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Germany's Excellence Initiative aims to promote top-level research and to enhance the quality of German universities and research institutions. The DFG is jointly responsible for running the initiative together with the German Council of Science and Humanities.
The Excellence Initiative provides funding for graduate schools, clusters of excellence and institutional strategies. In June 2009 the German federal and state governments decided to continue the Excellence Initiative, providing a total of €2.7 billion for the second five-year phase from 2012-2017.