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Press Release No. 58 | 15 October 2010
10 Years of the Sino-German Center for Research Promotion

Anniversary Celebration in Beijing / Special-Edition Publication “Partners in Science” / Leadership Change

On 19 October 2010, the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) will celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the founding of the Sino-German Center for Research Promotion (CDZ) in Beijing. Exactly ten years ago to the day, on 19 October 2000, the CDZ was opened as the first DFG office abroad. The Center’s duties include intensifying contacts between German and Chinese researchers, functioning as a catalyst in initiating joint research projects, and providing appropriate funding. Particular focus is placed on promoting collaboration between young researchers from both countries. The CDZ in its structure as  joint venture in unique in the field of science. It has its own funding budget, by  which it supports activities such as workshops, symposia, summer schools, cooperation groups and research projects. The DFG and NSFC have jointly identified different topics in which collaboration is particularly worthwhile. These include announcements in the field of stem cell research, water management and inverse problems in mathematics. The first two jointly funded Collaborative Research Centres are part of the nanotechnology and immunology research areas.

“For the next decade of collaboration”, says DFG President Professor Matthias Kleiner, “collaboration in energy research, with solar energy being a particular focus, in biodiversity research, and in research into food safety, for example, appear particularly worthwhile.” “We are,” Kleiner continues, “also interested in combining traditional Chinese medicine with the methods and approaches used by Western conventional medicine and to consider joint research into infectious diseases.”

In addition to DFG President Professor Matthias Kleiner and the President of the NSFC, Professor Chen Yiyu, speakers at the anniversary celebration on 19 October will include the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany in China, Dr. Michael Schaefer, the Vice President of the National People’s Congress and President of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Professor Lu Yongxiang, as well as Professor Wolfgang Schürer, Chairman of the Board of the Foundation Lindau Nobelprizewinners Meetings at Lake Constance. Lectures will be given by Professor Ouyang Ziyuan, member of the CAS and Chief Scientist of the Chinese Lunar Exploration Program, on “China’s Plans for Lunar Exploration”, and Professor Volker Mosbrugger, Director of the Senckenberg Research Institute and Natural History Museum, together with Professor Sun Ge, Director of the Institute for Palaeontology at the Shenyang Normal University, on “German-Chinese Collaboration in Palaeontology”. The high-ranking delegation, headed by DFG President Professor Matthias Kleiner, also includes the German founding president of the CDZ and former DFG President Professor Ernst-Ludwig Winnacker.

To mark the anniversary, a 40-page brochure has been published, so far only in German. It commemorates the work of the Center, features contributions from German and Chinese researchers, and provides generally-accessible descriptions of some of the collaborative research projects carried out to date. The Secretary General of the DFG, Ms Dorothee Dzwonnek, emphasised in an interview published in the brochure that the Center’s establishment as a joint venture served as a guarantee of its stability and successful cooperation.

On 1 October, the Center experienced a change in German leadership: Dr. Armin Krawisch, who headed the Center jointly with his Chinese colleague Professor Han Jianguo, was succeeded by Dr. Heike Strelen, so far head of the Life Sciences 1 group in the DFG’s head office in Bonn.. She will spend three years in Beijing.

Further Information

The special-edition publication, “Partners in Science: 10 Years of the Sino-German Center in Beijing”, is available online at (so far in German only):

For questions, please contact: