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New and Extended CRCs in Berlin

A new Collaborative Research Center (CRC) at Charité will focus on addiction, and Humboldt-Universität is a partner in a new CRC in business and economics. In addition, funding for three CRCs already in place at Freie Universität and Humboldt-Universität was approved for an additional funding period.

News from May 23, 2019

Funding was approved for a new transregional Collaborative Research Center (CRC/Transregio) at Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin. The participating researchers will investigate how individuals with addictions can regain control over their consumption of addictive substances. The findings are expected to help develop personalized therapies against addiction. Researchers at the University of Heidelberg and Technische Universität Dresden will be working together with those at Charité. The German Research Foundation (DFG) will be funding the project with about 12 million euros for four years at first, as the DFG announced on Thursday. The spokesperson for the new CRC “Losing and Regaining Control in Addiction – Development, Mechanisms and Interventions” is Professor Andreas Heinz, the director of the Clinic for Psychiatry and Psychotherapy at Campus Mitte, Charité.

A new CRC/Transregio was also approved for Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. For the first time the DFG is funding a CRC with a focus on business administration, “Accounting for Transparency.” Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Paderborn University, and the University of Mannheim applied for this transregional CRC together. Paderborn University will be the host. Over the next four years researchers will explore how accounting and taxation affect corporate  transparency and how regulation and corporate transparency impact the economy and society. The CRC is intended to make a contribution toward developing suitable rules for corporate transparency and for a transparent tax system. Over the four-year period the CRC will receive roughly 12 million euros.

Funding was also approved for another four years for the Collaborative Research Center 1171 “Affective Socities – Dynamics of Social Coexistence in Mobile Worlds.” The aim of this CRC at Freie Universität Berlin is to establish a new understanding of societies that takes into account the fundamental importance of emotions and in particular, emotions in the mobile, networked, and mediatized worlds of the 21st century. During the second funding phase, in addition to Freie Universität, researchers from Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, the Staatlichen Museen Berlin, Universität Hamburg, Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, and the Max Planck Institute of Social Anthropology in Halle (Saale) will be collaborating. The spokesperson is Birgitt Röttger-Rössler, a professor of anthropology at Freie Universität Berlin.

The DFG approved a third funding period for CRC 958 “Scaffolding of Membranes – Molecular Mechanisms and Cellular Functions” at Freie Universität. Within this CRC scientists from Freie Universität Berlin (host university), Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), the Leibniz-Institut für Molekulare Pharmakologie (FMP), and the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine (MDC) are working together. Researchers from outside of Berlin will also be involved. They are based at the University of Potsdam, the German Institute for Nutrition in Potsdam-Rehbruecke, and Tel Aviv University. The scientists are working on membrane-based protein scaffolds. The spokesperson for this CRC is Professor Stephan Sigrist from Freie Universität, who is an Einstein Professor – supported by the Einstein Foundation – and also a researcher at the NeuroCure Cluster of Excellence which is based at Charité – Universitätsmedizin, the joint medical school of Freie Universität and Humboldt-Universität.

The Collaborative Research Center 951 “HIOS – Hybrid Inorganic / Organic Systems for Opto-Electronics (HIOS) will receive funding for another four years. Based at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, this CRC was established in 2011. The scientific focus is on novel hybrid materials consisting of inorganic semiconductors, conjugated organic molecules, and metal nanostructures. The interaction of these very different components gives rise to new chemical and physical properties that are yet to be understood, mastered, and finally exploited to realize ever more complex opto-electronic functions in smallest possible volumes. Besides Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin as coordinating university, Technische Universität Berlin, Freie Universität Berlin, Universität Potsdam, the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie, and the Fritz Haber Institute of the Max Planck Society are partners in this challenging but rewarding endeavor. The spokesperson for the CRC is Norbert Koch, a professor of physics at Humboldt-Universität.

In total, the German Research Foundation approved funding for 14 new Collaborative Research Centers. In addition, the Grants Committee approved an extension of funding for 27 CRCs, including five in the category CRC/Transregio. As of July 2019, the DFG will be funding 278 CRCs nationwide.