Freie Universität Berlin is a leading research institution. It is one of the German universities successful in all three funding lines in the federal and state Excellence Initiative, thereby receiving additional funding for its institutional future development strategy.

Freie Universität also submitted proposals in the Excellence Strategy, the German government’s successor to the Excellence Initiative. As of January 2019, four research cluster projects are now being funded through the Excellence Strategy. The clusters are based on structures that were already successfully established within the Excellence Initiative.

In the Excellence Strategy Freie Universität is working more closely with Humboldt-Universität and Technische Universität as well as with Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin. These institutions applied together in the Universities of Excellence funding line.

The university’s performance in the Excellence Initiative provided funding for several new graduate schools and transdisciplinary research clusters. In particular, the graduate schools play a key role in the development of internationally competitive research centers of excellence.

Freie Universität Berlin has 16 academic departments and central institutes offering over 150 degree programs across a wide range of subjects.