research Institute

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Research institutions , institutes , centers or establishments are (often academic ) units that carry out research projects or research programs for which a certain amount of resources (money, personnel, information, research instruments) are available. The term itself is legally unprotected.

Research institutes are mostly supported by scientific academies , universities or other scientific associations. There are also institutes supported by foundations , associations and companies . If the facility is not stand-alone, it is often the “research department” of a company.


The most important public research institutions in Germany include a large number of special institutes in the faculties at universities, the non-university institutions of the Fraunhofer Society , the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centers , the Leibniz Association , the institutes of the Max Planck Society and the federal institutes with research tasks (the so-called departmental research ). A number of academy institutes and institutes sponsored by the federal states and municipalities should also be mentioned here.


In Austria , in addition to special forms of some university institutes, the research facilities of the Ludwig Boltzmann Society and the Christian Doppler laboratories are among others . Large museums also operate their own research departments, including some natural history museums or the Heeresgeschichtliche Museum (Military History Institute) in Vienna or the Ars Electronica Center in Linz. Other relevant institutions are, for example, the Joanneum Research (non-university research facility), the AGEO (Geoinformation), the Austrian Space Agency (ASA), some areas of the WIFI and the Institute for Empirical Social Research (IFES) or the Cancer Research Center . In general, however, non-university research institutes play a smaller role in Austria than in Germany.


In Switzerland , for example, the research institutes for empirical economics , for natural and engineering sciences , for leisure and tourism (FIF) and for high mountain climate and medicine can be mentioned. In contrast, the Swiss Pharma Contract is an example of industry-sponsored research institutions.

See also: Category: Research institute in Switzerland

Soviet Union

Scientific research institutes ( Russian нау́чно-иссле́довательский институ́т , Nautschno-issledowatelski institut ), or NII ( НИИ ) for short , are the state research institutions of the Soviet Union . There were over 100 research institutes, a large number of which continue to exist in Russia and the other successor states, some under different names.

Many of these institutions deal with the aviation and aerospace . For example :

  • NII AP - Scientific Research Institute of Aviation Instruments (i.e. Avionics), NII Awiazionnych Priborow
  • NII AW - Scientific Research Institute for Aviation Armaments, NII Aviazionnovo Voruschenija
  • NII GWF - Scientific Research Institute of the Civil Air Fleet, NII Graschdanskowo Wosduschnowo Flota (or GosNII )
  • NII WWS - Scientific Research Institute of the Air Force, NII Wojenno-Vosduschnowo Sily
  • RNII - Scientific Missile Research Institute (Reaktiwny NII)
  • NAMI - Central Scientific Research Institute for Automobiles and Automobile Engines


At the international level there are several state-sponsored institutions such as the European Space Agency (ESA) , the nuclear research center CERN , the European Southern Observatory ESO (Grenoble), the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) (Grenoble), the EUMETSAT facility , the Italian European Sistema Trieste with, among others, the International Center for Theoretical Physics and the Elettra Sincrotrone Trieste research complex , the EMBL biology project , and the ITER and Wendelstein 7-X fusion projects , which have a strong research focus alongside technical developments. Internationally, many research institutions are also funded by UNIDO or UNESCO .

See also

Directories of research institutions

Single receipts

  1. ^ Heine von Alemann: On the structure of social science research institutes in the Federal Republic of Germany. In: Günther Lüschen (ed.): German sociology since 1945. Development directions and practical relevance. Westdeutscher Verlag, Opladen 1979, ISBN 3-531-11479-4 . P. 193