The Owl

The Prize

n today's com­pe­ti­tive, hec­tic, often erra­tic, money-ori­ent­ed, in­crea­sing­ly ideo­logi­cally tinged, and mostly short-lived sci­ence and research, places of quiet dis­cus­sion free from strife are rare, and, though ge­neral­ly preached, broad-based inter­dis­ci­pli­nary ex­change usual­ly remains minor-league.

Single outstanding scientists have become a rarity. They still exist; how­ever, in most cases re­search and aca­de­mia re­quire teams, orga­nized as a net­work of groups with a com­mon inter­est. Leading in­di­vi­duals, with a clear research ori­en­ta­tion, forge suc­cess­ful groups and net­works with ac­com­plish­ed and com­pe­tent re­sear­chers.

The Pro Academia Prize is bestowed on the leader and — if possible — the mem­bers of aca­de­mic groups that serve as an example. They must have worked together and succeeded in reach­ing their goals over a period of at least eight years and thus created "nur­ser­ies" of scien­ti­fic emi­nence. The Prize was esta­blish­ed by The Round Table Found­ation.

The Prize is also meant as an incen­tive, a mo­ti­va­tion for young scientists to pursue new avenues of research and teaching. The Round Table Found­ation wants them to go on and follow an honest and ethi­cal aca­de­mic way.

The Prize itself is a crystal owl, symbo­liz­ing Athe­na, the goddess of crafts and skilled peace­time pur­suits. She personifies wisdom and right­eous­ness. Thus, the Prize stands for scien­ti­fic and aca­de­mic per­se­ve­rance, know­ledge, and ex­change. The Prize lauds these virtues and suc­cesses.

The crystal owl as re­pre­sen­tation of the Prize given to the lea­der of the net­work, cer­ti­fi­cates for all group mem­bers and — when­ever possible — small olive trees will be the sole gifts.

Olive Tree

The Nomination

he Executive Board of the Prize comprises the Pre­si­dent and the Coun­cil Members of TRTF, at present Peter A. Rinck, Robert N. Muller, Patricia de Fran­cis­co, and Hans G. Rin­gertz. Members of Ad­vi­sory Com­mit­tee are Luis Martí-Bon­matí, Regine C. Schulz, Edu­a­rdo Po­sa­da Flórez, and Klaus Roth. The Board may call in per­so­na­li­ties in aca­de­mia as ex­pert con­sul­tants.

The Prize is conferred every other year. Can­di­dates can be nomi­nated by the mem­bers of the Board or the Ad­vi­sory Com­mit­tee. Direct appli­ca­tions and self-nominations are not accepted.

However, suggestions are welcome and can be con­vey­ed to any mem­ber of the Executive Board.

Pro Academia Prize 2023. The laureate(s) for 2023 will be an­nounced in autumn 2023.