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Prize profiles

The annual conference of Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft will see the presentation of three Joseph von Fraunhofer Prizes and three Hugo Geiger Prizes. The Stifterverband Science Prize is awarded in recognition of scientific excellence in collaborative applied research projects.

Stifterverband Science Prize The Stifterverband (Donors’ Association for the Promotion of Humanities and Science) was founded by leading industrialists in 1920 on the instigation of German academies, universities and scientific associations. Its re-establishment after the Second World War was closely connected with the creation of the “Emergency Association of German Science” on January 11, 1949. Even today, the Stifterverband still sees its role as that of an intermediary between industry and science. It meanwhile handles a budget of 1.3 billion euros through 350 individual foundations. For the past six years, it has awarded an prize worth 50,000 euros to the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft in recognition of scientific excellence in applied research projects carried out by Fraunhofer Institutes in collaboration with industry and/or other research organizations (see topic 1). The prize is awarded biennially, alternating with the Technology Prize for human-centered technology. Joseph von Fraunhofer Prize – research with practical orientation This prize has been awarded by the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft every year since 1978, in recognition of outstanding scientific work by members of its staff leading to the solution of application-oriented problems. Over 200 researchers have meanwhile seen their work honored in this way. This year, three prizes were awarded – each valued at 20,000 euros. The prizewinners also receive a silver lapel pin bearing the effigy of the man for whom the award is named, as illustrated in the logo included in articles 2, 3 and 4. Hugo Geiger Prize – promoting talented young scientists The Bavarian government instituted this prize in 1999 to mark the 50th anniversary of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. It is named after former Bavarian secretary of state Hugo Geiger – patron of the inaugural assembly of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft on March 26, 1949. The Hugo Geiger Prize is awarded for outstanding, application-oriented doctoral theses or dissertations – to date only in the field of life sciences. This year, however, work from other Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft research areas will also be singled out. The prizewinning papers are selected on the basis of scientific quality, economic relevance, novelty, and an interdisciplinary approach. The work must be directly related to a Fraunhofer Institute or have been written at one. This year, the first-placed winner (article 5) will receive 5,000 euros in prize money, with 3,000 euros going to the second place and 2,000 euros to the third (article 6).