Center for Military History and Social Sciences of the Bundeswehr

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Center for Military History and Social Sciences of the Bundeswehr
- ZMSBw -


internal association badge
Lineup January 1, 2013
Country GermanyGermany Germany
Armed forces Bundeswehr Kreuz.svg armed forces
Subordinate troops

Military History Museum

Insinuation COA ZInFü.svg Inner Guidance Center
Location DEU Potsdam COA.svg Potsdam
Web presence
Head of office Sea captain Jörg Hillmann
Senior Scientist Michael Epkenhans

The Bundeswehr Center for Military History and Social Sciences ( ZMSBw ) of the Bundeswehr is a military agency and departmental research facility of the federal government and conducts research on military history , military sociology and security policy on behalf of the Federal Ministry of Defense .

The center's staff were largely taken over from the dissolved Military History Research Office (MGFA) and the Social Science Institute of the Federal Armed Forces (SoWi), which was also dissolved , and basically continue the tasks of the two departments. As the successor to the two research institutions, the center is a member of the working group of departmental research institutions .

The headquarters of the Center for Military History and Social Sciences of the Bundeswehr is Villa Ingenheim in Potsdam . The center has around 120 employees.


In terms of troops, the facility is subordinate to the Inner Guidance Center in Koblenz . In technical terms, the ZMSBw reports directly to the Federal Ministry of Defense , Armed Forces Management Division II 4.

The military history museum of the Bundeswehr in Dresden is subordinate to the center.


The center is divided into the following parts below the commander :

  • Management department (with assigned staff as administrative part of the center including the library and publications department)
  • Research department (as a scientific part)
  • Deployment department (as a scientific part)
  • Education department (as a scientific part)


One of the tasks taken on by the MGFA is the operation of the military part of the Federal Archives , the Federal Archives-Military Archives (BArch-MA), in Freiburg im Breisgau . The BArch-MA was set up in Freiburg in 1968 and then took over the military files that were returned to the MGFA by the USA, Great Britain and France and that they had captured during World War II . This group is also responsible for the selection of military-related access to the archive holdings for the period after the Second World War.

In addition, a working group assigned to the ZMSBw works in the Bundesarchiv-Militärarchiv, which examines the classified information of the Bundeswehr and orders disclosure or downgrading. With this, the working group is implementing a cabinet resolution of the federal government, according to which federal classified information in all archives must be open to any interested citizen as "public property", if overriding security interests do not contradict this.

Bundeswehr location database

The ZMSBw operates the Bundeswehr location database. The online database, which can be freely accessed via the ZMSBw website, provides access to the names of units and departments of the Bundeswehr, their abbreviations, possible traditional names and epithets, locations and properties with addresses. The database is used for military history research and the interested public and is intended to make structural changes, site closures, decommissioning and commissioning as well as relocations of Bundeswehr offices between 1956 and today traceable.


The current publications of the ZMSBw are the scientific journal Military History Journal (MGZ) ( ISSN  0026-3826 at R.Oldenbourg Verlag), which is now also available in an online version, the popular scientific journal Military History - Journal for Historical Education ( ISSN  0940- 4163 ) as well as the monographic series Contributions to Military History .

Scientific Advisory Board

Currently (as of 2019) the following persons belong to the scientific advisory board:

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Press and Information Center of the Armed Forces Base : Reorientation sticker. Bundeswehr, accessed on August 1, 2013 .
  2. Information on the website of the center , accessed on March 4, 2014.
  3. Structure of the ZMSBw. Center for Military History and Social Sciences of the Bundeswehr, accessed on August 1, 2013 .
  4. ^ Bundeswehr location database: Introduction. In: Retrieved March 24, 2020 .
  5. ^ Bundeswehr location database: Introduction and content. In: Retrieved March 24, 2020 .
  6. About us / Advisory Boards. Center for Military History and Social Sciences of the Bundeswehr, accessed on March 31, 2019 .

Coordinates: 52 ° 23 '10.9 "  N , 13 ° 1' 32.6"  E