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FRIAS Express September 2017

Dear FRIAS Community,


In the academic world, summer is always a time of transition. Projects are being finished and decisions for future ventures are being made. We are looking back on a very successful passing academic year and said goodbye to the fellows of the cohort 2016/17. Currently, we are happy to receive high-powered applications for our fellowship programmes in 2018/19. And we are busy preparing the welcome of the new Fellows who will join us from September onwards. As a matter of fact, the first Junior Fellows have arrived already. Also there is reason to celebrate: our newsletter ‘FRIAS Express’ turns ONE these days! In the past 12 months it has been a true pleasure for us to send you brief updates on a monthly basis on what’s going on at our Institute. The feedback on the Express we have received over the last year has been very positive and helped to further develop our electronic newsletter. Thanks a lot to all of you for your kind interest!



» Federal state of Baden-Württemberg and Freiburg University will continue to jointly finance FRIAS

Shortly before the summer break, the rectorate has approved continued funding for FRIAS for the time period 2018-19. Earlier, the federal state of Baden-Württemberg had decided to guarantee its share of the FRIAS budget until the end of the academic year 2018/19. This decision by both the state (Land) and the university is a recognition of the successful work of the Institute under its new concept since 2014. FRIAS and the university are aiming for securing additional long-term funding for the Institute through the German excellence initiative. With this valuable support FRIAS can continue to provide outstanding and internationally competitive research funding, primarily through its fellowship programmes.


» Call for Applications: FRIAS COFUND Fellowship Programme for international applicants

FRIAS is announcing its call for applications for the Marie S. Curie FRIAS Cofund Fellowship Programme (FCFP) for international applicants. Outstanding senior and junior researchers from all disciplines are invited to apply for a fellowship stay in Freiburg in the academic year 2018/19. Fellowship conditions are highly attractive and internationally competitive.

There are two types of Fellowships: Junior Fellowships for early-stage academics (completed PhD plus initial – one to six years - of post-doctoral experience; duration of stay: 12 months) and Senior Fellowships for established academics (duration of stay: 3–10 months). All fellowships will be awarded to individuals with challenging and innovative research projects of top academic quality through a highly competitive, strictly merit-based selection process. The all-important selection criteria are the academic excellence of both the applicant and the project proposal.

Note: Deadline for applications is October 10, 2017. Restrictions apply for researchers who have worked or lived in Germany during the last three years. Further information on the FCFP and the application procedure here.


» Call for Applications: FRIAS Fellowship programmes for researchers from Freiburg University

Besides its international fellowship programme, FRIAS also offers both junior and senior fellowships to researchers from Freiburg University. We encourage outstanding early-stage researchers as well as established professors from the University of Freiburg to apply. A fellowship at FRIAS offers an outstanding opportunity to advance one’s own research project while becoming part of an international community of researchers from all disciplines.

Note: Deadline for applications is October 31, 2017. Further information on the application procedure here.


» Scholars at Risk: University of Freiburg and FRIAS receive funding for two scholars from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation

The University of Freiburg will receive funding for two scholarships in order to support researchers facing the threat of war or persecution in their homeland. An application submitted by the University of Freiburg with the support of FRIAS has been successful within the Philipp Schwartz Initiative. With the financial assistance provided by this important initiative, FRIAS and the university are in the fortunate position of providing academic refuge to two threatened researchers and their families.

The Philipp Schwartz Initiative was established by the Humboldt Foundation with assistance from Germany’s Federal Foreign Office in 2015, and has recently received significant financial support from the VW Mellon Foundation, too. Supporting German Universities’ efforts to host foreign Scholars at Risk, the Initiative grants funding for scholarships of 24 months.

Further information on the activities of the University of Freiburg for Scholars at Risk can be found hereFurther information on the Philipp Schwartz Initiative can be found here.


» Selection of Joint Research Groups FRIAS – Nagoya IAR

Nagoya Castle

In July, FRIAS and the Nagoya Institute for Advanced Research (IAR) selected two new research groups that will start their work in January 2018. More information on the two Joint Research Groups here.

  • How Traditions of Economic Thinking Shape Economic Policie

Prof. Oliver Landmann and Prof. Hans-Helmut Kotz from the University of Freiburg and Prof. Naoki Fukuzawa and Prof. Yasuhiro Doi from the University of Nagoya will investigate ways in which different traditions of economic thinking influence economic policy making and economic policies in the European Union and Japan.

  • Quantum Information Processing in Non-Markovian quantum Complex systems

In the research field of quantum information science, Prof. Heinz-Peter Breuer and Prof. Andreas Buchleitner from the University of Freiburg will collaborate with Prof. Francesco Buscemi and Prof. Hayashi from the University of Nagoya. The consortium aims to design quantum circuit models – paradigms of quantum computation – fit for technological integration.

» Professor Caprice Knapp named Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Policy Fellow

Caprice Knapp

FRIAS congratulates fellow Caprice Knapp, associate professor of Health Policy and Administration at Penn State University, for being named Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Policy Fellow. Beginning in September, Knapp and five other health professionals will spend a year in Washington, D.C., working on health-related legislative and regulatory issues with members of Congress and the executive branch. More information on the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the fellowship programme in the press release.




» Junior Researcher Conference

This September we are happy to once again support up-and-coming research by hosting two Junior Researcher Conferences.

  • 13. - 15.09.2017: Beyond molecular movies: Bringing time-domain spectroscopy to diffraction imaging

This conference is dedicated to the mapping of chemical processes thereby “making a molecular movie” of the dynamics on electronic timescales. The technique helps comprehend basic chemical processes such as proton transfer in water as well as complex biological processes like the unfolding of protein on a molecular level. Leading scientists from the fields of spatial and temporal imaging of molecular dynamics will discuss the recent developments and possible outlooks in the field. More information here.

  • 19. - 22.09.2017 ODE Modelling in Systems Biology

The conference will deal with questions and application issues surrounding ordinary differential equation (ODE) models. What will be discussed are methodologies and recent developments in optimization, parameter estimation and uncertainty quantification as well as applications of ODE models and their implementation. More information here.



 In each issue, FRIAS Express introduces the people working behind the scenes making invaluable contributions to the continued development of the Institute, either as a member of its Steering Committee (handles all questions of governance) or its Scientific Advisory Board (responsible for all major selection decisions concerning fellowships, research foci, and project groups).

Tim Freytag

Tim Freytag joined FRIAS in 2015 when he was appointed member of the FRIAS steering committee. In the same year, he also joined FRIAS as a member of the interdisciplinary project group “A Green City Mandate”. This project group analysed the relationship between urban development and environmental challenges in order to understand if (and how) actors of urban planning respond to environmental challenges such as pollution, sanitation, and energy sustainability.

Tim Freytag is a Professor of Human Geography and Dean of the Faculty for Environment and Natural Resources at the University of Freiburg. Freytag studied Geography, History, and Romance Languages and Literature at the University of Heidelberg, the University of Granada (Spain) and the University of Geneva (Switzerland). After receiving his doctoral degree at the University in Heidelberg in 2003, Freytag worked as a research assistant and lecturer in Heidelberg. In 2009 he took up a position as Professor of Cultural Geography at the University of Kiel. Since April 2010 Freytag is a Professor of Human Geography in Freiburg. His main areas of research and teaching include tourism and mobility research, social and cultural geography, educational geography, and urban and metropolitan research.

Freytag has profound experience in applying and managing interdisciplinary and international research scholarships and projects. In the FRIAS Steering Committee Freytag not only brings in this expertise, but also valuable insights and experiences from his position as a highly research-active Professor and Dean at the University of Freiburg.



Bernd KortmannAugust and early Septemer are the time of the year at FRIAS with close to zero fellows and academic activities. Time for summer holidays, cleaning up, preparing for a fresh start from September and, with full force, from October onwards. Normally. This time, everything is a little different, though. Not only are we expecting any day now the arrival of the two scholars at risk funded through the Philipp Schwartz Initiative (see above). Especially Carsten Dose and my humble self are busy preparing the visits of two high-ranking delegations, one from Penn State, U Freiburg’s strategic partner in the United States, and the other from the University of Ghana (Legon/Accra). FRIAS has just started a close collaboration with the former (International Project Groups), and is (with full support of U Freiburg) planning a long-term collaboration with the latter by jointly running on the UG campus a MERIAN International Centre for Advanced Studies with the topic of Sustainable Governance. Attentive readers of the FRIAS Express may recall that this is part of a call by the German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) for establishing such a centre in Sub-Sahara Africa. Now, the crucial hearing of all applying consortia will take place in Bonn in mid-September – and our guests from UG will be part of the team presenting MICAS Africa at that very meeting. So there it goes – the summer drowsiness, for some of us here at FRIAS it’s rather like steeling oneself for the first autumn gale!