Events & Projects

  Pinboard with colourful post-its, three headlines: step, obstacle, strategy Copyright: © David Beecroft

The initiative has its origins in the international science evening RWTH hosted in 2021 in Berlin to mark its 150th anniversary.



+49 241 80 93891



Building on the takeaways gathered there, RWTH launched other events, such as panel discussions and digital workshops, to give the community the further opportunities it obviously needed to expand on the topic. In the course of these events, we formed the “Next Generation University” initiative.

Over the last few months, RWTH hosted a series of workshops and events for dialogue and exchange of ideas with individuals from academia, business, politics, and the media.


Upcoming Events

  • May 6/7, 2024: Kick-off event (by invitation only)
  • End of 2025: 1st Next Generation University Summit

Past Events

Networking and Work Meeting (November 7, 2023)

Next Generation University – Shaping the Future of Universities

Part of the Berlin Science Week

How can universities attract the very brightest talent? How can they achieve more diversity and inclusion in the translation process? And how can they remain relevant despite societal changes? These three central questions were the focus of the Next Generation University initiative workshop on November 7, 2023 at the Kunstfabrik Schlot jazz club in Berlin - an event that was held as part of Berlin Science Week. Some impromptu takeaways from this special get-together were: "Irritation as a driving force." - "Bravery! Don't let your inner critic stop you!" - "Transfer needs places, no system." The "Next Generation University" initiative wants to continue to offer creative spaces like this afternoon to bring together researchers, science managers, and innovators from the science system and its environment (entrepreneurship, culture, politics) to discuss the most pressing questions about the future of our universities.


Digital Workshop #4 (May 16, 2023)

Next Generation University – It´s Time to Rethink… The Interplay Between Science, Politics and Media

COVID-19, Climate, China: What does science have to achieve, policymakers to implement, and the media world to disseminate in future? What new structures are needed to enhance science-based policy consulting? And how must the institutions involved change to achieve this task? Some answers and food for thought to these questions can be found in the attached report.

  man writes something on a piece of paper Copyright: © David Beecroft

Digital-Workshop #3 (November 23, 2022)

Next Generation University – It’s Time to Rethink… How to Transfer DARPA’s DNA to Europe?

How can we in Europe find an adequate response to the U.S. format “Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency,” or DARPA for short? Can universities in this country expand their role as innovation drivers to such an extent that they could become a European equivalent of DARPA? Together with nearly 30 academics, innovation enthusiasts and systems experts, we tackled the promising idea of how to transfer the autonomy, positive error culture, and radical innovation capability of the US-American DARPA to Europe.


Digital Workshop #2 (June 3, 2022)

Next Generation University - It’s Time to Rethink... Translation

Focus: Translating Research Into Entrepreneurial Impact, barriers and success factors. We see translation as the opportunity of our time to work across sectors, faster, more naturally, and, above all, disruptively to solve global challenges. Within this broad concept, we paid particular attention to the following factors in this workshop: Inclusion / networking and communication / information-sharing formats between science, business, and society / incentives and concrete forms of collaboration.

  someone writes something on a board Copyright: © David Beecroft

Digital Workshop #1 (December 3, 2021)

Brainstorming Event

At this first digital workshop, we were interested in what experts from universities, foundations, science organizations, and the cultural sector see as the biggest challenges for universities. How self-reflective and willing to change are the players in the science system? What drives them? Given the multitude of challenges within the institutions, but also of a global nature, we wanted to hear assessments: In which areas is it worthwhile for universities to test new things because action at this point promises the greatest possible added value? So, where do we start if we want to build the “Next Generation University”? The workshop thus served as a compass for setting the topics for the following workshops.

  chancellor Nettekoven speaks at a lectern and is filmed Copyright: © Stefanie Loos

International Science Evening

“The New Fiction of Good Science – in Need of a Paradigm Shift?!” (6. Mai 2021)


Similar Topics