UA Ruhr Celebrates 20 Years with the Launch of the Future’s Fellowship Program: A New Era of Research Collaboration

Attendees of Presidents Roundtable UA Ruhr May 2024 © Nathalie Schueller

Discover how the UA Ruhr‘s newly launched Future’s Fellowship Program is set to strongly impact our international research collaborations, with key insights from the Presidents’ Roundtable on leveraging science and academia to tackle global challenges.

The University Alliance Ruhr (UA Ruhr) is an alliance of the Ruhr-Universität Bochum, TU Dortmund University and the University of Duisburg-Essen. The UA Ruhr Liaison Office New York represents these three universities in North America founded in 2004.

On May 9th, UA Ruhr celebrated its 20th anniversary with the launch of the Future’s Fellowship Program – a competitive fellowship initiative designed for researchers affiliated with the three universities. The 2024 founding cohort of Future’s Fellowship Program are researching at top institutions in the US: Lehigh University, Cornell University, and the University of Virginia.

Together with the DWIH – German Center for Research and Innovation New York, UA Ruhr hosted a Presidents’ Roundtable on Addressing Global Challenges: The Intersection of Science, Diplomacy, and Academia. The Presidents of TU Dortmund University – Prof. Dr. Manfred Bayer; University of Duisburg-Essen, – Prof. Dr. Barbara Albert; and Ruhr University Bochum – Prof. Dr. Dr. h. c. Martin Paul shared updates from the universities and opportunities to collaboration with our North American partners.

Participants of the roundtable emphasized the crucial role of scientific exchange in combating political polarization and skepticism. They highlighted the need for efforts like those led by UA Ruhr and partners, including the IIE Institute of International Education and the New Universities in Exile Consortium. These collaborations showcase the power of diverse perspectives in solving complex problems and driving innovation. Moderated by Britta Baron and Dr. Joann Halpern, with insights from Oscar Romero of NYCCEC, the discussions spotlighted the benefits of internships, civic engagement, and embracing diversity across academia.

While Public-Private Partnerships were praised for integrating science and the economy, concerns about barriers to exchange in illiberal regimes were raised. The roundtable called for better remuneration and job security for educators to attract top STEM talent. Strategies to attract international students to Germany, such as more English-taught programs and improved marketing, were also discussed. These steps are essential for making Germany an appealing destination for global talent.

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Consul General David Gill, Consulate General of Germany New York, addressed the importance of transatlantic academic exchanges and science diplomacy during the luncheon keynote address. Presidents Bayer, Albert, and Paul reiterated their commitment to these endeavors.

In summary, the Presidents’ Roundtable highlighted the importance of collaboration, diversity, and innovation in tackling global challenges. The Future’s Fellowship Program, backed by strong international partnerships, is set to advance science, diplomacy, and academia for our researchers and partners. As UA Ruhr celebrates 20 years of excellence, this program stands as a testament to its commitment to shaping the future of research collaboration.

For more information on the Future’s Fellowship Program, visit