Founded in 1386, Heidelberg University is Germany’s oldest university, and one of the top research universities in Europe. Its success in international rankings documents its leading position in the scientific landscape.
Heidelberg University is a comprehensive university, offering the full spectrum of disciplines in the humanities, law and the social sciences alongside the natural and life sciences, including medicine. Among the university’s most prominent research areas are transcultural studies, molecular life sciences, medicine, physics, astronomy, chemistry, mathematics and scientific computing. As a comprehensive university, Heidelberg is deeply committed to strengthening its disciplines and to fostering interdisciplinary cooperation, as well as to carrying research results over into society and industry.
Heidelberg University strongly emphasises on international cooperation. Over the years, it has established a worldwide network of research and teaching partnerships. South Asia and India in particular are essential cornerstones of Heidelberg University’s international collaboration strategy.
The strong focus on Asia is evidenced among other ways by the founding of the South Asia Institute (SAI), an interdisciplinary centre for research and teaching on South Asia founded in 1962. Unique in Germany the South Asia Institute ties together the social and economic sciences as well as geography with the cultural sciences embracing history and philology. The SAI opened its branch office in New Delhi in 1962, and thus was one of the first European academic institutions to be represented in India. In 2009, Heidelberg University inaugurated the Heidelberg Centre South Asia (HCSA) in New Delhi replacing the branch office of the SAI. In acknowledgement of Heidelberg University’s contributions to the study of South Asia the Indian Council for Cultural Relations has established the Heinrich‐Zimmer‐Chair for Indian Philosophy and Intellectual History at the SAI in 2009.
The Cluster of Excellence “Asia and Europe in a Global Context”, established in 2007, has underscored and extended Heidelberg University’s outstanding expertise in South Asian studies. It is an interdisciplinary network of researchers who examine the processes of cultural exchange between Asia and Europe.
Heidelberg University is also well linked within a worldwide network of research and teaching partnerships. In India, Heidelberg University maintains partnerships with the University of Delhi in Delhi, and the Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi.
Heidelberg provides excellent education and research opportunities for students and scholars from all over the world. Heidelberg University is home to over 29,000 full-time students, including more than 5,000 foreign students. Heidelberg has attracted undergraduates and graduates from India for years. Of the 115 Indian students currently enrolled in Heidelberg, 63% are pursuing their Ph.D. Heidelberg University also attracts several hundred visiting scientists and researchers each academic year from all over the world, among them roughly 30 scholars from India.