The DAAD named this project the Baltic-German University Liaison Office. On the one hand, the aim was to show, that even though the new project was settled in Latvia as the central country, Estonia and Lithuania shall be involved in long-term as well; on the another hand, the term „Kontor”, which has its roots in the Hanseatic trading language, was chosen to remind of the existing close relation between the Baltic States and Germany. Now and then a „Kontor” was not only a place for trading with goods but also with ideas. Through the diverse work of the Baltic-German University Liaison Office this historical relationship between the Baltic States and Germany shall be strengthened again, and create a space as well as a platform for mediation and encounters.
The concept of the Baltic-German University Liaison Office was welcomed by the Ministry for Education and Science of Latvia as well as by both of Riga’s big Universities. In July 2004 an agreement was signed regarding the establishment of the Baltic-German University Liaison Office. It was determined that the Baltic-German University Liaison Office will be administered together by the three founding institutions – the DAAD, University of Latvia and the Riga Technical University. At the ceremonial opening of the Baltic-German University Liaison Office in June 2005 the Ministry for Education, Science and Culture of the German federal state Mecklenburg-Vorpmmern was added as a fourth partner to this project and additionally the memorandum regarding the Baltic-German University Liaison Office was signed.
This place provides space for encounter and discussions, not only for scientists but for people from many different areas in society. In these years the Baltic-German University Liaison Office contributed with lectures and support of scientific projects that are crucial to the scientific cooperation between German and Baltic scientific institutions.
Moreover, since 2010 a call for support of projects occurs twice a year. For evaluation of submitted applications, which can come from diverse areas of studies, an Advisory Board has been convened, which consists of German, Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian professors.
The Baltic-German University Liaison Office offers further education activities related to Germany and Europe, for students and young scientists plus for all others who are interested in these fields. Besides, it is a meeting place where scientists and personalities from politics and economy from Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Germany come together and invite the society to discussions. Furthermore, the scientific events which are organized by the Baltic-German University Liaison Office, show a high popularity; especially the theme evenings have a strong appeal. A big emphasis is put on the lecturers, meaning that a German lecturer as well as at least one Baltic lecturer can examine the chosen topic from different perspectives, so that a broad overview is guaranteed. In the last 10 years more than 150 events with more than 6 000 participants were organized.
The Baltic-German University Liaison Office permanently invites people and different institutions from the Baltic Staates, who are willing to carry out a project and cooperation proposals. As an umbrella organization, the Baltic-German University Liaison Office welcomes every project and initiative of this kind as well as sponsors, that are willing to be our strategic partner and to support the further expansion and the infrastructure of the Baltic-German University Liaison Office.