The City and Region of Karlsruhe
In 2015, Karlsruhe celebrates its 300th anniversary. With nearly 300,000 inhabitants, it is the biggest city of Baden. Due to its unique fan-shaped layout with 32 roads proceeding from the castle like a fan, Karlsruhe is also known as “Fächerstadt” (the fan-shaped city). Karlsruhe hosts the Federal Constitutional Court and the Federal Court of Justice and, hence, is deemed the City of Law. Due to its warm and sunny climate, its vicinity to France, and the excellent groundwater quality, the region of Baden is known in general for good eating, good wine, good beer, and a high quality of life. Karlsruhe also is a city of knowledge, of engineering, and invention: The bicycle was invented by a Karlsruhe citizen (Karl Drais), as was the car (Carl Benz). Electromagnetic waves were discovered at the University of Karlsruhe (Heinrich Hertz) and the first systematic hydrogeological dye tracing test was performed by a Karlsruhe citizen, the Professor of Geology, A. Knop, in 1877.
Upper Rhine Valley and Black Forest
Karlsruhe is located in the Upper Rhine Valley, a tectonic rift valley with big groundwater reservoirs, a number of thermal springs, and a high geothermal potential. The Rhine, its floodplains, flooded gravel pits, and fens characterize the water landscape in the closer surroundings of Karlsruhe.
Karlsruhe is also considered the gate to the Black Forest. In early 2014, the Black Forest National Park was launched, the first and only national park in Baden-Württemberg. The densely wooded mountainous area covers about 100 km² and includes a number of lakes and waterfalls in the northern Black Forest. It can be reached from Karlsruhe within less than an hour.
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) was established on October 01, 2009 by a merger of Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe and Universität Karlsruhe. With about 24,500 students, 9,400 employees, and an annual budget of EUR 800 million, KIT is one of the biggest institutions of research and higher education in natural sciences and engineering in Europe.
The University of Karlsruhe was established in 1825 as the first technical university in Germany. Among its founding fathers was Johann Gottfried Tulla, whose correction of the river Rhine in the early 19th century was one of the biggest engineering achievements of that time. From the very beginning, water was in important topic at the University of Karlsruhe. Today, water research is represented by a number of disciplines at KIT and covers the complete scope from natural sciences to social sciences to engineering. It is closely connected to applied geosciences, climate and environmental research and renewable energies at KIT.
Apart from water research at KIT, Karlsruhe also hosts other important water institutions, such as the Bundesanstalt für Wasserbau (BAW, Federal Waterways Engineering and Research Institute), the Technologiezentrum Wasser (TZW, Water Technology Center), the Hochwasserzentrale der LUBW (Flood Center of the Baden-Württemberg State Agency for the Environment, Measurements, and Nature Conservation), and the Stadtwerke Karlsruhe (Karlsruhe Municipal Utilities).
-> Plan of Campus South of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (the central building with the conference office is the Audimax).