Bochum has about 380,000 inhabitants. The city is formed by the traditional industry of coal mining in the Ruhr area, but today there is no mining in Bochum anymore.
Today the most important institution in Bochum is the Ruhr-University Bochum, one of the biggest German universities. It has an extremely wide spectrum of subjects, beginning with mathematics and science, social sciences, economy, engineering, laws, philosophy, historical subjects, theology, medicine, and languages even including Chinese and Polish.
Bochum has a rich cultural life and its theatre is one of the most prominent in Germany. Next to Bochum are the cities Essen and Hattingen