The BIG-NSE is an international doctoral program founded on May 29 2007 at the Technische Universität Berlin (TUB).

For the first 11,5 years of its existence (June 2007-Dec 2018), the school was part of the excellencecluster  “Unified Concepts in Catalysis (UniCat – see initiated by the TUB and five other institutions in the Berlin area within the framework of the “Excellence Initia­tive” of the German Federal and State Governments, under the supervision of the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft: DFG). The top-level research in catalysis performed at UniCat has covered a broad range of topics, from natural sciences to engineering. The success of this research program, the only of its kind in Germany, required highly qualified and motivated young researchers in the different projects. With the founding of the BIG-NSE, UniCat aimed at recruiting the world's most gifted students and young researchers and offering them a broad, high-level, structured educational program in order to prepare them for the high ranking research performed at the cluster.

In October 2018, UniCat succeeded in its transformation into a new cluster, called UniSysCat, which will be financed for a further seven years by the DFG Excellence Initiative. More information on the new cluster itself and the involved consortium partners, its research program, its cooperation partners and its principal investigators may be found on the corresponding webpages.

As for the BIG-NSE, since January 2019 it has been part of the "Einstein Center of Catalysis" (EC2) supported by the Einstein Foundation Berlin. Within this new framework, it remains closely linked to the research at UniSysCat and primarily aims to inspire, initiate, and promote novel collaboration between research networks and institutions in Berlin on cutting-edge projects in chemistry and the molecular life sciences, projects that may in turn uncover new directions for future catalysis research. EC2/BIG-NSE's mission also extends to support for excellent PhD education. In particular it aims to recruit and support excellent PhD students from all over the world, whose task is to work on highly interdisciplinary research projects, overcoming the frontiers of classical disciplines in catalysis.

Find out more about us, in particular our organization, and our efforts in terms of gender equality, internationality, interdisciplinary research, networking and cooperation, technology transfer, and outreach in the corresponding sub-menus.

BIG-NSE retreat 2016

An intensive teacher/student interaction

A top equipment