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Video: Berlin researchers talk about digitalization in their fields of research.

Digitalization affects all areas of life, including the work at universities. The three major Berlin universities and Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin treat digital transformation as a cross-cutting aspect of research, teaching, and administration. The alliance partners address the opportunities and risks of digitalization in a variety of programs and initiatives. 

The Berlin universities support the Berlin Open Access Strategy, whose aim is to provide free, unlimited online access to scientific and scholarly information. Digital research platforms are used in research, while in teaching “blended learning” formats are used in which students work through learning materials independently with the help of digital formats and deepen their knowledge in face-to-face courses.

The Berlin alliance partners are also conducting research projects on the social and ethical consequences of digitalization. In this context, scholars and scientists from a wide range of disciplines come together to cooperate on areas related to the digital transformation.

Researching and Designing Digitalization

Scientists and scholars at the Berlin universities are helping design the process of the digital transformation in Germany. They are working with the Weizenbaum Institute for the Networked Society – the German Internet Institute, funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), where an interdisciplinary research team is seeking ways to ensure participation and democratic self-determination in the digital age.

Researchers at the Einstein Center Digital Future, founded in 2017, are pursuing digital structures in science, the economy, and society. The center for digitalization research is an interdisciplinary project of Freie Universität, Humboldt-Universität, Technische Universität Berlin, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, and the Berlin University of the Arts, along with other non-university research institutes, and is based on a major public-private partnership (PPP) involving more than 30 companies and organizations.

The alliance partners are also participating in the Berlin university program DiGiTal, which promotes outstanding scientists and artists in digitalization research. Financed via the Berlin Program for Equal Opportunities of Women in Higher Education (BCP), its aim is to ensure equal opportunities for participation and provide critical guidance throughout the digitalization and transformation processes.