Awards and Honors

The Academia Europaea is a European independent scientific society that was founded in 1988.

Prof. Robert Huber, Max-Planck-Institut für Biochemie, Martinsried, Professor für Chemie, TU München
Prof. Edward William Schlag †, Physikalische Chemie

The Arfvedson-Schlenk Award is granted to scientists for outstanding contributions in the field of lithium chemistry. In 1997, the award was established by Chemetall, Frankfurt a.M. in collaboration with the GDCh. The sponsorship was later assumed by Rockwood Lithium, which transitioned to Albemarle Germany GmbH and currently sponsors the award.

The Arfvedson-Schlenk Award pays tribute to two distinguished researchers in the field of lithium chemistry: Johan August Arfvedson (1792 - 1841), who first discovered lithium in the mineral petalite in 1817. Lithium gained significant scientific and industrial importance thereafter. Wilhelm Schlenk (1879 - 1943) worked on the study of free radicals and organometallic compounds, and he synthesized the first lithium organyls. (Source: GDCh)

2023: Prof. Thomas Fässler

The German Academy of Science and Engineering (acatech) is a German scientific academy for technology and applied sciences, founded in 2002. The association aims to advise policymakers on issues related to technology and technology policy. Additionally, the association seeks to represent the interests of German engineering and technology sciences both domestically and internationally.

2002 Prof. Wolfgang A. Herrmann, Anorganische Chemie
2002 Prof. Hubert Schmidbaur, Anorganische und Analytische Chemie
2013 Prof. Bernhard Rieger, Makromolekulare Chemie

The Albrecht Kossel Award is a prize in biochemistry, presented by the German Chemical Society (Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker) since 2014. It is named after the Nobel laureate Albrecht Kossel.

2016: ProfJohannes Buchner Biotechnologie

The GDCh Prize for Inorganic Chemistry (formerly the Alfred Stock Memorial Award) is a scientific distinction in the field of inorganic chemistry. It has been awarded since 1950 by the Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker (GDCh) and is named after the German chemist Alfred Stock.

1982: Prof. Hubert Schmidbaur
1959: Prof. Ernst Otto Fischer † 
1951: Prof. Walter Hieber †

The award established by BASF in 1990 as the Alwin Mittasch Medal for outstanding achievements in the field of heterogeneous catalysis has been presented internationally since 2006, now known as the Alwin Mittasch Award, for exceptional contributions across the entire field of catalysis.

2021: Prof. Johannes A. Lercher

The Bavarian Academy of Sciences and Humanities (BAdW) is a public corporation based in Munich. Scientists and scholars are appointed as full and corresponding members based on their contributions to significantly expanding the knowledge base in their respective fields through research. The general objective of the academy is to promote interdisciplinary encounters, connections, and collaboration among representatives of various research areas.

  • 1964: Prof. Ernst Otto Fischer †, Anorganische Chemie
  • 1978: Prof. Edward William Schlag †, Physikalische Chemie
  • 1988: Prof. Robert Huber, Max-Planck-Institut für Biochemie, Martinsried, Professor für Chemie
  • 1993: Prof. Hubert Schmidbaur, Anorganische und Analytische Chemie
  • 1996: Prof. Horst Kessler, Organische Chemie
  • 2000: Prof. Wolfgang Baumeister, Biochemie, Molekulare Strukturbiologie
  • 2009: Prof. Thorsten Bach, Organische Chemie
  • 2010: Prof. Johannes Buchner, Biotechnologie
  • 2016: Prof. Stephan Sieber, Organische Chemie
  • 2023: Prof. Thomas Fässler, Anorganische Chemie

The Bavarian Order of Maximilian for Science and Art, the counterpart to the Prussian Order Pour le Mérite for Sciences and Arts established in 1842, is today the highest honor of the Free State of Bavaria. It was founded on November 28, 1853, by King Maximilian II of Bavaria.

1981:  Prof. Ernst Otto Fischer  †, Anorganische Chemie
1993: Prof. Robert Huber, Max-Planck-Institut für Biochemie
2006: Prof. Maria-Elisabeth Michel-Beyerle, Physikalische Chemie
2010: Prof. Hubert Schmidbaur, Anorganische und Analytische Chemie 
2012: Prof. Wolfgang A. Herrmann, Anorganische Chemie

The Bavarian Order of Merit is awarded annually by the Bavarian Prime Minister as a 'symbol of honorary and grateful recognition for outstanding contributions to the Free State of Bavaria and the Bavarian people.' Established in 1957, it is bestowed upon individuals of any nationality. The total number of living awardees is not to exceed 2,000.

2000: Prof. Maria-Elisabeth Michel-Beyerle, Physikalische Chemie
2007: Prof. Wolfgang A. Herrmann, Anorganische Chemie
2018: Prof. Günther Wess, Biologische Chemie

The Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany – better known as the Federal Cross of Merit – is the highest German decoration for contributions to the common good. President Theodor Heuss instituted the order in 1951 on the second anniversary of the founding of the Federal Republic. It is awarded in nine grades, including the Medal of Merit, Cross of Merit, Grand Cross of Merit, and Grand Cross, to both Germans and foreigners.


Grand Cross

1997: Prof. Robert Huber, Max-Planck-Institut für Biochemie


1995: Prof. Maria-Elisabeth Michel-Beyerle, Physikalische Chemie
1997: Prof. Wolfgang A. Herrmann, Anorganische Chemie

The Carl Duisberg Memorial Award is an annual honor presented by the German Chemical Society (GDCh) to young postdoctoral researchers who have distinguished themselves through original work.

Following the death of Carl Duisberg in 1935, the IG Farbenindustrie established the Carl Duisberg Memorial Foundation for the promotion of academic talent in collaboration with the Association of German Chemists. From 1936 to 1943, the foundation initially awarded the memorial prize. After World War II, the foundation was not renewed. In 1969, Bayer AG assumed responsibility for the prize foundation, which is currently funded from the proceeds of a special endowment for awards at the GDCh.

2017: Shigeyoshi Inoue

In honorable memory of the distinguished German chemist, Dr. Karl Wamsler, a formative personality of the German chemical industry, Clariant has donated the Dr. Karl Wamsler Innovation Award to the Technical University of Munich. The annual prize is awarded to scientists who have created innovative momentum with industrial potential in the field of catalysis research.

The jury considers groundbreaking work that has been documented in scientific journals or the patent literature, and which originated in an academic or industrial research environment. The award is endowed with 50,000 €.

For more information see:

CRC - Karl Wamsler Award

Dr. Karl Wamsler Innovation Award (TUM)

About Dr. Karl Wamsler

The Emil Fischer Medal is awarded by the German Chemical Society (GDCh) in honor of Nobel laureate Hermann Emil Fischer for outstanding work in the field of organic chemistry every two to three years.

1961: Friedrich Weygand
1992: Ivar Ugi
1997: Horst Kessler
2018: Thorsten Bach

The Ernst Otto Fischer Teaching Award annually recognizes up to three innovative and successful teaching projects implemented at TUM. The award thus acknowledges the commitment of outstanding instructors in higher education teaching.

2012 Dr. Stefan Huber, Organische Chemie
2013 Dr. Florian Kraus, Anorganische Chemie, Fluorchemie
2015 Dr. Friedrich Esch, Physikalische Chemie, Dr. Christoph Scheurer, Theoretische Chemie
2015 Dr. Andreas Bauer, Organische Chemie
2016 Prof. Dr. Tobias Gulder, Biosystem Chemie

The Fresenius Award was established in 1961 by the German Chemical Society on the initiative of its Analytical Chemistry division. It commemorates Privy Councilor Carl Remigius Fresenius (1818–1897), recognized as a co-founder of Analytical Chemistry in Germany through his scientific work, textbooks, and the laboratory he founded. The award is given at irregular intervals to scientists who have made 'exceptional contributions to scientific development and the promotion of Analytical Chemistry.' The recipient receives a gold medal, a certificate, and a monetary prize.

2000: Prof. Reinhard Nießner

The Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize, officially the Support Prize for German Scientists in the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Program of the German Research Foundation, abbreviated as the Leibniz Prize, is named after the scientist Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646–1716). Since 1986, it has been awarded annually by the German Research Foundation to scientists working in Germany from various fields of science.

1987: Prof. Wolfgang A. Herrmann, Anorganische Chemie
1987: Prof. Hubert Schmidbaur, Anorganische und Analytische Chemie
2019: Prof. Brenda Schulman, Biochemie
2020: Prof. Thorsten Bach, Organische Chemie

With the Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Medal, TUM honors individuals in recognition of their outstanding scientific, technical, or medical achievements, through which they have made significant contributions as excellent educators and researchers to the university. Established in 1997, this award is named after Heinz Maier-Leibnitz, a pioneer in German neutron physics and one of the most significant scientists at TUM. Maier-Leibnitz developed the scientific and technical concept for the first German neutron source ('Atom-Ei,' 1957/58) in Garching.

2012: Prof. Notker Rösch Theoretische Chemie
2013: Prof. Maria-Elisabeth Michel-Beyerle Physikalische Chemie
2015: Prof. Johannes Buchner Biotechnologie 
2016: Prof. Stephan A. Sieber Organische Chemie

The Horst Pracejus Award of the German Chemical Society is a prize established in 1999 for research in the chemistry of chirality and enantioselectivity. It is named after Horst Pracejus, renowned for research on chiral catalysis in Rostock. The naming and establishment of the award also aim to honor outstanding scientific achievements in chemistry in the former GDR (German Democratic Republic). The prize is endowed with 7,500 euros and is awarded biennially.

2017: Prof. Thorsten Bach, Organische Chemie

The Joseph König Memorial Medal is a scientific award in the field of food chemistry presented by the German Chemical Society. The accolade was established in 1934 by the then "Association of German Food Chemists." According to the foundation statute, it commemorates 'Privy Councillor Professor Dr.-Ing. E.h. Dr. phil.nat. h.c. Dr. agr. h.c. Dr. med. h.c. Joseph König (1843–1930), the distinguished master of food chemistry.'

1988: Hans-Dieter Belitz
1998: Werner Grosch
2007: Peter Schieberle

The Klung-Wilhelmy Science Award is alternately awarded annually to young German scientists in the fields of chemistry and physics. This award is considered one of the most prestigious honors for young scientists in Germany, partly because five of the previous awardees later received the Nobel Prize, and others have received other significant national and international accolades. The Otto Klung Foundation at the Free University of Berlin and the Dr. Wilhelmy Foundation have joined forces as donors for the prize money. With a value of 75,000 euros, the Klung-Wilhelmy Science Award is one of the highest privately funded awards for young German chemists and physicists. A selection committee for chemistry and physics at the Free University of Berlin, in collaboration with colleagues from both Germany and abroad, nominates the awardees. The shared goal is to promote outstanding scientific achievements.

1982: Prof. Wolfgang A. Herrmann, Anorganische Chemie
2016: Prof. Dr. Stephan Sieber, Organische Chemie

The German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina is the oldest scientific and medical scholarly society in the German-speaking world and the oldest continuously existing natural science academy in the world.

1969: Prof. Ernst Otto Fischer †, Anorganische Chemie
1990: Prof. Hubert Schmidbaur, Anorganische Chemie
1995: Prof. Wolfgang A. Herrmann, Anorganische Chemie
2002: Prof. Horst Kessler, Organische Chemie
2006: Prof. Thorsten Bach, Organische Chemie
2006: Prof. Johannes Buchner, Biotechnologie
2017: Prof. Michael Sattler, Biomolekulare NMR-Spektroskopie

The award, which is endowed with 1.5 million euros, enables German institutions to attract outstanding researchers from abroad to establish their own research group or to pursue promising research activities in Germany. From 1990 to 2004, the award was called “Max Planck Research Award for International Cooperation” and was presented to several researchers from a wide range of disciplines each year. From 2004 to 2017, the "Max Planck Research Award" was awarded annually to two internationally renowned scientists from natural and engineering sciences, life sciences or humanities and social sciences.

1991 Prof. Wolfgang A. Herrmann, Anorganische Chemie
2001 Prof. Horst Kessler, Organische Chemie

The National Academy of Engineering (NAE) is a U.S.-based nonprofit scientific society that addresses interdisciplinary issues related to engineering, technology, and society. The NAE has over 2000 members from both the United States and abroad, and membership is one of the highest professional honors for engineers. Admission to the academy is by nomination and election by existing members.

2017 Prof. Dr. Johannes  A. Lercher, Technische Chemie

The Otto Hahn Prize, named after the nuclear chemist and Nobel laureate Otto Hahn, was newly established in spring 2005 by the Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker (GDCh), the Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft (DPG), and the city of Frankfurt am Main, among others. According to the statute, it is intended to 'promote science, particularly in the fields of chemistry, physics, and applied engineering, by recognizing outstanding scientific achievements.' The prize was created by merging the Otto Hahn Prize for Chemistry and Physics with the Otto Hahn Prize of the City of Frankfurt am Main.

1955: Prof. Heinrich Wieland †, Organische Chemie
1988: Prof. Franz Baumgärtner, Radiochemie

The Order of the Pour le Mérite (French for 'For Merit') was established by King Frederick II and was the highest decoration for bravery that could be awarded in the Kingdom of Prussia. The order has its roots in the Ordre de la Générosité, which was established in 1667.

1952 Prof. Heinrich Otto Wieland †, Organische Chemie
1993 Prof. Robert Huber, Max-Planck-Institut für Biochemie

The Rudolf Kaiser Award has been annually presented since 1989 to a young scientist for outstanding contributions in the field of experimental physics. It is named after the German physicist Rudolf Kaiser. A prerequisite for receiving the award is that the recipient has not yet been appointed to a professorship. The award is granted by the Rudolf Kaiser Foundation in the Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft (Donors' Association for the Promotion of Humanities and Sciences in Germany). The prize money is €35,000 (as of 2014).

1994: Klaus Müller-Dethlefs Physikalische Chemie

The Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences (IVA) was founded in 1919 by Gustaf V, making it the oldest engineering academy in the world. It has approximately 1,300 elected members from both Sweden and abroad, including experts and decision-makers from the fields of business, industry, and science.

2011 Prof. Wolfgang A. Herrmann, Anorganische Chemie

The Wilhelm Klemm Award is a chemistry prize, awarded since 1984 by the German Chemical Society (GDCh), primarily for achievements in inorganic chemistry. It commemorates the significant inorganic chemist Wilhelm Klemm, who had a long-standing impact in Münster and was internationally renowned. The prize was endowed by Degussa AG.

1995: Prof. Wolfgang A. Herrmann, Anorganische Chemie
2015: Prof. Thomas Fässler, Anorganische Chemie mit Schwerpunkt Neue Materialien

The Wöhler Award for Sustainable Chemistry is an award presented by the German Chemical Society (GDCh) for sustainable chemistry. It has been awarded since 1998 as the Wöhler Prize for Resource-Efficient Processes and received its current name in 2012.

2013 Prof. Bernhard Rieger