Fribourg Chaim Weizmann Lecturers

2017 - Felicitas Pauss

Felicitas Pauss was awarded with the 8th "Fribourg Chaim Weizmann Lectureship" for her outstanding work with particle physics at the high-energy frontier and astrophysics.

With more than 1100 papers, more than 98000 citations and more than 450 public presentations, her work lies between the ETH Zurich and CERN. She is professor emeritus at the ETH Zurich, was president of the Faculty Conference and adviser to the president on international affairs. She continues her research at CERN, where she was also head of international relations. She is most known for her involvement in the discovery of the Higgs boson.

2016 -  Rolf Zinkernagel

Rolf Zinkernagel was awarded with the 7th "Fribourg Chaim Weizmann Lectureship of 2016" for his innovative work in the immune system and the recognition of virus-infected cells.

Being a professor at the University of Zurich, Rolf Zinkernagel received the Nobel Prize in 1996 together with the Australian professor Peter C. Doherty. A man of many prizes, he also won the Cloëtta Prize in 1981, the William B. Coley Award in 1987 and the Albert Lasker Medical Research Award in 1995. In 1996, he became a Corresponding Fellow to the Australian Academy of Science and in 1998, a Foreign Member of the Royal Society.

2015 - Alan Heeger

In 2015, the Fribourg Chaim Weizmann Lectureship is assigned to Alan Heeger for his discovery and the development of conductive polymers. Besides the Nobel Prize in 2000, he won the Oliver E. Buckley Prize in 1983 and the Balzan Prize in 1995. He is not only an important physicist for his contribution to science, but also for initiating several successful start-ups.

2014 - Werner Arber

Werner Arber was awarded the Fribourg Chaim Weizmann Lectureship for his pioneering research on epigenetics.

Starting with studies in chemistry and physics at the ETHZ, he became a microbiologist and geneticist during his further career. In 1978, he received, together with Hamilton Smith and Daniel Nathans, the Nobel Prize in Physiology / Medicine for the discovery of restriction endonucleases, which later on lead to the development of recombinant DNA technology. Werner Arber is president of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences since 2011.

2013 - Dan Shechtman

Dan Shechtman received the fourth "Fribourg Chaim Weizmann Lectureship" for his outstanding discovery of quasicrystals. This discovery revolutionized the definition of the word "crystal".

Dan Shechtman is a "Philip Tobias Professor of Materials Science" at the Technion in Haifa, Israel, and Professor at the U.S. Energy Laboratory at Iowa State University in Ames, USA. In 2011, the international year of chemistry, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. In addition to materials science he teaches entrepreneurship and inspire young people around the world with his lectures.

2012 - Carl Djerassi

Carl Djerassi was awarded the Fribourg Chaim Weizmann Lectureship for his pioneering work in the development of the oral contraceptive pills, which enormously influenced our society.

Carl Djerassi is not only a brilliant chemist with more than 1'200 publications and an h-index of >90, but he is also a novelist and playwright. His novels and theatre plays combine science with fiction, hence the genre "science-in-fiction" is a perfect match. As an art lover and collector, he created his own artist colony. He is the recipient of many prizes and honorary doctorates for chemistry as well as his literary work.

2010 - Jean-Marie Lehn, ISIS, France

Jean-Marie Lehn is awarded with the Fribourg Chaim WeizmannLectureship for his ground-breaking and still on-going developments in theconcepts of supramolecular chemistry.

Jean-Marie Lehn was elected to become a teacher at the prestigiousCollège de France in 1980 and received the Nobel Prize together with Donald Cram and Charles Pedersen in 1987 for his work in Chemistry, particularly his synthesis of the cryptands. Lehn was an early innovator inthe field of supramolecular chemistry, i.e., producing large, useful compounds from smaller pieces in a rational way, and continues to innovate in this field. He has published in excess of 800 peer-reviewed articles in chemistry literature.

2009 - Ada E. Yonath, Weizmann Institute, Israel

Ada E. Yonath was elected as the first Fribourg Chaim Weizmann Lecturer for her outstanding contributions in the elucidation of the structure and reactivity of the ribosome by initiating ribosomal crystallography. In addition, she has some parallels with the scientific career of Chaim Weizmann.

She is the current director of the Helen and Milton A. Kimmelman Center for Biomolecular Structure and Assembly of the Weizmann Institute of Science. In 2009, she received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry along with Venkatraman Ramakrishnan and Thomas A. Steitz for her studies on the structure and function of the ribosome, becoming the first woman in 45 years to win the Nobel Prize for Chemistry.

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