Water is the element that connects Hamburg and its partner cities: they are all close to lakes, seas or rivers. Accordingly, this year the Society awarded prizes to those graduates who had completed outstanding research work focusing on water, seas or climate.
Dr. Dorothee Stapelfeldt, Second Mayor of the City of Hamburg and Senator for Science and Research, honored Nina Maaß, Fabian Große and Julia Köhler for their works in the field of oceanography, emphasizing the importance of research in her speech: “The Partner Cities Prize is an excellent example of civic engagement in the finest Hanseatic tradition. Research focusing on our seas, climate and the environment is something the city of Hamburg takes seriously, as can be seen by the success of the Cluster of Excellence CliSAP, the interdisciplinary structures of which are strengthened by the Center for Earth System Research and Sustainability and its support association.”
Maaß was awarded the 3000-euro first place prize for her Diploma thesis on “Improving passive microwave sea ice concentration algorithms for coastal areas – Applications to the Baltic Sea,” a work nominated by Prof. Kaleschke. Her thesis focused on a new method for measuring coastal ice buildup, which is particularly relevant for the Baltic.
Große’s Diploma thesis, entitled “Parameterising primary production and convection in a 3D model,” took second place, while Köhler’s Master’s thesis on “Analysis of sea ice surface salinities as seen by SMOS” received the third place prize.
The evening’s awards ceremony was the centerpiece of a varied program on different aspects of water: Olympic swimmers from Hamburg discussed “Water as an element in professional sports,” the geopolitical importance of water was delineated, and a project launched by Hamburg schoolchildren and involving the partner city Leon, Nicaragua was introduced.