Bundeswehr University Munich

Coordinates: 48°04′49″N 11°38′17″E / 48.08028°N 11.63806°E / 48.08028; 11.63806
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University of the Bundeswehr Munich
Universität der Bundeswehr München
Former name
Hochschule der Bundeswehr München
MottoSicherheit in Technik und Gesellschaft
PresidentEva-Maria Kern
Academic staff
915 (197 professors)[1]
Students3,825 (2022)[2]
Neubiberg (Munich)
, ,
48°04′49″N 11°38′17″E / 48.08028°N 11.63806°E / 48.08028; 11.63806
140 hectares (350 acres)[3]
Entrance to the university

University of the Bundeswehr Munich (German: Universität der Bundeswehr München, UniBw München) is one of two research universities in Germany at federal level that both were founded in 1973 as part of the German Armed Forces (Bundeswehr). Originally called Hochschule der Bundeswehr München the institution was supposed to offer civilian academic education for military officers. As an uncommon feature amongst German universities University of the Bundeswehr Munich unifies a more theoretical research university division and a more practical-oriented College of Applied Sciences branch.[4] Today, the university has an increasing number of civilian and international students. The academic year at the university is structured in "trimesters" and not the usual semester, to offer intensive studies with more credit points per year. Very capable students can therefore achieve a bachelor's and a master's degree within less than four years, while this would usually require five years. University of the Bundeswehr Munich has well-established scientific research and forms part of two excellence clusters of the German government's university excellence initiative. The University of the Bundeswehr Munich is one of only very few campus universities in Germany.


In 1970 the then minister of defence Helmut Schmidt initiated the reform process which led to the establishment of the two federal universities.

In 1970 the then minister of defence Helmut Schmidt decided that the education of military officers in Germany had to be reviewed and had to include full academic studies. After one year the Ellwein commission presented its proposal for the creation of two civilian colleges within the armed forces. Students should get fully recognised civilian degrees independent of their military profession, to have a higher qualified officer corps and more incentives to join the military. The idea was that students would have better conditions than at normal universities so that they could cope with a higher workload and study faster. After almost two years of discussions and the necessary legislative procedures, both universities could open. University education normally being a responsibility of the German states, University of the Bundeswehr Munich and Helmut Schmidt University are the only federal universities in Germany. With their innovative concepts Helmut Schmidt University and Universität der Bundeswehr München quickly became widely known as reform universities within the very traditional German university landscape. In the following years the universities had to establish their image and reputation and finally were accepted as full universities with the rights to award doctorate degrees as well as Habilitations to qualify university professors in the 80s. In the 90s and 2000s the university has started to open its teaching towards civilian students and to extend its international relations. While the researchers and doctorate students always used to be mainly civilians, the student body still had been purely military in the 90s. Today, University of the Bundeswehr Munich has concluded partnership contracts with different major financial and industrial companies, which send students to the University of the Bundeswehr Munich. In the past few years different federal agencies have started to qualify their employees at the university. Since 2007 Universität der Bundeswehr München has changed its degree to the harmonized Bologna system. It has completely restructed its curriculums and awards bachelor's and master's degrees instead of the former German Diplom.


  • 1973–1974 Gerhard Wachter (temporary)
  • 1974–1982 Horst von Engerth
  • 1982–1990 Rudolf Wienecke
  • 1990–1993 Jürgen von Kruedener
  • 1993–1994 Rudolf Avenhaus (temporary)
  • 1994–2005 Hans Georg Lößl
  • 2005–2023 Merith Niehuss
  • since 2023 Eva-Maria Kern

Campus and student life[edit]

Hirschkäfer, one of the central buildings containing the main library.
Most students live in the student dormitories on campus.
One of the central buildings containing the large Audimax lecture hall
University cafeteria.

The university is located in Neubiberg in the south of Munich, Bavaria. There are S-Bahn and U-Bahn connections to Neuperlach Süd as well as three bus connections available. In addition to that, there are motorway exits at Neubiberg and Neuperlach, permitting fast access by car. The large campus used to host the Air Force officer school before, and also included a military airport. Former runways are still used for scientific testing of vehicles. Since the 1970s a large number of buildings have been built for teaching, scientific research and student housing. Most of the students live in modern individual student dormitories on the campus and next to the university buildings. There is currently a large renovation process ongoing on the campus: within the next years about € 220m will be spent on building activities.[5] On campus students have access to different sports facilities like gyms, tennis courts and golf ranges. Different multinational engineering companies have their headquarters or important industrial facilities directly next to the campus, most notably Siemens, Infineon Technologies, Bosch and Siemens Household Appliances (BSH), and EADS facilitating frequent cooperation in research.

On campus all students (also the military ones) usually wear civilian clothes. Students can organize their activities as they want and attendance to lectures is mostly voluntary. On Wednesday afternoons there is regularly military or language training for soldiers. There are many possibilities for extracurricular activities within student initiatives and associations. International initiatives like the German-American, German-Israeli or German-Hispanic clubs as well as the Model United Nations Society play an important role on the campus. The students of each student dormitory usually organize a large party every year.

As a large part of the student body consists of military officers and officer candidates, sport is considered important on the campus. The sports center provides a variety of free courses for students – e.g. for different martial arts. There are a lot of sports facilities like gyms, different sports halls, a golf course, a large climbing wall, an indoor swimming pool, several tennis courts and other sports grounds. Furthermore, the university has a large military obstacle course which was used for the CISM world cup in 2009. There are different sports teams on the campus which also take part in the university championships.

Every student as well as the public has access to the more than one million volumes in the university library. The library is linked to the academic library network of Bavaria which allows interlibrary loans.

Administration and organization[edit]

The organization of University of the Bundeswehr Munich is similar to a usual university. 1,100 (non-military) employees, among them 163 full professors, serve the approximately 3,400 students.[6] The university is led by a civilian president and three vice presidents. The incumbent president is Eva-Maria Kern. The administration is headed by the Chancellor. A difference to most other universities is that the structure of education and research is split up between normal university part with seven university faculties and a Fachhochschule (College of Applied Sciences) part with three more faculties. Furthermore, the structure contains central services like the computing center, the large university library, a media center with state-of-the-art technology, a language service and the sport services. In addition to that the university has two further research institutes. The department for special services includes the Studium+ institute for interdisciplinary studies, the CASC center for postgraduate studies as well as some further services. Another difference to other universities is the military division which is responsible for the administration and training of military students. Decisions are made by the board, the extended board and the administration council (Senate and University Council). The university has about 850 non-scientific employees in addition to the about 570 scientific employees as well as additional military personnel.[7]


Similar to some other military run universities like the École Polytechnique the university only offers civilian study courses. The contents generally have no relation to the military and correspond to courses at regular German universities. Bachelor´s and Master´s studies in total consist of 400 ECTS credit points. Due to this there also is a small number of highly gifted civilian students who are sponsored by industrial and financial companies like Allianz, Bosch or Munich Re. In addition to that other German ministries and federal institutions like Bundesnachrichtendienst also educate some of their employees at the university. In cooperation with George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies a course of studies for senior leaders (International Strategic Studies) has been introduced. The university also has international students and offers individual mentoring and tutoring programmes. The University of the Bundeswehr Munich has concluded partnership contracts with an increasing number of international universities. Furthermore, it is possible for civilians to receive a doctorate or to qualify as a university lecturer (Habilitation). All of the professors are civilians, and the number of professors per student is significantly higher than at normal German universities. Thus in general the conditions for teaching are better. In autumn 2009 the university introduced the first military-related engineering course of study called Defence Engineering, which is solely dedicated to civilian students from industrial companies and federal institutions. Military students of the university usually only have a maximum of 4 years to pass their master's within the intensive studies with more content. If they do not finish their bachelor's after 2+14 years with the necessary grades, they cannot proceed. As the studies have to be finished in a shorter time than at common German universities, the academic year consists of three trimesters instead of the normal two semesters.

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
winter trimester spring trimester summer modules, internships etc. autumn trimester

Study courses[edit]

The university has restructured its courses of study according to the Bologna treaty and offers bachelor's and master's degrees as well as doctoral and postdoctoral studies. The University of the Bundeswehr Munich offers normal research university courses of studies as well as a few more practical oriented Fachhochschule (University of Applied Sciences) study courses. In total there are 37 Bachelor's and Master's degree programmes at the University of the Bundeswehr Munich.[4]

The University[edit]

College of Applied Sciences (Fachhochschule)[edit]

Campus Advanced Studies Center, CASC[edit]


The university is well established in different fields of research, especially when it comes to aeronautical engineering (e.g. participation in the GALILEO satellite program and development of different parts of space probes), computer-driven cars and information security. Bundeswehr University has the largest aviation and aerospace faculty in Germany.[9] A main focus of the university are all kinds of security technology. The university is part of two excellence clusters of the German government universities excellence initiative (Cognition for Technical Systems and Munich-Centre for Advanced Photonics).[10][11] The university hosts the ESA Summer School on Global Navigation Satellite Systems and the Munich Satellite Navigation Summit.[12] University of the Bundeswehr Munich forms part of the joint research and academic center Munich Aerospace, founded in 2010[13] and the Bavarian International Campus Aerospace & Security, founded in 2012.[14] The university also has a number of partner companies which rely on the universities research expertise and support the university with products and facilities for testing and research. To strengthen its research profile and enhance cooperation between the faculties, University of the Bundeswehr Munich has created several interdisciplinary research centers: SPACE,[15] MOVE (Modern Vehicles), RISK (Risk, Infrastructure, Security and Conflict), MARC (Military Aviation Research Center), CODE (Cyber Defence).[16] CODE is planned to have around 250 research personnel for Cyber Security.[17] Germany's federal cyber security research agency Central Office for Information Technology in the Security Sector is to be moved with 400 employees to the Neubiberg campus of University if the Bundeswehr Munich until 2023. With both organizations on campus the federal government aims to build up a cluster for cyber defence and security unique of its kind within Germany.[18][19] In 2017 new Center for Intelligence and Security Studies (CISS) was created by the University of the Bundeswehr Munich in cooperation with the Federal University for Public Administration, Federal Intelligence Service (BND) and Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV). Besides training future senior intelligence personnel the Center is engaged in intelligence and security research.[20]

International collaboration[edit]

The University of the Bundeswehr Munich has partner universities worldwide.[21] The following list shows some examples:

Notable alumni[edit]

Notable faculty[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ https://athene-forschung.unibw.de/download/137195/137195.pdf inside.unibw April 2021
  2. ^ "Karriere an der Universität der Bundeswehr München". karriere (in German). Retrieved 11 February 2023.
  3. ^ http://www.neubiberg.de/rathaus_und_buergerservice/gemeindepublikationen/Nanu_3-11.pdf Neubiberg's official magazine NANU 3/2011, p. 11
  4. ^ a b "Unsere Studiengänge". wow-en (in German). Retrieved 9 October 2020.
  5. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 13 August 2012. Retrieved 15 September 2012.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Campus newspaper, p. 7
  6. ^ Factsheet January 2011 Archived 21 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine University of the Bundeswehr Munich
  7. ^ http://www.unibw.de/praes/service/presse/Factsheet/at_download/down2 Archived 21 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine University Factsheet, as at March 2013
  8. ^ "ITZBund – Presse – ITZBund startet neuen Bachelor-Studiengang in München". www.itzbund.de. Retrieved 22 October 2020.
  9. ^ "Ludwig Bölkow Campus in Ottobrunn bei München: The Perfect Site". Archived from the original on 24 October 2013. Retrieved 15 September 2012.
  10. ^ cotesys. "CoTeSys: Partners & people". Retrieved 22 July 2015.
  11. ^ "MAP: Participating Institutes". www.munich-photonics.de. Archived from the original on 4 August 2012. Retrieved 6 June 2022.
  12. ^ "DLR Portal – News-Archiv – Internationale Satelliten Navigation Konferenz". DLR Portal. Retrieved 22 July 2015.
  13. ^ "Home". Retrieved 22 July 2015.
  14. ^ http://www.campus-ottobrunn.de/en/idea-product.html[permanent dead link]
  15. ^ "Forschungsschwerpunkte". wow-en (in German). Retrieved 9 October 2020.
  16. ^ "UniBw München – Neues Forschungszentrum CODE". Archived from the original on 22 July 2015. Retrieved 22 July 2015.
  17. ^ "Willkommen am Forschungsinstitut CODE". wow-en (in German). Retrieved 9 October 2020.
  18. ^ "University information brochure 2018". 2018. Retrieved 9 October 2020.
  19. ^ "Antwort auf die Kleine Anfrage der Fraktion DIE LINKE – Drucksache 19/5469 – Struktur und Tätigkeit der Zentralen Stelle für Informationstechnik im Sicherheitsbereich" (PDF). Bundestag (in German). 15 December 2019.
  20. ^ "Center for Intelligence and Security Studies". wow-en (in German). Retrieved 9 October 2020.
  21. ^ Partner Universities Archived 21 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine University of the Bundeswehr Munich, International Office
  22. ^ "DPMA – Senior Management". 31 March 2014. Archived from the original on 1 February 2009. Retrieved 22 July 2015.

External links[edit]