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University of Bayreuth, Press Release No. 167/2021, 22.11.2021

Special achievements honoured at the President's Dinner

Outstanding teaching, groundbreaking research achievements, creative sustainability ideas, impressive social commitment, promotion of women: every year, the city, the University Association, the International Club and the University of Bayreuth honour extraordinary achievements by university members. At the President's Dinner last Friday, 19 November 2021, 13 very special personalities were honoured with awards in a noble setting.

University Award for Outstanding Teaching "Goldener Rabe" to Federica Ronchetti

Federica Ronchetti only came to Bayreuth in autumn 2020. She received the "Golden Raven" for outstanding teaching for the course "Introduction to food law". The citation particularly emphasises how well Ronchetti taught the material, even though the course was held purely online. The content of the course included illustrative case studies on EU food law, the functions of the internal market, and the importance of international organisations in the food sector. According to the jury, Ronchetti offered course participants a platform to openly discuss the relevant topics and case studies. Ronchetti was always willing to research open questions and present newly found practical examples and findings.

Federica Ronchetti receives the Golden Raven from Anna-Lena Peter, Speaker for Science, Teaching and Studies in the Student Parliament.

This approach, diversity of methods, and openness have made her very popular with the students and ultimately led to her receiving the award. Born in Italy, Federica Ronchetti studied Nutritional Sciences (B.Sc) at the University of Vienna and "Safety in the Food Chain" (M.Sc) at the University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences Vienna. Since October 2020, she has been working as a assistant researcher at the Food Law research group of the University of Bayreuth.

Bayreuth University Award for Digitally Supported Teaching to Tina Bühner and Dr Katrin Horn

This year, the "Bayreuth University Award for Digitally Supported Teaching" will be awarded to two people due to the Covid19 situation and the resultant completely virtual teaching during the 2020 summer semester.

Tina Bühner was unable to accept the award in person.

Tina Bühner from the Public Law IV research group is one of the two recipients.  She designed her course entitled "Propädeutische Übung zur Vorlesung Staatsorganisationsrecht" (Propaedeutic tutorial for the Law of State Organisation lecture course) as a permanently accessible online course in which 641 participants were registered. She designed a new two-track digital course concept in blended learning format, which consists of a synchronous tutorial and an asynchronous online course in an inverted classroom format.

Dr. Katrin Horn (l.) and Prof. Dr. Martin Huber

The second award winner is Dr. Katrin Horn from the Anglophone Literatures & Cultures research group. The award relates to her course entitled "The Queer '90s". This proseminar was conducted as a purely online event with Zoom sessions and asynchronous parts. The aim of the course was for students to learn how to conduct independent literary analyses.

To achieve this goal, Horn followed the principle of the inverted classroom and designed the asynchronous e-learning course with very well-suited and in part highly innovative tools for active and interactive participation.

Olena Khoruzhenko receives the DAAD Prize 2021

The DAAD Prize is awarded annually to foreign students who study in Bayreuth with outstanding achievements and make a significant contribution to intercultural dialogue. This is the case for Olena Khoruzhenko from Ukraine.

Olena Khoruzhenko receives the DAAD Award from Vice President Prof. Dr. Thomas Scheibel.

After a bachelor's degree in Chemical Technology, she obtained a master's degree in the same subject at the Igor Sikorsky Kyiv Polytechnic Institute in Kiev with outstanding results (99 out of 100 possible points). She continued this high level of performance during her doctorate at the Inorganic Chemistry I research group in Bayreuth.

Even at her young age, she has already been involved in two publications in renowned specialist publications. Khoruzhenko is also socially committed, among other things by helping students to build up a scientific career through the alumni network of her Ukrainian alma mater. She also has an artistic talent that she combines with her social commitment. The amateur painter regularly donates the proceeds of her paintings to a self-help group for people in her home country who suffer from a rare skin disease.

Preis des Internationalen Clubs an Mingquing Alice Yuan

The International Club aims to contribute to the integration of foreign visiting scholars at the University of Bayreuth. The Prize of the International Club is intended to promote personality and outstanding academic work.

Mingqing Alice Yuan began her doctorate at the University of Bayreuth in 2017 under the supervision of Prof. Susan Arndt on the topic of "Literalizing Kenya*China: From the 'Third World' to the Global South". The thesis explores the intersections and interweavings of histories, societies, and narratives on global and local issues in Kenya and China, thus making an important contribution to international intercultural perspectives. In addition to her academic engagement, Yuan has been working with the BIGSAS Festival of African and African-diasporic Literatures since 2015 and worked as a Junior Fellow Representative of BIGSAS from 2019 to 2020.

Mingqing Alice Yuan (l.) with the Chairperson of the International Club, Mavie Schäfer. 

. With articles on online platforms and contributions to podcasts, Yuan is seeking to introduce the Chinese public to African literature and change the image of the continent in Chinese perception. As part of the Black Lives Matter movement, she facilitates a digital reading group on the topic and has led several sessions to raise awareness of gender and origin issues in the Chinese-speaking community.

Prize of the City of Bayreuth to Dr. Dominik Riedelbauch, Joh Sarre and Dr. Philipp Konrad Zuber

The Prize of the City of Bayreuth is awarded annually to up to three candidates from different faculties of the University of Bayreuth for outstanding dissertations. This year these were:

Mayor Thomas Ebersberger hands the Prize to Dr Dominik Riedelbauch.

Dr Dominik Riedelbauch for his dissertation "Dynamic Task Sharing for Flexible Human-Robot Teaming under Partial Workspace Observability", which was awarded summa cum laude. The reviewers find that the work shows extensive future potential. By considering a low-cost system that can be programmed by the end user, small and medium-sized enterprises can also gain access to robot staff.

Riedelbauch received his Bachelor's degree in Applied Computer Science from the University of Bayreuth. After completing his Master's degree in Computer Science, he received his doctorate from the Chair of Applied Computer Science III.

Joh Sarre for the summa cum laude dissertation entitled "'Some call it slum, we call it home!' - Negotiations of belonging among the Nubian inhabitants of Kibera, Kenya" The core question of the work is how people feel they belong to other people and places they consider home.

Joh Sarre (r.) got the Prize of the City of Bayreuth from Thomas Ebersberger.

Sarre's outstanding language skills (Kiswahili, Sheng and some KiNubi), living in a Nubian slum household in Kibera for several months, and acquiring the necessary skills to navigate Kibera safely have enabled work that offers a unique insight into the everyday life of a slum. Sarre did her bachelor's degree in "Culture and Society of Africa" in Bayreuth and moved afterwards to Leiden University (Netherlands) for a master's degree in "Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology". Most recently, Joh Sarre held the position of Academic Councillor at the Chair of Social Anthropology at the University of Bayreuth.

Dr. Philipp Konrad Zuberwas unable to accept his prize in person. 

Dr. Philipp Konrad Zuber for his dissertation "Mechanical studies on the regulation of bacterial transcription by NusG proteins" at the Chair of Biochemistry IV - Biophysical Chemistry. In addition to his analytical way of thinking, Zuber distinguished himself in particular by a very structured, solution-oriented, determined and careful planning, execution, evaluation and interpretation of his experiments. Zuber, who completed his Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Bayreuth, continued to work at the Chair of Biochemistry IV - Biophysical Chemistry at the University of Bayreuth after completing his doctorate. Since summer 2021, he has been employed as a postdoctoral researcher in the laboratory of Nobel Chemistry Prize winner Dr. Venki Ramakrishnan at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge (UK) as part of a three-year research project.

Research Prize of the Universitätsverein to Dr. Katrin Horn and Dr. Martin Weibelzahl

The Science Prize of the Universitätsverein (University Association) is awarded annually for outstanding academic achievements in nurturing young scholars at the University of Bayreuth. This year, the prize is shared.

Dr. Katrin Horn receives the Science Award from the hands of the 2nd Chairman of the Universitätsverein Bayreuth e.V., Prof. Dr. Stefan Leible.

Dr. Katrin Horn receives the science prize because her scientific profile is "original, currently very relevant to society, and nationally and internationally stimulating". This assessment by her supervisor Prof. Dr. Sylvia Mayer (Chair of American Studies/ Anglophone Literatures and Cultures) is underlined by the allocation of numerous scholarships and grants for her work to date.

With her habilitation project "The Economy and Epistemology of Gossip in Late 19th and Early 20th Century US American Literature and Culture", Ms Horn is entering the field of research into knowledge cultures. She is thus expanding her research profile to include a historical perspective and a focus on literary studies. Parallel to her habilitation project, Dr Horn is leading the DFG project of the same name and supervising a doctoral student.

Dr. Martin Weibelzahl completed his studies in economics (bachelor’s) and economics (master’s) in record time in a total of seven semesters at the Friedrich Alexander University of Erlangen. Within the framework of the Bavarian Elite Network, he then completed his doctorate on the topic of "Approaches to Congestion in Electricity Networks: Equilibrium Models, Mathematical Analyses, and Computational Results". 

Martin Weibelzahl was unfortunately unable to be present.

Prof. Dr. Jens Strüker (Chair of Business Informatics and Digital Energy Management) calls Weibelzahl a "professionally outstanding young scientist". Based on his interdisciplinary background, Weibelzahl has established two fields of research that are characterised by topicality and the highest social relevance. On the one hand, he is dedicated to questions of making "green electricity" available on a large scale, taking into account the necessary flexibility and the mobility shift towards electric cars. In both research fields, the award winner is internationally visible and well networked through his publications in renowned journals.

Sustainability Prize

The Sustainability Prize has been awarded since 2019 and is donated by Universitätsverein Bayreuth e.V.. It recognises students who base their final thesis on the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations and deal with ensuring sustainable, ecological development. Three places will be awarded this year.

Jonas Schwan (centre) won 1st place in the Sustainability Award. Prof. Stefan Leible handing him the prize with Prof. Dr. Susanne Tittlbach. 

First place this year went to Jonas Schwan. He wrote his master's thesis on "Electrodeposition of Cobalt-based Inorganic Materials: Development of an Electrochemical Flow Cell Setup for in-situ Analysis of Structural Dynamics via Small Angle X-Ray Scattering". The jury's reasoning here refers to the promising path of switching from fossil fuels to hydrogen as our main source of energy. The work forms an essential basis for further projects in the field of structural dynamics of redox-active materials for the sustainable energy industry.

Second place goes to Joshua Pohle with his bachelor's thesis "Comparison of deep geothermal energy with different technologies for heat supply in the context of life cycle assessment". In it, the environmental impact of the district heating supply of a real geothermal heating plant near Munich is examined. Pohle compares this heating plant with two alternative technologies. The results obtained form the basis for the evaluation of further heating plants and a systematic analysis, from which recommendations for action for a sustainable energy supply are then to be derived.

Joshua Pohle (center) took 2nd place in the Sustainability Award. Prof. Stefan Leible handing him the prize with Prof. Dr. Susanne Tittlbach. 

Sarah Spreng was awarded 3rd place in the Sustainability Prize. Prof. Stefan Leible handing her the prize with Prof. Dr. Susanne Tittlbach.

Sarah Spreng wins third place in the Sustainability Award of the University of Bayreuth. Her final thesis "Investigation of adhesion between microplastic particles and cells using microfluidics" within the Bayreuth Collaborative Research Centre "Microplastics - SFB 1357" looks at the increasing contamination of the environment with microplastics. In a large number of experiments, Spreng examined microplastic particles and their adhesion behaviour to different cells. The work contributes to understanding what happens to microplastic particles in the body and what potential health risks result.


As part of target agreements between the University Governing Board and the faculties for the implementation of equal opportunities for the sexes, the University of Bayreuth annually awards its Prize for the Advancement of Women to its faculties.

Von links: Dekanin Prof. Dr. Ruth Freitag; Universitätsfrauenbeauftragte Prof. Dr. Birgitta Wöhrl, Prof. Dr. Stephan Kümmel als Stellvertretung für Dekan Prof. Dr. Volker Ulm, Dekan Prof. Dr. Ralf Behrwald, Dekan Prof. Dr. Jochen Koubek

In the category "Completed doctorates", the Faculty of Languages & Literatures and the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences share the Cultural Studies Prize, which is endowed with € 10,000. The prize in the category "Successful Qualification for Professorship" (endowed with € 20,000) goes to the Faculty of Mathematics, Physics & Computer Science and that of the category "Professorial Proportion of Women" to the Faculty of Engineering Science (€ 40,000).

In addition to these prizes, the University provides a "Budget for Innovative Gender Equality Measures" to the tune of € 10,000 as part of this priority funding. In 2020, the following measures were funded through this budget:

■ Lecture series „PhilosopHer“

(Prof. Dr. Alice Pinheiro Walla).

■ Research proect „CovCare@UBT“

(Prof. Dr. Erdmute Alber, Dr. Tabea Häberlein, Anna Madeleine Ayeh).

■ Workshop „Unconscious Bias“ in business information systems

(Paula Heeß, Dr. Anna Maria Oberländer).

■ Reading series for feminist literature in Bayreuth

(University group HeForShe Bayreuth, Johanna Fock).

■ „Two day pilot project to support gender sensitive antiracism education and awareness at the University and in the city of Bayreuth“

(GeQuInDi, Dr. Marie Anne Kohl, Dr. Katharina Fink).

Angela Danner

Angela DannerHead of Office – Corporate Identity

Phone: +49 (0) 921 / 55-5323

Office:  Room No. 3.07, Central University Administration (ZUV),
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Jennifer Opel

Jennifer OpelDeputy Press & PR Manager

Phone: +49 (0)921 / 55-5357