The university town of Freiberg has about 40,000 inhabitants and is located between Dresden and Chemnitz. It is the administrative center of the district of Central Saxony and, with the Bergakademie Freiberg founded in 1765, home to the world's oldest mining university still in existence.
The entire historic city center is under monument protection. It belongs, together with local monuments of mining history such as the Reiche Zeche, to the UNESCO World Heritage Erzgebirge Mining Region since 2019. Until 1969, the town was dominated by mining and the metallurgical industry for around 800 years. In recent decades, a structural change to a high-tech location in the field of semiconductor manufacturing and solar technology has taken place.