• Your current position:
  • Institute

Print this Page. Send this Page.

The Heidelberg Centre for Transcultural Studies

The Heidelberg Centre for Transcultural Studies (HCTS) is dedicated to cross-disciplinary approaches and excellence in research focussing on transcultural processes. It is committed to theoretical research and intellectual inquiry in the field of transcultural studies, thereby seeking solutions to society's most formidable challenges in an increasingly globalized world.

The HCTS currently assembles Heidelberg faculty, international scholars and students working to understand and make understandable the complex dynamics of transcultural exchanges, which are at the foundation of all human interaction. It is dedicated to working in fields that cut across conventional disciplinary and nation-state borders, thereby fostering creative, original, speculative thinking and advancing knowledge of how we understand the world.

As a think tank the HCTS serves as a catalyst for developing new research methods and is a place to test innovative approaches to transcultural studies. It supports the development of new, also larger-scale research projects. By inviting fellows to conduct part of their research at the HCTS, it aims at establishing an international community of scholars dedicated to transcultural studies.

For this reason, it also hosts a Master’s and a Graduate Programme providing research-based teaching for junior scholars and encouraging them to  develop their own transcultural research agenda.

The Heidelberg Centre for Transcultural Studies (HCTS) is a central institute of Heidelberg University and was founded in April 2013. It builds on the structures that were established by the Cluster of Excellence "Asia and Europe in a Global Context" in two funding periods (2007-12, 2012-17).

Aims and Objectives of the former Cluster Asia and Europe

Aim of the Cluster is to enhance the understanding of the multi-layered interactions between and within Asia and Europe - an area of great significance for academia as well as for contemporary society and politics. We achieve this by examining the processes of exchange between cultures and establishing the concept of transculturality as a basic approach in the humanities and social sciences.

In the first funding period from 2008 to 2012, our scholars analysed the shifting asymmetries in cultural, social and political flows. Built on this foundation, we explore in the second funding period until 2017, in which dynamics the transcultural processes between and within Asia and Europe develop.

Thus, the Cluster sets out to

  • make the dynamics of transcultural interaction into a field of research with strong institutional grounding and high international impact,
  • systematically explore the analytical potential of the notion of transculturality on the empirical, conceptual and methodological levels,
  • strengthen the links between the rich expertise in Asian studies, humanities and social sciences at Heidelberg's comprehensive university,
  • increase the transcultural research potential by creating career paths for young scholars and by working with Asian institutions and scholars rather than just on Asia.