Future-proofing the Foundation!

At the turn of the year, Hans-Christian Pape’s term in office as President of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, that he assumed in 2018, comes to an end. The Foundation would like to thank the outgoing President for his commitment in turbulent times, which has set the Foundation’s activities on course for a sustainable and diversity-conscious future.

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Neurophysiologist Hans-Christian Pape, President of the Humboldt Foundation since 2018
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Enno Aufderheide, Secretary General of the Humboldt Foundation honors the outgoing President: “In the New Year, the Foundation will face a turning point: Our President, Professor Hans-Christian Pape, will come to the end of his term of office. During his tenure as President of the Foundation, changes were launched, which he encouraged; they have helped to make us ‘future proof’.

Path-breaking programmes, such as the Henriette Herz Scouting Programme, the Alexander von Humboldt Professorship for Artificial Intelligence and the Humboldt Research Hubs in Africa were introduced. Apart from the current conflict in Ukraine, one of the biggest challenges of his tenure was certainly the Covid pandemic. I should like to take this opportunity to thank Professor Pape most warmly for his engagement in the last few years!”

Hans-Christian Pape with Federal President Steinmeier at the Annual Meeting 2022
Hans-Christian Pape bei seiner Eröffnungsrede
Hans-Christian Pape at the Humboldt Academia in Society Summit 2022
Hans-Christian Pape with Angela Merkel at the opening of the Annual Meeting 2019
Hans-Christian Pape with Kate Crawford at the Humboldt Academia in Society Summit 2022
Hans-Christian Pape, President of the Humboldt Foundation, at the Humboldt Japan Colloquium
Hans-Christian Pape at the virtual Humboldt Colloquium Japan 2022

President Pape looking back on his time at the Foundation: “The pandemic was certainly one of the major challenges of my period in office, but we managed to respond quickly, flexibly and unbureaucratically to help our sponsorship-recipients  deal with lockdowns and travel restrictions. Much of what we learned during that period we now want to use in the future to facilitate new, more climate-friendly forms of academic mobility. The Sustainability Agenda that we have introduced together with a new strategy and a diversity agenda fall into this category. And the Foundation was able to provide humanitarian aid, too: the fellowships under the Philipp Schwartz Initiative allowed us to alleviate immediate needs, most recently with regard to the war in Ukraine. I am very proud of this. And, above all, I am very grateful.”

The President would also like to thank our friends and partners in politics and academia who have consistently supported the Foundation in the common struggle for the best solutions: “I trust and count on you to continue allowing the Foundations to benefit from your goodwill, your trust and your commitment even in difficult political and financial circumstances so that it may uphold the fine traditions and values whilst also carrying the flame of change into the future.”


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