The Seven Berlin Clusters of Excellence at a Glance
Matters of Activity
What can we learn from nature and traditional cultural techniques? How can we explore and influence more sustainable, resilient, and equitable ways of making, producing, and living by targeting the intrinsic activity of materials? Researchers from more than 40 disciplines are working on this in the Matters of Activity Cluster of Excellence. Biology and technology, humanities and materials, nature, and culture are interacting in new ways to create surprising solutions.
Transforming the World through Mathematics – that is the slogan of the Cluster of Excellence Berlin Mathematics Research Center (Math+). It has set itself the goal of exploring and further developing new approaches in application-oriented mathematics. The focus is on mathematical principles for the use of ever larger amounts of data in the life and materials sciences, in energy and network research, and in the humanities and social sciences.
To better understand, diagnose, and develop therapeutic approaches to the disease mechanisms of neurological and psychiatric diseases – these are the goals of the NeuroCure Cluster of Excellence. To ensure that the insights gained can be quickly applied in clinical practice and thus help patients, the Cluster has set up its own clinical research center – the Neuroscience Clinical Research Center (NCRC) – within Charité – Universitätsmedizin. This is where basic and clinical research collaborate closely.
Science of Intelligence
What is intelligence? Researchers from psychology, neurology, behavioral sciences, computer science, and robotics in the Cluster of Excellence Science of Intelligence (SCIoI) examine this question from different perspectives. There are still large gaps in our knowledge of the fundamental laws and principles that underlie artificial, individual, or collective intelligence. To close these gaps, researchers are collaborating across disciplines, observing and analyzing intelligent behavior, and developing artificially intelligent (AI) systems themselves.
The debates about the liberal order from a historical, global and comparative perspective are at the center of the Cluster of Excellence Contestations of the Liberal Script (SCRIPTS). Freedom, equality, justice, progress, and tolerance are the basic modules of the liberal script. However, societies with liberal constitutional structures are under pressure worldwide. Scholars and scientists address the question of why this is the case despite all the achievements, where the causes of current conflicts lie and how they differ from previous crises. What consequences are there for democracy and the global challenges of the 21st century?
The Cluster of Excellence Temporal Communities – Doing Literature in a Global Perspective is working on a global understanding of literature. To this end, the researchers aim to transcend traditional linguistic and cultural boundaries and explore whether literature is an appropriate mean of creating community. Literature transcends space and time – sometimes across millennia –, forms complex networks and is in constant exchange with other art forms, media, institutions, and society. In order to work together on research questions, the Cluster maintains intensive cooperation with the art and literary scene in Berlin.
More than 300 researchers from four universities and four research institutions are working in the Cluster of Excellence Unifying Systems in Catalysis (UniSysCat) to revolutionize catalysis. Their findings can provide solutions to many pressing global problems: Climate-neutral fuels, sustainable production methods in the chemical industry, and the recycling of plastics are all enabled by catalytic processes. To this end, researchers from the fields of chemistry, biology, engineering, and physics work closely together.