The Zukunftskolleg Research Award is named after the Zukunftskolleg – an Institute for Advanced Studies – which was established at the University of Konstanz in 2007. The Zukunftskolleg’s target group is young researchers at the stage of their career between completing a doctoral degree and prior to a first permanent post. Top-class research, high visibility, academic networks and transdisciplinary communication create an environment that supports the individual fellows in the most vulnerable phase of their academic careers.
With the new research award, the Zukunftskolleg is going a step further in its support for early career researchers. Each year, a new topic will be chosen, and an individual prize will be awarded to an exceptional researcher. Endowed with generous research support and travel costs, the award will enable its recipients to augment existing research projects, pursue novel experimental approaches, explore new questions and/or forge further links in their academic networks. Over the years, the Zukunftskolleg Research Award will invite nominations from all subject areas at the University of Konstanz.
Topic for 2022: “The Evolution of Behaviour”
Evolution is the driving force for the beauty of life on Earth: bacteria, plants, fungi and animals with their astonishing diversity have never ceased to fascinate humankind. Behaviour, in this context, is both the result of evolutionary adaptation and a driver of long-term change.
Since its foundation in 1966, the University of Konstanz has had a strong tradition of pioneering research in evolutionary biology, and the first professor here in this field, Professor Hubert Markl, already took the approach that evolution and behaviour must be considered in parallel. Behaviour is not a solely individual characteristic; it is also moulded by group dynamics. In collaboration with the Max Planck Institute of Animal Behaviour, the University of Konstanz hosts the Cluster of Excellence “Centre for the Advanced Study of Collective Behaviour”, which attracts the best minds in (neuro)biology, psychology, computer science, economics, mathematics and physics, among others.
The Zukunftskolleg Research Award acknowledges an individual who is actively exploring new horizons in these exciting times: How does evolution shape behaviour? How do collectives react to evolutionary pressure? How can animal communities change the environment through their behaviour and thus modify the selection pressure for themselves and other species?
Entitled to nominate awardees
All members and cooperation partners of the Zukunftskolleg and the University of Konstanz are entitled to nominate awardees, as are the elected members of the Review Boards of the German Research Foundation, national and international universities as well as universities of applied sciences with equivalent status, the Union of German Academies of Sciences and Humanities, the Max Planck Society, the German research centres of the Helmholtz Association, Fraunhofer, and the Leibniz Association.
The Zukunftskolleg Research Award is not restricted to specific subject areas. It acknowledges early career researchers who hold a doctoral degree and have accomplished outstanding academic achievements in their specialist field. This includes networked thinking and research, a cogent focus on solutions, and approaches for mastering the challenges of tomorrow.
The Zukunftskolleg Research Award comprises a three-month research stay in Konstanz, in the framework of which the prize winner receives research funding of €3,000, reimbursement of travel costs as well as an accommodation allowance.
About the Zukunftskolleg
The Zukunftskolleg is an Institute for Advanced Studies of the University of Konstanz and unique nationwide. It supports early career researchers between their doctoral degree and a professorship, offering them an interdisciplinary work environment with first-class research conditions and the greatest possible freedom. The Zukunftskolleg is funded within the Excellence Strategy of Germany’s federal and state governments and by the foundation “Hector Stiftung II”.
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