GGSB Lecture Week 2023: History & Outlook 

Background: Forschungszentrum Jülich (FZJ) and Georgian universities (AUG, GTU, ISU, KIU, TSU) are engaged in a manifold of cooperation projects for many years, which are merged and coordinated in the Georgian-German Science Bridge (GGSB). The cooperation of Jülich and Georgian partners has been put on solid ground by a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and a student exchange program with the Shota Rustaveli National Science Foundation of Georgia (SRNSFG) (more recently also with other Helmholtz Centers in Germany (GSI and HZDR)). Georgian students have conducted Master and PhD work in different FZJ-institutes under a joint Georgia-Juelich call.

As part of the GGSB concept, educational programs for Georgian students have been conducted as so-called “Autumn Lectures” at the Georgian Technical University (GTU) in 2013 and 2015. In 2017 and 2019, a new initiative (so-called “QUALI-Start-Up Lectures”) took place in Jülich, in which scientists of FZJ institutes (IEK, IKP, INM, PGI, ZEA) provided theoretical as well as practical trainings to selected Georgian students (from AUG, GTU, ISU and TSU) at experimental and technological facilities of FZJ. The subjects of these training courses were in the fields of basic science and included lectures in experimental and theoretical physics, chemistry, mathematics, life sciences and health as well as engineering science with an emphasis on application of technologies. In addition, “Workshops and Summer Schools” were held at different locations in Georgia in even years. They started in 2004 with an interruption during the pandemic and were restarted in 2022.

2023 Meeting: The German and Georgian institutions involved in GGSB intend to continue these activities with a one-week GGSB lecture course (June 26 – 30, 2023) in Tbilisi. This will be the first step to prepare the next edition of QUALI-Start-Up lectures - which are planned as distributed events in Aachen, Darmstadt, Dresden-Rossendorf and Jülich. During the Lecture Week, the German partner institutions and their major projects will be introduced, such that interested Georgian students will get an overview of the various possibilities in Germany. The students (who should be preselected by the Georgian universities) will be finally selected by a panel consisting of Georgian/German supervisors and further institute directors and receive individual grants for internships at German institutions (FZJ, GSI, HZDR, RWTH Aachen).

The event was sponsored by a joint grant of Volkswagen Foundation and SRNSF Georgia (Ref. 93 562 & #04/48).