The IPU is a state-recognised private university with its campus and administration in Berlin. The International Psychoanalytic University Berlin gGmbH limited liability company is the body responsible for the university, and the sole shareholder of the company is currently the Foundation to Promote University Psychoanalysis. The latter is a non-profit foundation with legal capacity established under German public law. The IPU is financed solely from the non-profit foundation's resources and the study fees from students attending the courses, in addition to third-party funding for its research activities. It does not receive any grants or contributions whatsoever from the public authorities.
With the commencement of lectures in 2009, a gap was closed that had arisen in the one-sided natural sciences direction of academic psychology. The study courses at the IPU convey psychoanalysis as a science which maps the human as a biological, social and culturally imprinted being and which seeks to understand the individual against the background of their history and the influence of their unconscious. All of the study courses at the IPU are research-related, and provide close contact with clinical and pedagogical practice from the first semester.
The IPU facilitates studies, advanced studies and further education as well as research with a psychoanalytical basis. In the fields of teaching and research, it pursues a scientific approach at the interface between the social, cultural, humanities and natural sciences.
It contributes to the further development of psychoanalysis as an applied social science and cultural theory. It conveys psychoanalysis as a science which maps the human as a biological, social and culturally shaped being and which seeks to understand the individual against the background of their personal history and under the influence of the unconscious.
The scientists lecturing and researching at the IPU have gained many years of experience in practice, teaching and research. They enjoy excellent learning and working conditions with the required resources at their disposal. Analysis, discussion and shared development – on an interdisciplinary level and beyond the limitations of the status groups – represent a defining criterion of the scientific and organisational work at the IPU. The IPU builds up networks and establishes cooperative arrangements with national and international partners in science, training and practice which promote mutual enrichment in terms of content and a positive perception among the general public.
The IPU fosters a (self) reflective attitude in teaching, research and on an application level, a close link between application and research, as well as an interdisciplinary and international dialogue. It contributes to the healthcare of the population.