The Bucerius Institute for Research of Contemporary German History and Society
The Bucerius Institute for Research of Contemporary German History and Society at the University of Haifa was established in 2001 by the Zeit-Stiftung Ebelin und Gerd Bucerius and its chairman Prof. Dres. H.c. Manfred Lahnstein.
The Institute promotes research on contemporary history and on the social, cultural and political reality of Germany and works to foster greater familiarity and understanding of modern Germany among the academic community. It further facilitates academic exchange between Germany, Europe and Israel.
While the main research emphasis during previous academic years dealt with questions of identity formation, migration, integration, citizenship, and multiculturalism, the Institute currently focuses on the study of the intersection of modern contemporary German history, modern Jewish history, and the history of science and scholarship. The Bucerius Institute aims at involving different disciplinary backgrounds and methodologies, historical periods and immediate geographical contexts, to bring to the fore aspects of modern German and Jewish history that can reveal the complexity of contemporary German history. The Bucerius Institute organizes conferences and research workshops within this broad framework to initiate scholarly discussions (e.g. on "Concepts of 'Race' in the Humanities" or the "Annual Seminar of Young Researchers of German History in Israel"). In this context, several collective projects are planned, e.g. on visual culture and German history in the twentieth century, the history of notions of race in the humanities, Jewish intellectual activity and Jewish cultural property in the immediate post-WWII period in Germany, and genealogies of visual classification and representation of human diversity.
The main public highlights are guest lectures and special events such as film festivals or musical performances that deal with a broad range of topics within the fields of interest (e.g. in the last years on "Wolves and Lambs: The Holocaust in East and West German Literature" or “German Cinema from behind the Iron Curtain”). In addition, outstanding German public figures such as Rita Süssmuth, Josef Joffe and Wolf Biermann lectured on special occasions of the Institute.
Scholarships and Academic Exchange
The Bucerius Institute has an active exchange program for M.A. and Ph.D. students with grants and scholarships. Numerous renowned visiting research scholars have given well attended lectures and seminars under the Institute’s auspices.
The Institute has active cooperations with other research institutions, such as the Leo Baeck Institute, the German-Israeli Foundation for Scientific Research and Development, the Simon Dubnow Institute for Jewish History and Culture, the Hamburg Institute for Social Research, the Institute for the History of the German Jews, the various German party foundations in Israel, and other academic Institutes in Germany.