Hannover has an above-average ratio of students per capita, and more scientific research personnel and teaching staff than any other region in Germany. The city boasts a total of four higher education institutes. With approximately 22,000 students and some 160 courses provided at nine faculties, Hannover's Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz University is the second largest in Lower Saxony. And at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts, more than 7,000 students at five faculties are benefiting from international degree programmes with a high degree of practical relevance and strong connections with the business community.
The Hannover University of Music, Drama and Media (HMTMH) offers more than 30 degree programmes and enjoys a special position as the only musical academy in Lower Saxony. With approximately 3,000 students, Hannover Medical School is one of the top-performing universities in Germany and has a reputation as one of the leading German university hospitals in terms of research, teaching and patient care. It carries out pioneering work in the field of transplantation medicine and is internationally regarded as a leading centre in this field.
Supported by six partner institutions, the MHH set up a Cluster of Excellence for 'REgenerative BIology to Reconstructive THerapy' (REBIRTH) in 2006. This is one of the prominent projects forming part of the Excellence Initiative, which was set up by federal and regional authorities to promote cutting-edge research in Germany and to foster the country's global competitiveness.
The Hannover University of Veterinary Medicine also enjoys an excellent international reputation with its 19 veterinary institutes, six clinics, and numerous centres and specialist disciplines. Hannover is home to various globally leading research centres. A prominent example is the Hannover Production Technology Centre (PZH), where more than 800 scientists working in fields from geothermal energy and precision forging to bio-medicine collaborate with industry partners to create innovate new procedures and technologies that are 'made in Germany'.
Hannover Laser Centre is one of the most important European laser technology research institutes and provides additional impetus for firms to set up research and development facilities in the region as well as promoting industry-driven training. Hannover also has a host of private educational institutions such as the Fachhochschule des Mittelstands (a University of Applied Sciences focusing specifically on SMEs), the Leibniz college, and the privately run FHDW business university.