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The Faculty of Social Science is one of very few scientific institutions in Germany that has been persistently pursuing a modern interdisciplinary approach of Social Science for decades and has realised it in the teaching and also the research activities. The de-central feature of the Faculty of Social Science lies in the linking of the sections Political Science, Sociology, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology, Social Policy and Social Economy as well as Social Science Methodology and Statistics.

Beside the interdisciplinary Social Science approach the Faculty has another special feature: the exceptionally pronounced research excellence reflected in the volume and the composition of the acquired third-party funds, in the amount and quality of the doctorates as well as in nationally and internationally renowned publications. In comparison to other institutions the Faculty is not only strong in the basic research financed by the DFG, the VolkswagenStiftung and other scientific institutions for promotion, but also in the linking of basic research and application-oriented research. This is demonstrated in particular by the integration of research and teaching.

The Faculty of Social Science has developed a convincing concept for the integration of research and teaching in terms of a researching teaching and a teaching research. These efforts of a teaching-research-integration have a long tradition. The approach of researching teaching and teaching research enhances the education level and the motivation of the students; it can enrich research and it improves the labour market chances for the graduates.

The fourth special feature of the Faculty of Social Science as well as the Ruhr-Universität as a whole is its unique embedding within a metropolitan macro-region, which offers a concentration of large enterprises and organisations as well as a structure of public administrations and all kinds of institutions unequalled in Germany and worldwide. The Faculty is involved in various consulting- and development networks of the region by its association with the institutes ZEFIR, InWIS and IAT and has participated in the structuring of change with several research projects. The regional integration of the Ruhr-Universität as a campus university and the Faculty of Social Science provides enormous chances for the cooperation with the industry, with associations and organisations as well as with public institutions benefiting the education and career chances of the students. The Faculty of Social Science has intensive contacts and co-operations developed over the course of decades and stabilised and extended by topical specific measures.

The fifth special feature of the Faculty of Social Science is its integration in and orientation on international networks and intensive international exchange in research and teaching. For many years we have had cooperation agreements with foreign universities, with a regular exchange of students and teaching staff like with the Universidad de Oviedo or the UAM-Mexico. Cooperation on European level has already been developed in the field of Gender Studies and has set an internationally visible sign for gender research with the Marie-Jahoda-professorship looked after by the Faculty. Members of the Faculty are also involved in the international study programmes of the Institut für Entwicklungsländerforschung [Institute of Development Research and Development Policy] (IEE) and the Institut für Friedenssicherungs- und Humanitäres Völkerrecht [Institute for International Law of Peace and Armed Conflict] (IFHV). The Faculty of Social Science is responsible for the study course ECUE which has an international outlook. At present there is for instance an international research cooperation going on (among others international association projects) with the universities Florence (EHI), Granada, Keele, Lodz, Mexico (UAM), Murcia, Newcastle, Oviedo, Oxford, Paris, Seoul (Ehwa), Stockholm, Tokyo and Warsaw. Furthermore the members of the Faculty are involved in many national and international publishing boards and functions.