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The Best Dissertations of the Year

Award ceremony for Ernst Reuter Prizes for outstanding doctoral research, plus award for excellent supervision of doctoral students at Freie Universität Berlin

№ 377/2019 from Dec 03, 2019

Five early-career researchers have been selected to win this year’s Ernst Reuter Prizes of Freie Universität Berlin for their outstanding and forward-thinking research. The award ceremony on Wednesday, December 4, 2019, is part of the day’s celebrations in honor of the university’s 71st anniversary. The recipients include the American studies scholar Dr. Tobias Jochum, economist Dr. Annika Schnücker, veterinary medicine researcher Dr. Jakob Trimpert, geographer Dr. Sophia Walther, and physicist Dr. Henrik Wilming. The Ernst Reuter Prizes are awarded annually by the Ernst Reuter Society for exceptional doctoral theses and come with a monetary award of 5,000 euros. The Dahlem Research School (DRS) has also named two award winners for their exemplary supervision of doctoral students. This year’s winners of the DRS-Award for Excellent Supervision are Professor Wendy M. K. Shaw from art history and Professor Stefan Rinke from the Institute for Latin American Studies. Winners of the DRS award also receive 2,000 euros, which they are supposed to use to further support early-career researchers.

Winners of this year’s Ernst Reuter Prizes for outstanding dissertations:

  • Dr. Tobias Jochum
    The Ethics of Representation in Contemporary Literary Narratives of Border Violence
    Department of Philosophy and Humanities
  • Dr. Annika Schnücker
    Model Selection Methods for Panel Vector Autoregressive Models
    School of Business and Economics
  • Dr. Jakob Trimpert
    The role of DNA Polymerase Fidelity on Genetic Variation and Pathogenicity of Mareks’s Disease Virus
    Department of Veterinary Medicine
  • Dr. Sophia Walther
    Assessment of the Dynamics of Terrestrial Vegetation Using Satellite Observations of Greenness and Sun-induced Chlorophyll Fluorescence
    Department of Earth Sciences
  • Dr. Henrik Wilming
    A Quantum of Thermodynamics: From Ground State Cooling to Spontaneous Symmetry Breaking
    Department of Physics

Around 750 scholars complete doctoral degrees at Freie Universität Berlin every year. A handful of the best doctoral theses are selected by an interdisciplinary commission and are awarded prizes by the Ernst Reuter Society. Doctoral students in DRS member programs can nominate their supervisors for the doctoral supervision award.

Every year since 1985, Freie Universität Berlin awards the Ernst Reuter Prizes on December 4, the anniversary of the university’s founding day. The prizes are named after the former Governing Mayor of West Berlin, who was deeply committed to the establishment of the university, which was founded on December 4, 1948.


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