Academia Europaea#

(The Academy of Europe)#

Award of the Academia Europaea Erasmus Medal #

Monday 27 June 2016, Cardiff#

Erasmus Medal

Sponsored by

Press release, June 27, 2016(info)#

The Council of the Academia Europaea are pleased to award the Erasmus Medal to the internationally renowned Astronomer;

Professor (Lord) Martin Rees FRS MAE (Cambridge, UK) #

The Erasmus Medal of the Academia Europaea is awarded on the recommendation of the Council, to a member who has maintained over a sustained period, the highest level of international scholarship and recognition by peers.

Professor Rees will deliver the 2016 Heinz-Nixdorf Erasmus Lecture.

The Laudation will be given by Gerry Gilmore FRS, Professor of Experimental Philosophy, Cambridge, UK.

Martin Rees
Professor (Lord) Martin Rees FRS MAE


Martin Rees is a Fellow of Trinity College and Emeritus Professor of Cosmology and Astrophysics at the University of Cambridge. He holds the honorary title of Astronomer Royal and also Visiting Professor at Imperial College London and at Leicester University. After studying at the University of Cambridge, he held post-doctoral positions in the UK and the USA, before becoming a professor at Sussex University. In 1973, he became a fellow of King's College and Plumian Professor of Astronomy and Experimental Philosophy at Cambridge (continuing in the latter post until 1991) and served for ten years as director of Cambridge's Institute of Astronomy. From 1992 to 2003 he was a Royal Society Research Professor, and then from 2004 to 2012, Master of Trinity College. In 2005 he was appointed to the House of Lords, and he was President of the Royal Society for the period 2005-10.

He is a member of the Academia Europaea (elected in 1989).

He is a foreign associate of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and is an honorary member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Pontifical Academy, and several other foreign academies. His awards include the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society, the Balzan International Prize, the Bruce Medal of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, the Heineman Prize for Astrophysics (AAS/AIP), the Bower Award for Science of the Franklin Institute, the Cosmology Prize of the Peter Gruber Foundation, the Einstein Award of the World Cultural Council and the Crafoord Prize (Royal Swedish Academy). He has been president of the British Association for the Advancement of Science (1994-95) and the Royal Astronomical Society (1992-94) and a trustee of the British Museum, NESTA, the Kennedy Memorial Trust, the National Museum of Science and Industry,and the Institute for Public Policy Research. He is currently on the Board of the Princeton Institute for Advanced Study, the Cambridge Gates Trust, and has served on many bodies connected with education, space research, arms control and international collaboration in science.

He is the author or co-author of more than 500 research papers, mainly on astrophysics and cosmology, as well as eight books (six for general readership), and numerous magazine and newspaper articles on scientific and general subjects. He has broadcast and lectured widely and held various visiting professorships, etc.

His main current research interests are:

(i) High energy astrophysics - especially gamma ray bursts, galactic nuclei, black hole formation and radiative processes (including gravitational waves).

(ii) Cosmic structure formation - especially the early generation of stars and galaxies that formed at high redshifts at the end of the cosmic 'dark age'.

(iii) General cosmological issues.

The 2016 Award is sponsored by the Heinz-Nixdorf Stiftung#

1. Heinz Nixdorf Stiftung is - together with Stiftung Westfalen - one of the two non profit foundations, which have been established from the assets of the estate of the entrepreneur Heinz Nixdorf, who died in 1986. The foundation promotes the following purposes:

a) the (advanced) professional education, especially in the field of modern technology
b) the sciences in respect of research and teaching, especially in the field of information technology,
c) the liberal and democratic governmental system, especially the "Soziale Marktwirtschaft"
d) public health,
e) sports.

The foundation realizes its purposes primarily in cooperation with other non profit institutions.

Heinz Nixdorf Stiftung promotes among others the Heinz Nixdorf MuseumsForum in Paderborn. This is a non profit istitution combining in a unique way the classic historic dimension of a museum with the current and future-oriented topics of a forum.

Heinz Nixdorf MuseumsForum is the largest computer museum of the world.

Further information about the Heinz-Nixdorf Stiftung can be found at


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