Press releases

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Goethe University PR & Communication Department 

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Jun 21 2023

European Prize for Supercomputing

Sarah Neuwirth from Goethe University receives PRACE Ada Lovelace Award

For her outstanding achievements in the development of High Performance Computing (HPC), the organisation "Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe" (PRACE) honours Dr Sarah Neuwirth from Goethe University Frankfurt with this year's PRACE Ada Lovelace Award. Neuwirth, deputy group leader of the Modular Supercomputing and Quantum Computing Group, has shown, among other things, for the first time how combinations of main processors (CPUs) and graphics processors (GPUs) can be used to build a modular supercomputer. The award will be presented to her at the Platform for Advanced Scientific Computing Conference (PASC 2023, 26-28 June) in Davos, Switzerland. 

“Dr Sarah Neuwirth is a young outstanding computer scientist expert in high-performance communication technologies, whose contributions have a potential impact far beyond her own research fields. Her involvement in exascale European HPC initiatives is also an example of her commitment to the development of technologies at the forefront of HPC-related research and with value for a variety of research fields. Overall, Dr Neuwirth has a great impact on next-generation HPC at a global level." said Professor Nathalie Reuter, Chair of the Ada Lovelace Award Selection Committee. “The committee also acknowledges her as a role model for women beginning careers in HPC not only because of her visibility in a science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) field, but also through her engagement in outreach activities and her participation in other relevant committees." adds Reuter. 

“We are very happy to present this award to Dr Neuwirth as she is precisely a role model for female scientists, and actually for everyone, to realise that we owe brilliant research outcomes to these persons." said Serge Bogaerts, PRACE Managing Director. He continued saying “PRACE is proud to have offered visibility to excellent young female scientists, since the creation of the PRACE Ada Lovelace Award, and thereby supports the positive trend of having more balanced gender representation in HPC committees, like the PRACE Scientific Steering Committee to start with." At the award ceremony at PASC 2023 in Davos Dr Neuwirth will give a keynote talk entitled “Leveraging HPC Performance Engineering to Support Exascale Scientific Discovery". 

Dr Sarah Neuwirth said: “I feel very humbled that my work is being honored with the PRACE Ada Lovelace Award, which is a great medium to raise awareness for diversity in HPC and science. Unfortunately, my own experiences during my undergraduate and doctoral years have made me clearly aware of how much women still struggle in STEM disciplines. Therefore, my greatest dream is to inspire the next generations through teaching, research, and outreach to encourage more women and underrepresented groups to pursue careers in HPC and related STEM subjects." 

Dr Sarah Neuwirth is a leading expert in HPC and networking, focusing on parallel I/O and monitoring technologies, parallel file and storage systems as well as container technologies and management for supercomputers. She boasts a highly impressive record of contributions to research and development in computer and computational science, an accomplishment to which her list of publications ably attests. In her PhD thesis entitled “Accelerating Network Communication and I/O in Scientific High Performance Computing Environments" which she defended summa cum laude - a most impressive achievement - she demonstrated for the first time in the world that it is practically possible to disaggregate CPUs and GPUs and operate both via a (smart) HPC network such that any combination of CPUs and GPUs can be mapped to each other in the spirit of modular supercomputing. 

She currently acts as Principal Investigator (PI) in the European Pilot for Exascale (EUPEX) Project co-funded by EuroHPC and the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF, according to its German initials). She was previously awarded research grants by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, where she worked as a visiting research scholar. Dr Neuwirth also played a key role in the series of EU-funded DEEP projects (DEEP and DEEP-ER) as the main expert for the communication technology, as well as in the IT and HPC research of the EC-funded Human Brain project. As a member of the German NHR initiative (National HPC), she is also active in Container and Container Management on a national level. 

Many of Dr Neuwirth's activities clearly demonstrate her growing impact in Europe and internationally. Dr Neuwirth is a consultant and active member on numerous advisory boards and program boards of international conferences, notably for the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), the SC conference and others, some of which she has chaired. She is a member of the IEEE and the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and pertinent sub-divisions, and referee as well as editor for quite a few journals and international refereed conferences. She has also been plenary and keynote speaker for international conferences. 

Dr Neuwirth is already a highly respected and internationally recognized supercomputer system architect, an area in which only a few females are active. Dr Neuwirth has been a member of the Equal Opportunity Council at Goethe University since 2022, and is an advisory member of the appointment committees. She is often invited to participate in round tables discussing the role of women in HPC at supercomputing conferences in the US and in Europe. In particular, she chaired the SCinet Student Volunteers program at IEEE/ACM SC from 2016 to 2019, acted as the Student Mentoring Chair at IEEE CLUSTER 2022, and still acts as ISC and SC student volunteer program coordinator at German universities to encourage applications from female students and underrepresented groups. Dr Neuwirth is helping to change the pre-conception of what STEM and HPC scientists should look like by encouraging young female talents to join these fields. 

Launched in 2016, the PRACE Ada Lovelace Award is awarded annually to a female scientist who makes an outstanding contribution to and impact on HPC in Europe and the world, and who serves as a role model for women who are at the start of their scientific careers. The award is named after the Countess of Lovelace, a British mathematician who lived in the 19th century and, among other things, worked with Charles Babbage on the Machine they called the Analytical Engine — one of the first precursors of computers. Many historians regard Ada Lovelace's contribution to this mechanical calculator as the very first algorithm – and herself as the first person to be rightly called a programmer. 

The Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe (PRACE) is an international non-profit association (AISBL) with its seat in Brussels. PRACE is currently shifting from providing access to Europe's largest supercomputers, to expanding, augmenting, and accelerating the representation of the interests of all HPC users in Europe. PRACE ambitions to represent the interest and identify the needs of users of HPC and related technologies (Artificial Intelligence, Quantum Computing, Cloud Computing, Data Science) in Europe and to pursue actions to enable high-impact scientific research and innovation across all disciplines and industrial applications, thereby enhancing European scientific, technological and economic competitiveness for the benefit of society. 

PASC 2023 conference: 

Picture download: 

Caption: Dr Sarah Neuwirth, Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany. Photo: private 

Further Information:
Dr Sarah Neuwirth
Modular Supercomputing and Quantum Computing Group (Professor Thomas Lippert)
Institute of Computer Science
Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany
Twitter: @NeuwirthSarah @PRACE_RI @goetheuni

Editor: Markus Bernards, PhD, Science Editor, PR & Communication Office, Tel: +49 (0) 69 798-12498, Fax: +49 (0) 69 798-763 12531,


Jun 21 2023

A true-to-original copy of the ancient masterpiece is now a permanent installation in Goethe University Frankfurt’s Sculpture Hall

Laocoön and His Sons in Frankfurt 

Goethe University's Sculpture Hall has received a prominent addition: a true-to-original copy of the monumental statue of Laocoön and his sons recently became part of the Collection of Classical Antiquities, bringing to Frankfurt one of the most important masterpieces of the Vatican Museums and certainly one of the most famous and influential ancient sculptures ever. The cast of the original artwork, kept in the Vatican, was custom-made for the Frankfurt collection. Making this unique project possible is a donation from York Thiel and Anni Heyrodt, a donor couple with close ties to classical archaeology in Frankfurt, who have generously supported the collection for years. 

The sculpture will be handed over during a ceremony held on June 25, as part of one of the regular guided tours offered at the Sculpture Hall on Sundays. The event will also feature a lecture by Prof. Dr. Anja Klöckner and Dr. Matthias Recke (of Goethe University's Institute for Archaeological Sciences), which will focus on the complexity of the work, its mass appeal and its reception up to the present day. The theme of the multi-figure group is taken from the popular myths surrounding the Trojan War: Apollo priest Laocoön warns the Trojans not to drag the wooden horse into the city – suspecting that doing so will seal the city's downfall. Roman poet Vergil describes how Laocoön and his sons are later attacked and killed by two enormous serpents sent by the goddess Athena.

Discovered in Rome as early as 1506, the three-figure original sculpture dating back to Roman times was completed in Michelangelo's workshop. The marble statue has had an immense influence on Renaissance art. To this day, the depiction of Laocoön, who, despite being entangled in the throes of death, also conveys tremendous dynamism, is considered one of antiquity's greatest artistic creations. 

With the Laocoön statue, the Frankfurt collection has received not only its first monumental figural group, the new acquisition also adds a new work from the period between the 1st century B.C. to the 1st century A.D., benefiting students of archaeology and art studies, among others. 

Created by professional art shapers from the German city of Leipzig, the statue consists of twelve individual parts crafted from a mold taken directly from the marble original: It is made of plaster, partly mixed with glass fiber and jute, weighs about 260 kg and is 2.42 meters high (taking into account its 35 cm pedestal, its total height comes to 2.77 meters). 

Images for download: 

Caption: Weighty addition: The true-to-original, approx. 260 kg cast of Laocoön and His Sons, pictured after its arrival at Goethe University's Sculpture Hall. Pictured here are artist Hans Effenberger (second from left), the curator of the Collection of Classical Antiquities and the Sculpture Hall Matthias Recke (right), and researchers from Goethe University's Archaeological Institute, all of whom worked together to assemble the statue from twelve individual parts. (Photos: Oliver Dziemba/Goethe University) 

Further information
Dr. Matthias Recke
Custodian of the Collection of Classical Antiquities / Sculpture Hall Classical Archaeology
Institute for Archaeological Sciences Dept. I
Phone +49 (69) 798 32301

Editor: Pia Barth, Public Relations Officer, PR & Communications Office, Tel. + 49 (0)69 798 12481, Fax + 49 (0)69 798 763 12531,


Jun 20 2023

Introducing the "Center for Critical Computational Studies" 

Goethe University launches pioneering research field on former Biocampus

With the establishment of the new "Center for Critical Computational Studies" (C3S for short), Goethe University Frankfurt is taking a significant step towards the advancement of computational, data and algorithm-based methods. C3S launches a future-oriented research, teaching and transfer environment that allows for system understandings to be deepened across domains, while at the same time sustainably and justifiably shaping the (post-)digital transformation. C3S will breathe new life into the former Biocampus on Frankfurt's Siesmayerstrasse.

"Critical Computational Studies" is a pioneering research field aimed at founding, developing, and applying computational – i.e. computer-, algorithm- and data-based – methods, while considering the interactions between computational advances on one hand, and humans, society and technology on the other. By interweaving the computational and the critical, one of Goethe University's goals is to understand the opportunities and challenges of (post-)digital transformations – and to actively shape them. The newly created center takes on a leading role in this. 

Commenting on C3S' establishment, Goethe University President Prof. Dr. Enrico Schleiff says: "The plan I outlined in my presidential election campaign for a new 'Center for Critical Computational Studies' to open up new paths into digitality is now being put into practice. The center underscores our commitment to cutting-edge research and methods development, and also serves as testimony of our accepting responsibility for shaping the (post-)digital age. To this end, we aim to significantly expand the development of effective computational methods and pave the way for the responsible use of such technologies. Not only will the center be a catalyst for innovative ideas and groundbreaking research, it will also serve both existing and future Goethe University colleagues. C3S also reflects our commitment to the sustainable use of existing buildings, as the center reactivates the former Biocampus on Siesmayerstrasse – a second key campaign promise for my term in office and a major achievement for Goethe University and the city of Frankfurt. I wish the center's directors a lucky hand and foresight. After all, it is the first steps that are the most crucial." 

The founding team is made up of four members, who come from the fields of humanities, social sciences, life sciences and computer sciences. Their diverse backgrounds are not the only reflection of the center's interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary aspirations. In the next two years, C3S will appoint twelve new professors. By cooperating closely with leading researchers from various faculties, the center will bundle a wide range of expertise while providing new impulses for Goethe University's Profile Areas. The special support offered to Early Career Researchers will also strengthen C3S' Principal Investigators. 

In addition to research, the center is also active in teaching, study and transfer, imparting "Critical Computational Literacy" not only to the university as a whole, but to society as well, thereby fostering the creative operation of promising computer technologies and at the same time propagating the necessary reflective competence for their ethical, social, political and economic implications. 

C3S will move into the former Biocampus on Frankfurt's Siesmayerstrasse once the historic space is renovated. Revitalizing this location will create inspiring contexts that will provide researchers with the space they need for research, teaching and transfer. 

Commenting on the center's significance and its initial activities, C3S' founding spokesman Prof. Dr. Christoph Burchard says: "C3S is a unique opportunity – both for our university and the Rhine-Main region. I am very grateful for the trust placed in me as the center's founding spokesperson. Together with the C3S Principal Investigators, we in the founding board will create the necessary structures to truly establish 'Critical Computational Studies'. I would like to add here that none of this would have been possible without the initiative and tireless commitment of Goethe University's president. In drawing on all the important preparatory contributions, we are now setting priorities and integrating our activities into the university's overall strategy. To this end, we are in close contact with the Cluster of Excellence initiatives and are actively seeking an intensive exchange with the Profile Areas and the faculties – all of which are key C3S partners. We have already initiated first research projects together with Goethe University colleagues, we are advancing 'Critical Computational Studies' in teaching (by promoting 'Critical Computational Literacy'), and are starting first transfer activities. At the same time, we have launched the processes to appoint twelve new professors to C3S. This is one of our main goals right now." 

Information on the center's research priorities and initiatives can be found on its website:

Additional information:
Prof. Dr. Christoph Burchard (founding spokesperson)

Editor: Pia Barth, Public Relations Officer, PR & Communications Office, Tel. + 49 (0)69 798 12481, Fax + 49 (0)69 798 763 12531,


Jun 12 2023

Art historian Miguel A. Gaete receives Klaus Heyne Award for Research in German Romanticism 

Postcolonial Reflections on Romantic Understandings of Nature

The Award for Research in German Romanticism – endowed by the pediatrician and Romanticism enthusiast Prof. Dr. Klaus Heyne from the German city of Kiel – will be awarded for the second time in 2023. This year's prize recognizes the work of Dr. Miguel A. Gaete on the romantic and colonial influence of German artists who traveled to Chile in the 19th century.

Informed by approaches drawn from a history of ideas, cultural studies and postcolonial theory, art historian Dr. Miguel A. Gaete examined the paintings and drawings of six less-known German artists, who travelled to Chile in the 19th century and depicted the indigenous population, the South American landscapes and the local flora and fauna. 

In his dissertation thesis, “Depicting Terra Incognita: German Romanticism, Arts, Sciences, and the Colonial Gaze in Chile, 1800–1899," Gaete demonstrates that German artists had more than just Humboldt's South American images and romantic theories about the relationship between humankind, nature, landscape, and aesthetics in mind when they journeyed to the Spanish-American colony to depict and describe the country and its people. Their paintings and drawings can also be seen as influenced by contemporary notions of “race," “Volk," a profound sense of cultural superiority and ambitious colonial aspirations. 

Chilean-born Miguel A. Gaete will receive the Klaus Heyne Prize for this postcolonial study. Awarded for the second time in 2023, the prize was donated to Goethe University Frankfurt by the pediatrician and Romanticism enthusiast Prof. Dr. Klaus Heyne (1937–2017), to honor outstanding contributions to the study of German Romanticism. Endowed with €15,000 (5,000 euros for own purposes, 10,000 euros for the organization of a conference conducted at Goethe University), the scientific award will be presented at a ceremony held at Goethe University on October 11 this year. 

In announcing its decision, the jury highlighted the fact that Gaete's work paves the way for future research into the discursive and cultural connections between German Romantic art and colonial structures. The Heyne Award jury is composed of Prof. Dr. Katharina Boehm (Chair of English Literature and Culture, University of Passau), Prof. Dr. Roland Borgards (Department of German Literature and its Didactics, Goethe University), Prof. Dr. Mechthild Fend (Department of Art History, Goethe University), Dr. Aurelio Fichter (Benvenuto Cellini Society e.V.), Dr. Mareike Hennig (Freies Deutsches Hochstift Frankfurt), and Prof. Dr. Frederike Middelhoff (Department of German Literature and its Didactics, Goethe University). 

The chair of the jury, Frederike Middelhoff, Professor of Modern German with a focus on Romanticism Studies, emphasizes: “Gaete's work constitutes a milestone in the inquiry into the motivations, scholarly networks and artistic practices of artists – both close to German Romanticism and working within colonial contexts –, who, with their pictures and drawings, lastingly shaped how Germans viewed Chile in the 19th century. Gaete's critical reading of the artists' 'colonial gaze' prompts important conversations about German Romanticism in the history of art and cultural studies, which must address Romanticism's problematic areas and colonial legacies. It should be noted that Gaete's monograph does not aim to provide exhaustive answers to the extensive questions related to these issues. Further research is necessary, and Gaete is committed to deepen this investigation at an international conference, scheduled to take place in Frankfurt in 2024 and made possible by the award money. We are very pleased that the Klaus Heyne Award for Research in German Romanticism can help promote this essential research." 

The award winner prevailed over a large number of innovative applications from the fields of German literary studies, musicology, the history of philosophy, and comparative Romantic studies. Dr. Miguel A. Gaete studied art history in Santiago and Barcelona, and is currently conducting research with a scholarship from the Gerda Henkel Foundation. Gaete, who completed his award-winning dissertation at the University of York (UK), already holds a PhD in philosophy from the Autonomous University of Madrid. He completed several fellowships and scholarships in Germany, including in Jena and Weimar. His monograph "Cultural Exchanges and Colonial Legacies in Latin America: German Romanticism in Chile, 1800–1899", which has been developed from his doctoral research, will be published this year by Cambria Press in New York. Gaete is currently preparing another manuscript for print, titled “The Leader of the Time: Carl Alexander Simon, Romanticism, and Colonial Imaginations in Southern Chile."

Image for download: 

Caption: Dr. Miguel Gaete, winner of Goethe University Frankfurt's German Romanticism Award. (Photo: private) 

Further information
Prof. Dr. Frederike Middelhoff
(W1-Professorship for Modern German Literature with a focus on Romanticism Studies)
Goethe University Frankfurt
Department of German Literature and its Didactics

Editor: Pia Barth, Public Relations Officer, PR & Communications Office, Tel. + 49 (0)69 798 12481, Fax + 49 (0)69 798 763 12531,


Jun 6 2023

Goethe University raises around 233 million euros in additional funding / Increase in international fundraising particularly high 

Third-party funding at an all-time high 

Goethe University increased its third-party funding by 17 percent in 2022. EU-funded projects saw the strongest growth: Their volume rose by 50% to €27.2 million.

Third-party funds, i.e. the funds a university acquires above and beyond its basic funding from the state and federal governments, are an important component of a university's budget. Last year, Goethe University's third-party funding saw across-the-board increases and came in at a total of €232.8 million, €33.9 million more than in 2021. 

At €71.4 million, the largest single source of public third-party research funding was the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG). Projects funded by the federal and state governments rose from €45.2 million to €52.2 million in 2022, representing a year-on-year increase of 15 percent. Funding for cutting-edge research projects by the state of Hesse alone amounted to €18.5 million. That figure also includes funding for three cluster projects supported by the state of Hesse ahead of the application for the German federal and state governments' Excellence Strategy. 

Particularly gratifying within the international context is the fact that the projects funded by the European Union (EU) increased by almost half to a volume of €27.2 million. All disciplines were able to attract new EU funding: Three ERC grants – highly competitive individual funding from the European Research Council – and three new European collaborative projects under Goethe University's leadership resulted in a substantial increase in acquisitions. 

Third-party funding from private sources totaled almost €60 million, up 22 percent. Of these, donations alone increased by 10 percent and came in at €10.3 million. Industry and legally independent foundations increased their funding by 35 percent to €25.6 million. 

"The new record level of third-party funding is a testimony to Goethe University's research strength and innovative power, as well as its increasing internationality. After all, the largest increase in third-party funding in 2022 came in against strong international competition in EU projects," says Goethe University President Prof. Dr. Enrico Schleiff. "I would like to congratulate not only all our university researchers on this success, but also all employees who contribute to these scientific achievements." 

The general increase in third-party funding at Goethe University can be attributed to a large number of newly acquired small and large projects. Examples include the two newly launched DFG Collaborative Research Centers (Sonderforschungsbereich, SFB) in the life sciences – "Membrane-associated protein assemblies, machineries and supercomplexes " (SFB 1507) and "Damage control by the stroma-vascular compartment" (SFB 1531) – as well as the newly established research unit (Forschungsgruppe 5417) on: "Translational polytrauma research to provide diagnostic and therapeutic tools for improving outcome". In the humanities and social sciences, the Academy for Islam in Research and Society (AIWG) was able to successfully commence its second funding period. 

Goethe University's total budget came in at about €764.5 million in 2022.

Editor: Pia Barth, Public Relations Officer, PR & Communications Office, Tel. + 49 (0)69 798 12481, Fax + 49 (0)69 798 763 12531,