5. July 2022 | Magazine:

Computer scientist receives Abt Jerusalem Prize Katharina Zweig is Professor of Complex Networks and Socioinformatics at TU Kaiserslautern

Katharina Zweig, Professor of Complex Networks and Socioinformatics at Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, was awarded the Abt Jerusalem Prize on 24 June 2022. The Evangelical Lutheran Landeskirche Braunschweig, Technische Universität Braunschweig, the Braunschweigische Wissenschaftliche Gesellschaft  and the Stiftung Braunschweigischer Kulturbesitz presented the award, which is endowed with 5,000 euros, for the sixth time.

Prof. Katharina Zweig’s work and teaching are consistently interdisciplinary. Since 2012, she has been Professor of Graph Theory and Analysis of Complex Networks at the Department of Computer Science at TU Kaiserslautern, where she heads the Algorithm Accountability Lab she founded. Together with Karen Joisten, she founded the “Center for Ethics and the Digital Society” in 2020.

Abt Jerusalem-Preisträgerin Katharina Zweig ist seit 2012 Professorin für Graphentheorie und Analyse komplexer Netzwerke am Fachbereich Informatik der TU Kaiserslautern. Bildnachweis: Peter Sierigk

Abt Jerusalem Prize winner Katharina Zweig has been Professor of Graph Theory and Analysis of Complex Networks at the Department of Computer Science at TU Kaiserslautern since 2012. Photo credit: Peter Sierigk

Her focus is primarily on the contribution of computer science to dealing with societal complexity as well as the social consequences and ethical issues of digitalisation. In doing so, Zweig explores and tests the heuristic and transformative power of computer science in perceiving and dealing with complex social, medical, political, legal and economic problems, as well as the social impacts of using AI systems.

In the prize colloquium before the award ceremony, Prof. Katharina Zweig spoke in her lecture on the topic “Zeitalter der KI – Zeitalter der Geistes- und Sozialwissenschaften?” (Age of AI – Age of Humanities and Social Sciences?). In addition, Prof. Dr. Jochen Steil (Computer Science, TU Braunschweig), Prof. Dr. Karen Joisten (Philosophy, TU Kaiserslautern) and Lukas Brand (Theology, TU Bochum) spoke about the relationship between humans and machines from an interdisciplinary perspective. The award colloquium can be viewed on the YouTube channel of the Landeskirche Braunschweig.

Bei der Preisverleihung in der Klosterkirche Riddagshausen (von links): Prof. Dr. Otto Richter (Präsident der Braunschweigischen Wissenschaftlichen Gesellschaft), Prof. Dr. Angela Ittel (Präsidentin der TU Braunschweig), Preisträgerin Prof. Dr. Katharina Zweig (TU Kaiserslautern), Landesbischof Christoph Meyns und Fabian Bruns (Stiftung Braunschweigischer Kulturbesitz). Bildnachweis: Peter Sierigk

At the award ceremony in the Riddagshausen Monastery Church (from left): Prof. Dr Otto Richter (President of the Braunschweigische Wissenschaftliche Gesellschaft), Prof. Dr Angela Ittel (President of TU Braunschweig), award winner Prof. Dr Katharina Zweig (TU Kaiserslautern), Bishop Christoph Meyns and Fabian Bruns (Stiftung Braunschweigischer Kulturbesitz). Photo credit: Peter Sierigk

The Abt Jerusalem Prize

With the Abt Jerusalem Prize, the organisers have been honouring outstanding scientific contributions to the dialogue between the humanities, natural sciences and technical sciences since 2009. It is endowed with 5,000 euros. The prize is named after Friedrich Wilhelm Jerusalem (1709 to 1789), who as Abbot of Riddagshausen was a co-founder of the Collegium Carolinum, from which TU Braunschweig grew. Abbot Jerusalem is regarded as a pioneer of an enlightened relationship between faith and reason. The Evangelische Akademie der Landeskirche Braunschweig, which is responsible for the award ceremony, also bears his name.