University Research Networks
Research networks are intended to facilitate interdisciplinary networking and collaboration between research groups and can be established in strategic fields of importance to the University of Basel. Networks are organized bottom-up, they finance themselves and use synergies to intensify and develop their scientific activities. An application for recognition of a University Research Network can be submitted to the vice rectorate for research by at least five members of group I or II of the University of Basel from at least two different departments. University research networks have the possibility to apply to the research fund for support in carrying out scientific activities of the network. Further information on the character of University Research Networks is provided in the guidelines.
Research Network Sustainable Future
The research network «Sustainable Future» (SF) connects a variety of research groups in the field of sustainability and strengthens their activities at the University of Basel.
The field of sustainability research addresses major future challenges, which can only be addressed by close interdisciplinary cooperation. This research network fosters interaction and collaboration among the participating research groups (and external partners) and supports the development of larger interdisciplinary research projects. Currently, the main network activities are focusing on the topics of «non-technical energy research», «(bio-)diversity» and «digitalization», and the interfaces between these topics.
In addition to promoting specific research activities, the «Sustainable Future» network coordinates a knowledge transfer on specific topics and supports scientific outreach. It thus connects and increases the visibility of all sustainability research at the University of Basel.
The research network brings together researchers from the Faculty of Economics, the Faculty of Humanities, the Faculty of Natural Sciences, the Faculty of Theology and the Faculty of Psychology.
Managing director: Andrea Ottolini-Voellmy
Basel Stem Cell Network
The Basel Stem Cell Network (BSCN) aims to drive forward stem cell research in biomedicine, cancer research, as well as research in metabolic diseases, aging and regenerative medicine. Its goal is to exploit the unique opportunities resulting from the close proximity of over 50 research groups, working in clinical and basic research on a wide range of questions related to stem cells. Research topics include the biology of stem cells, epigenetics, in vitro differentiation programs, cell signaling, cell fate determination, and a variety of clinical applications in and beyond the hematopoietic system. There is also a growing interest of basic research laboratories and of the pharmaceutical industry for the in vitro use of stem cell-based assay systems to study development and to model diseases.
The BSCN involves scientists working at the department Biomedicine of the Medical Faculty and the department Biozentrum of the Faculty of Science at the University of Basel, the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE) of the ETH Zurich in Basel, the Friedrich Miescher Institute and Novartis and Roche.
Director: Prof. Dr. Verdon Taylor
Contact: Prof. Dr. Aleksandra Wodnar-Filipowicz
Network Immunology (UBICO)
The University of Basel Immunology Community (UBICO) comprises numerous research groups working on topics of basic and translational research. Their research focuses on the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases such as arthritis, diabetes or MS, the early detection of viral or fungal infections by the immune system and the development of the immune system. Other important areas of investigation are metabolic diseases, antibiotic resistance, transplantation, and infection immunology. The goal is the development of new therapeutic strategies in connection with clinical medicine by interactive cooperation of researchers from different disciplines. The network also organizes events such as the Basel Immunology Focus Symposium, a Distinguished Immunology Speakers Program and various retreats.
About 30 research groups from the Department of Biomedicine and Biozentrum of the University of Basel and the University Children's Hospital Basel (UKBB) are involved in the Immunology Network.
Director: Prof. Dr. Jean Pieters
Contact: Maja Güntensperger
University Research Centers and Platforms
University research centers and platforms are long term clusters of research groups that are collaborating beyond the borders of their particular disciplines. They are financed by their own budget. The directors of platforms can be associated with two faculties in joint professorships.
eikones – Center for the Theory and History of the Image
The digital revolution unfolding since the early 1990s has transformed the old, inert image into an extremely flexible instrument. Even in the modern world of science, images are an indispensable research tool. Questions about the image, its ability to unlock knowledge, its power and its impact are at the core of topics treated by the previous National Center of Competence in Research (NCCR) “Iconic Criticism - the power and meaning of images” that will be continued as eikones Research Center.
“Iconic Criticism” gives the same attention to the image that language has received for centuries. In various disciplines, the image is considered as an established topic of research and is subject to critical reflection with the aim of developing expert knowledge to deal with images in their diverse facets, intellectual and historical perspectives as well as political, practical and artistic points of view.
Director: Prof. Dr. Ralph Ubl
Contact: Dr. Malika Maskarinec
Swiss Nanoscience Institute
The Swiss Nanoscience Institute (SNI) at the University of Basel is a center of excellence for nanoscience and nanotechnology. It was founded in 2006 by the Canton Aargau and the University of Basel in order to promote research, education and technology transfer in nanoscience and nanotechnology in Northwestern Switzerland. The SNI emerged from the National Center of Competence in Research (NCCR) "Nanoscale Science" (2001-2013) with the University of Basel as Leading House. The Nano Imaging Lab was established in 2016 and offers imaging services for research groups and external partners. The technology division and the electronic and mechanical workshops of the Department of Physics are available for researchers.
Director: Prof. Dr. Christian Schönenberger
Contact: Claudia Wirth
Transfaculty Research Platform Molecular and Cognitive Neurosciences
The Transfaculty Research Platform Molecular and Cognitive Neurosciences (MCN) was one of the first transfaculty endeavors of the University of Basel and has developed into a thriving hub for neuroscience-oriented psychological and psychiatric research. MCN focuses on the molecular, neurobiological and neural underpinnings of human emotional and cognitive processes and the development of novel treatment options for neuropsychiatric disorders. MCN is affiliated with the Faculty of Psychology and with the University Psychiatric Clinics of the Medical Faculty. Members of MCN have backgrounds in various disciplines, including psychology, psychiatry, biology and mathematics.
Direction: Prof. Dr. Dominique de Quervain, Prof. Dr. Andreas Papassotiropoulos
Contact: Melanie Knabe
National Research Cooperations
Plant Science Center
The Zurich-Basel Plant Science Center is an established center for plant sciences of the University of Basel, the ETH Zurich and the University of Zurich. It was founded in 1998 and aims at the promotion of scientific exchange and cooperation as well as increasing knowledge about plants and organisms interacting with them. By supporting innovative and transdisciplinary research projects as well as applying findings from basic research, sustainable development of the environment and agriculture is promoted. The dialog with the public is strengthened by contributing scientific views to social, economic and political topics.
Direction: Prof. Dr. Yvonne Willi, PD Dr. Günter Hoch
Contact: Sylvia Martinez