<address>© Uni MS - K. Kottke</address>
© Uni MS - K. Kottke

New publication: "Twelve Months, Twelve People - Portraits 2023"

With the publication "Twelve Months, Twelve People - Portraits 2023", the Office of Communication and Public Relations introduces some outstanding people of the past year. Based on their expertise, their role at the university and their successes, the people portrayed exemplify the research, teaching and transfer ideas that make up the university of Münster.

TRIS-degrading bacteria of the genus Pseudomonas were discovered in the wastewater treatment plant in Coerde and in various other plants in the region. This degradation capability was transferred to another Pseudomonas strain in the laboratory, as indicated by the green fluorescence.<address>© Uni MS - Johannes Holert</address>
© Uni MS - Johannes Holert

Microbiologist Bodo Philipp on the adaptability of micro-organisms

Münster's wastewater contains bacteria that can decompose a substance called "TRIS", which is frequently used in laboratories - a team led by Prof Dr Bodo Philipp discovered this by chance and unravelled the metabolic pathway, which is new in evolutionary terms.

Guests can network during the CERes kick-off event.<address>© Uni MS - Peter Leßmann</address>
© Uni MS - Peter Leßmann

Inaugural event of the CERes

Under the motto “Arrived yet? Doctroal and post doctoral researchers‘ journeys in flux”, the “Münster Centre for Emerging Researchers” (CERes) invites you to its opening event on March 6. A ceremony, various program items on the topic of graduate support and an interactive exhibition await guests from 11 am. Registration is required.


After the outbreak of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine, a collective slump in well-being was measurable internationally.<address>© -</address>
© -

Mental health impaired internationally following the outbreak of war in Ukraine

The outbreak of the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine led internationally to a collective collapse in well-being - regardless of individual characteristics. However, personality traits are decisive in the recovery from this shock. These are the results of a study led by Julian Scharbert and Prof. Dr. Mitja Back from the University of Münster, published in "Nature Communications".

Nikolaus-Thomas<address>© MM/vl</address>
© MM/vl

Thomas Nikolaus is a new spokesperson for the “Mathematics Münster” Cluster of Excellence

Thomas Nikolaus, Professor of Theoretical Mathematics at the University of Münster, was elected as a new spokesperson for the Cluster of Excellence "Mathematics Münster". He succeeds Prof. Christopher Deninger, who held the position jointly with Prof. Mario Ohlberger since the Cluster began its work in 2019. Mario Ohlberger continues in the position.

<address>© HI MS/Ellermann & NRW.Global Business/Jan Tepass</address>
© HI MS/Ellermann & NRW.Global Business/Jan Tepass

Interview: Female Role Models as Inspiration

Women are underrepresented in science worldwide, especially in the forward-looking STEM subjects – science, technology, engineering and mathematics. This is highlighted by the “International Day of Women and Girls in Science” on February 11th. The researchers Dr Katrin Junghans and Dr Annika Buchheit report on opportunities and challenges for female scientists and give helpful hints in scientific career planning.

Dr. Markus Seidel<address>© Centre for the Philosophy of Science (ZfW) - Sebastian Stachorra</address>
© Centre for the Philosophy of Science (ZfW) - Sebastian Stachorra

“Debates on restrictions are old”

One special form of freedom is academic freedom in the arts and sciences, as laid down in Article 5, Section 2 of Germany’s Basic Law. The first sentence states: “Arts and sciences, research and teaching are free.” In an interview, Dr. Markus Seidel explains this special freedom, which is enormously important for universities.

<address>© Uni MS - Robert Matzke</address>
© Uni MS - Robert Matzke

Excellence Strategy: Two clusters submit proposals

The first decisions have been made in the second round of the Excellence Strategy of the German federal and state governments to further strengthen top-level research at universities in Germany. The University of Münster is submitting two proposals for its two existing Clusters of Excellence "Mathematics Münster" and "Religion and Politics" to the German Research Foundation by August 22. A decision on funding will be made in May 2025.

The painting entitled “Liberty Leading the People” by the French painter Eugène Delacroix is an icon of the (French) freedom movement. It deals with the fights on the barricades in the 1830 July Revolution in Paris – a brief but intense and violent conflict between citizens and the authorities.<address>© Eugène Delacroix, Liberty Leading the People, 1830, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons</address>
© Eugène Delacroix, Liberty Leading the People, 1830, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Unfreedom too has its advantages

The “Wissenschaftsjahr 2024” (Science Year 2024) is all about freedom. It might seem absurd to write about lack of freedom and try to find something positive in it. However, especially with regard to climate change, it seems appropriate to think about which individual freedoms should be compromised in order to achieve a greater goal.

Prof. Christian Weinheimer works at the Institute of Nuclear Physics as an astroparticle physicist.<address>© Münster University - MünsterView</address>
© Münster University - MünsterView

Portrait of astroparticle physicist Christian Weinheimer

Prof Christian Weinheimer supports and motivates the young people in his team in their search for dark matter and the mass of neutrinos. His team is at the forefront of global research.

Mangaaka were beings which watched over the observance of treaties in the Loango region of western Africa. Their original legal function was concealed by European collections exhibiting them solely as works of art.<address>© Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York</address>
© Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Interview on colonial provenance research

Handing back cultural artefacts which have a colonial provenance has long been an object of public debate. The historical anthropologist Dr. João Figueiredo from the Käte Hamburger Kolleg “Legal Unity and Pluralism” and the legal historian Dr. Sebastian M. Spitra discuss the opportunity to contribute to a better understanding of the communities of origin and their pluralistic legal systems.

<address>© Uni MS - Web und Design</address>
© Uni MS - Web und Design


Becoming and passing away, passing on and innovation: evolution is life, and life is constant change - from the single-celled organism Luca 3.6 billion years ago to today, for example, in the face of new climatic challenges. Gradual changes in culture and society are also often referred to as evolution. In a six-month dossier, the Communications and Public Relations department is focussing on one of the most momentous scientific discoveries.

Evolution is researched in a wide variety of disciplines.<address>© alionaprof -</address>
© alionaprof -

Research into evolution: four questions, four viewpoints

Growth and decay, passing things on and renewal: evolution is life, and life is constant. The word ‘evolution’ is also used to describe gradual changes in culture and society. To start the series off, four researchers from the University of Münster give their views here on the dazzling diversity of evolution and what research has discovered.

Evolution as gradual development is the most common scientific concept for understanding processes.<address>© Uni MS - Web and Design</address>
© Uni MS - Web and Design

A momentous discovery

“I feel as if I’m confessing a murder,” wrote Charles Darwin in his book “On the Origin of Species”, published in 1859. He was evidently aware that his new insights at that time were not only presenting some scientific theory. No, the British naturalist was shaking the prevailing conception of the world.

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