The first award ceremony in 1985 at Hamburg city hall

(c) Historical archives of Körber-Stiftung

The selection procedure

The Körber European Science Prize is awarded annually, alternating between the fields of Life Sciences and Physical Sciences. Renowned scientists from the respective disciplines from all over Europe form two international Search Committees.

The role of the Search Committees is to identify and nominate outstanding scientists in Europe whose research shows future promise and international relevance. Their work is supported by international experts who give their independent opinions on the candidates and their research proposals. The Search Committee recommends a maximum of five candidates to the Trustee Committee which ultimately determines the prize winner based on a summary of expert assessments, previous publications and career achievements.

The procedure

The Trustee Committee

The Trustee Committee is composed of ten scientists working in different scientific disciplines in Europe. The committee is chaired by the current President of the Max-Planck-Society, Prof. Dr. Patrick Cramer.

The most important task of the Trustee Committee is the final selection of the awardees. The decision of the committee is based on the discussions held in the Search Committees, the documentation submitted by the candidates and the independent expert opinions of scientists from all over the world.

Prof. Dr. Patrick Cramer (Chair)
President, Max-Planck-Society, Munich, Germany
Prof. Dr. Sir Anthony Kevin Cheetham
Materials Department, University of California Santa Barbara, USA
Prof. Dr. Sir Richard Friend
Department of Physics, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom
Prof. Dr. Alain Fuchs
President, University Paris Sciences & Lettres, France
Prof. Dr. Gerald Haug
President, German Academy of Sciences Leopoldina, Halle (Saale), Germany
Prof. Dr. Edith Heard
Director General, European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), Heidelberg, Germany
Prof. Dr. Bert Meijer
Director, Institute for Complex Molecular Systems, Eindhoven University of Technology, Netherlands
Prof. Dr. Felicitas Pauss
Department of Physics, ETH Zurich, Switzerland
Prof. Dr. Maciej Zylicz
President, Foundation for Polish Science, Warsaw, Poland
Photo: Ricky John Molloy
Prof. Dr. Juleen Zierath
Department of Molecular Medicine and Surgery, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden

“Europe needs excellent science to keep up with the USA and Asia. That’s why the Körber Prize honours outstanding researchers working in Europa who have demonstrated remarkable achievements and are expected to make further breakthroughs in the future.”

Dr. Thomas Paulsen

Member of the Executive Board, Körber-Stiftung

The Search Committees

The Search Committees have the task of identifying the best European scientists with the most innovative research as potential candidates for the Körber Prize. The nominees are each required to submit a comprehensive research proposal, which is then discussed within the Search Committee. The top three candidates are submitted to Trustee Committee for the final decision.

Search Committee Life Sciences

Prof. Dr. Edvard Moser (Chair)
Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience, Trondheim, Norway
Prof. Dr. Pascale Cossart
Institute Pasteur, Department of Cell Biology and Infection, Paris, France
Prof. Dr. Daniel Louvard
Institut Curie, Paris, France
Prof. Dr. Nadia Rosenthal
Imperial College London, UK; The Jackson Laboratory, USA
Prof. Dr. Sabine Werner
Institute of Molecular Health Sciences, ETH Zurich, Switzerland
Prof. Dr. Stefano Mazzoleni
Department of Agriculture, University of Napoli Federico II, Naples, Italy
Dr. Silvia De Monte
Institute of Biology of Ecole Normale Supérieure, PSL Research University, Paris, France

Search Committee Physical Sciences

Prof. Dr. Sir John O’Reilly (Chair)
Former Director General of Knowledge and Innovation, London, United Kingdom
Prof. Dr. Frede Blaabjerg
Faculty of Engineering and Science, Aalborg University, Denmark
Prof. Dr. Amal El Fallah Seghrouchni
Laboratoire d’Informatique de Paris 6, Sorbonne University, France
Prof. Dr. Klaus Ensslin
Department of Physics, ETH Zurich, Switzerland
Prof. Dr. Claudia Felser
Director, Max-Planck-Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids, Dresden, Germany
Prof. Dr. Daniela Jacob
Director, Climate Service Center Germany, Helmholtz- Zentrum Hereon, Hamburg, Germany
Prof. Dr. Rosa Menéndez
Carbon Science and Technology Institute, Madrid, Spain


Guidelines of the Körber European Science Prize