An Exchange with the World - Germany's International Years of Science
In 2008, the German Federal Government finalised a strategy for the internationalisation of science and research. The International Years of Science, which have been taking place since 2007, are an instrument for the implementation of this strategy. Egypt, Israel, China, Brazil, Russia and South Africa have already been partners. In 2014 it is Turkey.
What is the best possible way for us to deal with global change and its consequences? How can we use resources in a sustainable way, how can we secure welfare, how can we foster innovation? How can we create relevant knowledge in all these areas and link it internationally? There are many possible approaches, but one thing is certain: Global questions can only be dealt with in international collaborations. The more information that can flow together and the more differing viewpoints that can be considered, the more successful scientists will be in helping to react to these challenges. The objective of the International Year of Science is to keep expanding the existing collaboration with partners in education and research and to increase public awareness. In concrete terms, the bilateral cooperation of universities is to be expanded, professional education and training is to be promoted and top-level research, primarily in future-relevant areas, is to be boosted. To implement these objectives, the BMBF (German Federal Ministry of Education and Research) and the responsible Ministry of the respective partner country invite their research institutes and educational institutions to take an active part in the Year of Science. Under the umbrella of the Year of Science, this offers you the possibility to introduce joint projects to the public, to strengthen the exchange of young scientists and to initiate new projects and partnerships.
In addition, the BMBF and the respective partner Ministry will announce so-called idea competitions for the Year of Science. In the context of these competitions, high-visibility measures such as delegation trips, events and other projects will be sponsored to advance cooperation in education and research as well as in science and technology. The focal areas of the International Years of Science are oriented on the research agendas of both countries - In Germany, for example, that is the Hightech-Strategy - as well as on bilateral agreements for scientific-technological collaboration (S&T cooperation agreement of 1979).
Expanding Successful Collaboration in a Sustainable Way
2014 is the German-Turkish Year of Research, Education and Innovation - a joint initiative of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the Ministry of Science, Industry and Technology of the Republic of Turkey. Under the slogan "Science Bridging Nations", both countries want to continue to expand their successful collaboration, to create new cooperation opportunities and to sponsor young talents. A large number of German and Turkish partner institutions are engaging with great commitment, including research institutions, funding agencies, intermediary organisations, universities, but also other educational institutions as well as private and public interest groups. They all contribute to the goal of strengthening the exchange between Germany and Turkey on all levels.
Focal Topics of the Year
•• Key technologies
Germany and Turkey want to intensely promote applied research in the key technologies. The focus is, for example, on technologies from the areas of information, communication, production as well as mobility, transport, logistics, health research and nano- and biotechnology.
•• Challenges of global change
Both Germany and Turkey have an interest in exploring global change and taking an active part in shaping it, primarily in the areas of renewable energy, energy efficiency, food and agriculture, environment technologies, climate change, climate protection and waste water management.
•• Human and social sciences
Two additional major themes are the co-existence of different cultures (diversity, migration) and the exchange of knowledge ("Brain Circulation").
The German-Turkish Year of Science deals with future-related topics that are important to all of us: from the challenges of global change and the humanities and social sciences to applied research in key technologies. To mobilise as many forces as possible, the focus will also be on the collaboration of research and industry, further education in economics, science and research as well as the interface between science and society.
Successful Launch for the German-Turkish Year of Science
Around 600 guests from the areas of politics, science and the economy, including around 200 guests from Turkey, came to the opening held by the Federal Minister for Education and Research, Prof. Dr. Johanna Wanka, and her Turkish counterpart Fikri Işık, Minister for Science, Industry and Technology of the Republic of Turkey. "The launch of the German-Turkish Year of Science signifies the start of a new chapter in German-Turkish cooperation, one that will be effective even after the end of the year," Minister Wanka said in her opening speech For the visitors, there was also an opportunity to familiarise themselves with projects of the German-Turkish cooperation and strategies in the handling of global challenges in an accompanying exhibition. In the context of the opening event, a professional forum took place on the subject of "German-Turkish Cooperation: Transfer of Know-How in Research, Education and Innovation". Around 200 experts split into three different working groups in the specialist forum to discuss the success factors and improvement potential in relation to the binational and transnational knowledge exchange, starting with education and covering university collaboration as well as funding and innovation. Afterwards, both ministers signed agreements on the future focus of the bilateral cooperation in education, science and research. Additional cooperation agreements have been concluded between the German Research Foundation (DFG) and the Turkish research council TÜBITAK and between the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the Turkish Council of Higher Education (YÖK). The official Closing Ceremony will take place in Turkey on the 12th of March 2015.