The universities of UA Ruhr offer a broad variety of cutting-edge research that transcends disciplinary borders and achieves international recognition. The collegial nature within and between disciplines and institutions is one of the true hallmarks of the Ruhr Area. Students, scientists, and scholars who come to the UA Ruhr universities become part of a down-to-earth and close-knit network of research institutes and companies whose impact stretches far beyond the Ruhr Area.


Research at UA Ruhr is developing at a rapid pace. By bundling the complementary strengths of our partner universities, we successfully open up innovative research fields. With joined forces, we thus form critical masses in terms of personnel and infrastructure that are indispensable for handling large research topics.


Outstanding examples of that standard-setting collaboration include the Flagship Programs “Materials Chain” and “Ruhr Explores Solvation” (RESOLV), set up in 2015, where numerous researchers from the UA Ruhr universities work hand in hand, often in cooperation with other third-party and international partners. The research cluster RESOLV is financed by the DFG Excellence Initiative.

Moreover, 100 additional joint research institutions and projects have been established spanning all disciplines, from American studies to cell biology.

One of our strengths is nurturing young talent. Young researchers are promoted through various interdisciplinary programs, including individual coaching, as well as in numerous Graduate Schools. The Mercator Research Center Ruhr (MERCUR) supports this unique cooperation by providing 46 million € for collaborative research endeavours.

A key tool for fostering the collaboration between the universities are the UA Ruhr professorships, funded by MERCUR with up to one million euros. The professorships help define a competitive UA Ruhr profile and have so far been awarded to

  • Prof. Thomas K. Bauer in order to provide digital data in Social Sciences and Economics
  • Prof. Manfred Bayer in order to enhance cooperation in investigating novel materials via laser spectroscopy
  • Prof. Malte Behrens in order to pool competencies in the field of "Materials Chemistry of Catalysts" in the Flagship Program Materials Chain
  • Prof. Martina Havenith-Newen to facilitate the continuous expansion of the UA Ruhr Flagship Program RESOLV
  • Prof. Sven Rahmann in order to pool competencies at the UA Ruhr Center for Computational Biology
  • Prof. Petra Wiederkehr to develop the research focus "Virtual Manufacturing" in the Flagship Program Materials Chain