Press Release 076/2011

KIT Humans and Technology Focus Starts

Opening Ceremony at the Tollhaus Karlsruhe Cultural Center with Klaus Töpfer Speaking
Der neue Schwerpunkt Mensch und Technik am KIT erforscht die Wechselbeziehung  zwischen technischen Innovationen und Gesellschaft. (Foto: Seleneos,
The new KIT Humans and Technology Focus studies the interaction between technical innovations and society. (Photo: Seleneos,

Which impacts does technology have on man? How does the society influence scientific developments? The KIT Focus concentrates on these questions and studies the interaction between man and technology. On Monday, May 23, 2011, the Focus will be inaugurated officially at the Tollhaus Cultural Center with the former Federal Minister of the Environment, Professor Klaus Töpfer, speaking. Journalists are cordially invited and asked to register using the form enclosed.

Technology accompanies man in most areas of life: It is the main component of mobility, energy or the health care sector. The KIT Humans and Technology Focus studies the consequences of technical innovations and analyzes the interaction between society and science.

The Focus links natural sciences and engineering with humanities and social sciences. About 420 researchers from 35 institutes of KIT cooperate on this interdisciplinary level and concentrate on the topics of health, culture, environment, economy, work, and knowledge. In addition, the two multidisciplinary issues of “Sustainable Development” and “Innovation Processes and Technology Design” are covered. The scientific spokesman of the Focus is Professor Armin Grunwald.

On Monday, May 23, 2011, the Humans and Technology Focus will be opened by a ceremony. The event will start at 17 hrs with a poster presentation of the Focus. Then, the former Federal Minister of the Environment, Professor Klaus Töpfer, will speak. Lyricist Christoph Köhler will read from twitters and reveal entertaining links between digital technology and society. The science rapper Kate McAlpine and the “Vocal Resources” jazz choir will provide for the musical program of the evening.


17 hrs:
Presentation of the Focus in the entrance hall
Poster presentation of the KIT Humans and Technology Focus
Vocal Resources
Jazz choir directed by Friedrich-Wilhelm Möller

18 hrs:
Welcome addresses

Dr.-Ing. Peter Fritz, KIT Vice President for Research and Innovation
Prof. Dr. Armin Grunwald, Spokesman of the KIT Humans and Technology Focus
Large Hadron Rap – Science Rap
Kate McAlpine, Science Communicator

18.30 hrs
“Humans and Technology – On the Paths of Sustainable Development”
Prof. Dr. Klaus Töpfer, retired Federal Minister of the Environment and long-time Director of the UN Environmental Protection Program (UNEP)
Twitter reading
Christoph Köhler, speaker and lyricist

Further information can be found at: The opening ceremony will be organized by ZAK | Center for Applied Cultural Science and Studium Generale at KIT.


Being “The Research University in the Helmholtz Association”, KIT creates and imparts knowledge for the society and the environment. It is the objective to make significant contributions to the global challenges in the fields of energy, mobility, and information. For this, about 9,600 employees cooperate in a broad range of disciplines in natural sciences, engineering sciences, economics, and the humanities and social sciences. KIT prepares its 23,300 students for responsible tasks in society, industry, and science by offering research-based study programs. Innovation efforts at KIT build a bridge between important scientific findings and their application for the benefit of society, economic prosperity, and the preservation of our natural basis of life. KIT is one of the German universities of excellence.

ak, 13.05.2011


Monika Landgraf
Head of Corporate Communications, Chief Press Officer
Phone: +49 721 608-41150
Fax: +49 721 608-43658
presseNny7∂kit edu

Contact for this press release:

Anna Moosmüller
ZAK | Zentrum für Angewandte Kulturwissenschaft und Studium Generale
Phone: +49 721 608-48027
Fax: +49 0721 608-44811
E-Mail:anna moosmuellerUkc5∂kit edu

The press release is available as a PDF file.