Press release

Kosmos Lecture on sustainable urban development at the Humboldt Foundation’s summer reception

Indian architect Pratyush Shankar will present results of the 2023 Humboldt Residency Programme on 7 September.

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More than 300 international guests from academia, politics and business as well as Humboldtians currently conducting research in Germany will meet at the summer reception being held in Berlin by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. Robert Schlögl, who has been president of the Foundation since January, will host the event for the first time. In addition to offering a space for speaking about and sharing personal experiences, the reception aims to provide impetus for new research collaboration. The Kosmos Lecture will present the initial results of the 2023 Humboldt Residency Programme.

Modelled after the Kosmos lectures Alexander von Humboldt gave in Berlin nearly 200 years ago to inform the public about the latest scientific findings, today’s Humboldt Foundation hosts a lecture on a topical subject every year on a date close to Humboldt’s birthday. This year, the Indian architect and professor of urban history and design Pratyush Shankar will speak on the subject of “Our Precious Resources: Cities as Spaces of Hope”. Simultaneous interpretation will be offered.

Humboldt Residency Group 2023, short biographies (PDF, 589 KB) 

Pratyush Shankar is the creative lead of the 2023 Humboldt Residency Programme, which brings 10 experts from academia, the media, the arts and civil society together to discuss sustainable approaches to our use of resources. Shankar’s work focuses on the history of urban development in South-East Asia, the relationship between nature and cities, and traditional knowledge systems. As a Humboldt Research Fellow, he was a guest at the University of Bonn multiple times between 2015 and 2017.

Humboldt Residency Programme 

The Humboldt Residency Programmes offers researchers and actors from the arts, the media and civil society the opportunity to work together on a topic that changes every year. The programme is being financed by Germany’s Federal Foreign Office. A six-week residency in Berlin and Brandenburg that ends in September fosters an intensive interdisciplinary sharing of views and information and promotes dialogue with the public. 

Journalists are welcome to attend!
Please register for the event by 4 September 2023 by sending an e-mail to, together with a copy of your valid press card.

Time: Thursday, 7 September 2023, 6 p.m. (doors open at 5:30 p.m.)
Venue: Villa Elisabeth, Invalidenstraße 3, 10115 Berlin


  • Welcome address Robert Schlögl, President of the Humboldt Foundation
  • Kosmos Lecture Pratyush Shankar (architect and professor of urban history and design at Navrachana University in Vadodara, India), Creative Lead of the 2023 Humboldt Residency Programme
  • Discussion
  • Reception starting 7:30 p.m.

Press contact on location: Kristina Güroff, Tel. 0151-14015796 

(Press release 24/2023)

Every year, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation enables more than 2,000 researchers from all over the world to spend time conducting research in Germany. The Foundation maintains an interdisciplinary network of well over 30,000 Humboldtians in more than 140 countries around the world – including 61 Nobel Prize winners.

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