Creating the Future
Press release
Hector Science Award 2017


14. January 2018

Reveal­ing The Secret Of Learning

Award of the Hector Stiftung goes to Prof. Dr. Brigitte Röder, Univer­sity of Hamburg

HEIDELBERG/WEINHEIM. Prof. Dr. Brigitte Röder (Univer­sity of Hamburg) received this year’s Hector Science Award of the Hector Stiftung for her outstand­ing achieve­ments in research on the inter­play of differ­ent sensory systems (multi­sen­sors) as well as the age depen­dency of the functional organi­za­tion of the human brain (neuro­plas­tic­ity) and the result­ing learn­ing processes.

Together with her team, Prof. Dr. Brigitte Röder works among others on the question, why people can no longer learn some skills in old age, if they lack certain early child­hood experi­ences. A deeper under­stand­ing of the imprint of the brain in these sensi­tive stages of devel­op­ment, when humans learn partic­u­larly quickly and easily, could help to promote those skills at a later stage.

Prof. Dr. Holger Hanselka, Presi­dent of the Karlsruhe Insti­tute of Technol­ogy (KIT), empha­sized in his lauda­tion that Brigitte Röder's excel­lent research could have concrete signif­i­cance for the organi­za­tion of insti­tu­tional educa­tional processes. For example, when it comes to the question when which knowl­edge should be taught. Especially with regard to the train­ing of junior scien­tists, Holger Hanselka wondered whether orien­ta­tion and counsel­ing services as well as pre-courses and programs at the start of the study are offered too late. Partic­u­larly impor­tant would be offers that begin much earlier — even at primary school age — to give children the oppor­tu­nity to gener­ate knowl­edge. The Hector Stiftung pursues exactly this approach with the Hector Children's Acade­mies, in order to inspire children sustain­ably for natural sciences, Holger Hanselka acknowl­edged the excep­tional dedica­tion of the founders Josephine and Dr. h.c. Hans-Werner Hector.

Hector Science Award 2017

f.l.: Dr. Hans-Werner Hector, Josephine Hector, Prof. Dr. Brigitte Röder, Prof. Dr. Holger Hanselka, Presi­dent of the Karlsruhe Insti­tute of Technology