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Gender Studies

Freie Universität, Technische Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität, and Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin all have firmly established gender studies institutions that contribute to their broad spectrum of scholarly endeavor: Freie Universität hosts the Margherita von Brentano Center, which focuses on gender studies, while Technische Universität is home to the Center for Interdisciplinary Women’s and Gender Studies, Humboldt-Universität hosts the Zentrum für transdisziplinäre Geschlechterstudien (Center for Transdisciplinary Gender Studies), and Charité is home to the Institut für Geschlechterforschung in der Medizin (Center for Gender Studies in Medicine).

These and other institutions are part of the Arbeitsgemeinschaft der Frauen- und Geschlechterforschungen Berliner Hochschulen (afg), a working group of women’s and gender studies institutions at higher education institutions in Berlin. The afg’s mission since its founding, in 2000, has been to act as a network of expertise and support gender studies at higher education institutions in Berlin.

Recent examples of the extensive cooperation among Berlin’s universities in the field of gender studies are the “GenderOpen: A Repository for Gender Studies Research” and “Law – Gender – Collectivity: Processes of standardization, categorization and generating solidarity” projects, both of which are supported by the German Research Foundation (DFG).

Improving Access to Findings from Gender Studies

Plans call for combining the many different approaches and findings derived from women’s and gender studies in the German-speaking world in a single joint project. Toward this aim, the German Research Foundation (DFG) has granted Freie Universität, Humboldt-Universität, and Technische Universität Berlin half a million euros so far for a joint project called GenderOpen: A Repository for Gender Studies Research. The goal is for this electronic infrastructure to be used to safeguard the findings derived from gender studies centrally and improve access to this information for both academia and the general public; at the same time, a platform for free publication in an interdisciplinary field is to be created. The partners involved in the project are the Margherita von Brentano Center at Freie Universität Berlin (project management), the Center for Transdisciplinary Gender Studies at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, and the Center for Interdisciplinary Women’s and Gender Studies at Technische Universität Berlin.

Law, Gender, and Collectivity

Via its “Research Unit” support format, the German Research Foundation (DFG) approved an alliance project titled Law– Gender – Collectivity: Processes of standardization, categorization and generating solidarity in July of this year (funding for 2018–2021: about 2.5 million euros). The participating partners are Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (host), Freie Universität Berlin, Technische Universität Berlin, the University of Potsdam, and European University Viadrina, in Frankfurt an der Oder. The scholars and researchers working on the project come from the fields of sociology, law, social and cultural anthropology, cultural studies, and history. They are investigating how institutional and legal practices and the practices of the everyday world intersect in different collective spaces and what interactions and ambiguities arise as a result, with a particular focus on gender-specific and political dynamics.