Two PIK researchers appointed professor at Humboldt University

05/23/2014 - Industrial ecology and land use: for these two research areas leading scientists of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) have recently been appointed professor at the Humboldt University in Berlin. “We are glad that Professor Helga Weisz and Professor Hermann Lotze-Campen, two renowned climate scientists, are joining HU, and that PIK and HU today are connected through no less than five professorships,” says Peter Frensch, Vice-President for Research at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin.
Two PIK researchers appointed professor at Humboldt University
Two professors: Hermann Lotze-Campen and Helga Weisz. Photos: Karkow, Batier

Helga Weisz, co-chair of PIK’s research domain Transdisciplinary Concepts & Methods, was appointed professor for Industrial Ecology and Climate Change at the Faculty for Humanities and Social Sciences in May.This professorship is assigned to both the Institute for Cultural Studies and the Institute for Social Sciences. “This unique combination of humanities, the social and the natural sciences, the latter being represented by PIK, in fact pursues a highly ambitious goal,” says Weisz. “It aims at understanding the role of natural resources for creating both the inertia and the transformation potential inherent in modern societies.”

A molecular biologist and cultural scientist by training, Weisz has held guest professorships at Yale University in the US and at the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland. Before joining PIK, Weisz was associate professor at Alpen-Adria University in Vienna, where she is also habilitated in Social Ecology.

Hermann Lotze-Campen, co-chair of PIK’s research domain Climate Impacts and Vulnerability, has been appointed professor for Sustainable Land-use and Climate Change at the new Department for Life Sciences at HU. "Agriculture, land-use, adaptation and mitigation of climate change are at the center of this professorship, that is closely linked to several branches of HU - from agricultural sciences to geography, from economy to social sciences," says Lotze-Campen. The professorship is supported by Bayer Foundation as part of their long-standing promotion of education and research.

He grew up on a farm in northern Germany and became himself a farmer before he studied agricultural sciences and economics in Kiel/Germany, Reading/UK and Minnesota in the US. Ahead of joining PIK in 2001 he worked on the commercial use of satellite data for agricultural purposes at the European space company Astrium.