Departments and Research Institutes
The Saarland Informatics Campus comprises not only Saarland University’s Department of Computer Science, but also the two cooperating Departments of Mathematics and of Language Science and Technology with their informatics-related study programs. A wide array of internationally renowned, top-tier informatics research institutes are also located in the immediate vicinity on the campus and in the region.
Max Planck Institute for Informatics
Since the founding of the institute in 1990, its scientists have researched the mathematical foundations of information technology (algorithms and complexity, logic of programming), and they develop new algorithms for various application areas such as computer graphics, geometric computation, program verification, databases and information systems, as well as bioinformatics. With publications at the highest level and through the education of excellent young scientists, foundational research in computer science is advanced here. Due to its large number of high-quality publications, the MPI-INF is among the most-cited institutes in Germany.
Max Planck Institute for Software Systems
The Max Planck Institute for Software Systems (MPI-SWS) was founded in 2004 and is based in Kaiserslautern and Saarbrücken. Its focus is basic research in the areas of development, analysis, modeling, implementation, and evaluation of complex software systems. At the locations in Kaiserslautern and Saarbrücken the principles of efficient, reliable, secure and usable computer systems are researched.
The two Max Planck Institutes on the Saarland Informatics Campus are Germany’s only Max Planck Society research centers for the foundations of computer science, and top addresses for scientists.
German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI)
Based in Saarbrücken, Kaiserslautern, Bremen and Berlin, the DFKI is one of the most important “Centers of Excellence” in the international scientific world and is the leading business-oriented research institute for software technologies in Germany. Since 1988, the entire spectrum from application-oriented basic research to market- and customer-oriented development of product functions has been covered at the DFKI. Measured by its number of employees and volume of third-party funding, the DFKI is the largest artificial intelligence research center in the world.
Center for Bioinformatics
Bioinformatics is an interdisciplinary scientific field encompassing aspects of biology and computer science, but also medicine, chemistry, pharmacy, physics, and mathematics. The goal of the ZBI (Center for Bioinformatics), founded in 2011, is the use of computers for the configuration of high-tech experiments in the life sciences, as well as the extensive, complex data sets thereby generated. Through bioinformatics, the ZBI contributes to a better understanding of diseases, in order to diagnose them earlier and more effectively, and to treat them in a more targeted way.
Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz Center for Informatics
At Schloss Dagstuhl in Wandern, around 2500 top international researchers, promising educators, junior researchers, and practitioners meet each year, in order to exchange ideas about research work. Research groups, summer schools, postgraduate programs, and individuals find ideal, undisturbed conditions in which to hold workshops, continuing education events, and retreats. High-caliber seminars and workshops are offered regarding research funding, scientific continuing education, and knowledge transfer between research and practice. Schloss Dagstuhl operates and maintains the online bibliographic collection of scientific publications in informatics known as the “Digital Bibliography & Library Project” (dblp), which is used by scientists worldwide. The administrative office is located at the SIC.
Cluster of Excellence
The Cluster was established through the German Federal and State Excellence Initiative and funded for two complete funding periods. The researchers work on natural, multimodal and ubiquitous interaction with information systems. Information systems are also expected to interact with humans in a natural way, considering the environmental context, reacting to language, text and gestures, and responding appropriately. This requires new systems to be created, in which all this occurs as naturally and intuitively as possible.
Department of Computer Science
With the establishment of the Department of Computer Science at Saarland University, the foundations for the internationally oriented SIC were already laid in 1969. 55 professors at the university and the research institutes teach in 24 courses of study, many of these in English; thanks to excellent student-faculty ratios, the faculty educate outstanding young talent. Also through close collaboration with the research institutes and the cooperating departments, the professors frequently win prestigious research awards. The Collaborative Research Centers “Methods and Tools for Understanding and Controlling Privacy (SFB 1223, funded since 2016) and “Symbolic Tools in Mathematics and their Application” (SFB 195, funded since 2017) are signs of the high level of research carried out here.
Department of Mathematics
In the mathematics department, currently there are 20 professors teaching and doing research, including two joint professorships with the computer science department, as well as one junior professor. The scientists conduct research in eight areas, including stochastics, numerical mathematics, didactics of mathematics, functional analysis, mathematical data analysis, applied analysis, and the area of algebra, geometry, and number theory. Currently, the department participates in the DFG Transregional Collaborative Research Center “Symbolic Tools in Mathematics and their Application”.
In addition, there is close collaboration in the greater region through regularly held joint seminars with Metz in the area of functional analysis, with Kaiserslautern in algebraic geometry and computer algebra, with Luxembourg in free probability theory, and with Frankfurt, Heidelberg, Landau, Mainz and Paderborn in the didactics of mathematics.
Department of Language Science and Technology
With its eight professorships, the department offers internationally oriented, English-language master’s programs, partly in cooperation with international partner universities (LCT Erasmus Mundus), and thanks to intensive supervision, trains highly qualified young academics. The department’s scientists conduct research in fields such as computational linguistics, machine translation, phonetics, psycholinguistics, speech and signal processing, and linguistics and translation science. The department cooperates closely with computer scientists, linguists and psychologists in research and teaching, especially in the Collaborative Research Center “Information Density and Linguistic Encoding” (SFB 1102), which has been funded by the DFG since 2014.