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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Integrative Research Institutes

Integrative Research Institutes (IRIs) are interdisciplinary research institutes at Humboldt-Universität. They focus on a research field in which the University aims to become an international leader. Researchers of the Humboldt-Universität work closely with partner organisations and international visitors at an IRI.

As interdisciplinary institutes, the IRIs promote intra-university collaborations with a strong research focus and thus play a decisive role in overall profile-building at the University. At the same time, the IRIs tap into the potential found at the interface between university and non-university research and make a crucial contribution to the long-term development of collaborative research at Humboldt-Universität. In addition to their high potential for academic innovation, the IRIs also have a structural impact on the University’s governance and create new models of academic collaboration beyond the boundaries of individual disciplines.

The IRIs also work closely with the Humboldt Graduate School on providing support to young researchers.

IRIS Adlershof

The Integrative Research Institute for the Sciences – IRIS Adlershof – was founded in 2009 as the first IRI at HUmboldt-Universität. It conducts interdisciplinary research on innovative hybrid materials and functional systems. IRIS Adlershof provides important impetus for the development of Campus Adlershof by making use of bridging professorships, developing shared infrastructure (Joint Lab for Structural Research) and increasingly collaborating with business and industry. It promotes young researchers by working closely with the Graduate School of Analytical Sciences Adlershof (SALSA), which is funded by the Excellence Initiative.

IRI für Lebenswissenschaften

The IRI for the Life Sciences (IRI LS) was inaugurated at the beginning of 2013. It integrates the research approaches of the Humboldt-Universität, from the molecular level right up to patient-focused clinical research, with work by its renowned collaboration partners, the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine and the Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin. The IRI LS plays a pivotal role in developing Campus Nord into a life-sciences research centre.


The third IRI of the Humboldt-Universität works on the transformation of human-environment systems (THESys). It serves to connect the sustainability research conducted at several different HU faculties. The aim of working more closely with non-university partners in the field of climate research is to make use of and maximise synergies. Junior research groups are set up with the specific goal of promoting excellent young researchers.