Professor Sabine Kunst


President of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Prof. Sabine Kunst Copyright: © Matthias Heyde

Under which constraints will universities be forced to operate?

Throughout the coronavirus crisis, universities received government support in numerous measures, such as emergency funds for students, bridging offers in qualification phases, and funding for digital teaching formats. However, according to a DIW estimate, public coffers will be facing a net loss of around 230 billion euros by the end of 2021.

This will surely have an impact on the priorities set in future budgets. What does this mean for universities, which are already inadequately funded? To what extent is there even any leeway left for negotiating new university contracts? And under which constraints will universities be forced to operate? The consequences of the coronavirus crisis will inevitably have an impact on university governance.

Given the tight budget situation and the experience gained from unforeseen developments such as a pandemic, it is vital to open up flexible management options for universities to secure the freedom and innovative power of science and lastingly strengthen its recently proven status in society.