Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Michael Gessler is since 2005 head of the department "Vocational Eduction and Training" at the faculty 12 and since 2006 board member at the Institute Technology and Education (ITB Institut Technik und Bildung), a Central Research Unit (CRU) of the University of Bremen.
The Institute Technology and Education has been conducting research in the area of vocational training and education for more than 30 years. Currently employing a staff of 50 persons, it is among the largest independent research establishments in its field worldwide. The work carried out at ITB involves cooperation between experts in the fields of vocational education, engineering, sociology and cultural studies, psychology, economics and occupational science. Much of the research is undertaken in international cooperation and research networks.
Central Research Units fall directly under the responsibility of the University of Bremen’s Academic Senate. Prerequisites for being granted CRU status are that objectives and tasks are of an interdisciplinary or cross-institutional nature, the existence of a common thematic focus, and that the object of research is of central strategic significance to the University of Bremen. Central Research Units are usually established for an initial period of seven years. Prolongations, generally of five-year duration, can only be granted subsequent to successful evaluation. In 2016 the ITB was successful re-evaluated.