Forschungsbörse Science Year 2012

students receive certificate

Their job is to do research on sustainable development – but what exactly is their everyday work about? In the Forschungsbörse project researchers from all over Germany are letting school students look over their shoulders as they work in the hope of getting them excited about their research and their field.

Sustainable development is the focus of this year’s Science Year, whose motto is “Project Earth: Our Future”. It seeks to address young people in particular and encourage them to get involved in sustainable development research and think about the challenges posed by a global ecosystem in a state of change. 

It is very important to give young research talent the opportunity to meet with researchers in person. The Science Years’ Forschungsbörse project provides just such a platform. The website has helped put researchers, experts and professionals from various scientific disciplines in contact with schools in every Science Year since 2010.

More than 280 researchers and scientists have been involved in Science Year 2010 – The Future of Energy and Science Year 2011 – Research for our Health and have paid visits to classrooms in years 4 to 13 at schools all over Germany. During the Science Year 2012, the Forschungsbörse will add experts in sustainable development research who are interested and have the time to talk about their work and let school students see it up close at school. Some 50 experts in the field have already registered.

Researchers in school

The range of research fields that researchers and scientists represent is wide. The Science Year 2012 “Project Earth: Our Future” focuses on our prospects for the future and those of future generations and sheds light on what science and research can do to secure that future. The answer to that question is complex and puts three key issues at the core of this Science Year: 

How do we want to live?
How must we structure our economy?
How can we preserve our environment?

These questions involve research fields that deal with the complex changes occurring in our global ecosystem and their consequences. These areas mainly concern

•    Environmental research (climate, water, soil)
•    Research in environmental technologies
•    Earth system research
•    Energy research
•    Economics and finance, social sciences, humanities

As a result, new Forschungsbörse members include ecologists, economists, biologists and chemists as well as engineers, urban planners, architects, sociologists, historians and philosophers; in other words, sustainability experts who represent the entire spectrum of issues relevant to our Earth’s future and who hope to rouse school students’ fascination for their research field.

Just a click away

As the Science Year 2012 “Project Earth: Our Future” kicks off in February 2012 the Forschungsbörse and its associated sustainability research experts will go online. This is how it works: the web page features scientists and researchers who introduce themselves, their work and their institution. Anyone who would like to join and register can do so directly on the website or by contacting the Science Year Office (Büro Wissenschaftsjahre) at forschungsboerse(at)

The entries feature the experts’ photos and a personal statement in which they make the case for their discipline and encourage school students to take up contact. School classes can “book” an expert for a personal appearance in their classroom via the website. 

The Science Year office is glad to arrange press interviews with experts and provides bulletins of Forschungsbörse school appointments.


Büro Wissenschaftsjahre – PT-DLR e.V.
Alexandra Therése Gottschalk
Rosa-Luxemburg-Str. 2| 10178 Berlin
Tel.: 030 67055782
Fax:  030 67055789 


More information on how to "Get involved"