The German Science and Humanities Council (Wissenschaftsrat, WR) is the oldest science policy advisory body in Europe. It was founded on 5 September 1957 in the Federal Republic of Germany by the German federal government and the states (Länder) on the basis of an Administrative Agreement. It advises the federal government and the governments of the states on any questions pertaining to the content and structural development of science, research and higher education.
Through the work carried out by the WR during its first years, it contributed significantly to the establishment of an internationally competitive high-performance research and higher education system. Around the time of the German reunification, the WR laid the foundation for developing an efficient science landscape in the new federal states.
To this day, the WR supports important science policy issues such as:
_ educational expansion and the extension of the higher education system
_ questions of effectiveness and efficiency in science and research
_ the German reunification and its consequences
_ tendencies of differentiation and internationalisation in the research and higher education system
On the WR work programme (German version only)