Institute of Chinese Studies
The Institute for Chinese Studies as part of the Faculty of Philosophy at the University of Heidelberg was established in 1962. Prof. Bauer was then the first chair until he took up his new position at Munich. In 1968 Prof. Debon was appointed to the vacant chair and acted as the head of the department until his retirement in 1986.
In 1987 Prof. Rudolf Wagner succeeded him and the University began a strategic development of Chinese Studies. A second professorship was established and Prof. Susanne Weigelin-Schwiedrzik was appointed in 1989 to strengthen the study of modern China and the teaching of the modern Chinese language. A third professor, Dr. Barend ter Haar, arrived in 1994. He left to take up the chair in Leiden University in 2000. Prof. Weigelin-Schwiedrzik also left Heidelberg for Vienna University in 2002. Their positions were filled again in 2004, with Prof. Müller-Saini and Prof. Mittler. 2012 Prof. Wagner was succeeded by Prof. Giele. The newly established position of junior professor of “Economy and society of China and East Asia” was first held by Dr. Christian Göbel and since 2014 by Dr Anja-Désirée Senz. Since 2009, Joachim Kurtz, professor for intellectual history at the Cluster of Excellency "Asia and Europe in a Global Context", is also affiliated with the institute.
The institute is actively engaged in various academic projects, ranging from Chinese textbooks (Prof. Müller-Saini) and paleography (Prof. Giele), knowledge exchange between China, Japan and Europe (Prof. Kurtz), economic cooperation and transcultural linkages in China's border regions as well as in local Chinese politics (Junior Prof. Senz), to Chinese contemporary music, the Chinese public sphere and contemporary popular culture (Prof. Mittler). The library has a number of exceptional holdings such as films, musical scores and recordings, news-media old and new and numerous otherwise inaccessible databases. The institute is located in the heart of the pictoresque city of Heidelberg. Visitors are very welcome.