Research magazine "Ruperto Carola" - fascicle 2/95

"Ruperto Carola" Heft 2/95 engl. Despite the vastly increasing demands being made on it, the welfare state is anything but inefficient. This is the conclusion of a comparative analysis undertaken by Heidelberg-based political scientist Manfred Schmidt and featured on the cover of the latest edition (2/95) of Heidelberg University's research magazine "Ruperto Carola". Leibniz Prize-winner Schmidt takes an international look at the way the division of labour between state and market functions and weighs up the advantages and disadvantages of the various constellations. Other central topics in this issue: major progress in neuroradiology, the psychological strains of adolescence, protection for our ground water, Russian authors and their influence on 20th century American literature, new vistas for the Medical Research Centre in Mannheim. "Are Universities Service Centres and Nothing More?", asks Rektor Prof. Peter Ulmer in his editorial. With specific reference to the title feature he invites his readers to spare a thought for the controversial subject of endowments. In this respect the University of Heidelberg has had little to complain of recently but it's still a far cry from the lavish donations enjoyed by British and American universities. Ulmer identifies two main reasons for the dilemma. One is a stubborn lack of awareness of "corporate" reponsibility for the community interests represented by culture and scientific research, the other the failure in the past by members of the University to cultivate personal contacts with potential donors. Against the backdrop of the immense bid the University is making to give itself a viable new structure, Ulmer hopes that there will soon be a change of attitude that will support the University in its efforts. In future it will be easier to avoid open-surgery brain operations and the use of radiation in diagnosis and therapy. In the second article, Klaus Sartor of the University Neurological Clinic describes the advanced methods now available for radiological imaging of the head. Standard procedures such as computer tomography are being upgraded via 3-D data records, thus mapping the spatial dimension of the human body more faithfully on the screen. In addition, the radiation-free charting of brain functions by means of magnetic resonance tomography has made great strides, thus opening up new perspectives for the understanding and treatment of strokes and permanent functional brain damage. Psychiatric treatment for children and adolescents is the subject of the next article, entitled: "Who am I really?" In adolescence young people have some tough phases of development to cope with, most of them bound up with changes in their physical image and the influence that has on their thinking. If society is prepared to take these crises seriously, the prospects of a sound development in terms of identity, self-confidence and autonomy are good. Franz Resch, Director of the Psychiatric Clinic's children's and young people's department, calls for greater understanding and more support for young people at "significant crossover points" in their development. In Germany at present there are an estimated thousand cases where residual waste represents an acute hazard for the ground water. Is prevention the best way of preserving our main source of drinking water? Wolfgang Kinzelbach of the Institute of Environmental Physics addresses this question in the next article and also provides an answer. Kinzelbach and his research team have developed measuring procedures and computation methods providing practical aid in making remedial activities effective and keeping the costs manageable at the same time. The Russian authors Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy, Turgenev and Chekhov were a source of major inspiration for many 19th and 20th century American novelists and short-story writers. Murder, war and an acute awareness of impermanence were subjects that young American authors were equally concerned with. Horst-JĀrgen Gerigk of the Institute of Slavonic Studies traces these affinities and the reception of Russian literature in America. An interview with Klaus von Ackern, Dean of Heidelberg University's Mannheim Faculty of Clinical Medicine, brings the main body of the magazine to a close. Von Ackern describes the coming developments to be expected in clinical research, the organisation of the Mannheim Medical Research Centre, major cooperation agreements existing with other research institutions in the region and Mannheim's new research incentive programme for young scientists "FORMAT". The present issue rounds off with the usual columns on "Outside Financing", "Brief Reports from Young Researchers", "Opinions" and the report on the activities of the Stiftung UniversitĄt Heidelberg foundation. "Ruperto Carola" costs 10 DM plus postage, 5 DM for students. Like the special Support Subscription (60 DM for four issues) it can be ordered from: Pressestelle der UniversitĄt Heidelberg, Postfach 10 57 60, 69047 Heidelberg. Up
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