History and Development

The Baden-Wuerttemberg Cooperative State University (DHBW) was founded as the first cooperative, practice-integrating university in Germany in 2009. It applies the successful dual principle of the former Berufsakademie, which was developed more than 40 years ago and is characterised by its close connection of theoretical studies and practical experience in companies and social institutions.

The Berufsakademie, developed in 1974 from the so-called ‘Stuttgart model’, was initiated by the companies Daimler Benz, Bosch and SEL. This initiative was intended to offer an alternative to conventional studies, including excellent chances for promotion and good incomes, to the increasing number of graduates from academic high schools (Gymnasium). Furthermore, it was necessary to counteract the looming deficit of junior employees with a practice-related education.

From Berufsakademie to Cooperative State University

With its Schools of Business, Engineering and Social Work, the Berufsakademie Stuttgart developed into one of the largest universities in the region. On 1 March 2009 the Berufsakademie received university status and the institutes of the Berufsakademie in Baden-Wuerttemberg were turned into the Baden-Wuerttemberg Cooperative State University (DHBW). With the establishment of the state DHBW, the graduates of the dual study programmes are now also awarded the nationally and internationally approved academic Bachelor degrees. Since late 2011, DHBW Stuttgart has offered career-integrated Master programmes.

Milestones DHBW Stuttgart

  • 1974: Berufsakademie Stuttgart founded with 122 students in 35 training companies
  • 1989: DHBW Stuttgart branch founded in Horb
  • 2006: all degree courses accredited by ZEvA (Hannover)
  • 2009: Conversion of Berufsakademie Stuttgart into the Baden-Wuerttemberg Cooperative State University Stuttgart (DHBW Stuttgart)
  • 2011: Introduction of Master programmes at the Schools of Business, Engineering and Social Work
  • 2011: System accreditation of all DHBW locations by ZEvA
  • 2012: accredited as family-friendly University
  • 2014: DHBW Stuttgart celebrates 40 years of excellence
  • 2015: DHBW Stuttgart Campus Horb celebrates 25 years of excellence