An informal meet-up of Montreal area Humboldt alumni on October 18th

DAAD Alumni, current scholarship and grant holders and friends of DAAD Canada in Montreal are invited to attend an informal meet-up on Wednesday, October 18th from 7:00 – 9:00 pm at L’amère à boire (2049 Rue Saint-Denis). Come meet your fellow alumni for some socializing and networking.
The first round of drinks is on DAAD and light refreshments will be provided. Hope to see you there!
To join us, please register in advance at:
Les anciens boursiers, les boursiers actuels, ainsi que les amis du DAADsont conviés à une rencontre informelle le mercredi 18 octobre de 19 à 21 heures à la brasserie artisanale L’amère à boire (2049, rue Saint-Denis).
Le DAAD offrira la première consommation à ses convives.
Si vous comptez vous joindre à nous, inscrivez-vous ici:


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DAAD Information Centre Toronto
c/o Munk School of Global Affairs

Report about the recent Kolleg

Here is a set of slides by Dr. E.A. Evans, UBC. You can either look at the PDF file:Evans Humboldt Kolleg 05 07 2016 (PDF) or download the PPT file: Evans Humboldt Kolleg 05 07 2016 (PPT)


‘TIME‘ Kolleg Report as prepared by Prof. C-W Chow, HAC President and Kolleg Organizer
The Kolleg focused on the theme of „Time“ held in Toronto from May 5-8 was highly successful, bringing together a total 95 scholars which included 31 Early Career Scholars, 12 Other Scholars and 22 DAAD alumni. The expenses related to the 22 DAAD Alumni are covered by a separate grant from the DAAD. Thus, the costs of the 73 participants who are not DAAD Alumni are counted in the in the funding request to the AvH.
Feedback from all attendees of the conference were universally positive. There were several factors which contributed to the success of the programme.
1. The choice of ‚Time‘ as a central theme.
The theme allowed participation of scholars from a wide range of disciplines, with enthusiastic response to our initial call for papers. Indeed, several submissions, late in the planning of the conference, could not be fitted into the programme due to constraints within the 3-day programme. As evidenced by the papers presented, this Kolleg showcased a truly multi-disciplinary academic exchange amongst scholars at throughout the conference.
2. The 3-day duration of the conference.
Three full days allowed for scheduling of general sessions with talks from scholars across disciplines to facilitate multi-disciplinary exchange. The concurrent session, which were programmed with speakers within the same/similardisciplines allowed for more indepth content-specific discussions. Moreover, as can be seen in the attached programme, all sessions included talks from both early and established scholars with the view of generating and fostering discussions amongst potential mentors and mentees. The duration of the meeting also allowed for ample time during breaks to allow discussions initiated within sessions to continue at more informal settings.
3. The venue.
The Campbell Conference Centre, embedded in the Munk School of Global Affairs, was specifically chosen to foster discussion and networking. Designed in the tradition of Oxford University College quadrants with the meeting rooms at each side of the central quadrant, the open spaces in the quadrant (both indoor and outdoor) with benches and tables allowed for conversations in an informal setting throughout the 3 days of the conferences. Indeed, the both indoor and outdoor spaces were much used by the delegates for conversations during the breaks throughout the meeting.
4. Participation of 31 Early Career Scholars.
A concerted effort was made via contact with the DAAD, AvH alumni, personal meetings with Post-Graduate Training Offices and International Relations Offices of the many universities in Ontario and Quebec to invite Early Career Scholars to the Kolleg. Our success in recruiting 31 Early Career Scholars was compounded by their active engagement as Speakers, Session Chairs and Round-Table Discussion Leaders. The feedback from these Early Career Scholars was outstanding with at least 3 who are now stimulated to actively pursue further research studies in Germany.
5. The bus excursion to the wineries and dinner in the Niagara region on Saturday afternoon and evening.
The setting allowed for much lively conversation amongst and between participating scholars that was evident throughout the afternoon and evening. Despite the late hour (with the bus arriving back in Toronto near midnight), the noise level on the bus was testimony of
the lively discussions amongst the delegates that continued well after our dinner round table discussions.

Dr. Heinrich Pfeiffer – Kondolenzbuch / Book of Condolence

Liebe Präsidentinnen und Präsidenten der Humboldt-Alumnivereinigungen,

mit großer Betroffenheit und Anteilnahme nimmt die Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung Abschied von ihrem langjährigen Generalsekretär Dr. Heinrich Pfeiffer, der am 22. Dezember 2016 im Alter von 89 Jahren unerwartet aus einem erfüllten Leben genommen wurde.
In den letzten Tagen erhielten wir bereits viele Beileidsbekundungen aus aller Welt, die von den lang gepflegten Freundschaften und dem großen Respekt, den Heinrich Pfeiffer weltweit genossen hat, zeugen. Ohne ihn wäre die Humboldt-Stiftung eine andere; und ohne ihn wäre die Humboldt-Familie nicht geworden, was sie ist! Seine Lebensleistung wird in den vielen Erinnerungen der Humboldtianerinnen und Humboldtianer, die uns in diesen Wochen erreichen, nochmals gewürdigt.
Um diese Erinnerungen und die große Bedeutung von Heinrich Pfeiffer für Sie persönlich und für das gesamte Humboldt-Netzwerk noch einmal sichtbar zu machen und zu teilen, hat die Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung ein elektronisches Kondolenzbuch eingerichtet: Falls Sie es wünschen, können auch Sie darin persönliche Abschiedsworte schreiben.

Dear Presidents of the Humboldt Alumni Associations,

It is with great sadness and deepest sympathy that the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation bids farewell to its long-term Secretary General, Dr Heinrich Pfeiffer, who died suddenly in the midst of a full life on 22 December 2016 at the age of 89.
In the last few days, we have received many messages of sympathy from all over the world, bearing witness to the many old friendships he maintained and the great respect in which he was held worldwide. Without Heinrich Pfeiffer, the Humboldt Foundation would not be what it is today, and without him, the Humboldt Family would not have developed as it has! In the current weeks, his life’s work is being honoured once again in the many memories being sent to us by Humboldtians everywhere.
In order, once again, to showcase and share these memories and the enormous importance of Heinrich Pfeiffer for you personally and for the Humboldt Network as a whole, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation has opened an electronic Book of Condolence at  If you wish, you can take the opportunity to add your own words of farewell.

Herzliche Grüße/Kind regards,
Britta Debus

i.A./ p.p. (Frau / Ms) Britta Debus
Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung / Foundation
Abteilung Förderung und Netzwerk / Department Sponsorship and Network
Referat Asien / Asia Division

Humboldtcanada trauert um Heinrich Pfeiffer

Heinrich Pfeiffer Foto: Humboldt-Stiftung/Oliver Rüther

Mit großer Betroffenheit und Anteilnahme nimmt die Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung Abschied von ihrem langjährigen Generalsekretär Dr. Drs. hc. mult. Heinrich Pfeiffer, der am 22. Dezember 2016 im Alter von 89 Jahren unerwartet aus einem erfüllten Leben genommen wurde.

Dr. Heinrich Pfeiffer war seit 1956 zunächst Geschäftsführer und später bis zu seinem Ausscheiden 1995 Generalsekretär der Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung. Anschließend blieb er der Stiftung bis zu seinem Tod als Ehrenmitglied des Stiftungsrates aktiv verbunden.
Unter seiner Leitung entwickelte sich die Stiftung zu einer der anerkanntesten Organisationen der deutschen Auswärtigen Kultur- und Bildungspolitik. Heinrich Pfeiffer baute ein globales Netzwerk des Vertrauens unter den von der Stiftung Geförderten auf, das wesentlich zur Völkerverständigung beitrug und die Stiftung bis heute geprägt hat. Die tiefe Verbundenheit unserer Alumni in aller Welt, zu denen er bis zu seinem Tod vielfältige Verbindungen und Freundschaften unterhielt, kam auch in jüngster Zeit immer wieder deutlich zum Ausdruck und hat weltweit zum Ansehen der Stiftung beigetragen.

Die Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung ist Dr. Heinrich Pfeiffer zutiefst dankbar für sein langjähriges Wirken, in das er seine ganze Person einbrachte.

Text adapted from Alexander von Humboldt-Foundation.


This year no Feuerzangebowle, but something Canadian:


“time” and “timing”


the contribution by Frank W. Stahnisch at the 2016 Humboldt Kolleg

(click on image to access the full presentation)

editing and writing by Dorothy Porter & Frank W. Stahnisch


Western Humanities Alliance Special Issue

with an edited volume by

Dorothy Porter & Frank W. Stahnisch, eds.: Boundary Work and Trading Zones in the History of Medicine and Medical Humanities. Salt Lake City, UT: University of Utah Press 2015 (396pp.)

Editor’s Note

Our annual special issue with the Western Humanities Alliance. This year’s theme is “Trading Zone and Boundary Concepts in the History of Medicine and the Medical Humanities.”

Editors: Dorothy Porter & Frank W. Stahnisch

it’s time for 2016 HUMBOLDT KOLLEG

kolleg_2016to view or print Final 2016 Kolleg Programme & Abstract Book: TIME (click here)







invitation to early career scholars

logo March 2016

Dear Post-Doctoral Trainees, Clinician Scientist Trainees and Early Career Researchers,

The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation offers research fellowships and research awards to outstandingly qualified researchers to conduct research in Germany.  The selection committees comprise academics from all fields of specialisation and they make independent decisions, based solely on the applicant’s academic record. The Foundation supports people, not projects. Once a Humboldtian, the Foundation integrates all alumni in a world-spanning network of excellence during their entire lifetime.

As part of our ongoing network of promoting collaborative research excellence between Germany and Canada, I would like to extend an invitation to Post-Doctoral Trainees, Clinician Scientist Trainees and early career scholarships (< 12 years of PhD) to the upcoming Humboldt Kolleg on “Time” to be held at the Munk Conference Centre at the University of Toronto, May 6-8, 2016.   Following on the footsteps of 4 highly successful Kollegs on the elements, “Water “(Banff, 2005), “Fire” (Ottawa, 2009), “Air” (Vancouver, 2011) and “Earth “(2014), ‘Time’ will undoubtedly result in a weekend of stimulating conversations amongst us.

The meeting is generously supported by grants from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation and the Germany Academic Exchange (DAAD). Conference registration and meals will be covered.  An excursion to Niagara-on-the-Lake is open to conference attendees and spouses at the cost of $120 each, and includes transportation, winery tour and an evening dinner reception.

Updates regarding the conference can be found on this website. Information about the opportunities offered by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation can be found at

If interested, please complete and return attached registration form at your earliest convenience.  Space is limited. If there are questions, please contact me at the address below.


Chung-Wai Chow, MD, PhD, FRCPC

President, Humboldt Foundation of Canada


Stephen Clarkson

It is with sadness that we report that Stephen Clarkson, a well-know political scientist at the University of Toronto, has died in Freiburg, Germany while on a research trip. He was 78.

You may know that he was the winner of Alexander Humboldt Foundation’s Konrad Adenauer Research Award in 2013. The Award, managed by the Royal Society of Canada, was created to promote academic collaboration between Canada and the Federal Republic of Germany and is available to be awarded annually to a Canadian scholar in the humanities or social sciences.

Some details of Stephen’s life and contributions can be found here in this Globe & Mail article;