Bremen International Graduate School of Social Sciences (BIGSSS)

Bremen International Graduate School of Social Sciences (BIGSSS) integrates excellent areas of graduate education and research at the University of Bremen and Jacobs University into a synergetic inter-university institution designed to be an internationally competitive model of graduate education.BIGSSS' guiding principles are education to excellence, quality assurance, and effective funding.

BIGSSS builds on the experience and institutional structure of both UB's Graduate School of Social Sciences (GSSS), funded as a model institution for the reform of advanced graduate education in Germany, and Jacobs' interdisciplinary social-science graduate programs.

Founded upon the core disciplines of political science, sociology and psychology (while also integrating bordering disciplines) and supported by a solid foundation in social-science methodology, BIGSSS offers advanced interdisciplinary training, thus preparing fellows for leading professional positions inside and outside of academia, both nationally and internationally.
BIGSSS' graduate education and research is built around thematic fields which are integrated under the umbrella theme “Changing Patterns of Social and Political Integration“. The umbrella theme is used to achieve the degree of coherence necessary for fruitful cross-fertilization. The three thematic fields are: “Global Governance and Regional Integration“, “Welfare State, Inequality and Quality of Life“, and “Changing Lives in Changing Socio-Cultural Contexts“.

BIGSSS is based on the collaboration among a number of outstanding research institutes at the two universities and can draw on a prodigious social-science landscape both at UB and Jacobs. This cooperation facilitates the early integration of doctoral students into a strong research environment, and ensures a cutting-edge research orientation in BIGSSS'curricular and thematic development.