Alexander von Humboldt Professorship

With a value of five million EUR, the Alexander von Humboldt Professorship is the most highly-endowed research award in Germany and draws top international researchers to German universities.

The Humboldt Professorship at a glance

  • Humboldt Professorships bring international research stars to Germany

    Alexander von Humboldt Professorships 2017 awarded by Federal Minister of Education and Research Johanna Wanka and the President of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Helmut Schwarz.  > more

  • Heading for the Big Leagues

    Worldwide competition to attract the best researchers is fierce. German universities are increasingly joining the fray – and succeeding in recruiting vast numbers of top academics.  > more

Award Winners 2018

Anne van Aaken
Law / Economics


Wil van der Aalst
Informatics/Computer Science


Bogdan Andrei Bernevig
Solid State Physics and Materials Science


Marco Caccamo
Computer Engineering / Real-Time Systems


Margaret C. Crofoot
Biology / Movement Ecology


Ewa Dąbrowska
Cognitive Linguistics


Arno Rauschenbeutel
Quantum optics / Atomic physics


Guus F. Rimmelzwaan
Virology / Immunology


Michael H. Sieweke
Immunology / Stem cell research


Raul Fidel Tempone
Applied Mathematics


Award Winners 2017

Largus T. Angenent
Environmental Microbiology / Bioprocess Engineering


Peter Baumann
Cell biology


Jijie Chai
Structural Biology


James Conant


Wolf B. Frommer
Plant molecular biology


Ran Hirschl
Constitutional Law / Political Science



An Offer You Can’t Refuse (Almost)

Thanks to the Humboldt Professorship, Germany has enticing things to offer international research luminaries. A review of the first five years.

“Germany’s Nobel Prizes awarded,” announced the Süddeutsche Zeitung on its front page when the Alexander von Humboldt Professorships were granted for the first time some five years ago. Germany’s Nobel Prizes? The comparison is both apposite and completely off the mark. On the one hand, ...  > more


When I think of Germany...

Reflections of an American scientist living in Göttingen

When I think of Germany I think of a place where it is still fun to do science! No kidding. Germany is a fun place, especially when it comes to Science. This hit me like a brick recently at the end of a hard week of work, Freitag Feierabend! I’m sitting in a nice Göttingen student Kneipe with ...  > more


“We Have to Explain What Makes a German Administration Tick”

KOSMOS: The interim evaluation of five years of the Humboldt Professorship is largely positive. But it does identify some critical areas which will need to be addressed in the 2015 evaluation. What are you concerned about? AUFDERHEIDE: One genuine concern is the low proportion of women, even ...  > more

The Anxiety Tamer

Jürgen Margraf developed a therapy for panic attacks that works incredibly fast. Now a Humboldt Professor at Ruhr-Universität Bochum, the psychologist is investigating how people stay mentally healthy.

There are occasions when even anxiety researchers get anxious. Jürgen Margraf has experienced many such moments, and remembers one in particular. “It was my first dive in the sea,” relates the Professor of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, sitting in his office on campus at ...  > more

There’s Still Room at the Top

Prominent female researchers are rare, amongst Humboldt Professors, too. What academia and the Foundation can do about it.

The IBM Research Centre in Zurich likes to showcase the successful physicist, Heike Riel. When TU München raised the possibility of a Humboldt Professorship a year ago, alarm bells rang in Zurich. They made her an IBM Research Fellow, the highest accolade the company grants. For five years, the ...  > more

Heading for the Big Leagues

Worldwide competition to attract the best researchers is fierce. German universities are increasingly joining the fray – and succeeding in recruiting vast numbers of top academics.

It was about a year ago that Hannes Leitgeb faced his big decision. Leitgeb, now 39, had been conducting research as a philosopher and mathematician in Bristol, UK, for five years; then his two children reached school age. “To be honest, we weren’t really sure about the school system in ...  > more


8. Mai 2018: Verleihung der Alexander von Humboldt-Professuren in Berlin

Gekommen, um zu verändern: Festveranstaltung 10 Jahre Alexander von Humboldt-Professur und Preisverleihung am 8. Mai 2018 in Berlin

Zehn Forscher aus dem Ausland werden mit Deutschlands höchstdotiertem Forschungspreis ausgezeichnet und erhalten je bis zu fünf Millionen Euro. Preisverleihung mit Bundesforschungsministerin Anja Karliczek am 8. Mai in Berlin.  > more


New Alexander von Humboldt Professors chosen

Five researchers from abroad selected to receive Germany’s most valuable international research award in 2018 and move to Berlin, Saxony-Anhalt, Bavaria, Baden-Württemberg and North Rhine-Westphalia.

The Alexander von Humboldt Professorship comes with up to €5 million in funding and is granted to eminent researchers of all disciplines who have been working abroad up to now. They are expected to conduct cutting-edge research at German universities on a long-term basis. The award amount is ...  > more


Humboldt Professor Tschöp to receive Carus Medal

German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina honours outstanding research on diabetes and obesity

The medical researcher is one of the world's most eminent scientists working in the field of diabetes and obesity research. In 2012, he became the first physician ever to be awarded an Alexander von Humboldt Professorship. The German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina has now selected him to ...  > more