RWTH Aachen Main Building Copyright: RWTH Aachen  

RWTH Aachen University exploits strong research networks and the intellectual curiosity of its staff to address bold scientific questions, transfer forefront knowledge and drive innovative discoveries that impact global challenges.

All members of RWTH are expected to conduct their research with the highest level of integrity and commitment to excellence and to follow the University’s Code of Conduct in all interactions with third parties on behalf of RWTH.


Major accomplishments over the past decade

  1. developing a strong profile nationally and internationally in the natural sciences
  2. exploiting the Jülich Aachen Research Alliance (JARA), a unique strategic partnership with the Helmholtz Forschungszentrum Jülich to pursue frontier research, share infrastructure and recruit top talent
  3. implementing a tenure track program and targeted initiatives to close the gender gap
  4. establishing eight Profile Areas to promote convergence of different disciplinary expertise. All Profile Areas focus on frontier research at the interfaces of different disciplines and tackle questions of societal relevance

The Excellence Initiative of the German federal and state governments (2006 to 2017) provided RWTH with a unique opportunity to boost its research profile by strengthening the natural sciences and fostering interdisciplinary research. These were the first steps in RWTH’s steady transformation into an Integrated Interdisciplinary University of Technology and also towards convergence.

Topics include sustainable synthetic fuels, data mining, computational science, production technology, high-performance materials, health, renewable resources and mobility.

The successful implementation of the institutional strategy is reflected in the reputation of RWTH’s graduates, the exceptional position of the University regarding acquisition of peer-reviewed third party funds and the RWTH Aachen Campus.

The RWTH Aachen Campus, one of the largest technology-oriented research landscapes in Europe, visibly highlights the research prowess of the University. The entrepreneurial mindset and collaboration with industry partners fostered on the Campus benefit both students and employees of RWTH.

The many stimulating ideas are already having an impact in Aachen and the entire tri-border region of Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands. An innovative knowledge community is evolving that is closely networked with some of the world’s leading research and industry partners.

RWTH is a major driving force behind this development. And Aachen, as a livable and lovable city at the crossroads of three cultures, provides an ideal environment for this creative hub.

  RWTH Aachen graduates learning together Copyright: Peter Winandy

RWTH Graduates in High Demand

RWTH Aachen University offers competence-, research- and practice-oriented training with the goal of developing highly qualified and responsible graduates for leading positions in science, society and business.

The University educates over 45,000 students enrolled in 157 courses. This includes more than 9,500 international students from over 135 countries.

RWTH is known for its world-class university education in Natural Sciences and Engineering

National rankings, international assessments and the high employability of RWTH graduates in academia and industry testify to their excellence as well as their ability to handle complex tasks, lead and work constructively in international teams.

Entrepreneurial Transfer

RWTH embodies a broad knowledge and competence landscape that supports curiosity-driven knowledge creation as well as application-driven engineering solutions. Groundbreaking research at the frontiers of science and technology is conducted in the Profile Areas, Research Centers and in research networks with strategic partners. Embedded in RWTH’s genetic code is the transfer of results from basic and applied research into societally relevant innovations. This leads to numerous developments that are patented and utilized.

The University’s innovative capacity is reflected in the high number of business start-ups (currently more than 1,400). As a result, around 32,000 jobs have been created in the region in the last 25 years.

Furthermore, RWTH Aachen is the largest employer and education provider in the region. RWTH will continue to play a decisive role as a driving force influencing and shaping this high-tech region.

The Vision

RWTH strives to foster a unique educational and networked research environment that embraces the convergence of knowledge, approaches and insights from the humanities, economics, engineering, natural and life sciences.

RWTH aims to be the best German University of science and technology and one of the top five in Europe. This will be measured by the reputation of its graduates, research networks and the impact of the research as well as the University’s ability to attract top global talent and necessary external funding to reach its scientific goals.

RWTH Aachen prides itself as being a university in which all groups actively contribute to the open communication culture and join in the decision making process. We call this the “Aachen Way”. All members of the university, including the students, pledge to support the University’s vision and strategic goals.


The Location

Many new products and processes originate in Aachen. This is a testament to the University’s genetic code, namely the ability to create knowledge and transfer it to increase the impact of research. In the research laboratories and testing facilities of RWTH, for example, the first all-metal aircraft was developed, as was the diesel soot filter. This is where the first wind tunnel stood and the first particle accelerator.

This trend-setting innovative capacity and the practical technology transfer to the world have a long history in Aachen, the City of Science. Here the first German Technology Development Center opened in 1982. With its business start-ups, Aachen has become the city with the highest density of university spin-offs and engineering offices in Germany.

Science has defined the structural change from a mining area to a technology region and today it is the most important economic factor. More than 50,000 people study and teach at the four universities and colleges in the Aachen region. Because of the academic expertise here, Forschungszentrum Jülich and numerous research centers of international corporate groups have been established in and around Aachen, making the urban region a Silicon Valley at the heart of Europe.

  European flag and statute of Charlemagne Copyright: Andreas Herrmann

Aachen, known as an “Europastadt” (City of Europe), is Germany’s westernmost major city. Three nations with three languages converge at its boundaries putting Aachen at the center of a dynamic, cross-border region. More than 9,500 international RWTH students from over 135 countries convey the scientific center of Aachen an international flair.

Teaching and research are also reflected in the image of the city. Thanks to the students and their diverse cultural life, the tradition-rich City of Aachen has a lively and young appearance, particularly in the student quarter of Pontviertel. Its proximity to the Eifel and the Ardennes, to Maastricht and Brussels with their linguistic and cultural distinctiveness, give the city that lies in the shadow of Charlemagne’s palace chapel a particular charm. Anyone who has been here once, according to a study by the Prognos consultancy, keeps coming back ...


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