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Visitors’ Night 2007 at the University of Heidelberg

29 October 2007

University and University hospitals promise fascinating glimpses of the research world – Rector Prof. Dr. Bernhard Eitel praises the commitment of colleagues and staff


From 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. on 10 November 2007 over 60 institutes, centres and departments of the University of Heidelberg and Heidelberg University Hospital will be opening their doors to the public in the course of the first-ever Visitors’ Night. They will be joined by other universities, research institutions and companies in the Rhine-Neckar Metropolitan Region. The University of Heidelberg extends a cordial invitation to all those interested in gaining an impression of the range of research conducted at the University and taking a look behind the scenes. "We want to show our visitors the exciting and important topics addressed by our scientists and scholars,” said Rector Prof. Dr. Bernhard Eitel, who was full of praise for the commitment displayed by colleagues and staff. "This way they can get an impression of the research progress being made and its repercussions on our everyday lives.”

The programme encompasses entertaining experiments and demonstrations, laboratory tours, informative and exciting presentations and a number of activities everyone can join in on. Professors and lecturers will be providing readily comprehensible explanations of scientific phenomena and the latest medical research ventures and operation methods, offering advice and assistance in coming to terms with problems associated with illness and other general issues of vital significance. They will also be addressing acute issues like global warming, biotechnology, data protection or the American presidential elections and providing insights into the religions of the world, foreign languages and cultures, colossal computer architectures and the fascinating realm of cells and molecules. Fans of CSI and Crossing Jordan can find out about the differences between fiction and reality in the field of forensic medicine. In simulated court proceedings, teachers at the Institute of Public Finance and Fiscal Law will be demonstrating that tax law can also be an intriguing subject. At the Institute of Physics on Philosophers’ Way, visitors can enjoy live music while following the development of physics from its earliest beginnings to the latest experiments, including the Big Bang in the laboratory.

The question of what it is precisely that holds the world together will also be mooted at the Kirchhoff Institute of Physics – amateur experimenters are very welcome! Visitors to the Cluster of Excellence "Cellular Networks” can look forward to an exciting encounter with the latest technologies enabling us to observe living cells under the microscope. The astronomers have prepared a truly galactic show. Visitors can emulate the crew of Star Trek and explore the universe with fascinating subjects ranging from the birth of stars to alien planets. Back on earth, the geographers will be devoting themselves to a highly topical issue, the way we deal with scientific knowledge and natural resources. The interdisciplinary network devoted to research on aging will be looking at the attitude of society and individuals to this ussue. "100 Years Old and Happy! But How?” is just one of the multitude of topics under discussion on Visitors’ Night. At the Max Weber House visitors can listen in on an intriguing discussion with top managers on the subject of capitalism. At the Department of Germanic Studies, the well-known poetry performer Lutz Görner, who sees his efforts as an "encouragement to read”, will be whisking his audience away into the strange world of Dadaism.

Those who have always wanted to know what mathematics and music have in common or whether the future belongs to fuel cells will find the answers in the course of this open night at the University of Heidelberg. If they prefer to watch robots in action, an opera performed by puppets or an airbag doing its stuff, then they will also be catered for. The University Library has a special treat in store for book-fanciers. Visitors will have the rare opportunity to admire historical prints and manuscripts in their original state, a show made possible by the sponsorship of Deutsche Bank AG. Another important sponsor is the ABB AG with its support for the impressive illumination of the University buildings ensuring that no one loses their way in the maze of attractions on offer.

Many of the offerings on Visitors’ Night are also suitable for youngsters. They can look forward to a wide range of activities guaranteed to amaze and intrigue. Young visitors can start a rocket with baking powder, learn Chinese, build a robot or explore the mysteries of ancient Egypt. And if their teddy bears have anything wrong with them, the Teddies’ Hospital promises to patch them up again.

Information on all these events and many more is available on the University’s internet pages:

At regular intervals, central topics featured on Visitors’ Night at the University of Heidelberg are discussed under the heading "Im Blickpunkt” (in German only). Notification of programme changes and other news can also be found on the University home page.

Please address any inquiries to
Dr. Tanja Fichtner
Public Relations Department
University of Heidelberg
phone: 06221/542135

Journalists can also address their inquiries to
Dr. Michael Schwarz
Public Information Officer
University of Heidelberg

Irene Thewalt
phone: 06221/542310, fax: 542317
Editor: Email
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