University of Basel

University of Basel
Universität Basel
Latin: Universitas Basiliensis
Type Public
Established 1460
Endowment CHF707,4 million (2014)
Rector Andrea Schenker-Wicki[1]
Academic staff
Students 12,955
Location Basel, Basel-City, Switzerland
47°33′31″N 7°35′01″E / 47.55858°N 7.58360°E / 47.55858; 7.58360Coordinates: 47°33′31″N 7°35′01″E / 47.55858°N 7.58360°E / 47.55858; 7.58360
Affiliations Utrecht Network
Old University Basel

The University of Basel (German: Universität Basel) is located in Basel, Switzerland, and is considered to be one of the leading universities in the country. It was founded in 1460 and is the oldest university of Switzerland. In 2016 the Dutch-based Leiden University Rankings placed the university 45th overall in the world. In 2012, the ARWU[2] ranked the university as the 85th best worldwide, while at the same time it was ranked 96–98th worldwide according to the Russian-based Global University Ranking.[3]


Inauguration ceremony of the University of Basel, 1460

Founded in 1460, it is Switzerland's oldest university.[4]

Erasmus, Paracelsus, Daniel Bernoulli, Jacob Burckhardt, Leonhard Euler, Friedrich Nietzsche, Eugen Huber, Carl Jung, Karl Barth, Karl Jaspers, Hermann Peter,[5] Hans Urs von Balthasar, Werner Kuhn, Edgar Heilbronner, and Christoph Gerber are among those associated with the university.

The University of Basel was founded in connection with the Council of Basel. The deed of foundation given in the form of a Papal bull by Pope Pius II on November 12, 1459, and the official opening ceremony was held on April 4, 1460.[6] Originally the University of Basel was decreed to have four faculties—arts, medicine, theology and jurisprudence. The faculty of arts served until 1818 as foundation for the other three academic subjects. In the eighteenth century as Basel became more commercial, the university, one of the centers of learning in the Renaissance, slipped into insignificance. Enrollment which had been over a thousand around 1600, dropped to sixty in 1785 with eighteen professors. The professors themselves were mostly sons of the elite.[7]

Over the course of centuries as many scholars came to the city, Basel became an early center of book printing and humanism. Around the same time as the university itself, the Basel University Library was founded. Today it has over three million books and writings and is the largest library in Switzerland.

In 1830 the Canton of Basel split in two with the Federal Diet requiring that the canton's assets, including the books at the University library, be divided—two thirds going to the new half canton of Basel-Landschaft. The city, Basel-Stadt, had to buy back this share and the university became so impoverished that it drastically reduced its course offerings. Students were expected to continue their education after two years or so at a German university. In 1835 the enrollment at the university was forty students, mostly from the area.[7]

At the end of the 1990s the University entered a period of crisis; the management of the University was strongly criticized; Vice-Rector Gian-Reto Plattner wrote that "when no solution is found, the University must be closed. That would be more honest than allowing it to sink to the level of a simple college."[8]



  • Theology[9]
  • Law[10]
  • Medicine[11]
  • Faculty of Humanities (Phil I)[12]
  • Faculty of Science (Phil II)[13]
  • Business and Economics[14]
  • Psychology[15]
  • Interdisciplinary institutions
    • Europainstitut[16]
    • Jewish Studies
    • Mensch-Gesellschaft-Umwelt (MGU)[17]
    • Centre for African Studies Basel (ZASB)
    • Kulturmanagement
    • Gender Studies
  • Associated institutes

Student associations

    • Business and Economy (BESS)
    • Computer Science (fg.informatik)[19]
    • Chemistry (VBC)
    • Pharmacy
    • Geography
    • Geology (VBG)
    • History
    • Biology (VSB)
    • Medicine (FaMBa)
    • French Philosophy
    • Mathematics and Physics (FG 14)[20]
    • Meteorology
    • Psychology
    • Sociology
    • Computational Sciences[21]
  • Dings-Shop Dings Shop
    • Shop for office materials for students
  • Universitätssport Universitätssport Basel
    • Organizing sport events and trainings for students
  • SKUBA: Studentische Körperschaft der Universität Basel Skuba Home
  • Calcutta Project Basel Calcutta Project Basel
    • International co-operation by students from Basel in India, Kolkata
  • GeZetera GeZetera
    • Newspaper made by students for students

Notable alumni

The University of Basel has had two Nobel Prize winners associated with the institution: Tadeus Reichstein (1950) and Werner Arber (1978).

Associated institutions

See also

Notes and references

  2. "Academic Ranking of World Universities - 2012". shanghairanking. Retrieved 23 May 2013.
  3. "" (PDF). Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  4. "University of Basel". External link in |journal= (help)
  5. Borchardt, Frank L. (1966). "The Topos of Critical Rejection in the Renaissance". Modern Language Notes. 81 (4): 476–88. doi:10.2307/2908074. JSTOR 2908074.
  6. "History Basel". External link in |journal= (help)
  7. 1 2 Grossman, Lionel, Basel in the age of Burckhardt (Chicago, 2000) p. 35, and note 20; p. 118
  8. Plattner, Gian-Reto. Basler Zeitung, 29 August 2000, pp. 3–4
  9. "Theologische Fakultät". Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  10. "Juristische Fakultät Universität Basel". Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  11. "Webseite der Medizinischen Fakultät Basel". Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  12. "Philosophisch-Historische Fakultät". Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  13. "Philosophisch-Naturwissenschaftliche Fakultät". 29 July 2011. Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  14. "WWZ: Home". 26 September 2011. Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  15. "Fakultät für Psychologie". 28 September 2011. Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  16. Europainstitut der Universitat Basel
  17. "MGU - home". Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  19. "Willkommen auf der Homepage der FG Informatik". Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  20. "Fachgruppe 14 – Uni Basel". 3 July 2007. Retrieved 12 September 2015.
  21. "FG Computational Sciences". Retrieved 2 October 2011.

Wikimedia Commons has media related to University of Basel.
This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 11/14/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.