DFG approves 14 new research training units

Better scientific training for medics

The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) is setting up 14 new Research Training Units, two of which are going to be European Rersearch Training Units. The new institutions, which will commence work on the 1st October 2000, raise the total of such units supported by the DFG to 305. One of the new Research Training Units aims at providing a novel type of academic qualification for medics. At the "Molecular and Structural Foundations of Tumour Stability" unit, which is located in Würzburg, medics who have passed their third state examination work together with doctoral candidates from the natural sciences, in particular pharmacologists and human geneticists. They intend to find out how tumours can damage human hereditary matter and have an impact on cell structures. The medical scientists will subsequently publish their results in internationally renowned specialist journals. The DFG regards this as a step towards reforming doctorates for medics.

The DFG has been promoting collaboration among specially qualified doctoral candidates from all disciplines in the Research Training Units since 1990. Under the supervision of professors who have attained special levels of proficiency in research and teaching, groups of 15 to 20 doctoral candidates work in co-ordinated research programmes that are usually of an interdisciplinary nature. Currently, around ten percent of all doctoral candidates in Germany do their PhDs at Research Training Units. On completing their courses, they are as a rule more comprehensively qualified and are on average two years younger than their fellow students at other institutions.

The 14 new Research Training Units in detail:

— Molecular and Structural Foundations of Tumour Stability, Würzburg University

— Sensor Photo-receptors in Natural and Artificial Systems, Regensburg University

— Analytical Topology and Meta-geometry, Münster Universi

Contact: Dr. Robert-Paul Koenigs
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft

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