German companies are becoming world market leaders through technological innovations. This is how Germany secures its prosperity and social welfare as a business location even today. These innovations do not succeed on their own. Apart from funding, young researchers require impetus, support and official recognition. The Curious-Mind-Forscherpreis recognizes young scientists under the age of 40 whose work not only demonstrates the highest level of academic excellence, but also indicates that it will provide impetus for the future of the German economy. The Curious-Mind-Forscherpreis is awarded in two categories, which change each year.
The four Curious-Mind-Forscherpreis categories are:
- Life Science
- Digitization & Robotics
- Materials & Active Substances
- Mobility & Energy
Awardees of the Curious-Mind-Forscherpreis
These young scientists were honored in their respective fields and disciplines with the Curious-Mind-Forscherpreis.
Michael SalibaAwardee 2021
Solar Cells, Renewable Energies, Semiconductors
Category: Materials & Active Ingredients
Matthias MayAwardee 2021
Photoelectrochemistry, Energy Storage
Category: Mobility & Energy
Sascha FahlAwardee 2018More information
Category: Digitalization & Robotics
Barbara GrünerAwardee 2018
Tumor Biology and Therapy Research
Category: Life Science
Who is selected as a Curious Mind?
The candidates for the two categories of the Curious-Mind-Forscherpreis are determined in accordance with a complex procedure. Only those who have already been awarded a renowned scientific honor in relevant disciplines, such as the Heinz-Maier-Leibnitz Prize or the Otto Hahn Medal, who have received highly qualified funding, for example under the Emmy Noether Program of the German Research Foundation, or who head an independent junior research group, for example at the Helmholtz Association, are eligible to apply.
The application documents must clearly show the economic benefit of the applicant’s current research, as well as the objectives for commercial implementation of the findings. Based on this information, the high-ranking jury then selects the respective prizewinner in both categories. In addition to renowned general researchers, the jury includes top managers from innovative companies and high-ranking scientific experts.
The listed jury refers to the currently evaluated categories.
Jury “Life Science”
- Jochen Maas
General Manager Sanofi-Aventis Germany GmbH
- Bernd Müller-Röber
Professor at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology
- Holger Zinke
Founder and Member of the Supervisory Board Brain Biotech AG
Jury “Digitalization & Robotics”
- Sabine Bendiek
Chairman of the Executive Board Microsoft Germany GmbH
- Ulrich Dietz
Founder and Chairman of the Supervisory Board GFT Technologies SE
- Stefan Sigg
Chief Product Officer and Head of R&D Software AG
- Rafael Laguna de la Vera
Founding director of the German Agency for Disruptive Innovation in Leipzig
- Martin Noé
Chief Editor manager magazin
- Stefan Oschmann
Former Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany
- Otmar Wiestler
President of the Helmholtz Society