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Above you see a picture of the city of Kiel (www.kiel.de) and its environment. Kiel is the regional capital of the state of Schleswig-Holstein, which is the most northern federal state of Germany.
As you can see, water is the characteristic element for Kiel. This is reflected in the expanding harbour, in the international oceanic research, in the highly specialised navy and world-class water sports. Nowadays more than 230,000 people live in Kiel. The population declined due to the automation of technical processes on the dockyards. Yet the city is still affected by maritime trade.
Kiel is also shaped by its university (www.uni-kiel.de). The University of Kiel was formally inaugurated on 5 October 1665. While Kiel's city fathers clearly intended to enhance the city's long-term economic success, they could never have foreseen that one day the university would be its largest employer. The University is named after its founder Duke Christian Albrecht of Schleswig-Holstein-Gottorf. In remembrance of the end of the Thirty Years´ War the University´s seal bears the inscription "pax optima rerum", which means "peace is the most important good".
One of Kiel´s main attractions are the locks of Kiel-Holtenau. The locks a part of the Kiel-Canal, the world´s busiest artificial waterway. The Kiel-Canal runs for almost 100 km right through Schleswig-Holstein - from Brunsbüttel to Kiel-Holtenau - and links the North Sea with the Baltic.