What is the Forschungscampus Dahlem?

At the Dahlem museum complex, a new kind of research and presentation location is emerging under the name of the Forschungscampus Dahlem. It is an interdisciplinary project that brings together various collections and institutions from the Stiftung Preussicher Kulturbesitz (SPK).

Seven institutions from the SPK cosmos – a number of which are based in Dahlem – have banded together to create the Forschungscampus Dahlem. Six branches of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin – the Ethnologische Museum, the Museum für Asiatische Kunst, the Museum Europäischer Kulturen, the Institut für Museumsforschung, the Kunstbibliothek and the Rathgen-Forschungslabor – are joined by the Ibero-Amerikanische Institut.

The Forschungscampus Dahlem is more than a research site: it strives to be a network which links up various areas of expertise and perspectives, enabling it to develop and present new insights into the material and immaterial cultures represented in the Dahlem collections. This work is founded on a commitment to making research processes visible, designing them in a transparent fashion, and enabling the participation of various stakeholder groups in the development of new knowledge. At the Forschungscampus Dahlem, various forms of knowledge will be treated equally and thought together, transcending traditional epistemological hierarchies.

The work at the Forschungscampus Dahlem is oriented around the concept coordinates: CULTURES RESEARCH OBJECTS KNOWLEDGE. These concepts reflect various facets of the work carried out in the Dahlem collections, and all the concepts mutually influence one another: objects carry knowledge within them, while knowledge is also an engine for cultures, which contributes to the production of new objects.

Research on and with cultures works in various directions, as does the relationship between research and objects. The Forschungscampus Dahem goes by the name “FC Dahlem”, underscoring its playful approach to the production and communication of knowledge. FC Dahlem seeks to dismantle the hierarchies that inflect systems of knowledge, and is committed to an equality-based mode of collaboration when it comes to defining research topics.

The Forschungscampus Dahlem is connected to the Freien Universität Berlin through a strategic partnership: together, the collection-based research in Dahlem will develop and experiment with new approaches to learning and teaching.