University of Konstanz

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University of Konstanz
German: Universität Konstanz
Logo of the University of Konstanz
Type Public
Established 1966
Chancellor Jens Apitz
Rector Ulrich Rüdiger[de]
Academic staff
1,251 January 2014[1]
Administrative staff
976 January 2014[1]
Students 11,711 WS 2014/15[1]
Undergraduates 9,001 October 2014 [2]
Postgraduates 1,679 October 2014[2]
683 October 2014[2]
Other students
348 October 2014[2]
Location Konstanz, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
Affiliations German Excellence Universities, EUA, YERUN, IBH
A view of the University of Konstanz campus
Foyer glas ceiling designed by Otto Piene (1970)
The entrance area of the university library

The University of Konstanz (German: Universität Konstanz) is a university in the city of Konstanz in Baden-Württemberg, Germany. It was founded in 1966, and the main campus on the Gießberg was opened in 1972. The University is situated on the shore of Lake Constance just four kilometers from the Swiss border. As one of eleven German Excellence Universities, University of Konstanz is consistently ranked among the global top 250 by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings .[3] In 2016 it was ranked 7th globally by the Times Higher Education 150 under 50 rankings.[4] It is often referred to as "small Harvard" by the German media.[5][6][7]

Over 10,000 students from close to 100 countries are enrolled at the university, while over 220 links to European partner universities and numerous exchange programmes facilitate global networking.[8] Students may choose from more than 100 degree programs. Moreover, Konstanz University cooperates with a large number of renowned universities such as Johns Hopkins University,[9] Yale University,[10] the University of Chicago,[11] UC Berkeley[12] and the University of Zurich.[13] Its library is open 24 hours a day and has more than two million books.[14]


In 1965 the founding committee of the university developed the concept of a reform university with new forms of study and teaching, a central administration and central facilities for technology, computers and language training. New forms of self-administration replaced traditional university structures. In 1966 the university began its work in a wing of today's Inselhotel, formerly a Dominican monastery. Professor David Daube, Regius Professor of Civil Law at the University of Oxford, gave the inaugural lectures.

The beginning was makeshift - in the middle of Sonnenbühl on the edge of the town quarter Petershausen on the right side of the Rhine, with only a handful of professors and a few dozen students. Starting in 1967, today's campus was developed through individual construction projects on the hill known as the Gießberg. Until today, the university has continued to be structurally altered and expanded. In 2007 the University joined the German Universities Excellence Initiative competition and succeeded in becoming Germany's smallest and youngest University of Excellence. The University secured funding for its institutional strategy "Towards a Culture of Creativity",[15] the graduate school "Chemical Biology"[16] as well as the cluster of excellence "Cultural Foundations of Integration".[17] This result was reconfirmed when the university succeeded in the second programme phase (2012-2017)[18] with all projects and additionally was granted the "Graduate School of Decision Sciences".[19]


The campus is located on the Gießberg, about 3 kilometres (1.9 mi) from the center of the city and comes with its own beach facing the Lake Constance.[20]

The university was planned as a place of life and learning, in which new forms of research and teaching should be reflected in the architectural style. Dense construction, short paths, the absence of large auditoriums in exchange for a large number of seminar rooms, as well as the variety of work, traffic, and quiet areas, are all part of the architectural concept. In addition, there was the idea of creating lasting "Kunst am Bau" (structural art) accents, so that the building of a desolate concrete landscape could be avoided in an effective manner.[21]


These are the 3 faculties into which the university is divided:


The ranking results of various commonly referenced international rankings are shown below.

Ranking 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
THE 194 201-225 226-250 226-250 226-250 175
QS 297 279 273 310 319
ARWU 301-400 301-400 301-400 301-400 401-500

In the "Times Higher Education 150 Under 50 University Rankings", the University of Konstanz achieved 7th position globally in 2016.[22] This position makes Konstanz the best German university amongst those assessed, all of which are under 50 years old. This assessment was underscored by the 2014 edition of the global ranking "QS Top 50 under 50", which also concentrates on universities under the age of 50. In this case Konstanz came 21st in the global comparison.[23]

Notable Alumni[edit]

Points of interest[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Universität Konstanz: Facts and Figures, WS 2014/15 (retrieved 21 January 2016).
  2. ^ a b c d Universität Konstanz: Statistik über die Studierenden der Universität Konstanz, Studienjahr 2014/15 (retrieved 21 January 2016).
  3. ^ "THE World University Rankings". Times Higher Education. 
  4. ^ "". 
  5. ^ "". 
  6. ^ "". 
  7. ^ "Deutsche Welle". 
  8. ^ "Exchange programmes". University of Konstanz International Office. 
  9. ^ "CAAT Europe". Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. 
  10. ^ "Konstanz University website, exchange programs". 
  11. ^ "Network for Transatlantic Cooperation". University of Konstanz. 
  12. ^ "Konstanz University website, exchange programs". 
  13. ^ "Cooperations Switzerland". University of Konstanz. 
  14. ^ "Library of the year 2010". dbv (German Library Association). 
  15. ^ "The Institutional Strategy "Modell Konstanz – Towards a Culture of Creativity"". University of Konstanz. 24 May 2012. Retrieved 2 March 2013. 
  16. ^ "Graduate School Chemical Biology". University of Konstanz. Retrieved 2 March 2013. 
  17. ^ "Konstanz Center of Excellence Cultural Foundations of Integration". University of Konstanz. Retrieved 2 March 2013. 
  18. ^ "Germany Names New Top Universities". ScienceInsider. 15 June 2012. Retrieved 2 March 201.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  19. ^ "Graduate School of Decision Sciences". University of Konstanz. 28 January 2013. Retrieved 2 March 2013. 
  20. ^ "Segeln & Wassersportgelände" (in German). University of Konstanz. 24 October 2012. Retrieved 2 February 2013. 
  21. ^ "The History of the University of Konstanz". University of Konstanz. 
  22. ^ "THE 150 Under 50 University Rankings". Times Higher Education. 
  23. ^ "QS Top 50 under 50". QS World University Rankings. 
  24. ^ "Zoran Djinjic (prime minister of Serbia)". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 2 March 2013. 
  25. ^ "Press Release No. 8 of 11 January 2007" (in German). 11 January 2007. Retrieved 24 February 2013. 
  26. ^ "UBS - CV Axel A. Weber". 22 January 2013. Retrieved 2 March 2013. 
  27. ^ accessdate=25 July 2015

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 47°41′24″N 9°11′17″E / 47.690°N 9.188°E / 47.690; 9.188