and learning processes)
  • A plan for the ongoing evaluation of the degree program
  • A timeline for establishing the program in the winter semester of 2025/2026

(3) Endorsement letters from the heads of departments/faculties of the involved partner institutions (as per the template provided in the application form)

1.6. Submitting your application

Applications should be submitted from August 15, 2023, until October 3, 2023, 11:59 PM, through the coordination of the Cross-Cutting Theme 7 "Teaching and Learning". The applications, labeled "Application BUA Joint-Degree," should be submitted in either German or English to:

Coordination CCT7 „Teaching and Learning”, Christian Richter, Email: christian.richter@berlin-university-alliance.de

1.7. Selection process and selection committee

The funding allocation takes place through a competitive, two-stage selection process. The selection committee consists of members from the BUA Steering Committees "Teaching and Learning" and "Focusing on Grand Challenges," as well as students. All applicants will be informed of the results at the end of November 2023, following the conclusion of the selection process.

We look forward to receiving your concepts. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact us!


Questions regarding the call are answered by: 

Questions regarding BUA degree programs and collaborative teaching offerings are answered by the BUA office of the respective partner institution: