A developing Internationalization Strategy

International strategies and cooperations

The University of Stuttgart has made internalization a strategic goal. It cultivates cooperations and partnerships around the globe for networked teaching and research.

Internationally engaged and interconnected

The University of Stuttgart's strategic goal expressed in the slogan “internationally engaged and networked” describes undertakings with a global perspective.

Because an international orientation encourages diverse intellectual approaches, it attracts students and scientists from around the world. The University’s international atmosphere, the way it organizes studies, and the focused way it promotes international projects ensure that our graduates are equipped to meet their responsibilities in various contexts, both here at home and abroad.  

Researchers, students, and staff take international and cultural aspects into account in their methods, programs, and ways of working. They promote the University of Stuttgart’s self-image as a

  • Globally recognized research university on the cutting edge of scientific-technological progress,
  • as well as a

  • Reliable and internationally accepted partner for knowledge and technology transfer in industry, science, and society

Cooperations around the globe

The University of Stuttgart cooperates with foreign universities in both research and teaching. This can mean participation in research alliances, exchange programs or dual-degree study programs. The world map shown here pinpoints partner universities and selected cooperations. For more detail, see the definition list segmented by region, each designated by capital letters on the map.

Weltkarte mit Standorten ausgewählter Kooperationshochschulen auf allen Kontinenten (c)
With 320 cooperations around the world, the University of Stuttgart is part of a global network.
A: North America

17 direct partnerships, 6 country programs totaling more than 60 universities

B: Latin America

28 cooperations

C: Europe

ca. 240 relationships in 32 countries

D: Africa

4 cooperations

E: Asia

22 cooperations

F: Oceania

10 cooperations

The internationalization strategy

In 2011, the University of Stuttgart began strategically aligning its diverse international activities and developing an institutional internationalization concept, together with a number of member groups. The development of this continued as part of the development process of a comprehensive university-wide strategy (2013-2018).


In 2017, this process, together with the recommendations and findings from the HRK internationalization auditing process, served as the basis for the internationalization strategy, agreed by the Rectorate. The targets and measures that had been decided upon were then presented to the remaining members of the rectorate, and all other faculties for the purpose of further discussion. The Steering Committee Internationalization was created to implement the internationalization strategy and to ensure sustainable dialogue pertaining to internationalization at the university. This committee includes representatives from all faculties, central offices and administration, as well as students and is currently headed by the Senior Advisor from International Affairs.

The University has staked out goals in the following five areas and decided on the steps necessary to develop it into one of the world’s top leading international research universities. These are the five steps:


To deepen its international scientific collaboration, the University of Stuttgart negotiates global strategic partnerships. The University’s leadership puts special emphasis on relationships with the strategic partnership universities. In an international cooperations context, these are universities with whom a successful partnership already exists and that focus on similar disciplines that are of research-strategic interest.

We showcase a few of these existing strategic partnerships at the bottom of this webpage.

University of Stuttgart’s exchanges of ideas, argumentation, and proposals transcend borders with universities inside and outside Europe. Among other opportunities, the University takes advantage of the EU’s Horizon 2020 Research Framework program. Our international research undertakings are supported by a Project Office conceived of as a central scouting and consulting unit. In addition, new and first-time faculty appointments receive special support for setting up and expanding international research cooperations.  

Find out more about internationalization of research here on the respective area pages.

When preparing for study stays abroad, University Stuttgart students receive specific support that continues as they complete their stays abroad and even beyond in the follow-up phase. The goal is to provide at least a third of undergraduate students with the experience of studying abroad. For this purpose, we conclude exchange and scholarship programs with cooperating universities. Over the course of the next five years, a fourth of the University of Stuttgart’s Master’s degree programs are to be offered in English, the lingua franca of international science.

The page convering services provides an overview of studying abroad for interested students.

Exchanges of knowledge and standards increase when university researchers and students alike are mobile. As an internationally known, high performing research institution, the University of Stuttgart offers a broad array of fields for research and study. To build on Stuttgart as an attractive place for international professors and students, we are increasing the number of courses offered in English and will soon be opening a Welcome Center.

The Welcome Center is currently nearing completion.

The University of Stuttgart Strategic International Network (SINUS) covers all research and teaching areas in a scientific network of international partner institutions. In addition, it maintains an International Center for Culture and Technology (IZKT) and cooperates with academic institutions in sister cities of the city of Stuttgart. It further engages in education cooperations and exploits its membership in international university organizations and agencies.

France Focus and the Italy Center of the IZKT are two international relationship success stories.

Strategic partnerships

The University of Stuttgart has concluded strategic partnerships with select foreign universities. Already in place are oneswith Jiao Tong University in Shanghai and Saint Petersburg Polytechnic University, for example. Others are being prepared for or in the planning stage.

The cooperations span multiple areas. With Shanghai Jiao Tong University, for example, a Joint Research Lab is being set up in China for Stuttgart and Shanghai scientists to do collaborative research on Industry 4.0 projects. For decades, we have enjoyed an active, friendly exchange with professors of the Georgia Institute of Technology that resulted in a dual-degree Master's study program in Mechanical Engineering in which both institutions confer degrees.

Brücke über einen Kanal in Minhang in Shanghai. (c) 蟋有的蟀 (Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0)
The university's campus is situated in the Minhang district.

Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China

This university located in China’s economically most powerful region was founded in 1896 and has a comprehensive research-focused, international orientation. It has 37,000 students enrolled in 29 departments. It offers undergraduate programs in economics, law, literature, science, engineering, agriculture, medicine, management and art. Master’s and PhDs are offered in the fields of economics, law, literature, science, engineering, agriculture, medicine and management. Application-oriented teaching and research, both experimental and using simulation technology, are based on- and off-campus. The laboratories, research, and cooperation centers cover broad areas and make comprehensive knowledge transfer to society and the economy feasible.

Homepage of Shanghai Jiao Tong University

Internationale Studierende im Foyer der Polytechnischen Universität Sankt Petersburg. (c) Media Center, SPbPU
Students come to the Polytech from all over the world, among others, to take advantage of a long tradition of mechanical engineering that the university can look back on.

Saint Petersburg Polytechnic State University (SPbPU) in Russia

This university in Russia’s cultural capital was founded 1899 as Peter the Great University. It sees its mission as translating national policies to the university level. The goal is to create a knowledge economy that leads and innovates. This mission can be traced back to its origins: the first faculties to be set up were economic science, naval architecture, electromechanics and metallurgy. Today, most of the roughly 27,000 students are divided among the disciplines of engineering sciences and technologies and the social sciences. Other faculties are mathematics and natural sciences, humanities, art and educational sciences.

Homepage of the Polytechnic State University Saint Petersburg

Blick in den großen Hörsaal der Universität Bergamo, eine alte Kirche. (c) Università degli Studi di Bergamo (public domain)
Innovation meets tradition: The Aula Magna of the University of Bergamo is located in the heart of the medieval Old Town.

University of Bergamo (Università degli Studi di Bergamo) in Italy

The University of Bergamo is in Lombardy, Italy’s strongest economic region. It opened its doors in 1968 and has about 16,000 students divided between three city campuses. Economics and law are taught downtown; humanities, human science and social sciences as well as linguistics and cultural studies are based in the medieval old town, and the engineering sciences occupy an outlying industrial area, which makes it an optimal location for knowledge transfer and cooperations with industry.

Homepage of the University of Bergamo


Dieses Bild zeigt Holtkamp

Wolfgang Holtkamp

Senior Advisor International Affairs (SAIA)