The Volvo Prize, considered to be the highest-ranking distinction for environmental research, will be presented to Schellnhuber in early November in Sweden. The President of Germany will bestow upon him the Federal Order of Merit, first class, in October in Berlin’s Bellevue Palace. And the renowned University of Copenhagen will honour him with an Honorary Doctorate.
"In the creation of diverse, interdisciplinary research that can take on the most frightening climate challenges facing humanity, there is no one better than Hans Joachim Schellnhuber to contribute with international leadership in the development and application of scientific findings for politicians and decision-makers," the Volvo-Prize Jury statement says. As a physicist, Schellnhuber “has applied the rigorous, quantitative background to Earth System science,” thereby setting the stage for the development of this strand of research. He is the first German to receive the prize.
"The Volvo Prize in fact is something like the Nobel prize for environmental sciences, since unfortunately up till now there is no Nobel Prize for this kind of interdisciplinary approach," says Paul Crutzen, Nobel Prize Laureate for chemistry. Before winning this in 1995 for his research on ozone layer depletion, Crutzen had himself been one of the very first recipients of the Volvo Prize. "It is more than well deserved that Hans Joachim Schellnhuber now receives this eminent award. He is a researcher who has changed the way we look at all the complex processes between heaven and earth. But he is more than just a brilliant brain - he is a brain with a conscience. Schellnhuber is incessantly building bridges between science and society, like hardly anyone else does."
Schellnhuber’s interest in complex systems and nonlinear dynamics, often called chaos theory, led him from fundamental physical research to climate science. He developed several iconic concepts, for instance the analysis of “tipping elements” in the climate system, that have given impulses to international research. The two-degree-target for limiting climate change – which later on got taken up by policy-makers worldwide – was conceived under the leadership of Schellnhuber by the German Advisory Council on Global Change (WBGU). Schellnhuber has published more than 250 scientific articles and over 50 books or book chapters. He is, amongst other things, a member of the American National Academy of Sciences and the German Academy of Sciences (Leopoldina) as well as a professor at the University of Potsdam, Germany, and the influential Santa Fe Institute in the US.
It is on this basis that Schellnhuber became an important interlocutor of policy-makers: in the WBGU that he is a member of since 1992; in the experts team of EU Commission President José Manuel Barroso; as the chief advisor on climate issues for chancellor Angela Merkel during the German presidency of G8 and EU Council in 2007; or for the state government of Brandenburg.
The prize is funded by Volvo but awarded by an independent foundation.The Jury of the Volvo Prize consists of Gita Sen, professor at the Indian Institute of Management in Bangalore and Jacqueline McGlade, executive director of the European Environment Agency, and others. The prize has previously gone to figures like Susan Solomon from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration of the US or Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Muhammad Yunus from Bangladesh. The award comes with a cash sum of about 160,000 Euro.
The official statements on the Federal Order of Merit and on the Honorary Doctorate of the University of Copenhagen will be published later this year.
Pictures are available upon request
For further information please contact the PIK press office:Phone: +49 331 288 25 07
Jonas Viering | idw
13.11.2018 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau
Improving the understanding of death receptor functions in cells
07.11.2018 | Goethe-Universität Frankfurt am Main
Max Planck researchers revel the nano-structure of molecular trains and the reason for smooth transport in cellular antennas.
Moving around, sensing the extracellular environment, and signaling to other cells are important for a cell to function properly. Responsible for those tasks...
Researchers at the University of New Hampshire have captured a difficult-to-view singular event involving "magnetic reconnection"--the process by which sparse particles and energy around Earth collide producing a quick but mighty explosion--in the Earth's magnetotail, the magnetic environment that trails behind the planet.
Magnetic reconnection has remained a bit of a mystery to scientists. They know it exists and have documented the effects that the energy explosions can...
Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.
Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...
Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.
In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...
On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.
19.11.2018 | Event News
09.11.2018 | Event News
06.11.2018 | Event News
20.11.2018 | Life Sciences
20.11.2018 | Life Sciences
20.11.2018 | Physics and Astronomy