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FRIAS – Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies

"The Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies is the international research college of the University of Freiburg. As an integral part of the university, the Institute unites under its roof the humanities and social sciences, medicine, the natural and life sciences, and engineering.

FRIAS offers leading academics (Senior Fellows) as well as outstanding early-stage researchers (Junior Fellows) from Freiburg and around the world the opportunity to concentrate exclusively on their (individual or joint) research projects for a certain  period of time. It is in this way that the Institute creates a unique space and atmosphere for research within the university, enriches the global network of Freiburg-based researchers, and enhances the international visibility of the research conducted at the University of Freiburg. Particular attention is paid to promoting promising young academics, with FRIAS creating ample opportunities for them to build international networks by engaging in inspirational discussions and collaborative research with the members of the Fellow community across disciplines and (not just academic) cultures .

FRIAS invites renowned scholars from around the world to Freiburg, offering a setting in which they can dedicate themselves to an inspiring research project or publication of their choice. Here, they are provided with a stimulating working environment, comprehensive support for their project, quiet offices meeting their individual demands as well as access to extremely well-equipped labs."

"The Institute | Structure and Organization."
FRIAS. Universität Freiburg 2020. Accessed on June 10, 2020.

FRIAS was created as the centerpiece of the Exzellenzinitiative 2007-2012 and allows Freiburg, with the help of leading researchers from Germany and abroad, to make its place amongst the top research universities worldwide. Since the Institute's establishment in spring 2008, researchers from the English Department have been extensively represented at FRIAS, particularly within its School of Language and Literature (2008 – 2013). The following list provides an overview of English Department researchers that have worked with FRIAS.

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Senior Fellows


  • Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Bernd Kortmann
    English linguistics
    Executive Director of FRIAS | October 2015 – present
    Director of Humanities and Social Sciences | December 2013 – present
    Senior Fellow | April 2008 – September 2009
    Morphosyntactic Complexity in Varieties of English

  • Prof. Dr. Monika Fludernik
    Englise literature and narratology
    Senior Fellow | October 2009 – September 2010
    Metaphor and Ideology: Knowledge, Representation and Figurative Impact

  • Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Hochbruck
    North American studies
    Senior Fellow | April – September 2011
    Firefighting as Culture: The Risk Culture of Firefighting in America

  • Prof. Dr. Barbara Korte
    English literature and cultural studies
    Senior Fellow | April 2008 – March 2009
    Re-Presented History: Constructing a New Past for a Multi-Ethnic Britain

  • Prof. Dr. Sieglinde Lemke
    North American and cultural studies
    Senior Fellow | April 2010 – March 2011
    Facing Poverty

  • Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Christian Mair
    English linguistics
    Senior Fellow | October 2012 – September 2013
    The Caribbean Diaspora in Europe and North America: Contrasting the Anglosphere and Francosphere

Junior Fellows


  • PD Dr. Dorothee Birke
    English literature
    Junior Fellow | April 2008 – October 2014
    Representations of Reading in the English Novel from the 18th to the 21st Centuries

  • Dr. Alice Blumenthal-Dramé
    English linguistics
    Junior Fellow | October 2015 – July 2016
    Structural Predictions in Language and Motor Processing

  • Prof. Dr. Michael Butter
    North American studies
    Junior Fellow | April 2008 – March 2013
    Conspiracy and Community: The Social Power of Secrecy and Suspicion

  • Jr. Prof. Dr. Eva von Contzen
    English literature
    Junior Fellow | October 2013 – July 2014
    Lists in Literature and Culture: Towards a Listology 
    (see LISTLIT below)

  • Dr. Benedikt Szmrecsanyi
    English linguistics
    Junior Fellow | April 2008 – April 2013
    A Corpus Approach to Geolinguistic and Genetic Patterns in Aggregate Morphosyntactic Variation in Varieties of English