Cooperation agreement between Goethe University Frankfurt and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Goethe University Frankfurt and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (HUJI) today announced another significant addition to their existing scientific cooperation in the field of childhood research: The two universities signed a cooperation agreement to establish the Center for Childhood and Child Welfare in Context.

The collaboration builds on a long-standing partnership characterized by extensive research, support for early career researchers and excellence in university teaching. Notable joint initiatives include an international study on the well-being of children, other empirical studies on the rights, interests and needs of children and adolescents, as well as research on violence and neglect in families or educational institutions in both Germany and Israel. The two universities have also been holding an annual German-Israeli Master’s seminar since 2016.

The main aim of this latest research cooperation is to deepen and expand academic and scientific cooperation in both childhood as well as social science research. The new Center for Childhood and Child Welfare will focus on a number of topics, including the implementation of children’s rights, dealing with structural bottlenecks such as a shortage of skilled workers, and experiences with displacement, among others. In addition, the center will also research issues related to professionalization, quality, digitality, digitalization, global warming and biodiversity. Another one of its aims is to help ensure children and adolescents have a voice in research, and to examine age as a social category.

Scientists from a wide array of different disciplines – such as childhood and family research, educational science, pedagogy, migration research, social work and healthcare – from both universities will be involved in the center, which sets out to deliver an innovative contribution to global childhood research and promote networking in this field.

Goethe University President Prof. Enrico Schleiff: “I am delighted to see our two universities pool their respective strengths and potential even more in the field of childhood research, which is so important to our society. The Center for Childhood and Child Welfare in Context further intensifies and expands our existing close cooperation. I would like to thank everyone involved at both universities, first and foremost among them Prof. Asher Ben-Arieh and Prof. Sabine Andresen, for their great commitment to making this future-oriented international cooperation possible.”

Prof. Sabine Andresen, Professor of Educational Science at Goethe University Frankfurt, with a focus on social pedagogy and family research: “Our experiences with the master’s seminars especially, in which students from Frankfurt and Jerusalem not only learn together, but also discuss and compare what it was like to grow up in both countries, have led us to deepen the cooperation. For students who will later work in youth welfare offices or as child protection specialists for example, this exchange about both systems, about tailor-made services or barriers to the protection of children and adolescents is game-changing. We also found that a lot of friendships have emerged from these seminars.”

Prof. Asher Ben-Arieh, Dean of HUJI’s School of Social Work and Social Welfare, underscores the importance of this latest collaboration: “This cooperation between the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Goethe University Frankfurt is proof of our joint commitment to advancing research in the field of childhood studies. By joining forces, we aim to create a better and safer future for children worldwide. Through our combined expertise and dedication, we can better understand and improve the lives of children and families.”

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