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Press Release No. 29 | 1 July 2015
DFG President Peter Strohschneider Re-Elected

Medieval Germanist Confirmed in Office for Four Years by General Assembly in Bochum

Peter Strohschneider will serve another term as President of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation). The 59-year-old professor of medieval German language and literature was re-elected by the General Assembly of the DFG on Wednesday 1 July 2015 in Bochum. His second term will begin on 1 January 2016 and will last for four years instead of the previous three. This is now the standard term of office for all members of statutory bodies as defined in the statutes of the DFG, amended last year.

Strohschneider has been President of Germany's largest research funding organisation since 2013. In terms of science policy, his presidency to date has been characterised by the debate on the future of the German research system, especially the further development of the Excellence Initiative and other major higher education and science policy pacts and, closely connected with this, the future face of DFG funding programmes – issues that will also be a feature of his second term of office.

For the DFG as the central self-governing organisation of the German research community, the most important events during Strohschneider's first term were the amendment of its statutes in 2014 and the reform of the regulations for the election of DFG review boards in 2013.

At international level Strohschneider has campaigned for greater global commitment to free, knowledge-driven research, for example in the Global Research Council (GRC), for which he served as Chair of the Governing Board in 2013/2014 and co-host of the 2013 annual meeting in Berlin, as well as through the continuing development of bilateral relations with partner organisations in Russia, China, Japan, India, Brazil, Mexico and the USA.

Peter Strohschneider was born on 3 October 1955 in Stuttgart. Between 1975 and 1982 he studied Germanistics and history as well as law, sociology and political science at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU) Munich. He completed his doctorate there in 1984 and in 1991 obtained his habilitation for German language and literature of the Middle Ages and early modern period. In 1992 Strohschneider moved to the Technical University of Dresden, where in 1993 he was appointed to the Chair of Medieval German Language and Literature and Early Modern Research. Since 2002 he has taught medieval German language and literature at LMU Munich. His special research interests are the history and theory of premodern textuality, courtly song, the narrative forms of the Middle Ages and early modern period, and medieval cultural studies.

For six years beginning in 2005 Strohschneider was a member of the German Council of Science and Humanities, the most important science policy advisory body to the federal and state governments. As its chairperson from February 2006 until January 2011, working with DFG Presidents Ernst-Ludwig Winnacker and Matthias Kleiner, he was much involved in the implementation of the first phase of the Excellence Initiative and preparations for the second phase. Among other posts, Strohschneider has been a visiting professor at the École Pratique des Hautes Études, Paris, and the Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies. He is a full member of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and Humanities and the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina.

The President represents the German Research Foundation internally and externally and works with the Executive Committee to develop the strategic-conceptual orientation of the DFG.

Further information

A photo and detailed CV of the DFG President are available online at:

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