life newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de 05 2016 contemplation: christmas and cultural change > s. 3 drilling: a crater yields insights > s. 5 behavior: social media etiquette > s. 10 much ado about nothing? in controversies over values, the person with the best and most objective arguments doesn't always win. photo: olly/photolia philosopher andreas urs sommer says values may provide orientation and security but they actually do not exist. we'll start with the good news. what doesn't exist can neither be degraded nor lost, empha- sizes andreas urs sommer, a philosophy professor specializ- ing in the philosophy of culture at the university of freiburg. in his book, werte. warum man sie braucht, obwohl es sie nicht gibt (values: why they are neces- sary although they do not exist) he attacks the allegedly solid foundation that politicians, the churches, outraged citizens, starry-eyed idealists and other loud-mouths refer to. rimma gerenstein asked the researcher about the role values play in so- ciety, why they are continually changing, and how people can come to terms with chasing a mirage. uni'life: mr. sommer, everyone is talking about values such as tolerance, freedom, pacifism and respect. why are you main- taining that they do not exist? andreas urs sommer: values aren't anything that can be found in physical reality. they are not stones, trees or people. and on the abstract level of intellectual reality, they aren't well-defined quantities like numbers. values only come to exist in communica- tion, and the longer people listen to a debate about values, the more they will get the impression that those debating are speaking about very different things. angela merkel's perception of "western values" differs from that of pegida supporters. tolerance is another example. you can characterize it not just as a value, but as a stance, political position or vir tue. and what does it mean? where does it start and where does it end? so values are negotiated ac- cording to the situation? that's a significant point. what is really important only appears during the course of communica- tion and in context. during a discussion among students in a lecture hall, freedom may be their premier value, but when they are walking home at night, then safety becomes their most impor- tant value because they don't want to be attacked on the next street corner. andreas urs sommer emphasizes that it is modern societies that de- bate about values. different values mean different life frameworks. photo: patrick seeger based on that, present day critics can simply relax. values cannot be coarsened or lost. they only change. it is precisely this change that we can take as evidence that we are not suffering a general cultural decline. in europe today, you can choose the sexual orientation you wish, there are registered life part- nerships, and human rights have been added to the political agenda in many parts of the world. these are all signs of mature civilization. so a society that argues about values is modern? absolutely, because values al- ways indicate diversity. there is not just one value. there are many. you have to consider how to organize them in a hierarchy. it was not until the mid-19th century that we began to speak of "values" as such, and that came at the point when the last metaphysical and religious determinants began to crack. yet in western tradition, a differentiation was always made between "good" and "evil," but this constellation didn't allow for much gray area. someone who deviated from the mainstream in premodern society was not only a freak, but also evil and ostracized by the community as a result. to- day our society is able to accept differences in values, and along with that, differing life and intel- lectual frameworks. if you look at pegida demon- strations for example it doesn't seem like peaceful acceptance. these are differences of opinion that are fought out in public. it's a gloves- of f fight and the means vary. a large newspaper, for ex- ample, has nationwide media power, but an internet troll paid by russia can also reach broad masses of people by making com- ments on the internet. the nego- tiations do not take place in a vacuum, either. it's a matter of rock hard political or economic interests, and these are simply not objective "scientific" givens. instead, they are attached to indi- vidual and collective needs. when compared with other countries, do particular values make germans stand out? i think so, and through a certain fragmentation. when we think of "german" values, we think of prussian virtues like punctuality, order or reliability, but obviously, if you look at major, high-profile german construction projects, for example, we really aren't quite conforming to those. what i've determined is that in germany, due to its own history, what are supposed to be givens are really no longer taken for granted. a high degree of critical self-reflection has dominated in german culture since 1945. people question, ana- lyze and have reservations. when the german chancellor spoke of "the values of europe," many cultural commentators reacted with a great deal of criticism. by con- trast, when hillary clinton or don- ald trump celebrate america as "the greatest country in the world," they garner broad agreement. on the one hand, values don't exist, yet on the other they are by necessity in constant change. how should people handle this contradiction? that's actually quite dif ficult for us. there's a type of residual metaphysical need – that we've inherited from tradition – namely, we want absolute cer tainty. in the past and present, we find attempts to establish uniform value structures tending towards totalitarianism. but because hu- man life is characterized by move- ment, durable, rock-solid value structures are impossible. the clever shy away from committing to absolutes. needs change con- tinually, that is why no value may be permanently elevated to the most important one. we must al- ways consider what a value means for us. and we need to do that as individuals and in small groups and as entire societies. it will always be that way, and that's good. andreas urs sommer: werte. warum man sie braucht, obwohl es sie nicht gibt. (values: why they are necessary although they do not exist) j. b. metzler verlag, 2016. 188 pages, 19,95 euro.
2 news 05 2016 unı leben newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de a firm line the university of freiburg resolutely opposes xenophobia by thomas goebel the university of freiburg "decisively condemns any form of anti-foreign activity throughout the entire university. the senate has unanimously made this clear after many nationalistic and xeno- phobic slogans appeared on campus. the initiative for this resolution came from the students. "our main thought was that the uni- versity is not a politically neutral place – particularly at a time when refugee hostels are being set on fire," empha- sized julia müller, a law student. as a member of the senate, she was among those who submitted the draft resolu- tion. "if there are anti-foreign incidents taking place around the university then we must oppose them and support tolerance and diversity," she added. on 20 april 2016, hackers gained access to several printers of the uni- versity of freiburg and printed out racist and anti-semitic texts. printers at other higher educational institutions in germany produced similar pamphlets. swastikas were also scratched into window panes of a few university build- ings – including the windows of the student council building on belfort- straße. in addition, stickers with na- tionalistic and anti-foreign slogans appeared on collegiate buildings, the university library and street signs. these apparently came from the right- ist extremist, nationalistically-oriented, identity movement that is being ob- served by germany's office for the protection of the constitution. curiosity and candor "the stickers were distributed around the whole campus and downtown. we're still finding them," said christian kröper. as a representative of the julia müller and christian kröper are aiming to use educational work and training to take a stance against racism. photo: thomas kunz legally-constituted student government, the student of english language and literature is an advisory member of the senate. students went on to write a draft resolution and submitted it to the committee for a vote. "i'd expected lots of skepticism," said kröper, "but the reaction was just the opposite. the idea was welcomed across the board by all status groups." the committee reworked the text slightly and sub- sequently passed it unanimously. the senate's resolution makes it "un- ambiguously clear that universities are places of plurality, cosmopolitanism and international exchange." in the 2015/16 winter semester, more than 16 percent of the students at the univer- sity were from abroad. the proportion of foreign academics and researchers has also been increasing for years. the resolution says that racism and xenophobia have no place at the uni- versity. it goes on, "to thrive, research and teaching require a climate that is characterized by curiosity and candor rather than hatred and fear. the uni- versity of freiburg sees creating this climate and fostering it as one of its most important tasks." biology professor ralf reski is glad about the student initiative. "it's a matter of how the university sees itself," said the senate spokesman for the professors' group. he continued, "we're dependent on international cooperation – scientists and scholars must discuss results freely – without bias based on faith, nationality or con- tinent of origin." he went on to say that exclusion was incompatible with the human tasks of research and teaching. "universities should be beacons of enlightenment," said reski. "naturally, differences in political opinion or cultural background could cause tensions in the laboratories and seminars," he added. "but that cannot and may not lead to the restriction of science. we're working here together on possible solutions. this coopera- tion could even serve as a model for society," he said. "science only works through discourse," said müller, "and everyone should be able to take part in that. kröper elaborated, "of course the senate can't simply decree that. for that, you need education and train- ing – so exactly what a university is supposed to do in the first place." www.uni-freiburg.de/universitaet/ universitaet-und-gesellschaft new name, modern research the winds of change are blowing along maximilianstraße 15. the insti- tute of european ethnology has given itself a new name. since the begin- ning of the 2016/17 winter semester it has been called the institute for cultural anthropology and european ethnology. the new name heralds more than the institute's upcoming fiftieth anniversary. it also symbolizes the modernization of the discipline and a new institute profile. in future, the scholars here will increase their examination of topics such as popular culture, space, migration, and mobil- ity, including economic activity. this change will also be reflected in teach- ing. in addition, a professorship dedi- cated to material and political culture and europeanization will again be filled in the coming years. the insti- tute at the university of freiburg was founded in 1967. www.eu-ethno.uni-freiburg.de sustainable eating and the city waldkirch im breisgau and leut- kirch im allgäu are being used as model communities. the university of freiburg is coordinating a new cooperative project based on the ex- ample of district towns in baden- württemberg. during the next three years, the project will research and initiate integration of systems of nutri- tion in sustainable municipal develop- ment. the federal ministry of educa- tion and research is funding the program with around 1.1 million euros. the chair of environmental govern- ance, heiner schanz;, the chair of sustainability governance, michael pregernig; and the chair of forestry and environmental policy, daniela kleinschmit are taking part in the project. key partnership expanded the university of freiburg and nan- jing university in china have conclud- ed an agreement to expand their cooperation in the area of the science of sustainability. among the activities the agreement provides for are the organization of joint scientific work- shops and the provision of funding and means of transportation for sci- entists and doctoral candidates. the agreement is a legal annex to the accord the two universities concluded in 2013 to establish their key partner- ship. initially this was primarily in the area of "modern china studies. in 2015/16 both universities opened the nanjing-freiburg center of modern china studies with subsidiaries in freiburg and nanjing. they went on to extend cooperation to a second area in 2015 with the establishment of a joint workshop dedicated to the study of sustainable materials. www.international.uni-freiburg.de/ keypartners_nanjing-de university engages expert commission a commission of experts from the university of freiburg is looking into an initiative of the city of freiburg to conduct a scholarly examination of street names to determine the conse- quences this measure could have for the university. in november 2016, the city council issued a policy decision to rename twelve streets after a majority of the council members said that these street names seemed in- appropriate today. the decisions made by the city council are relevant for the university because many of the affected individuals were linked to the institution. the university has recognized these individuals with, for example, statues or plaques or by naming institutes, buildings or foun- dations after them. the vice president for research integrity, gender, and diversity, prof. dr. gisela riescher is heading the commission composed of people with expertise in history, law and political science. the committee began its work in december 2016. premiere in the konzerthaus the freiburg student orchestra (fso) is making its debut on 28 janu- ary 2017 at the konzerthaus. the ensemble is performing the 4th symphony and song of destiny by johannes brahms and béla bartók's concert for viola and orchestra. norbert kleinschmidt is conducting the fso, with jean-éric soucy solo- ing on viola. soucy is the viola soloist of the new swr symphony orchestra. the song of destiny, arranged by bernhard schmidt, will be performed together with the john sheppard ensemble, a chamber choir from freiburg. the performance begins at 8 p.m. ticket prices range from 8 euros to 20 euros and can be pur- chased in advance through reservix and at the evening box office. found- ed in 1998, the fso is made up mainly of students from all disciplines. each semester it performs a repertoire of mainly classical and romantic sym- phonies, symphonic poems, over- tures and solo concerts. www.freiburger-studentenorchester.de
05 2016 news 3 unı leben newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de the same procedure as every year? – not quite! how celebrating christmas has changed in religion, society and culture families; the main thing is that they are carried out. does that guaran- tee an "ideal world" on christmas eve? "no," counters the theologian, "there are different behavior pat- terns." most people simply take part in this ritual without thinking much about it. it's a certain type of naive ritual that is practiced. then there are small groups who simply want to get away from it by going abroad, for example. and there's another small group, that consciously and completely immerses itself in the celebration, continues wahle. even people who are not religious cele- brate the holiday, because it reso- nates with existential questions and considerations and it opens up some scope for sorrow. people think about someone who's died or are happy to see children's eyes glowing in excitement. "christmas is a social and holy holiday, during which the topics of time and eternity play a role and those are religious concepts through and through, even if there isn't any praying or reading of the christmas story according to the book of luke." these are, by the way, also indispensable compo- nents of christmas, he says, as is whether a place is occupied or remains empty. "everyone says and sings alle jahre wieder ("year after year"), but every year is a little bit different," says the scholar, calling it "collective contingency." and he warns that, "the four or five hours of the afternoon on christmas eve and into the early evening are the most intense of the entire year." gingerbread, apples and candles: stephan wahle decorates his christmas tree in the traditional way. photos: ars ulrikusch, by- studio, s.h.exclusiv (both of fotolia) chocolate santas are already on supermarket shelves at the end of the summer, right along- side the advent calendars and gingerbread. that's when you have to ask yourself: is there any- thing still exciting at all about christmas anymore? or has it become merely a festival of con- sumption and commerce? frei- burg theologian dr. stephan wahle downplays this cynical query with a simple "no." alexander ochs asked him about the most signiﬁ - cant rituals and routines related to christmas in germany. christmas eve, christmas day, advent – it's entirely conceivable that hundreds of books have been written, par ticularly in theology, about how the meaning of the holi- day has changed over the course of centuries. conceivable, perhaps, but that's way of f the mark. stephan wahle's work, however, is an exception. the 42-year-old has been at the university of freiburg since 2006. he is responsible for liturgical studies within catholic theology. in his postdoctoral re- search thesis wahle investigated christmas in religion, culture and society. in july 2016, he received society. in july 2016, he received the balthasar fischer award for his the balthasar fischer award for his work. "scholarly theology barely work. "scholarly theology barely addresses christmas at all. addresses christmas at all. during the middle ages, the depiction of ages, the depiction of jesus as a child took jesus as a child took on a central role. it always bothered me that there isn't a me that there isn't a current monograph on it, and if there is on it, and if there is one, then it's only one, then it's only about the early histo- about the early histo- r y, but nothing about the r y, but nothing about the processes of processes of transformation," transformation," explains wahle. "as a theologian, explains wahle. "as a theologian, i wanted to do something that eth- i wanted to do something that eth- nologists or cultural scholars do, nologists or cultural scholars do, namely, look at culture." one of the things wahle examined is the ques- tion of what people do when they spend christmas eve at home. crowded churches on christmas viewed historically, christmas came into being in relatively late, in the 4th century. "the first church services and texts that we're relying people who aren't religious celebrate christmas, too, because the holiday provides space for existential questi- ons and thought, says stephan wahle. expression of anticipation: christmas markets usually get underway at the end of november and end a day before christmas eve, so just before the actual christmas holiday is about to get started. christmas eve, so just before the actual christmas holiday is about to get started. photos: thomas kunz apples and gingerbread, not with ornaments or tinsel," he says. naive rituals, deliberate routines in assigning meaning to the cele- in assigning meaning to the cele- bration, says wahle, he distinguishes bration, says wahle, he distinguishes between the church, private between the church, private individuals and society. the individuals and society. the meal, whether it's carp or meal, whether it's carp or potato salad, or if there's potato salad, or if there's meat or it's vegetarian, is meat or it's vegetarian, is an essential par t of the an essential par t of the holiday for him. he holiday for him. he says it's not a mat- says it's not a mat- ter of how these ter of how these rituals and routines rituals and routines ever came to ever came to develop within develop within on originated in late an- on originated in late an- tiquity. in those, the tiquity. in those, the child in the manger, child in the manger, jesus, the small, jesus, the small, helpless child, helpless child, doesn't have any role to play," reports play," reports wahle. instead, wahle. instead, the meaning of the meaning of jesus as the son of god jesus as the son of god made man was in the fore- made man was in the fore- ground. during the middle ground. during the middle ages, the spectrum broadened ages, the spectrum broadened and deep contemplation of the child and deep contemplation of the child took on a central role. into the 19th took on a central role. into the 19th century, christmas remained a reli- century, christmas remained a reli- gious holiday and revolved around gious holiday and revolved around going to church. protestants pushed going to church. protestants pushed christmas celebrations from 25 christmas celebrations from 25 december to 24 december early on. december to 24 december early on. for catholics, the vigil mass at mid- night on christmas eve was the key service. but the researcher says that in recent times, that hasn't really been the case. he says everything is shifting to be even earlier. adds wahle, "visitor numbers for the ser- vice on christmas day are staying relatively stable. it is the central church service of the entire year." anticipation nuremberg's christkindlesmarkt, for example, tends to be viewed as one of the oldest and best-known christmas markets of early modern times. the christmas market is an expression of anticipation. regardless of the drinking of mulled wine, the real celebration only comes afterwards, on christmas only comes afterwards, on christmas day," says wahle. he continues, day," says wahle. he continues, "something is always being antici- "something is always being antici- pated, yet at the same time, it's made pated, yet at the same time, it's made clear that what's being anticipated isn't clear that what's being anticipated isn't quite there yet. socially, on 25 decem- quite there yet. socially, on 25 decem- ber, christmas is just about over for ber, christmas is just about over for many people, whereas for the church- many people, whereas for the church- es, it is only just beginning." according es, it is only just beginning." according to catholic ecclesiastical calendars, to catholic ecclesiastical calendars, christmastide only ends on the first christmastide only ends on the first sunday after 6 january. sunday after 6 january. christmas tree needles christmas tree needles fall softly fall softly no matter how early some people no matter how early some people put up their blue spruce or nordmann put up their blue spruce or nordmann fir – the tree is and remains the most fir – the tree is and remains the most important part of christmas celebra- important part of christmas celebra- tions in germany. nearly 30 million tions in germany. nearly 30 million trees are sold in germany each year. trees are sold in germany each year. "the tree is the symbol of a german "the tree is the symbol of a german christmas. you can't do without a christmas. you can't do without a tree," summarizes wahle. "it is the tree," summarizes wahle. "it is the embodiment apropos of forward displacement and making everything earlier: some of the christmas markets are already open in mid-november and close on 23 december. so on christmas, the christmas market has been and gone. says the theologian, "it's explicitly about a christmas market. it is not or only rarely an advent market." accord- ing to wahle, christmas markets aren't just a big export hit, they are also a cultural component of the celebration. "they've got a long tradition. people offered to sell their wares to the townspeople on the church square. of a bourgeois family christmas as of a bourgeois family christmas as it had developed in the 19th century," it had developed in the 19th century," he says. today the custom has he says. today the custom has gotten as far as abu dhabi and gotten as far as abu dhabi and australia – in foreign lands australia – in foreign lands where the climate doesn't suit where the climate doesn't suit the tree at all, so it's strictly a the tree at all, so it's strictly a decoration. wahle was born decoration. wahle was born in sauerland. even today, in sauerland. even today, he still goes out with his he still goes out with his parents and friends to cut parents and friends to cut down his christmas tree in down his christmas tree in the family's own forest. the family's own forest. "at my house it's decorated "at my house it's decorated traditionally, with real candles, traditionally, with real candles,
4 research 05 2016 unı leben newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de precious wood forest scientists research two forgotten members of the genus sorbus – service and checker trees by eva opitz w hen tree branches are bare in autumn, the bright red berries on the rowan trees lining the lanes are particularly striking. the rowan's close relatives, service and checker trees, are less obvious. also mem- bers of the botanical genus sorbus and the rosaceae family, the two and the rosaceae family, the two trees are relatively unfamiliar and rare trees are relatively unfamiliar and rare compared to the rowan. dr. patrick compared to the rowan. dr. patrick pyttel and jörg kunz of the chair of pyttel and jörg kunz of the chair of forestry at the university of freiburg forestry at the university of freiburg want to change that. "we want to want to change that. "we want to know more about how they grow, know more about how they grow, which locations are ideal for them which locations are ideal for them and how foresters can distribute and how foresters can distribute them in woods," says kunz. both them in woods," says kunz. both forest scientists are convinced forest scientists are convinced that their work will pay off. the that their work will pay off. the service and checker trees produ- service and checker trees produ- ce popular wood, can cope with ce popular wood, can cope with the stress of drought and their the stress of drought and their berries can be used, too, in cer- berries can be used, too, in cer- tain foods for example. pyttel und kunz are first pyttel und kunz are first tr ying to find out why the tr ying to find out why the trees have become rare and un- trees have become rare and un- noticed, even by foresters. the noticed, even by foresters. the checker tree, for example, does checker tree, for example, does checker tree, for example, does best in open stands of oak forest. best in open stands of oak forest. best in open stands of oak forest. best in open stands of oak forest. yet they are also at risk there, yet they are also at risk there, yet they are also at risk there, because deer find them a because deer find them a because deer find them a welcome change in their welcome change in their menu and tend to nibble menu and tend to nibble on them. what is on them. what is more, in more, in the past, the past, oak oak for- for- ests were ests were f requent ly f requent ly r e p l a c e d with coniferous with coniferous ones, so the checker's habitat was lost. the service tree also faces chal- lenges. its berries were once used to clarify ciders or make high quality schnapps, though both practices had already become less common in dec- ades past. checker tree berries were also once used to treat ailments of the large intestine. says pyttel, "all that can be made in the laboratory these days." lack of knowledge on the part of modern day forest opera- tors has contributed to many omis- sions in dealing with these trees. sions in dealing with these trees. there, say the scientists, people there, say the scientists, people "knew ver y "knew ver y little about the species of sorbus until a few years ago." planting checker and service trees only makes sense where suitable soils are present. both species deal well with dry conditions. with respect to the consequences of climate change, this makes them possible candidates for inclusion when estab- candidates for inclusion when estab- lishing mixed forests. "the checker lishing mixed forests. "the checker tree even manages in places where tree even manages in places where it's too dry for beech," says kunz. he it's too dry for beech," says kunz. he adds that they need to know more adds that they need to know more adds that they need to know more adds that they need to know more about these species. they say that about these species. they say that about these species. they say that about these species. they say that the checker and services trees the checker and services trees the checker and services trees the checker and services trees have commercial potential, have commercial potential, have commercial potential, have commercial potential, too. their wood is very hard too. their wood is very hard too. their wood is very hard too. their wood is very hard and as a result and as a result and as a result they could, for they could, for example, be example, be used as a used as a sustainable substitute for high quality tropical woods. the scientists esti- mate that a table made of checker wood could easily fetch several thou- sand euros, meaning the price for a cubic meter of the fine wood exceeds that of spruce many times over. the hard wood has always been used to make high quality furniture used to make high quality furniture and musical instruments. says pyttel, and musical instruments. says pyttel, "if you hear "if you hear b a g - b a g - p i p e s , t h e n t h e n there's a ver y high probability that they are made of sorbus wood. we've got to get away from viewing these trees as curiosities in the forest," says pyttel. he adds that instead, they should become an im- portant part of the forest economy. he emphasizes, "this is the message that we're touring the world with as we present our work." as we present our work." the two scientists are taking the the two scientists are taking the results of their top-level, empirical results of their top-level, empirical research into forestry districts and research into forestry districts and the forests are benefitting from it. the forests are benefitting from it. "people in the field have to know "people in the field have to know about the species in order to bring about the species in order to bring them on properly," says kunz. he them on properly," says kunz. he adds that knowledge based on simple adds that knowledge based on simple obser vation is not enough. an em- obser vation is not enough. an em- pirical foundation resting on verified pirical foundation resting on verified results is required. kunz continues results is required. kunz continues that success ultimately depends on that success ultimately depends on making the correct recommenda- making the correct recommenda- tions for silviculture using many tions for silviculture using many case studies done on dif ferent case studies done on dif ferent stocks of trees. says the scien- stocks of trees. says the scien- tist, "only then do generally tist, "only then do generally valid statements become valid statements become established. they are the established. they are the prerequisite for taking the prerequisite for taking the right measures. and right measures. and through that, the trees through that, the trees get the attention that get the attention that get the attention that they deserve." they deserve." they deserve." green splendor – the checker tree (left) and the service tree are among rare species of trees – yet their wood is valuable and their berries can be used in foods, drinks and home remedies, for example. photos: zerbor, joachim opelk a (both of fotolia) eye of newt and toe of frog, wool of bat and tongue of dog what lists tell us about people and their world — from ancient times to the modern day by yvonne troll d eep in their cavern, the three witches brew a charmed potion which they use to foretell the fate of the protagonist, william shakespeare's macbeth, who has already killed the king of scotland and thus ascended the throne. the witches name the ingredients of the brew as a list, star- ting with eye of newt and toe of frog, wool of bat and tongue of dog. these magical ingredients make up one of the favorite literary lists of dr. eva von contzen. "the list itself is magical, musical, almost songlike, capturing you in its thrall," she says. her fascination for lists has led the english scholar from the university of freiburg to deve- lop a research project. over the next fi ve years, von contzen and an inter- disciplinary team will study lists in literature from ancient times to the modern day as well as everyday lists. the project has received a starting grant of almost 1.3 million euros from the european research council. "my theory is that lists are exceptionally good at illustrating how people per- ceive and organize the world, what was important at a certain point in history, and what knowledge was available," says von contzen. in one of the fi rst european written works, homer's iliad, written in the 8th century bc, there is a famous list: the catalogue of ships. in this, homer itemizes the ships, their masters, and the origins of the greek heroes who went to war against troy. in the epic texts of ancient history, catalogues were the typical form in which historic events were recorded. in the middle ages, however, scribes preferred to archive their knowledge encyclopedi- cally. so lists give an indication of the prevailing literary tradition at a certain point in time. by showing how lists have changed over the centuries, von contzen aims to show how the presen- tation of knowledge has developed – and with that also the way in which people cognitively organize and pro- people cognitively organize and pro- cess things. everyone wants to be at the top "in this age of the internet in par- "in this age of the internet in par- ticular we are surrounded by lists. ticular we are surrounded by lists. today, we have such an excess of today, we have such an excess of information that the list is often the only way of reducing and systematiz- only way of reducing and systematiz- ing our complex world," says von contzen. one example is the web- contzen. one example is the web- site buzzfeed, which consists en- site buzzfeed, which consists en- tirely of articles in list form. it offers "seventeen of the worst horror "seventeen of the worst horror stories about male roommates" stories about male roommates" or "thirteen of the weirdest polling places in the us." this text form now even has its own name, the "lis- now even has its own name, the "lis- ticle", a portmanteau word based on "list" and "article." rankings have another distinctive feature: they are not neutral. they place a value and a hierarchy on things. in one episode of the ameri- eva von contzen says that lists are an exceptionally good way of showing how people perceive and organize the world, and what was important at a certain point in history. photo: kl aus polkowski can animation series south park, "the list", schoolgirls create a hit parade of the cutest male pupils. "this drove the boys completely mad, because everyone wanted to be num- ber one," says von contzen. so lists can be a tool of power and control. it is the same with lists in literature. "no other form has such power to make readers not read a text. lists can be annoying, boring and drive you insane," says the researcher. they interrupt the flow of reading, don't generally explain things, and are usually a challenge to the reader. the author can use them to control the reading process and deliberately provoke the public. over the course of the project the aim is to compile information on where in literature lists can be found, and to make this avail- able to the public in an online data- base. until then eva von contzen hopes to use her work to develop "listology," the study of lists.
05 2016 research 5 unı leben newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de mining culture on the upper rhine a new research partnership is re- ceiving a total of more than 1.8 million euros for the next three years from the european program for cross-border projects, interreg v oberrhein. it aims to examine the roots of indus- trial culture on the upper rhine. to be more precise, the researchers are investigating one of the earliest industries in central europe, metal extraction along the rhine rift valley from basel to mainz from the 13th century. among other things, a his- toric atlas of the metal-extracting industries will be written and an exhi- bition is planned. eighteen universities and scientific establishments from germany, france and austria are tak- ing par t, as well as three par tners from the trinational association, "eu- cor – the european campus" of the upper rhine region with the universi- ties of freiburg, haute-alsace and strasbourg. at the university of freiburg, prof. dr. sebastian brather from the institute of archaeological sciences (iaw) is leading a team. second round for research training groups the research training groups (grk) "faktuales und fiktionales erzählen" (factual and fictional storytelling) and "kohomologische methoden in der ge- ometrie" (cohomological methods in geometry) of the university of freiburg have successfully applied to the deutsche forschungsgemeinschaft (dfg) for an extension. the dfg has already supported both institutions for a period of four-and-a-half years with a total of almost 8.2 million euros in funding. the "faktuales und fi ktionales erzählen" grk is established in hu- manities and social sciences and pro- vides an opportunity for up to nineteen students to work on their doctorates. the "kohomologische methoden in der geometrie" grk, which is established in the mathematics faculty, offers doctorates for up to 14 students. www.grk-erzaehlen.uni-freiburg.de www.gk1821.uni-freiburg.de bohren nach erkenntnissen photos: michael poelchau ecord/iodp expedition to the crater of a meteorite strike that changed the world 66 million years ago by nicolas scherger dr. michael poelchau gladly took on a month of enduring the swell of the sea and engine noise, sharing a cabin with fi ve people, and doing shift work from midnight to noon every day. after all, as part of an international research team, the freiburg-based geologist was taking part in a scien- tifi c adventure. the expedition led to a crater – the site of a meteorite strike 66 million years ago that changed the course of life on earth. "until now we've only had a rough idea of what happened back then," says poelchau about the origin of the 180-kilometer chicxulub crater in the gulf of mexico. what is known is that a 15-kilometer diameter rock slammed into the shallow ocean at a speed of 17 kilometers a second and created a hole 30 kilometers deep. heat and shockwaves destroyed life within a radius of several thousand kilometers. poelchau describes the event: "the sudden release of energy is compara- ble to exploding an atomic bomb." a third of the rocky mass from the earth's crust was also fl ung up into the atmosphere. fine dust darkened the skies around the world, the ecosystem collapsed and many species disap- peared. the theory is that this event marked the end of the dinosaurs and enabled the rise of mammals. from central mountain to ring-shaped mountain range but what exactly happened when the meteorite struck? large strike craters are found at the heart of ring-shaped mountain ranges. when the collision first occurs, a mountain rises in the center of the crater. however this is unstable and rapidly collapses, caus- ing the material to be forced to the edges of the crater and the ring- michael poelchau's job was the initial description of the drill cores. using just the naked eye and his geological expertise, he had to identify the rocks and determine the segments' environment of origin within the crater. shaped mountain range to arise. "you can see a similar phenomenon with a drop falling into water," says poelchau. the exact forces at work are still un- clear. "we haven't been able to simu- late the process satisfactorily on the computer yet." that is the reason for the search for clues in the gulf of mexico. a liftboat, a cross between a ship and a drilling rig, brought the team to directly above the ring-shaped mountain range. at the chicxulub crater, the researchers for the fi rst time took drill cores from depths ranging between 500 to 1,334 meters. this took them down to the upper strata of the ring-shaped moun- tain range. with the naked eye and geological expertise, poelchau's job was to provide the initial description of the three meter long chunks that were brought up onto the liftboat, including identifying the rocks and determining the environment in the crater that seg- ments came from. his work created the basis for later geochemical and geophysical investigations. 340 samples in freiburg now, the core samples are at mar- um – the center for marine environ- mental sciences at the university of bremen. poelchau is studying about 340 samples together with prof. dr. thomas kenkmann at the university of freiburg. it is time to do the detailed work: for instance, assess the shape and direction of the cracks in the rock that can show the strength and direc- tion of the forces released when the meteorite struck. researchers are us- ing the data to gradually determine how the central ring-shaped mountain range was formed. the team has reported their initial fi ndings in the specialist journal sci- ence. the scientists determined that within the space of a few minutes the asteroid fi rst compressed down and then outwards rocky masses located ten kilometers below the earth's sur- face before they were again pushed back to the center of the crater and upwards. on the earth's surface they piled up into a central mountain and then collapsed into a ring-shaped mountain range. another fi nding was that the rock making up this ring is more porous and less dense than expected. it offered microorganisms ecological niches in which they could develop and perhaps provides clues about how the fi rst life forms appeared long, long ago, when the earth was beset by meteorite strikes much more frequently. research on the crater the expedition to the chicxulub crater took place from april to may 2016. as part of the international ocean discovery program (iodp) it was led by the european consor- tium for ocean research drilling (ecord) and funded by the inter- national continental scientific drill- ing program (icdp). costs totaled 10.5 million euros. www.ecord.org/expedition364 university and employment agency continue cooperation wins for two special research areas they provide extensive advice and information materials on star ting a career and the job market. the uni- versity of freiburg and freiburg em- ployment agency are boosting their cooperation, with the aim of providing students and graduates with the best possible suppor t for moving from studying into the employment market. in addition, the employment agency is continuing its engagement with the dual career netzwerk oberrhein, which supports the partners of pro- fessors and senior administration and technology executives with career ad- vice. "the employment agency has been a close partner of the university of freiburg for 15 years. we are very happy that we are going to continue this collective success story into the future," says rector prof. dr. hans- jochen schiewer, who signed the agreement together with christian ramm, chairman of the board of freiburg employment agency. www.studium.uni-freiburg.de/service_ und_beratungsstellen/karriere www.chancengleichheit.uni-freiburg. de/dualcareer/dualcareernetzwerk the deutsche forschungsgemein- schaft has approved an application to extend a special research area (sfb) of the university of freiburg and a new application for an sfb/transregio (trr) led by freiburg for the period from 1 january 2017 to 31 december 2020. sfb 1015 "muße. grenzen, raumzeitlichkeit, praktiken" (leisure. boundaries, time & space, methods), is star ting its second phase with funding of almost 6.5 million euros. researchers from various disciplines are studying cultures of leisure sys- tematically, historically and empiri- cally. the university of freiburg is receiving 4.5 million euros for the new launch of sfb/trr "neuromac." the project is examining special white blood corpuscles in the central nerv- ous system, which form the immune system of the human brain. research- ers hope this will help to create the basis to improve treatment of brain disorders such as alzheimer’s or stroke, as well as psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia or depression. discover science at surprising science bookmarks in the genes researchers are searching for new epigenetic agents that control which sections of genetic informa- tion are "read" by the body. light strikes matter freiburg-based physicists research processes such as photovoltaics and photosynthesis. www.pr.uni-freiburg.de/pm/ surprisingscience
6 learning 05 2016 unı leben newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de everything is a matter of perspective the archaeological collection holds an exhibition designed by students by stephanie streif archaeologist jens-arne dickmann had a plan when he took charge of the university of freiburg's archaeo- logical collection four years ago. the new curator's idea was that exhibition space in the basement of the herder- bau on habsburgerstraße would not only serve as a collection for study and instruction but also function as a place for learning, or – to put it more precisely – as a workshop. since then, the space between enormous plaster casts and display cases full of tiny original artifacts has hosted drawing courses, readings, scenic theater and concerts in addition to the usual lectu- res, workshops and examinations. and should a student suddenly get the urge to practice setting up a small exhibition in a corner of the collection, then that's allowed, too. yet at the moment, dr. dickmann is facing greater challenges. a genuine exhibition has been planned and is opening to the public on 24 january 2017. the show, a matter of perspec- tive – ancient sculpture groups in space is the finale of a large-scale teaching project that dickmann devel- oped and for which he received an 85 thousand euro grant from the essen- based stiftung mercator (mercator foundation). students have been pre- paring for the exhibition for more than a year. the idea grew out of a one- semester writing workshop, explains the archaeologist. it was a seminar in which the students were to approach a single exhibit item by writing about it. amount of effort involved was never- theless enormous," says dickmann. assembling a 340-page catalog, in particular, took a great deal of the stu- dents' time during the first project. dick- mann says he's convinced that all the students are motivated by far more than the few ects points they get for taking part in his project. at the moment, the students are mulling over their texts for the catalog. if the words fail to convince, then the piece goes back for reworking. texts can be rewritten three, four and, if necessary, five times. the curator says that the young people don't always handle this with ease. yet they stick with it, he adds. "they want to learn and have shown themselves to be extremely reliable," he says. the mercator grant will end during the current semester. it's not yet clear if young archaeologists at freiburg will have the chance to set up their very ownre. hopes are that they will, be- cause those who do things themselves learn best. dr. jens-arne dickmann, curator of the archaeological collection supports the students in shaping and organizing the event. photo: patrick seeger opening in january they were first to describe the object as vividly and in as much detail as pos- sible. then, the students had to write up scientific documentation, a catalog item, and an easily understandable information sheet for it. a semester later, the students took part in a semi- nar which gave them the required ba- sic knowledge of hellenistic sculpture groups. and because it is to be their exhibition, they are working on curat- ing, organizing, creating, scripting, lay- out and photography for the event. they might even have to spend an af- ternoon or two painting pedestals for the sculptures if need be. passion takes priority over european credit transfer system (ects) points dickmann describes his aspirations: "i want my students to already assume scientific responsibility during their education." decisions are made – with a few exceptions – together and demo- cratically, after extensive discussion within the group. this is the second exhibition to be financed with funding from the grant. in the summer of 2015, of drinking and carousing – radical changes in ancient feasting was the first exhibition to be held. back then dickmann had a team of seven stu- dents. this time, he's got twice as many. "the concept was very well-received at the institute of classical archeology. the newer students were getting curi- ous, in part because they could do a great deal by themselves, but the the special exhibition of the archae- ological collection, a matter of per- spective – ancient sculpture groups in space will be open to the public from 24 january until 2 july 2017. it is located in the herderbau on habsburgerstraße (entry between nr. 114 and nr. 116), 79106 freiburg. the collection is open on tuesdays and thursdays from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., and on sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. tours are available. entry is free of charge. www.archaeologische-sammlung. uni-freiburg.de "if you have fun at it, then you're good at it too" a new teaching format simplifies career guidance for students by verena adt s iegfried weis never expected to be asked about the subtle differences between fee and commission-based advisory services. in mid-november 2016 the independent financial ad- viser from waldkirch was in freiburg facing a group of students who had signed up for a new course. weis was stunned at how well-prepared many of the participants were. "the level of detail of some questions was aston- ishing," said the 49-year-old appre- ciatively after he had talked about his daily work and answered questions for an hour-and-a-half. the seminar "mein kompetenzprofil im praxis-check," or "my skills profile: a practical check," is offered as a joint course by the center for key qualifications (zfs) of the university of freiburg and the southern upper rhine chamber of commerce (ihk). the course gives students from all disciplines the opportunity to learn about various businesses through direct contact with company directors and the self-employed and at the same time test their own suitability for one industry or another. extrovert or shy? happy with customer contact or prefer to work alone? the students take an in-depth aptitude test to find out their individual profiles. photogestoeber/ photolia "many students are uncertain what field they want to work in later," says verena saller who is head of the zfs. "so it was natural to offer something to help with personal career orienta- tion." with the support of the ihk, the zfs attracted eight companies, each of which planned a double session with the seminar par ticipants. the spectrum ranges from a globally-ac- tive auditing company, which employs 120 in freiburg alone, through to a family-run traditional brewer y with local roots. the students have to prepare inten- sively for the encounters. they must create a corporate profile before each meeting and produce a number of key questions for the discussion. the speakers are without exception op- erational management and not just sent from the personnel department. this was important to the organizers. "we aren't aiming to gain future em- ployees here, but to present the in- dustr y of the region as a whole," stresses the head of the ihk, dr. steffen auer. "for the students it's about finding out: 'what am i suited to and what do i enjoy?' if it's fun for you, then you're good at it too." curved career paths first of all, the participants have to assess where their interests, strengths and weaknesses lie. they also have to incorporate someone else's evalu- ation of them. then they really get down to it with the vocational aptitude test of the ihk, which takes up a three-hour session. as a result, the students receive a comprehensive aptitude profile precisely depicting their abilities – from motivation and retentiveness to decisiveness and planning skills. their individual profile is then compared to the features of more than 300 different professions. suitability for one job or another can be determined from the extent to which they correlate. one of the par ticipants, dominik mößner, was interested in discovering career opportunities and assessing his abilities better. he is enrolled in a bachelor's program with majors in biology and economics and doesn't yet know what direction he wants to take. he was glad to learn first hand that successful careers don't always take a straight path. he gained this sudden insight from communication coach lena sarikaya, who gave up a management position in the pharmaceuticals industry a few years ago to work as a freelance coach. "some people in the group were ver y surprised that i can live from my current job," relates sarikaya. she thinks the new format is a good way of responding to the problem that many students have little insight into working life. www.zfs.uni-freiburg.de
05 2016 learning 7 unı leben newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de health in the city a new program of study – global urban health – investigates ways to reduce health risks in cities by sarah schwarzkopf a ir pollution, fast food and stress are just a few of the factors de- trimental to urban dwellers' health. the more urbanization increases, the more contagious and chronic disea- ses, psychological ailments and vio- lence, gain in signifi cance. in the winter semester of 2016/17, the university of freiburg's faculty of humanities began offering a master's degree program global urban health. the one-year course of study addresses the health challenges posed by urba- nization. its students learn to mitigate the risks and threats to health posed by living in modern cities. the center for medicine and society is organizing the english-language, interdisciplinar y program. in the mornings, students examine theories that they then apply in practice in the afternoon. "there was a statistics course this morning," says dr. sonia diaz-monsalve, who coordinates the instructional offerings of the global urban health program and is respon- sible for quality control as well. she continues, "after the lunch break, the students gather data at the cemetery. they can then analyze it and deter- mine, for example, at what average age people died in different decades." guest lecturers and field trips provide fur ther insight into urban health in real life. bringing knowledge back home the prerequisites for admission are a university degree and at least two years of work experience. the tuition fee for the course is 12,000 euros. graduates will have many employment options open to them, for example in development aid, medicine, policy- new delhi, india: students learn how health risks – those caused by polluted air for example – can be reduced in metropolitan areas. photo: kl aus polkowski making, city planning or education. "in future, with the master's degree i will be able to work at an international level rather than just in a hospital," says student francesca tsai of taiwan. "i would like to achieve that independ- ent of its political situation, taiwan can take part in world health organization events," she explains. students from developing countries can take the knowledge they've gained back to their home countries as well. up to now, the program is the only one of its kind in the world. what's new about it is that it focuses specifi cally on health in cities with an emphasis on the developing world. "it is nevertheless important to us to examine problems from a global standpoint, because mosquitos don't recognize national bor- ders," diaz-monsalve elaborates, refer- ring to the challenges involved in con- trolling spread of contagious diseases. and in poor and affl uent countries alike, chronic disease is becoming more evenly distributed as globalization pro- gresses. says diaz-monsalve, fast food, cigarettes and televisions are everywhere, so heart disease, cancer and diabetes are common everywhere as well. students learn how to recog- nize problems and develop solutions for them. "freiburg is an optimal loca- tion for the program," says its coordina- tor. the university is located relatively close to united nations organizations headquarters. furthermore, there are many green areas nearby and the physical activity level of the population is comparatively high. in addition to theoretical knowledge and methods of empirical analysis, dealing with the media and policy-makers effectively is part of the course curriculum. in the fi rst year that the course has been offered, three hundred people from different professional fields ap- plied for the 20 available course places. the fi rst group comes from ten differ- ent countries – among those are argentina, bangladesh and ethiopia – and fi ve continents. "the intercultural differences are a wonderful experi- ence for all of us," says diaz-monsalve, because the students have fi rst-hand experience with some of the problems being investigated. this can be helpful in terms of developing promising solu- tions. says the course coordinator, "in certain regions, mosquito nets are not necessarily an effective means of pre- venting mosquito bites because their white color is associated with death and people don't like to sleep under them." she adds that this example shows how important it is to approach the problem to be addressed from different perspectives. www.zmg.uni-freiburg.de/training/ mscglobalhealth/master ein konto für alles mögliche. -mal besser vorbereitet mit . dieses giro- und erlebniskonto hat in ihrer studien- und azubizeit alles parat. infos zu den vorteilen – banking und service, sicherheit und preisvorteile in der regio – gibt’s bei der sparkasse vor ort oder per contomaxx-app. … lebe dein konto! contomaxx.de open for questions how digital provision of texts is changing by nicolas scherger new rules affecting the availability of texts that can be called up on- line on the ilias study platform came into effect on 1 january 2017. the uni- versity has set up a forum to answer students' and instructors' questions about this because the availability in particular of digital items on course reserve shelves will not be straight forward in future. the affected texts are those that come under paragraphs 52a of the german copyright law (urhg). these are small parts of a single work – up to 12 percent or a maximum of 100 pag- es, short literary works and articles from magazines and newspapers. in- structors were required to remove these works from ilias as of 31 de- cember 2016 if the university library (ub) had not obtained a use license for them. from that point onwards, in- structors may make these materials available in seminar libraries or at the ub in the form of a master copy. download and save the rectorate recommended that, by the end of 2016, students download and save all the materials available on ilias that are relevant for their contin- ued studies. it advised that what stu- dents have saved on their personal computers could also be used for their studies into the future. the amendments date back to a framework contract agreed in sep- tember 2016 between the standing conference of the state ministers of education and cultural affairs (of the länder in the federal republic of germany) (kmk) and an alliance of authors and publishers known as "exploitation company – print" or vg wort. like many other institutions of higher education, the university of freiburg will not become party to this contract. it provides that vg wort will no longer charge a flat rate for all texts falling under paragraphs 52a of the urhg and that all instructors must register use of these texts individually. from the university's standpoint, this would require excessive administra- tive work. instead, the university has committed itself to opening up new negotiations with vg wort as soon as possible. www.pr.uni-freiburg.de/go/fragen-ilias
8 campus 05 2016 unı leben newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de snow white, sons and heirs, and an eight on the intelligence scale how the game therapy plays with social expectations and self and others' assessments by nicolas scherger editorial staff members from the publication uni'leben and research- ers at the university of freiburg sat down for a round of therapy in the german television series abgezockt (ripped-off). their aim was to examine the board game from a – tongue-in-cheek, of course – scientific perspective. the game players use a miniature couch to make their way through infancy, child- hood, adolescence and adulthood, and to consider their alter ego. as they go, the players collect pins rep- resenting fields of knowledge. the goal is to be the first to garner all six. to proceed, contestants must answer questions correctly or guess what people believe they see in inkblots. they also provide therapy for the other players. this involves determin- ing how people perceive themselves and the influence they have on others. game sessions can get spicy. years- long friendships can be made or broken on the game board. the players prof. dr. markus heinrichs, dr. bernadette von dawans and dr. tobias stächele of the depart- ment of biological and differential psychology and the out-patient psychotherapy clinic for stress- related illnesses rimma gerenstein, public relations, university of freiburg therapy sequence tobias stächele draws a knowledge question, " who visits their retired parents more often? adult sons or adult daughters?" the psychologist gets it right. according to a 1986 study, women visit their parents an average of 62 times a year, whereas men manage only 47 visits. an amused tasks for individual and group therapy are found on the blue cards. during this part of the game, the questions are about how people perceive themselves and the influence they have on others. photos: patrick seeger markus heinrichs says, "i wouldn't even get to 47 visits in twenty years. comparative studies today would in part arrive at very different results." yet other outcomes dating back some time remain valid. rimma gerenstein is to guess whom a father of twins prefers – the firstborn, or the smaller or weaker twin? "the son and heir – or stronger twin," she answers correctly. the exper ts explain that can be credited to both evolutionary biology and psychology. bernadette von dawans gets an easy question as well, "whom is it easier to hypnotize? men or women?" women, clearly. "men have more fear of relinquishing control," elucidates heinrichs. the cowboy. but only two percent of the test subjects saw that. sixty per- cent said the blot depicted two danc- ing women. says heinrichs, "what a person recognizes depends on what dominates an individual's character. medical students could interpret it is an anatomical diagram of the birth canal." yet it remains a mystery how stächele arrived at camels. stächele provides a bit of variety a few moves and knowledge questions later. he has to guess what most people see in a certain inkblot. the question alludes to the personality test named for the psychologist her- mann rorschach, who developed it nearly a century ago. heinrichs says, " viewed from today's perspective, with regard to its diagnostic relevance it is "utter nonsense, but entertaining." so does the image show two dancing women, two horses fighting or a bow-legged cowboy? "i actually see camels," says stächele, and chooses finally, the highpoint of the game is reached. gerenstein ends up in stächele's office and must subject herself to therapy. the patient is asked: if she had to cast a film with the people with whom she is playing, what film would it be – "snow white," "gone with the wind," "the godfather" or " sexy schoolgirl report nr. 8"? "the answer given should actually be honest, but often people choose to give a socially desirable response," comments heinrichs. gerenstein writes down her answer on a slip of paper and stächele must guess which tasks for individual and group therapy are found on the blue cards. during this part of the game, the questions are about how people perceive themselves and the influence they have on others. film she chose. "the godfather," he answers, missing the mark. "i wanted that first, but then you influenced me," complains gerenstein, looking over at heinrichs. "snow white," is what is on the paper. says gerenstein, "i thought that would be socially desir- able because we're a friendly group." a short time later, heinrichs is faced with a similar problem. he ends up in group therapy and has to write down how intelligent he thinks he is on a scale of one to ten. the others have to agree on a number, but are allowed a margin for error of one point. stächele sets limits, "he's written down something between five and ten, so we're interested in something from six to nine." von dawans takes on the challenge, "eight or nine. he's certainly doesn't think that we'll put him at seven." "or six," blurts the pro- fessor. the group agrees on eight and they are on target. "of course," says heinrichs, "i maintain that 98 percent of all people would choose eight." the analysis after just over an hour, all the situ- ations the game presents have been tested – but none of the contestants is anywhere near victory, so the group decides to leave the game undecided. does having studied psychology help when playing the game? about twenty to thirty percent of the questions can be answered with the help of subject knowledge, but the experts say com- mon sense can be applied to many of them. heinrichs says the game can best be used in private life, rather than for teaching. he elaborates: with a group of new roommates, for example, who want to get to know each other. or, he adds, for people who have long been friends. "it is interesting to see how one person influences the others – and during a game that lasts for several hours, you are getting feedback again and again," he says. „therapy“, hasbro (not in current selection) www.hasbro.de clean-up the environ- ment and donate by a decision of the rectorate, pro- ceeds from the university of freiburg's project to recycle ink and toner cartridg- es will be donated to charity. two thou- sand euros have been collected by the project in the last four years. the sus- tainable university work group is now donating this sum to the förderverein für krebskranke kinder e. v. in freiburg. according to its statutes, the organiza- tion aids children who have cancer and their families by providing psychological and social support and aftercare. it also supports the center for pediatrics and adolescent medicine at the freiburg university medical center. "we think that this association carries out exem- plary and outstanding work in freiburg," says dr. jürgen steck, who leads the sustainable university work group. campus statistics one gold, four silvers student numbers have again topped the 25 thousand mark. in the winter semester of 2016/17, 25,439 students matriculated. of those, 4,339 have foreign nationality. during the winter semester last year, the university of freiburg for the first time had more than 25 thousand students. among them, more than four thousand were foreign nationals. both records have been surpassed again this year. at the moment 13,499 of the students are women and 11,940 are men. 10,198 of those studying are seeking a bachelor's degree. 5,199 students are in master's programs and 5,732 want to complete their studies by tak- ing a state exam. during the current winter semester, for 4,221 university of freiburg students, it is the first time they have been enrolled at an institution of higher education. the university of freiburg's wine has won five medals at the austrian wine challenge (awc) in vienna. the competition is the largest recognized wine competition in the world. a gold medal was awarded to a dry, late vintage, 2014 pinot noir from the lorettoberg. two of the university's pinot blanc wines – vintages 2013 and 2015 respectively – each won a silver medal as did a 2015 and a 2012 pinot noir. the university of freiburg first took part in the competition in 2012 and had the honor of taking home two gold and five silver medals for its wine. the endowment adminis- tration of the university manages the vineyards. at this year's awc vienna, 1,900 producers from 41 countries en- tered nearly 13 thousand wines in the competition. the jury is composed of international oenologists, sommeliers, restaurateurs, wine merchants and photo: sandr a meyndt wine journalists. because the compe- tition is recognized by the eu, the uni- versity may use the medals on bottle labels when advertising the wines. www.zuv.uni-freiburg.de/service/wein www.nachhaltige.uni-freiburg.de/ projekte/toner_kartuschen
05 2016 campus 9 unı leben newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de launching a new life refugees nabil sifo and danial danha are studying at the university of freiburg this winter semester by petra völzing the semester is starting. everyone is milling around outside the uni- versity of freiburg's library. danial danha and nabil sifo are sitting in a café happily watching all the hustle and bustle. both have had hard times in the past. sifo comes from the town of salamiyah in syria. he came to germany via greece in the summer of 2015 – one of many in the massive stream of refugees. the 30-year-old had already left syria in 2013. "i had finished my military service in syria, but they did not want to let me go because of the war," he explains. while he was on leave, he packed a few things and fled to jordan. "according to syria i am a de- serter," he says glumly. he would face the death penalty were he to return. the decision to go was difficult to make, because he was leaving his mother and three siblings back home. "killing another person was unimaginable for me, and certainly not for a dictator like bashar al-assad," he says. before he joined the military, sifo studied geology in damascus. now he is starting a master's program at the university of freiburg in the same subject. the men converse steadily in ger- man. both have taken a language course for refugees that the university has offered since april 2016. "of course it would be more relaxed if we were speaking to each other in arabic," says danha. both say it is extremely important to learn to speak german well as quickly as possible. they use every opportunity they get to practice. "there are some topics where i still can't find the german words. for example, when i'm talking about a pretty woman," says danha with a laugh. he has been in germany since the start of 2015 and has already passed the german language test for international students at german insti- tutions of higher education – meaning he has attained a c1 level and meets landing on both feet: nabil sifo (left) and danial danha really like freiburg – best of all, the helpfulness of the city and its residents. photo: thomas kunz the requirements to begin study. the 22-year-old has been studying medi- cine since the start of the 2016/17 winter semester. sifo, on the other hand, does not require level c1, be- cause teaching is in english in his course of study. "naturally, that's easier," he says and smiles. never- theless, he is still working diligently at learning german. reaching the required level this semester a total of nine refugees began courses of study at the univer- sity of freiburg. that is not a large number. yet students from the affected countries on regular student visas who are not seeking asylum are not includ- ed in this figure. "learning the german language is the biggest hurdle," says dr. christina schoch, the director of the student service center. conven- tional integration courses only take learners as far as level b1, which is insufficient for university studies. "there are few affordable opportunities to reach level c1," says schoch. forty refugees can take part in the univer- sity's german course. eighty applied for it. normally it takes six months to progress from b1 to c1 explains schoch. she adds, however, that expe- rience shows the refugees need more time. compared to other students from abroad, they are less prepared and often have to work on the side as well. what is more, they are worried about the right to remain in the country. christian faith. when their house was taken from them, they saw no future in iraq anymore. danha does not like to say how they came to be in germany, only that: "it was difficult and compli- cated." before he left, he had started studying medicine in irbil. attacks were carried out twice in front of the univer- sity building. "i was never certain if i would get back home safely," he says. now he lives with his parents and two sisters in an apartment in umkirch. his father has found a job as an engineer. his two sisters attend secondary school. danha was an exception. "right after i arrived in germany i bought myself a german book and started on my own," he explains. the aramean comes from the town of irbil in the kurdish region of northern iraq. in recent years his family's life was made increasingly difficult on account of their saying thanks and giving back in return both students are happy in freiburg. "the university's caliber and equipment are far better here than in irbil," says danha, who can foresee becoming a cardiologist. nabil feels comfortable, too. but he says the need to work on the side makes his studies more diffi- cult. "i need the money, above all to pay rent." he lives with three german students in a shared apartment. an- other bitter pill for him is that he had successfully applied for a daad scholar- ship in jordan. but because he did not have a valid passport, the german em- bassy refused to issue him a visa and the scholarship offer expired. he ap- plied again in freiburg, but in vain. "that was a real shame, because then i would have more time to study," he adds. all-in-all, however, he has no regrets. neither of them has experienced any discrimination yet. "if anything, i expe- rience positive discrimination," notes a grinning sifo. he says he is continuing to receive support precisely because he is a refugee. "the social worker at the refugee hostel in emmendingen helped me a great deal," he recounts. it was she who established contact with the university. but he says the professors support him, too. danha also has positive reports. "i have at least 30 friends – and all my fellow stu- dents are ready to help," he says with enthusiasm. then the two men be- come reflective again. "it is really im- portant to us that we are able to say a huge ‘thank you,'" they agree. "my town would not have done as much for us as freiburg has," danha elucidates. both say they want to do something in return for society. as a doctor, danha will help people. and from the start, sifo has been volunteering as an inter- preter at refugee hostels. he says he will continue his social commitments event after he completes his studies. stationery, bibs, rubber ducks: the university of freiburg's uni’shop supplies a wide range of goods not just for everyday life on campus but also for every other kind of situation. in this series, uni’life presents a few of its products and there is a prize draw for coupons. uni’que by martin jost umbrellas are used to having a hard time of it. usually we treat them badly. we blame them if we don't have them with us, and then if we do, we still complain about them. they're too bulky, too fragile and too small when bad weather whips up. but then, if it's dry, an umbrella is never small enough for us. it takes up valuable space in the bag and is so heavy that it alone is guilty for our bad posture. in the end, we carry the brolly day in, day out, without ever needing it. and then it doesn't rain for weeks. until the day comes when we finally take it out of the bag and leave it at home. an umbrella never pleases us, but that probably isn't its fault. it comes into sunshine in the rain use when the quality of the weather deteriorates. and so it becomes a victim of the tendency to "kill the messenger." we blame the messenger for the bad news they bring – for in- stance, sleet. the first example of an umbrella that could be folded dates back to 21 bc. there haven't been many changes in umbrella technology in the two thousand years since. more modern materials are used, of course, but brollies still flail around when there's a gust of wind. and whilst their rainproof coating is effective, rain still finds a way to soak into trouser legs and down collars. but nothing can beat the greatest challenge we have with an umbrella – how not to lose it or forget it. the pocket brolly in the university of freiburg's design from the uni’shop does what it can though. at barely 350 grams it is lighter than most text- books. it can open, close, and is water-repellent, so as an umbrella it's pretty much state-of-the-art. but the best thing about it is its brilliant blue color. it's always a good thing to brighten things up when you go out in dull weather. the university of freiburg, the wife of the former german president theodor heuss said, "i stand in sun and feel myself growing wings." this brolly comes with sunshine included. and so that we freiburgers can show our sunny side when we are abroad too, the quote is printed in english. competition win one of two 25 euro coupons for the uni’shop. send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org before 20th january 2017. the coupon winners will be drawn from all the entries received. come rain or shine: the brolly has a quotation from elly heuss-knapp, alum- na of the university of freiburg. photo: thomas kunz and the brolly also quotes elly heuss- knapp. when she started studying at www.shop.uni-freiburg.de
10 compass 05 2016 unı leben newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de etiquette primer for social media a new netiquette and updated guidelines provide orientation for everyone using the internet in the name the university by yvonne troll whether it is facebook, twitter, instagram or the rest, the univer- sity of freiburg is active on all major social media channels. the offering on the world’s largest social media network, facebook, is directed at the broadest audience. it provides pro- spective students, students, faculty, colleagues and journalists a package of comprehensive information about the university. twitter, by contrast, uses a two-track system. a media account provides journalists with news, while a second channel is dedicated to supply- ing a wider audience with more general information and reports on the latest happenings. a new youtube presence is in the process of being launched. the platform provides impressions of the university, including videos of research and teaching as well as tips and information for students. instagram promises a look behind the scenes at the university. the social media coordinator at freiburg, dr. max orlich, calls it the "feel good media." he and his colleague, melanie hübner, hand- le everything that has to do with any type of social media. as public rela- tions department staff, they coordinate and supervise all the university’s digital and supervise all the university’s digital activities. the business networks xing and the business networks xing and linkedin are currently being expanded. linkedin are currently being expanded. "there we are in contact with employers, donors and sponsors, and maintain a network of former students," reports hübner. the duo are students," reports hübner. the duo are getting plenty of response. says orlich, getting plenty of response. says orlich, "you can tell by the comments and "you can tell by the comments and likes that the alumnae and alumni con- likes that the alumnae and alumni con- tinue to be interested in what is going tinue to be interested in what is going on at their alma mater." friendly and respectful the pair says comments, news, dis- the pair says comments, news, dis- cussions and posts are welcome on all cussions and posts are welcome on all channels. nevertheless orlich and channels. nevertheless orlich and hübner emphasize that there are cer- tain rules to follow. netiquette – a type of collection of behavioral rules for social media users – offers guidance. "you should adhere to certain commu- nication rules when dealing directly with people. the same goes for the internet. but there, many people still i nd it difi cult to have their say reason- ably and politely," notes orlich. he says that depending on the topic, the potential for aggression can rise rapidly and may lead to insults, threats and insinuations. the university disci- plines those who make xenophobic, sexist, party-political or religious remarks. beyond that, users must en- good manners are always in style: netiquette provides tips for facebook etc. illustr ation: svenja kirsch sure that they respect copyrights and the privacy of others and do not post advertisements. people who fail to comply with these guidelines can be warned – or in extreme cases – be reported to facebook, banned or reported to the police. the university of freiburg is legally responsible for content on social media channels and websites that appear on the internet in its name. even staff members who are using social media for university institutions are being given a helping hand. orlich and hübner have updated and expand- ed already existing guidelines. new, for example, is the tip that legal informa- tion is obligatory, as is eliminating the "like" or "share" buttons of social net- works on external websites because these transfer user data without authorization. staff members have the opportunity to use a forum on the uni- versity’s intranet to share their experi- ences. the team furthermore offers social media courses for beginners and advanced users through the uni- versity’s internal further and continuing education programs. orlich and hübner say they are also available for direct contact at all times. netiquette schooling netiquette and guidelines www.pr.uni-freiburg.de/publikationen/ soziale-medien introduction to corporate design www.zuv.uni-freiburg.de/service/ cd/cd-manual/socialmedia contact email@example.com working out at work students and ofﬁ ce workers often spend hours sitting motionless with their eyes ﬁ xed on their computer screens. as deadlines and examinations approach, the time for relaxation shrinks to nil. it's no wonder, then, that back pain, stiff necks, headaches or simply a general sense of being unwell caused by sluggish circulation, can set in over time. finding relief for these aches and pains isn't difﬁ cult. the staff of the fitness & health center (fgz) of the university of freiburg has presented a series of exercises that can easily be done at your desk at any time. take a load off your back – stretch your hip f lexor by petra völzing m ost people are likely barely awa- re of the existence of their hip flexors. yet the muscles have a key function. they link the upper thigh with the pelvis and the lower section of the spinal column. the hip flexors provide stability for the torso and transfer force from the legs to the lower spine. sitting bent at the hip for long periods of time keeps the musc- les in a shortened position. this can lead to the lower back pain of which many people complain. using a sim- ple exercise to stretch the hip flexors periodically can help to avoid this discomfort. sit up straight and on the edge of your chair. put your left leg out and bent to a 90-degree angle. place your right leg under the chair or to the side of it. rest it gently on your upper instep and extend the leg as far behind you as you can. this stretches the hip flexors and the muscles at the front of the thigh. putting the pelvis in an upright position and straighte- ning the back intensify the stretch. hold the position for twenty to thirty seconds, then repeat the exercise on the other side. repeat the stretch two or three times on each side. people who want a more intense exercise can do it without the support of a chair, but remember that more strength and balance are required for this. caption: using the chair as a sup- port valentin stark demonstrates a hip l exor stretch. photo: kl aus polkowski move it! anyone who wants to get moving is welcome to come and explore the range of activities and advice the fgz offers, or they can book an ofi ce visit from pausenexpress to be put through their paces on the spot. www.fgz.uni-freiburg.de www.gesunde.uni-freiburg.de/angebote/ projekte/pausenexpress
05 2016 compass unı leben newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de individual standard the web-to-print service can create visiting cards, ﬂ yers, posters or calendars in the university corporate design to suit your needs also pays off financially, as also pays off financially, as print jobs are only charged at print jobs are only charged at equipment and materials costs. web-to-print has gradually web-to-print has gradually expanded its offering, and from the start of 2017 there will be another new service: by rimma gerenstein aristoteles draped with snow over his shoulders, a wall of bright green lockers that store secrets in col- legiate building iii, vibrant yellow daffo- dils on the mensa cafeteria lawn – the university calendar makes 2017 look appealing. and if you don't like one picture or another, you can choose a picture of your own – or simply create an entirely new calendar. that doesn't work for you? then make your very own from scratch! you could say that's the slogan of the web-to-print platform. it enables every member of staff of the univer- sity of freiburg to design and order print materials directly from the uni- versity printing ofi ce and then have them sent by internal mail to their workplace. items that can be pro- duced include posters, l yers, visiting cards and invitations, folders, calen- dars or certii cates. the key feature of web-to-print is that it only stocks templates that are designed in accordance with the cor- porate design (cd) rules of the univer- sity. "the advantage is that you don't have to rummage through a manual when you are creating a l yer about an institute, for example," says marcel oettrich from knowledge manage- ment, who oversees the service. "you don't have to spend ages thinking whether the university logo should now go at the bottom left or right or how big it should be. the program sorts all that out for you." a saved document can always be reworked the platform came into existence all of eight years ago, when the univer- sity introduced its corporate design. "our goal was to provide staff with guidelines for use of the cd, but at the same time show them that corpo- rate design absolutely doesn’t have to mean that everything looks the same," remarks oettrich. the platform is popular. about 5,000 orders are sent to the program each year. besides the simplicity of the in-house process, it unwanted advice the glücksatlas isn't intended as a guide to happiness – but there's still a lot to learn from the study serial documents. now, to serial documents. now, to print personalized invitations print personalized invitations or certii cates you just have to or certii cates you just have to upload an excel file with the upload an excel file with the names and the program does names and the program does the rest. oettrich says that it's the rest. oettrich says that it's especially practical because especially practical because every employee can repeat- every employee can repeat- 11 brightening the ofi ce: the calendar makes the new year look appealing – and can also be decorated with personal photos. photos: universit y of freiburg edly access old pro- edly access old pro- jects, which remain jects, which remain stored as templates stored as templates and can be reordered and can be reordered or adapted at any time. or adapted at any time. if at some stage the if at some stage the layout no longer meets layout no longer meets requirements, oettrich requirements, oettrich is there to help find is there to help find an individual solution. an individual solution. "sometimes the space available is too small, for instance on visiting cards. if someone has a long name we can adjust the layout appropriately." about those visiting cards: the i rst person to send in an order for visiting cards to web-to-print after this edition of uni'life comes out – i.e. after 8 de- cember 2016 – will receive a gift of a keyring. in the cd, of course. but there is still room for individuality. the color is up to you. www.webtoprint.uni-freiburg.de kontakt: firstname.lastname@example.org move to schleswig- move to schleswig- holstein. with 7.41 holstein. satisfaction points from a possible 10, the from a possible 10, the people of the federal people of the federal state of schleswig- state of schleswig- holstein are holstein are the the happiest. the aver- happiest. the aver- age for the federal age for the federal find a secure job. losing a job is no good for anyone. on the other hand, this isn't so much because of the loss of income but because of the loss of social contacts. in other words, you can't do without other people. otherwise, as far as family planning goes, you only move into the top league of happiness when you have children. the i rst child contributes the most to the balance, but each additional child does increase satisfaction with life at least a little. however, three or more children are required to offset the negatives of living in the former east germany. unfortunately, living in the former gdr will bring you down a lot, with mecklenburg-vorpommern being the absolute nadir. by martin jost we humans strive to be happy. maybe being happy or at least the drive to be happier is the meaning of life. so it's a pity that we know so little about what makes us happy in the long term. published by deutsche post, the 2016 glücksatlas, or atlas of hap- piness, is the sixth edition already loo- king into the happiness of the german people and their satisfaction with their standard of living. its main authors are bernd raffelhüschen, professor of pu- blic i nance and director of the inter- generational contract research cen- ter at the university of freiburg, and reinhard schlinkert, founder and ceo of the institute for market and political research – dimap, in bonn. the authors of the glücksatlas stress that it is not suitable as a guide to a happy life. presumably this is a disclaimer of liability, so it shouldn't stop us from taking the study at face value. we want to learn from the hap- piest germans: what are they doing right? what does us good? and what can put a damper on our happiness? below are a few well-meaning pieces of advice which you should take with a pinch of salt. republic as a whole republic as a whole is currently 7.11. however, if you prefer to live in the prefer to live in the south-west either as south-west either as a matter of habit or a matter of habit or on principle, it's far on principle, it's far from the worst anyway. but then please choose baden. of the 19 regions sur veyed, baden came fourth in the satisfaction rankings – 0.06 points and five places ahead of württemberg. good friends and pleasant colleagues are important, but the happiest people also have a permanent partner. married people are meanwhile still 0.1 points happier than people who are living together without a marriage cer tificate. find a religion and practice it, that makes everything better. catholics rate their marriages as far and away the most satisfy- ing. on the other hand getting married hardly makes atheists any happier. illustr ations: svenja kirsch the most satisi ed people on average are those who have found a new partner after the death of their first. they are almost 0.3 points more satisi ed than those who are married for the i rst time. the i rst marriage doesn't achieve this. per- haps this is because you only really know what you had with your signii cant other once you've lost them. understandably, contentment drops by a whole point imme- diately after being bereaved. but one year later it is back where it was before the loss. but if you are honest with yourself, you already know what else does you good: not watching too much televi- sion, playing more sport, voluntary work and donating to a good cause. but don't give blood if you are paid for it. this doesn't affect your satisfaction levels. the bad news, however, we've kept until last. more than half of your tendency to be happy is determined genetically – so we hope your parents have passed on a good basic level of satisfaction.
12 people 05 2016 unı leben newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de as a child, sarah adler already found skeletons, graves and all sorts of creepy stories exciting. in her book, she expresses her fascination in a humorous way. photo: kl aus polkowski when death has doubts about life student sarah adler publishes her first novel knochenjob by sarah schwarzkopf nobody likes him. so he decides to finally do something to change that. in her debut novel published in october 2016, sarah adler tells a story of death and his efforts to improve his image. the 22-year-old from köndrin- gen is in her fourth semester at the university of freiburg. she is study- ing archeology and english language and literature. writing has always been adler's passion. now that's paid off. her novel sold out two weeks after it was released. says the author, "death finds it un- fair that no one can stand him and that everyone clings to life. so he tries to find friends by using several methods which unfortunately all go horribly wrong in some way." his annoying col- leagues life and fate keep throwing a wrench into his work. the three follow animals and humans through evolution, starting with the first cell. death has to adapt to things too, because different forms of life die in different ways. he asks himself if he is really as bad as everyone thinks he is. adler goes beyond western my- thology in her depiction of death. she includes other concepts as well. the young author says the cross-cultural thought she's experienced in her stud- ies helped her do this. adler continues that it is no coincidence that she is studying archeology and has tackled the topic of death in her first novel. "i always found everything that has to do with dead people fascinating – with skeletons and gruesome things," says the young author and laughs. there is an alemannian burial ground in kön- dringen. says adler, "as a child i often walked by the old bones that were sticking up out of the clay. i would im- agine how long ago that was and how cool it would be to dig them out myself." ten pages a day knochenjob is the first story that adler has written through to the end. despite the complex plot – which fea- tures many strands and jumps around in time – adler wrote the book in just two months. it all started in the sum- mer of 2015, when she played the part of death in a theater piece and at the same time was preparing for her first aid course in her skeleton costume. "at one moment, i was studying cardio- pulmonary resuscitation and in the next i had to go out on stage and do someone in. the idea came to me at some point during that time," recalls adler. from the start it was clear that the book would be funny. says adler, "i love plays on words and humor suits me best. besides, i wanted to do something new. that's difficult when death is the topic." adler says literature inspires her. "i enjoy reading just about anything. i like modern universes with a touch of fantasy – everything that's a little bit quirky, where ideas are turned on their head and reinterpreted," she explains. among her favorite authors are walter moers, jonathan stroud and a few british writers with whom adler shares dry humor. "you only learn how stories work by reading a lot," she says. the thing adler likes best about writing is that it's a quiet and relaxing pastime. adler works translating english into german in addition to her studies. lat- er, she says she would like to pursue a master's degree or perhaps work for a publisher, but she favors above all earning her living as an author and translator. "i've got a great many ideas that i'd still like to implement," she says, adding that it's a good reason to keep writing ten pages a day. adler says that's not difficult at times when she has good ideas. "then, it's like i'm possessed," she elaborates. the reception her first work received has been wholly positive up to now. "i'm curious to see the first bad review. i want to know what exactly it is they'll take issue with." she's already has a contract for her second novel. it takes place three thousand years in the fu- ture in a parallel universe. and it's not as if adler is resting on her laurels. at the moment, she's working on her third book, which is directed at an audience of young readers. with rope, cable and fire extinguisher benjamin schätzle coaches the german youth national tug-of-war team, he also inspects electrical equipment and provides fire safety at the university by jürgen schickinger benjamin schätzle likes taking back steps – but only during a tug-of-war. as the coach of the german national youth tug-of-war team, he encourages it. to win an event, a team has to pull their opponents four meters in their direction, meaning that backwards in tug-of-war means going forward to success. recently, schätzle's team won second place in the world cham- pionships. at the safety office of the university of freiburg, he is responsib- le for the organization of the fire safety program and inspection of electrical equipment. there, just as elsewhere, the man from elztal prefers going for- wards to backwards, even if barriers need to be overcome in the process. "you should never give up, even when it looks as if you're on the brink of defeat," says schätzle. he says sports have taught him this lesson, but it's applicable everywhere. schätzle used to be a member of the waldkirch volunteer fire department and was an active tug-of-war team member in the simonswald tug-of-war club. but back problems put an end to both of those hobbies, so he continued to pur- sue his interests in another way. at the simonswald tug-of-war club he took on the job of youth coach. later, he became the club's coach and recently was promoted to coach the youth national team. "i stumbled into it," says schätzle. but he didn't miss a step. at the start of september 2016, in his first year of coaching, he and his team won second place at the world champion- keeping fire under control: benjamin schätzle gives seminars on fire safety basics. photo: kl aus polkowski ship in malmö, sweden. "that was a surprise," says a pleased schätzle. the 34-year-old can't stay away from fire, either. "firefighting was always my hobby," he says. after he stopped working as an active fireman, schätzle began providing early fire safety education courses in kindergar- tens and schools. he started work at the university in 2005, first in facilities services. then, in 2015 he qualified as a fire safety officer. a short time later, schätzle began working in the safety office, where he and head fire safety officer roland birmele form the fire safety team. batteries ignite now and then at one or the other of the techni- cal institutes, says schätzle. "we haven't had any major fires in my time here," he adds. nevertheless, reports schätzle, there's plenty to do – for ex- ample, organizing emergency drills, holding fire safety seminars or drawing up safe seating plans for events. the priority for events is ensuring that fire exits and firefighters' access routes remain clear. space is at a premium in many places on campus. occasionally, tables, cabinets or machines stand in the halls. "most of the time that's not allowed for safety reasons," says schätzle. a qualified electrician, schätzle's second area of responsibility is inspecting electrical equipment. he can look at anything from small, mobile devices to table lamps, electric kettles and table centrifuges to ensure they are safe. he says that if you take a close look at many items, you will find plenty of worn cables, exposed con- tacts or bare wires. there can also be cracks in housings or other types of damage, he adds. "at the moment we're working on structural improve- ments to ensure that all electrical de- vices are inventoried and tested regu- larly," says schätzle. this means that soon every institute will have its own officer for testing electrical facilities. the safety office will make the neces- sary testing devices available. it also offers training courses on how to use them. the course only takes an-hour- and-a-half because the measurements are almost fully automated. south baden home to most of germany's tug-of-warriors fire safety regulations have become stricter. "fortunately, the university cooperates very well," praises schätzle. it would be good, he says, if staff members would simply reflect now and then about what to do in an emergency. where is my exit? are there any barriers that i would have to help a disabled person over? in tug-of-wars, competi- tions are when things get serious. but schätzle says there are few risks, "it's true. it's a strength sport, but there are very few injuries." the national youth team coach speaks enthusiastically about the atmosphere at practice ses- sions and competitions – of team spirit, power, technique and synchronicity. "it's a really great sport!" he says. with one exception, all the clubs in germany's national league come from south baden. "there are plenty of really high level competitions where we are. i rec- ommend to everyone that they should come by and watch one," he says.
05 2016 personnel 13 unı leben newspaper of the university of freiburg www.leben.uni-freiburg.de achievements the university of freiburg has awarded prof. dr. alain beretz its university medal. as the president of the university of strasbourg, france, he received the award at his farewell party – on 16 september 2016 beretz became director general for innova- tion and research at the french min- istry of education. the university of freiburg gave him the award in honor of his extraordinary contributions to the establishment of the european grouping of territorial cooperation (evtz), "eucor – the european cam- pus," and his signifi cant work on the project of a european university for the upper rhine. for the discovery of an inhibitor for the enzyme sirtuin 2 (sirt2), the work- ing group headed by prof. dr. manfred jung from the institute of pharmaceu- tical sciences at the university of freiburg received the phoenix phar- maceutical sciences award together with an endowment of 10,000 euros. sirtuins are associated with a range of age-related diseases such as cancer, diabetes and alzheimer's. in future, it may be possible to use this inhibitor to counteract the occurrence of these diseases or find new therapeutic approaches. the pharmaceuticals trader, phoenix group, awards the prize each year for outstanding perfor- mance in basic pharmaceutical research. forest scientist prof. dr. christian messier of the university of quebec, montreal, canada, has received a humboldt research award. the alex- ander von humboldt foundation's distinction honors scientists for career achievements that have made a substantial impact on their areas of expertise. award winners are invited to realize research projects at an insti- tution of their choice in germany. messier intends to continue to develop concepts at the university of freiburg for the management of forests as com- plex, adaptive systems. among other things, these approaches are designed to improve the capacity of forests to adapt to climate change. his host is prof. dr. jürgen bauhus from the institute of forest sciences. the german government has called on prof. dr. ulrich schraml to contrib- ute his professional knowledge to the implementation of its national sustain- ability strategy for the next three years. chancellor angela merkel has appoint- ed the freiburg-based researcher to the council for sustainable develop- ment. at the university of freiburg, schraml deputizes for the professor of forestry and environmental policy and heads the woodlands and society de- partment at the baden-württemberg forest testing and research institute. the role of the council is to develop concrete options for action and pro- jects for sustainable development and to raise public awareness of the issue. prof. dr. andreas urs sommer, who teaches in the department of phi- losophy at the university of freiburg and heads the "nietzsche-kommentar" research unit of the heidelberg acad- emy of sciences, has been awarded the geisteswissenschaften interna- tional special prize for his book werte. warum man sie braucht, obwohl es sie nicht gibt. the börsenverein des deutschen buchhandels, the fritz thyssen foundation, vg wort and the german foreign ministry present the honor twice a year for outstanding works in the humanities and social sci- ences, and finance their translation into english. the wissenschaftliche gesellschaft freiburg is honoring the freiburg- based chemist dr. michael sommer for his scientific work in the field of macromolecular chemistry with the helmut holzer research prize 2016, which includes an endowment of 10,000 euros. sommer's area of research is the synthesis of innovative organic polymers, known as functional materials, which are capable of sustainably storing and converting energy. potential areas of application include organic solar cells. the aristotle university of thessa- loniki, greece, has made prof. dr. bernhard zimmermann of the de- partment of greek and latin philology at the university of freiburg an honor- ary doctor. the degree is in recogni- tion of zimmermann's accomplish- ments with regard to greek culture, in particular greek literature from an- cient history to the present, and his contribution to academic cooperation between germany and greece. zim- mermann's research focuses mainly on greek literature of the pre-classical and classical period and the reception of ancient culture in the modern era. mit direktbank und bundesweitem filialnetz. für mich: bbbank-junges konto 1) voraussetzung: genossenschaftsanteil von 15,– euro/mitglied. kostenfreie kontoführung bis 27 jahre, danach erfolgt automatisch die umwandlung in ein gehalts-/bezügekonto. voraussetzung für eine kostenfreie kontoführung ab ausbildungsbeginn/berufsstart: eingang ausbildungsvergütung bzw. gehalt/bezüge. 2) zinssatz variabel, befristet bis zur vollendung des 27. lebensjahres; vierteljährliche zinsgutschrift ihre vorteile: • kontoführung, bankcard und depot zum nulltarif1) • für jugendliche unter 18 jahren: bei kontoeröffnung schenken wir ihnen die mitgliedschaft in höhe von 15,– euro • verzinsung bis max. 1.000,– euro kontoguthaben2) informieren sie sich jetzt über die vielen weiteren vorteile ihres neuen kontos unter www.bbbank.de/junge-kunden appointments faculty of law the rector has named an attorney at the freiburg legal practice of spar- wasser & heilshorn and lecturer at the university of freiburg since 2002, dr. torsten heilshorn, an adjunct professor. effective from 1 october 2016, the rector has named lecturer dr. jan felix hoffmann of the university of heidelberg, a professor of civil law and civil procedure law at the insti- tute of german and foreign civil procedure law. faculty of economics and behavioral sciences effective from 1 november 2016, the vice president has appointed dr. bastian schiller of the institute of psychology to be a lecturer for a three-year term. effective from 1 october 2016, the rector has named junior professor dr. thamar voss of the university of tübingen a junior professor of em- pirical school and instructional development at the department of educational science. faculty of humanities prof. dr. gregor dobler of the department of ethnology has declined the appointments offered him by the university of fribourg, switzerland, and the university of bayreuth. effective from 1 october 2016, the rector has named lecturer dr. tim epkenhans of the oriental seminar a professor of islamic studies, focusing on central asia, at the same institute. effective from 1 november 2016, the rector has appointed dr. valerie schoenenberg of the institute of archaeological sciences (iaw) to be a lecturer for a three year period. faculty of mathematics and physics effective from 27 october 2016, the rector has appointed prof. dr. angelika rohde of the ruhr uni- versity bochum, professor of mathe- matical stochastics at the institute of mathematics. effective from 31 october 2016, the rector has appointed prof. dr. giuseppe sansone of the polytechnic university of milan, italy, professor of experimental physics at the institute of physics. effective from 31 october 2016, the rector has appointed prof. dr. marc schumann of the university of bern, switzerland, professor of experimental physics, with an emphasis on astro- particle physics, at the institute of physics. faculty of chemistry and pharmacy the rector has named the chairman of roche pharma ag germany and ceo of roche deutschland holding, dr. hagen pfundner, an adjunct professor. neue produkte im sortiment effective from 1 november 2016, the rector has appointed dr. andreas walther of the dwi – leibniz institute for interactive materials a professor of functional polymers at the institute of macromolecular chemistry. faculty of biology effective from 1 october 2016, the rector has appointed prof. dr. thomas ott of the university of munich profes- sor of cell biology of plants at the institute of biology ii. effective from 1 november 2016, the rector has appointed dr. matthias wittlinger of the institute of biology i to be a lecturer for a three year period. faculty of environment and natural resources effective from 1 november 2016, the rector has appointed dr. jochen fründ of the institute of earth and environmental sciences to be a lecturer for a three year period. effective from 1 october 2016, the rector has appointed lecturer dr. stefan hergarten of the institute of earth and environmental sciences professor of near-surface geophysics at the same institute. faculty of engineering prof. dr. kristof van laerhoven has accepted a post at the university of siegen. he is leaving the professor- ship in embedded systems here at the department of computer science. anniversaries 25 years of service dr. volker-henning winterer, it services heike kölblin, central university administration anja kury, department of german brigitte stertz, university library 40 years of service prof. dr. achim aurnhammer, department of german birgit erhard, institute of pharmaceutical sciences prof. dr. rainer glawion, institute of physical geography rolf heisch, central university administration venia legendi für dr. anda degeratu, mathematics produkte nden sie im online-shop: www.shop.uni-freiburg.de und in den buchhandlungen rombach und walthari