Members of the Committee for the Allocation of Feodor Lynen Research Fellowships to German Scientists and Scholars

As of May 2019

Information on the composition of the committee

The central instrument for conferring Feodor Lynen Research Fellowships is an interdisciplinary selection committee.


The members are assigned certain applications, on which they report to the committee. All decisions are discussed and taken jointly by the interdisciplinary committee; the Foundation’s Board of Trustees must approve the committee’s choices for research fellowships.

The selection committee is composed of:

  • specialist members: recognized researchers of various disciplines (= specialist selection committee members)
  • non-specialist members: voting representatives of public and private funders; non-voting representatives of other science (funding) organisations.

This composition ensures the necessary scientific expertise to review the applications, complemented by institutional expertise on strategic-structural aspects.

The total number and the representation of disciplines by experts on the committees is based on the average number and subject representation of the applications received. The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation’s choice of expert committee members forms the basis for recognising and selecting excellence in its sponsorship programmes. The selection of specialist selection committee members is, therefore, a core process at the Foundation that seeks to identify the finest scientific minds. The Selection Department takes great care to regularly include domestic and international researchers on its committees who are new to the Foundation’s broader network in order to remain open to new perspectives and angles.

For each new appointment or replacement, the Foundation consults numerous experts as well as representatives of science organisations to draw up a shortlist. Scientific excellence is a basic prerequisite for a candidate to be considered. Other core prerequisites are:

  • international contacts and experience, as possible extended academic professional activity abroad
  • preferably broad scientific expertise
  • willingness and ability to engage in interdisciplinary discourse
  • willingness to actively support the work of the Humboldt Foundation
  • sufficient availability.

The following additional aspects are also considered when appointing committee members:

  • gender and age balance
  • balanced regional representation
  • complementing existing expertise on the committee
  • including researchers who work abroad whilst ensuring the necessary familiarity with the German science system.

The decision to appoint a new member is approved by the Board of Trustees. The appointment is for an initial term of three years and can be renewed twice.


Professor Dr. Hans-Ulrich Reißig
Institut für Chemie und Biochemie - Organische Chemie, Freie Universität Berlin

(Proxy: Professor Dr. Harald Strauß)

Specialist Committee Members

  • Professor Dr. Anne Baillot
    Faculté des Lettres, Langues et Sciences humaines, Le Mans Université
  • Professor Dr. Thomas Benzing
    Klinik II für Innere Medizin, Universität Köln
  • Professor Dr. Martin Burger
    Naturwissenschaftlische Fakultät, Department Mathematik, Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg
  • Professor Dr. Irene Burghardt
    Institut für Physikalische und Theoretische Chemie, Universität Frankfurt am Main
  • Professor Dr. Sonja Drobnic
    Bremen International Graduate School of Social Sciences (BIGSSS), Universität Bremen
  • Professor Dr. Gerhard Ernst
    Institut für Philosophie, Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg
  • Professor Dr. Saskia Florine Fischer
    AG Neue Materialien, Humboldt-Universität Berlin
  • Professor Dr. Beate Kellner
    Institut für Deutsche Philologie, Universität München
  • Professor Dr. Bettina Lotsch
    Max-Planck-Institut für Festkörperforschung, Stuttgart
  • Professor Dr. Gabriele Metzler
    Institut für Geschichtswissenschaften, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
  • Professor Dr. Christiane de Morais Smith
    Institute for Theoretical Physics, Utrecht University
  • Professor Dr. Uta Paszkowski
    Department of Plant Sciences, University of Cambridge
  • Professor Dr. Ludwig Schultz
    Institut für Metallische Werkstoffe, Leibniz-Institut für Festkörper- und Werkstoffforschung (IFW), Dresden
  • Professor Dr. Harald Strauß
    Geologisch-Paläontologisches Institut und Museum, Universität Münster
  • Professor Dr.-Ing. Kai Sundmacher
    Max-Planck-Institut für Dynamik komplexer technischer Systeme, Fachgruppe Physikalisch-Chemische Prozesstechnik, Magdeburg

Non-specialist Voting Committee Members

  • Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung:
    MinR Peter Hassenbach
  • Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Liaison Office, Bonn:
    Professor Dr. Masahiko Hayashi
  • Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan:
    Professor Yian Tai

Non-specialist Non-voting Committee Members

  • Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung:
    Dr. Enno Aufderheide
  • Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst:
    Dr. Christian Schäfer
  • Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft:
    Dr. Armin Krawisch
  • Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, Generalverwaltung:
    Dr. Berthold Neizert


Alexander von Humboldt Foundation
Selection Department
Jean-Paul-Str. 12
53173 Bonn, Germany

Fax: 0228-833 212