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Special Strength in four Research Profile Areas

TU Dortmund, its Profile Areas and the University Alliance

Research at TU Dortmund University enjoys particular national and international visibility in its four profile areas. Research projects in these fields account for more than two thirds of third-party funding. Additionally, the University Alliance Ruhr (UA Ruhr) pools the research strengths of its three member universities Dortmund, Bochum and Duisburg-Essen in two UA Ruhr Flagship Programs.

The Four Profile Areas of TU Dortmund University

Chemical Biology, Drug Research and Process Engineering

New developments in the biosciences depend greatly on our understanding of the underlying molecular biological processes and on the development of new microtech tools. TU Dortmund University has strongly driven such research with a particular focus on Chemistry and Molecular Biology as well as a microtechnology and process engineering. Our research in Chemical Biology focuses on the function, modification and interactions between proteins and modulators. Our second focus in bioscientific research is the bio-technological production of fine chemicals and drug precursors, including the steps necessary to separate and process them.

In this profile area, the Faculties of Biochemical and Chemical Engineering, Chemistry and Chemical Biology as well as Physics participate in the Cluster of Excellence ”RESOLV – Ruhr Explores Solvation” at Ruhr-Universität Bochum. TU Dortmund University also cooperates closely with the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Physiology (MPI) and the Leibniz Institute for Analytical Sciences (ISAS).

Dortmund is a hub for drug development, combining the expertise of two faculties, three Max Planck and Leibniz Institutes and commercial experience into the ”Center for Integrated Drug Research” and “Drug Discovery Hub Dortmund” in order to translate academic innovation in drug research into pharmaceutical application.

Prominent projects within the profile area include:

  • RESOLV, the Cluster of Excellence defining the novel interdisciplinary field of Solvation Science,
  • CRC/Transregio 63, Integrated Chemical Processes in Liquid Multiphase Systems, doing BLA,
  • The BMBF-funded research initiative ”Medical Chemistry for Dortmund”, establishing three early career research groups and
  • Drug Discovery Hub Dortmund, a TU Dortmund-led consortium for the efficient transfer of academic innovation into pharmaceutical application.

Education, Schooling and Inclusion

Our research on youth, school and education produces empirical research outcomes as well as research-based development concepts for the entire range of preschool, school and vocational education.

The profile area is driven by three faculties - Education, Psychology and Sociology, Mathematica and Rehabilitation Science.

For three decades, the Center for Research on Education and School Development has continuously analyzed fundamental empirical data on the German education system. The Dortmund Competence Center for Teacher Training and Educational Research (DoKoLL), the German Academy for Educational Leaders (DAPF), the Center for Applied Psychology and the Center for Higher Education Research (zhb) all contribute their skills and assets to strengthen this profile area.

Prominent projects within the profile area include:

  • DoProfiL, developing next-generation methods of teaching in inclusive education,
  • TIMSS (Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study), a nation-wide assessment of primary school mathematical and scientific competence,
  • PIRLS/IGLU (Progress in International Reading Literacy Study) a nation-wide assessment of primary school reading competence and
  • “Easy Reading”, a joint European project on how to increase inclusive access to digital information.

Two UA Ruhr Flagship Programs

Materials Chain

Materials Chain-LogoMaterials Chain pools and strengthens research activities in the field of Materials Science. The goal of the UA Ruhr Flagship Program is to reach a complete and concise description of the entire materials chain – from atoms to finished technical components and vice versa. Materials Chain covers all stages of modern Materials Science, from designing, manufacturing and refining materials to their characterization and processing within the production chain. This expertise at the three universities of Dortmund, Bochum and Duisburg-Essen, which combines the activities of more than 200 research groups, is highly recognized internationally.



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