To facilitate the transfer of research results to all levels of society and thus open up new prospects to students and young researchers, the university systematically seeks dialogue with the broader public as well as defined subsets. A wide range of activities encourages continual exchange between science and society.
Through a variety of events and communication formats, including the Academic Lunch Break, the Studium Generale lectures, as well as meetings between scientists and representatives from the political, economic, and cultural spheres, Heidelberg University strives to strategically connect research expertise and specialised knowledge with various target groups in society. The goal is to keep the public informed and to raise awareness of the impact of scientific work on society.
To this end, the Marsilius Kolleg launched the "Marsilius kontrovers" lecture series, a public forum for the discussion of controversial topics (e.g. surrogacy, genome editing, big data in medicine) with the wider public.
The Heidelberg Center for Cultural Heritage (HCCH), the Heidelberg Center for the Environment (HCE), the History and Cultural Heritage Research Unit (FGKE), as well as the Public History projects promote dialogue between science and the public. Through the close cooperation between the FGKE and the Reiss-Engelhorn Museums in Mannheim, several internationally significant exhibits, each drawing thousands of visitors, were organised over the last several years. Members of the university also reach a broad public through expert contributions in a number of media.
Springer Nature Visiting Professorship
In cooperation with the Veranstaltungsforum of the Holtzbrinck Publishing Group and the Klaus Tschira Foundation, the Springer Nature Visiting Professorship for Scientific Communication was established at the Marsilius Kolleg. As experts in scientific communication and quality journalism, each of the visiting professors shares with young scientists how to best communicate their research results to a widely diverse public. The Springer Nature Visiting Professorship is intended to sharpen awareness of the growing importance of good scientific communication. The visiting professorship aids society in shaping the future through science. Learn more
Ruperto Carola Lecture Series
With its concept of focal themes, Heidelberg University will in future, on a twice-yearly basis, present socially relevant research topics in different formats to the general public. The offerings include the Ruperto Carola lecture series and the “Ruperto Carola” research magazine.
Academic Lunch Break
These fifteen-minute lectures are given far from the lecture hall in the unique atmosphere of the Peterskirche – entertaining, informative, and above all easy to understand. A question and discussion round follows.
The "Überlebensstrategien" lecture series is a joint project of the Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung (RNZ) and the Heidelberg Collaborative Research Centres working in the life sciences. The editors from the Heidelberg newspaper's editorial office pose questions on the research topics presented, the researchers involved, and the methods used.
Kids’ Uni is a programme of the “Young University”, which offers children and young people the opportunity to gain their first experience with science and research through attending lectures and workshops. In the 2021 summer semester, the Kids’ Uni organised a virtual tour of discovery through Ruperto Carola designed for school children from the age of eight.
Scientists are reporting on their current research projects in the life sciences in the lecture series “wissenschaft.leben”, their aim being to increase awareness of the importance of basic research in society. The project coordinated at the Centre for Organismal Studies (COS) comprises panel discussions and video podcasts and is meant for the general public.
Networks and Exchange
Heidelberg Chamber of Industry and Commerce (IHK) Evening
This joint event held by the IHK Rhine-Neckar and Heidelberg University brings together business and science. The Heidelberg Evening includes lectures as well as an opportunity to exchange views.
Heidelberg Collaboratory for Image Processing
The Heidelberg Image Processing Forum is a forum for further education and the exchange of information between universities, research institutes and industry. With lectures by representatives from science and industry, it offers regular insights into current research and development topics.
Physics Research Discussion Group Rhine-Neckar
Two times a year this discussion group provides scientists from industry and universities in the region a forum to discuss their research and development work in the field of physics and to support collaboration on projects that are nearing practical application.
Rhine-Neckar Modelling Day
Modelling Day brings together practitioners and scientists to discuss innovations and modelling approaches in physics research as well as to share experiences. The Heidelberg Graduate School of Mathematical and Computational Methods for the Sciences co-organises the event.
Geoinformation Network of the Rhine-Neckar Metropolitan Region, GeoNet.MRN
The GeoNet.MRN Network is an association of various firms, organisations, university research institutions and municipalities in the greater Rhine-Neckar region that addresses regional topics of concern in which geoinformation is key.