What happened when?

Components and structure, construction activity and rectorates in pictures

Formation and structure

"Kiesinger-Zettel", first mention of the university by Minister President Kurt-Georg Kiesinger, 1959

The parliament of Baden-Württemberg decides to establish the University of Konstanz.

Der Gründungsausschuss bei der Schlussredaktion des Gründungsberichts. Im Vordergrund: Dr. Ralf Dahrendorf, Dr. Herbert Nesselhauf, 1./2. April 1965. 
Weitere Mitglieder: Dr. Hansjochem Autrum, Dr. Waldemar Besson, Dr. Hellmut Bredereck, Dr. Adam Falkenstein, Dr. Dr. h.c. Gerhard Hess, Dr. Dr. h.c. Ludwig Raiser. Dr. Joachim Ritter, Dr. Emil Tonutti

The state government appoints the members of the foundation committee.

The foundation committee develops the concept of a reform university with new models for study, teaching, and research.

Minsterpresident Kurt Georg Kiesinger appoints the first eight professors of the university in the council hall of the city of Konstanz:

Hans Aebli, Waldemar Besson, Ralf Dahrendorf, Hans Robert Jauß, Franz Georg Maier, Herbert Nesselhauf, Wolfgang Preisendanz und Hansgert Peisert.

Official founding date for the University of Konstanz (Senate vote on 28 February 1966)

Im Türbereich: Nikolaus Kämpfe, am anderen Ende des Tisches Dr. Peisert, später Prof. Dr. Hansgert Peisert.

The first student is enrolled: "It didn't start off with research and teaching but with moving furniture and packing boxes", recalls Nikolaus Kämpfe, the first student to be enrolled at the University of Konstanz. As the first student and a student assistant, he helped with the move into the University of Konstanz's Centre for Educational Research.

The University of Konstanz moves into the Steigenberger Inselhotel (a former Dominican monastery).

The foundation stone is laid for the University of Konstanz at the Giessberg site. At the same time, the first lecture is held at the Inselhotel Konstanz.

The first doctorate is awarded at the University of Konstanz

Dr. Wolfgang Zapf is the first member of the university to be authorized to teach at a university.

The first habilitation (post doctoral qualification) is earned at the University of Konstanz

Universität mit der Insel Mainau im Hintergrund

The cluster of excellence "Cultural Foundations of Integration" is approved.

In the framework of the German Excellence Initiative for the promotion of science and research at German universities, the University of Konstanz is selected as a University of Excellence. The University was recognised twice by the international selection committee for its Institutional Strategy "Model Konstanz - Towards a Culture of Creativity" as well as the Konstanz Research School Chemical Biology.

Innenhof der Universität

Second funding phase of the German Excellence Initiative:

The University of Konstanz successfully completes its maximum goal in the second phase of the German Excellence Initiative with its institutional strategy, one cluster of excellence and two Graduate Schools. With the four grant approvals (as compared to three), the University of Konstanz is able to utilize even more resources than in the first phase of the German Excellence Initiative.

Blick auf die Universität Konstanz aus der Luft

50th anniversary of the University of Konstanz

Construction process

The University of Konstanz relocates to the Sonnenbuehl site.

Construction begins at the Giessberg site on the Chemistry building, dining hall, administration building, humanities lecture halls, Audimax, library administration and information centre, book section G, east section - humanities.

The University Library at the Giessberg site opens.

A centrally located and easily accessible library is an intrinsic part of the original concept of the reform university.

The dining hall at the Giessberg site and the cafeteria in the entrance area on level 05 are opened for business.

Construction of the sports facilities begins.


Gründungsrektor Hess: 1966–1972
Founding Rector Hess: 1966–1972

Professor Dr Gerhard Hess † is appointed on 28 February 1966 as the first rector at the University of Konstanz.

Rektorat Diez: 1972–1973
Rectorate Diez: 1972–1973

Dr Theopont Diez † as State Commissioner of Baden-Württemberg is entrusted with the management of the University.

Rektorat Naschold: 1974–1976
Rectorate Naschold: 1974–1976

Professor Dr Frieder Naschold †

Rektorat Sund: 1976–1991
Rectorate Sund: 1976–1991

Professor Dr Dr h.c. mult. Horst Sund †

Bootsfahrt und Gespräch nach der Geländebesichtigung. Alfred Gerigk (links), Günter Schlensag, 5. August 1964
Boat ride and talk after the site visit. Alfred Gerigk (left), Günter Schlensag, 5 August 1964

University Kanzler (chancellor) 1980–1988: Günter Schlensag is appointed first director of the university administration (he had been Chief Administrative Officer since 1966).

Amtseinführung des neuen Universitäts-Kanzlers Dr. Jürgen Hess (rechts);
Quelle: Landesarchiv Baden-Württemberg, Abt. Staatsarchiv Freiburg, W 140 Nr. 11061, Fotosammlung Marlis Decker
Inauguration of the new university chancellor Dr. Jürgen Hess (right). Source: Landesarchiv Baden-Württemberg, Abt. Staatsarchiv Freiburg, W 140 Nr. 11061, Fotosammlung Marlies Decker

University Kanzler (chancellor) Dr Jürgen Hess: Kanzler 1988–1994

Rektorat Rüthers: 1991–1996
Rectorate Rüthers: 1991–1996

Professor Dr Dr h.c. Bernd Rüthers †

Universitäts-Kanzlerin Dr. Elke-Luise Barnstedt­­­ von 1994–1999.
Foto: Sandra Göttisheim
University chancellor Dr. Elke-Luise Barnstedt, 1994–1999. Photo: Sandra Göttisheim

Dr Elke-Luise Barnstedt is selected in 1994 to become the first female director of a university administration in Baden-Württemberg.

Rektorat Cohen: 1996–2000
Rectorate Cohen: 1996–2000

Professor Dr Rudolf Cohen †

Seit 1999: Universitäts-Kanzler Jens Apitz
Since 1999: University chancellor Jens Apitz

Jens Apitz

Rektorat Graevenitz: 2000–2009
Rectorate Graevenitz: 2000–2009

Professor Dr Dr h.c. Gerhart von Graevenitz

Seit 2009: Rektorat Rüdiger
Rectorate Rüdiger: 2009-2018

Professor Dr Dr h.c. Ulrich Rüdiger

Professor Dr Kerstin Krieglstein

Professor Dr Katharina Holzinger