IMPRS & Covid-19

SARS-CoV-2 in Germany - Information

General Information

We provide two links about the corona pandemic where you could find all the updated information:

- The Federal Ministry of Health

- The Robert Koch Institut

Update December 14th, 2020:

These are the main points decided by the Chancellor and the state premiers:
The decisions currently in place will remain in place until 10 January 2021.

  • Private meetings with friends and family will continue to be limited to a maximum of 5 individuals from a total of two households. Children up to the age of 14 are not counted as part of this figure.
  • Over Christmas the following will apply: Depending on the case numbers in each federal state, the states can make an exception to the contact restrictions in place from 24 December to 26 December 2020 and permit households to meet up with a maximum of 4 close family members from outside their immediate household plus children up to the age of 14, even if this means a total of more than two households or 5 people over the age of 14.
  • A nationwide ban on all gatherings will be in force on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. Fireworks will also be banned in areas frequented by many people. The sale of fireworks before New Year will be banned this year, and there is a general recommendation not to let off any fireworks, partly because of the high risk of injury and the fact that the health system is already seriously stretched.
  • Shops are to close from 16 December 2020 to 10 January 2021, with the exception of food shops and shops selling essential goods.
  • Service businesses including hairdressers will close, because physical distance cannot be avoided. Necessary medical treatment, including physiotherapy, will continue to be possible.
  • At schools too, contracts are to be drastically reduced between 16 December 2020 and 10 January 2021. During this period children should be kept at home if at all possible. For this reason, schools will all close over this period, or will suspend in person classes. Emergency care services will be provided, and remote learning offered. Nurseries will proceed similarly. Parents will be given additional options to take paid leave to look after their children.
  • Employers are urgently requested to explore the possibility of either closing companies completely for annual company holidays or offering farreaching opportunities to work from home from 16 December 2020 to 10 January 2021.
  • The hospitality industry may continue to deliver food or sell food to take away and eat at home. Food may not be eaten on the premises. There will be a ban on the consumption of alcoholic beverages in public from 16 December to 10 January. Fines will be imposed for contraventions.
  • Church services and religious gatherings in synagogues and mosques are only possible under specific preconditions. The Federal Ministry of the Interior will engage with the religious communities.
  • The federal and state governments urgently appeal to all citizens to avoid all non-essential travel inside and outside Germany between now and 10 January.
  • Sectors of the economy that are particularly hard hit by the restrictions will continue to receive financial support.
  • (Information above were sent by H.-W. Rix, Director of the MPIA, on 13th December 2020)

In this pdf file, you can find the "Ordinance of the State Government on Infection Protection Measures against the Spread of the SARS-Cov-2 Virus" in the version from 30 th November, 2020 on in English, provided by the state of Baden Württemberg.

Note that some rules were slightly different in different states, in particular concerning the closure of universities. The link explains the new laws in German, but also provides information in foreign languages.

IMPRS related

The MPIA and also IMPRS, have been a virtual institute over the last months. This is a preventive measure and will  apply initially for an undefinite period. The IMPRS Office can be reached via email. 

Concerning the lecturing, teaching activities at Heideberg University, we definitely could not return to normal university life at the semester start. The Heidelberg University starts to open step by step.

Heidelberg University is now trying to offer as many face-to-face events in small groups – from laboratory courses to colloquia for examination candidates.

Large-scale lecture courses will probably have to take place digitally. As far as is technically and organisationally possible, lectures will be available to students as a combination of physical events and digital formats.

Here is a link to the Heidelberg University website on corona virus-related information which will be updated regulary.

On the following website, provided by the Heidelberg University, you can also find information on Regulations for entering and living in Germany. For further information, please contact the International Office of your institute.


Update April 2, 2020:  PhD examina:  two options will be offered, in brief:

1) Remote exam:  with candidate and chair examiner only in the room; other examiners connected via heiCONF; entry to the building controlled

2) As usual:  but in a different, larger room as usual ("GoldBox", INF 226, ground floor). Examiners will be requested to confirm their availability. No audience allowed. Also no other people allowed in the building (parents, friends, ...)

Please contact the HGSFP well in advance to your exam.


Here you find further Covid related links listed in English:

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