Chair of War Studies

Current: Consultation hours during the semester break

The secretary's office will be unoccupied on 24 March.
Homework and other mail can be deposited in the "Institute of History" post box on the lower floor of building 11.

Professor Neitzel's office hours are as follows:

Tue 28.2.2023 10:00 - 12:00

Tue 14.3.2023 14:30 - 16:30

Tue 28.3.2023 new: 9:30 - 11:30

Tue 11.4.2023 14:00 - 16:00

Team of the Chair
Photo: Kai Bublitz Fotoproduktion
Team of the Chair

The Chair of War Studies is the only one of its kind in Germany. It is dedicated to military history and to the cultural history of violence, and is a central venue of liaison between the university and other research institutions investigating military history, between different methodical approaches within this varied discipline, as well as for the transfer of academic knowledge at both a national and international level. We seek to contribute to making Potsdam, with its history and its orientation towards to the future, more visible internationally as a centre of interdisciplinary war studies.

The Chair addresses military history and the cultural history of violence from the Early Modern Period to the present. It examines the foundations, dynamics and consequences of violent conflicts on the national and international stage. Drawing on interdisciplinary approaches, the Chair analyses how state, society and armed forces interact with one another. Its principal research focus is the nineteenth and twentieth century.

Located at the Chair, moreover, are two study programmes at Master level that are unique in Germany.FAQ Both are interdisciplinary, international and practice-orientated: The MA in War and Conflict Studies is a single degree at the University of Potsdam, in which predominantly German and European students research violent phenomena in the past and the present in small groups. The MA in International War Studies is a double degree programme with University College Dublin, which offers students the possibility of forming networks in the Anglo-Saxon world of war studies and which is aimed above all at an international audience.

Both study programmes combine the ambition to explore the subject of war and conflict in the past and the present from a multitude of different professional and national perspectives. Alongside concrete armed conflicts, the interactions between war and violence, security and stability, conflict and development are hereby illuminated. Our range of courses therefore offers a broad selection from history, political science, sociology and international law: from Clausewitz to cyber wars.

The work of the Chair profits enormously from a variety of partners located both in Potsdam itself and in nearby Berlin. Among the most important academic partners are the Centre for Military History and Social Sciences of the Bundeswehr (ZMSBw), the Federal Archives and the Federal Military Archives. Good working relations exist with the Federal Academy for Security Policy (BAKS), as well as the Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) and the Bundeswehr’s own consulting agency. Think tanks, political foundations and the Berlin-based media actively support us with teaching events and internships. An exceptional relationship continues to exist with the Federal Ministry of Defence, but also with the Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, which approach the subject of war and conflict from very different perspectives.

The Chair’s online presence is designed to illustrate the entire thematic diversity of the work of the Chair described above. If you are interested in any aspect of our work, do not hesitate to contact us.

Call for Applications
Photo: Christian E. Rieck
BAKS-President Brose und Prof. Neitzel sitzen am Tisch

All lessons learned? - Afghanistan mission

All lessons learned? On 6 March, BAKS President Ambassador Brose and Prof. Dr. Neitzel discussed with 15 civilian and military leaders of Provincial Reconstruction Teams during the Afghanistan mission their diverse experiences. It became clear that the Federal Republic of Germany still has considerable potential for improvement in the design of networked security.

permanent link

Call for Papers till 14th April 2023

"Illegitimate Violence during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars (1792-1815)"

International Conference presented by the DFG Sub-Project: Illegitimate Violence in the French and Austrian Militaries during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars (1789–1815)

Paris Lodron University Salzburg, 22-24 February 2024

permanent link

Lecture by Dr Pschichholz on 8 March via Zoom

"Relativised, forgotten or political weapon? Researching the Armenian Genocide", held by Dr Christin Pschichholz.

on Wednesday, 8 March 2023, 11:30 a.m. via  Zoom

Meeting-ID: 720 964 3450
Kenncode: 093470


Do not underestimate Russia

Professor Neitzel talks about the war in Ukraine in the MDR podcast "Armed Forces and Strategies (in German)

Interview 31.01.2023


Anthology now available via Open Access

The anthology "The First World War as a Caesura? Demographic Concepts, Population Policy, and Genocide in the Late Ottoman, Russian, and Habsburg Spheres", edited by Christin Pschichholz, is now available via Open Access.

Link to anthology


"Das Reich der Vernichtung" reviewed in the Berliner Tagesspiegel

In a two-page article "Neuer Historikerstreit: Is the Holocaust still considered unique?", Konstantin Sakkas reviewed Alex Kay's new book, "Das Reich der Vernichtung" (wbg Theiss), in the Tagesspiegel on 11 February 2023.

Link Berliner Tagesspiegel:


Besuch einer Schülergruppe des Adolf-Reichwein Gymnasiums

Students discuss the Ukraine war with Prof. Neitzel

On 8 February, a group of students from the Adolf-Reichwein Gymnasium in Heusenstamm/Hesse visited the University of Potsdam and discussed the war in Ukraine with Prof. Dr Sönke Neitzel, Dr Klaus Wittmann and Christian Rieck. The Chair of Military History has been cooperating with the Adolf Reichwein Gymnasium for many years in the context of school project work.