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Wissensschaft weltoffen 2020 – Germany remains a desirable destination as a study location 

In late in November, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) came out with the 2020 edition of Wissenschaft weltoffen, a publication modelled on Open Doors of the Institute of International Education (IIE) on international mobility into and out of the US started in the 1950s. The information and data contained in Wissenschaft weltoffen 2020  refer to academic mobility into and out of Germany during the 2019/20 academic year. The data were collected in the first semester of the academic year, so the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic in the second semester is not reflected in the numbers. In the production of the publication, DAAD partnered with a Hannover-based higher education research institute. The report can be found on DAAD's website. For the first time in the history of the publication, there will also be an English-language version available in mid-December 2020.

In the report, DAAD indicates it is pleased with the development of mobility into and out of Germany. In the reporting period, inward-mobile degree 320,000 students were enrolled in German tertiary institutions. This is an increase of 18,000 students on the previous year, or of about 6%. this makes Germany in absolute numbers the top receiving country of non-English speaking countries. The numbers continue a long-term trend: in the last ten academic years, the overall increase was 76%.

The most significant countries of origin are China (40,000 students), followed by India (20,600), Syria (13,000), Austria (11,500) and Russia (10,500). Almost three quarters of inbound-mobile students were enrolled at universities and only about one quarter at universities of applied sciences (Fachhochschulen). However, percentage growth in the Fachhochschul-sector exceeded that in the "normal" universities.

The numbers of doctoral inbound doctoral students also grew. There were slightly over 27,000 international PhD students in the year 2019/20. This is a growth of about 3% since the previous year and 52% over the last ten years. The number of foreign doctoral students has grown faster than the number of German ones.

According to this report, the number of German students studying abroad is still on the rise, reaching about 140,000 in the reporting period. Numbers of outbound students have doubled since 2000 and quadrupled since 1991. Leading destination countries were all in Europe.

While German international education has suffered in the second semester of the academic year 2019/20, like most countries in the world, DAAD is optimistic that the damage of the coronavirus to enrolments at German higher education institutions will be limited.

Germany is still highly desirable as a study location - DAAD