African Studies − A Focus Area with Tradition
Our regional research focus on Africa has existed since the establishment of the University of Bayreuth in 1975. Today, the term African Studies refers to the totality of Bayreuth's Africa-related research and training activities animated by 40 different disciplines and subject areas, from cultural and language studies to the social sciences, economics, and law to the Earth sciences and biosciences. The Institute of African Studies coordinates all Africa-related activities at the University of Bayreuth.
Within this wide and diverse range of disciplines, which is unique for a single university, interdisciplinary cooperation has been consistently encouraged from the very beginning.
The collaboration between academics from different fields working in the same region and addressing joint questions creates strong synergies, which have led to the establishment of research groups, bachelor's and master's programmes, and doctoral programmes, with a high proportion of researchers from Africa.
The high quality of Africa-related research at the University of Bayreuth is reflected in the milestone we have reached in the Excellence Strategy of Germany's federal and state governments: our draft proposal for a Cluster of Excellence has received a positive review, and we have now been asked to submit a full proposal. "For African Studies at the University of Bayreuth, this is major recognition of our work to date," said Prof. Dr. Rüdiger Seesemann, chairman of the proposed cluster. Here you will find the press release relating to the Excellence Strategy.
Our university library houses the second largest collection of books and media on Africa in Germany, with 155,000 volumes and media items, which provide an important basis for Bayreuth's internationally recognized Africa expertise.