Opening Ceremony (2016) - Opening Ceremony of the 66th Lindau Nobel Lauerate Meeting

Lindau Island. This is the place where it all began in 1951. The City Theatre hosted the very first Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting. What fascinated me about the evolvement of the Lindau Meetings was that my father in the beginning described it as how everything should be so terribly ceremonial and academic. It’s better we make an informal, personal meeting. And that is what made the Lindau Meetings into this platform for personal encounters. Welcome to the 66th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting. Facing future demands, the topics of the Lindau Meetings alternate every year. And during the week we find a programme with lectures, with expert panels, with master classes. And laureates and young scientists discuss cutting edge research. And the young scientists present their scientific work and get from the laureates guidance. We are very much connected to Nobel Laureates. We can interchange and exchange experiences, challenges we are facing. We can get experience on hand in order to close the gap between young scientists and Nobel Laureates. In Lindau, the next generation of scientists get the opportunity to reflect and discuss their research and their life as scientists. They find new companions who share their thoughts and thus become part of a bigger network. Other people are going to be able to see more than you are seeing. And that’s what I find so appealing about this meeting is that you are going to meet a lot of people with different kinds of backgrounds and different kinds of horizons. To ensure the continuance and further development of the Lindau Meetings, the Foundation Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings was established in 2000 on the initiative of 50 Nobel Laureates. For the last 15 years, Wolfgang Schürer chaired the Foundation and got very much personally engaged to strategically develop the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting. Lindau is THE hub and the contribution is manifold. It is the programme, if you wish, the week as such. You have years of collected insights, of collected wisdom, of collected knowledge. And this is brought forward and made accessible through the Mediatheque and through projects of Lindau’s Mission Education. The network of the academic partner institutions around the world is a cornerstone of the ongoing internationalisation process of the Lindau Meetings. Lindau is a fantastic festival for science. It’s a place to network - not so much for the Nobel Prize winners but for the young people. And maybe some of them will become Nobel Laureates too. So it’s a wonderful occasion that we full-heartedly support, also through our Foundation. Collaboration across nations and disciplines has become ever more important. The Lindau Meetings are very grateful to the Robert Bosch Foundation for supporting the Horst Köhler Fellowship Programme for young scientists from Africa. We strongly believe in the potential of young African scientists, because we think they can really shape a sustainable future for their own continent. But they are not connected very well to the international community yet. And Lindau gives them the opportunity to meet them all because it’s a hot spot of excellence of science. The Lindau Spirit as well as the Lindau Community gave me a large network to always relate to whenever I need advice or exchange of experience, worldwide. Further important partners are government authorities such as the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, which provides substantial support and guidance. With outstanding financial support from the Free State of Bavaria, the local conference venue, Inselhalle, is currently being modernised and expanded. The City of Lindau is undertaking major efforts to provide a state-of-the-art conference venue. It will host the 67th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting in 2017. For 66 years, the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings have brought together Nobel Laureates and young scientists. This personal dialogue has always been the most important thing happening here. And it is for sure that this is the most important thing for the future too. So they warned me not to walk too close to the back of the stage and now I see why. Hello, my name is Adam Smith. And it’s my very great pleasure to be your guide to this Opening Ceremony. The video you’ve just seen has very helpfully introduced you to some of the people and themes that you’ll meet and see discussed in the next couple of hours. And as Countess Bettina emphasised at the beginning and end of that video, the Lindau Meetings are all about personal encounters and dialogue. And over the next 5 days you are all, Nobel Laureates and young scientists alike, going to be working very hard to maximise the opportunity that this extraordinary meeting presents for getting to know each other. But the Opening Ceremony is somewhat different. For the next 2 hours all you need to do is sit back, relax, listen attentively, and enjoy the show. So to get things started I’d like to call upon Countess Bettina Bernadotte, who is President of the Council for the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings, to give the opening address. Countess Bettina. (Applause) Presidents Fischer and Tan from Austria and Singapore, Federal Minister Wanka, State Secretary Mara, Minister Bauer, State Secretary Pschierer, representing Bavaria, and Minister Bauer, Baden-Württemberg. Governor Wallner, Members of Parliaments and Lord Mayor Ecker. Excellencies, young scientists, dear Nobel Laureates. Very welcome to the 66th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting. And welcome to a very special meeting. For most of you it is your first time in Lindau. And we hope that it will be an extraordinary experience which will soon begin to exert its special influence on you. We call it the Lindau spirit. Some of you have been here many times - and this, first of all, applies to the Nobel Laureates. I cannot tell how pleased we are that you are so loyal to the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings. And keep returning, offering the gift of a full week of your time and enormous pro bono engagement that cannot be held high enough in esteem. You are the foundation of the Lindau spirit. And can I please ask you Laureates to stand up for a moment so that all young scientists can see who you are and where you are. Or wave at least. (Applause) Sorry, Adam was quite wrong, not all of you are expected to lean back and enjoy - some of you have to work. Unfortunately, some are no longer with us. And we will miss them deeply. We are very sad to have lost 2 true Lindau personalities during the last year: Sir Harry Kroto and Walter Kohn. We also sadly miss Yoichiro Nambu, Richard Heck, Douglass Cecil North, Alfred Goodman Gilman, Lloyd Stowell Shapley, and Imre Kertesz. Nobody of them will be forgotten. And let us honour them together in a moment of silence. Thank you. As we have seen in the short movie, this year we are meeting in a special location: Lindau’s City Theatre. As we have heard, this venue is not the classical conference venue. And we were challenged to organise the meeting with many temporary solutions and compromises. But it is also a pleasure to be here, as this is the place where it all began, where the meetings were held for the first time. Back in 1951, the moving spirit of the founders was the vision, that this gathering in Lindau could contribute to the reconciliation after World War II and enable a peaceful and prosperous future. The founders were 2 Lindau physicians, Doctor Franz Karl Hein and Professor Gustav Parade, as well as my father, Count Lennart Bernadotte. Today, with the world still in conflict, their idea is as modern and convincing as it was 66 years ago. Over the past decade we have developed their initial idea into our leitmotive: Educate, inspire, connect. Because this is the core of what we seek to achieve: fostering science for the benefit of mankind. This is yet another very powerful idea, conceived by none other than Alfred Nobel himself. And written down in his last will. When we look back at roughly a century of scientific discoveries, we see a century of breakthroughs: penicillin and DNA, vitamins and ribosomes, X-rays and quantum computers, and so many more. This is why we believe in the power of scientific progress. It plays an utterly important role in solving current challenges like worldwide availability of potable water, sufficient food supply, affordable health care, or accessible education. We are also challenged dealing with climate change, responsibly using the earth’s resources, and shaping a fair model of how we want to live together. This aim has led to the Mainau Declaration on Climate Change, signed by 76 Nobel Laureates last year, during the last day of the meeting on Mainau Island. It was handed over by 2 Nobel Laureates to the French president, François Hollande, to impact the climate talks that were held at that time in Paris. The success also teaches us that solving so many of today’s challenges does not rest on scientists' shoulders alone. We need an atmosphere of understanding between scientists, society, politicians and all of us. There is only one way we can master the great challenges ahead: together. When conceiving the Nobel Prize, Alfred Nobel didn’t think of the greatest return on investment. He wanted the prize to be given to those who achieved the greatest benefit for mankind. And that also includes the generations after us. Earlier, I claimed that this would be a very special meeting. Another reason for this is the farewell of Professor Wolfgang Schürer. He served as chairman of the board of directors of our Foundation, and as a member of the Council and its vice president. He has dedicated more than 15 intense years to bring the meetings forward. And today we will honour his extraordinary engagement. You will hear more about this later during the ceremony. Organising such a meeting requires a lot of support. And we are very pleased that we have so many long-standing partners in this endeavour. I would really like to mention all of our maecenas and benefactors - but this would easily require another hour of me talking. So I will pick 3 as representatives for all our supporters. I would like to thank the German Federal Minister, Johanna Wanka. Thank you for your ongoing support - not only for the meeting itself, but also for our outreach projects aimed at teachers, pupils and Lindau Nobel alumni. And I would like to thank Pamela Mars and the Mars Company for their support over the last years. And, dear Pam and team, thank you for your renewed commitment for another full decade. A few minutes ago, Gerda Tschira, her sons and I, unveiled a plaque at Alfred-Nobel-Platz 1, to commemorate a lasting gift, Klaus Tschira’s Foundation made to the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting. Dear Mrs Tschira, dear Tschira family and representatives of the Klaus Tschira Foundation, we are forever grateful for this generous support that will always link our 2 Foundations together. And which will always make Klaus Tschira very memorable, whom we very sadly miss. Finally, it is my pleasure to introduce a few changes this year, which are based on last year’s feedback. A new addition to this year’s Lindau programme is the poster session, allowing you young scientists to present your studies, and increasing the scientific exchange with the laureates. We will also award 3 poster prizes at the end of the week. Another first we are very excited about is the Heidelberg lecture given by a Turing Award winner, Vinton Cerf. A very warm welcome, Vinton, to Lindau, and it’s a pleasure to have you here. And we have made further improvement to our online offer with the new Lindau Meeting App, containing the most up-to-date information on the meeting. We will also use it for panel discussion questions. So make sure to download it right away, or maybe after the Opening Ceremony. You will all have seen the scientific programme that our chairmen, Rainer Blatt and Lars Bergström, have put together. That will commence tomorrow morning. Lars and Professor Blatt, would you please stand up also? You will see them all week, so I will not ask them to come up here, but it can’t be bad to see their face. (Applause) I hope that you will enjoy the programme very much. And that you will use the manifold opportunities in-between to connect with your peers, to exchange your ideas with the Nobel Laureates, and to live the Lindau spirit. Let us all enjoy the coming week. A very warm welcome. (Applause) And now it is my pleasure to invite Klas Kärre up on stage, who today represents the Nobel Foundation. A warm welcome, Klas. (Applause) Dear Excellencies, dear Laureates, dear young scientists, honoured guests, ladies and gentleman. It is with great pleasure that I stand here in Lindau today to convey warm greetings from Stockholm. From the Nobel Foundation, from the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, who select the Laureates in Physics and in Chemistry. And from the Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institute, selecting the Laureates in Physiology or Medicine. Greetings and, indeed, congratulations to you all because you have a wonderful week ahead of you. A week full of science, discussions and meetings with many new friends from all over the world. Right now, in this moment, the prize awarding institutions in Stockholm go through an exciting period. It is soon time to do the final selection of this year’s laureates. The 2016 Physics prize will be announced in exactly 100 days from today. A total of 201 laureates have been awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics since the first one was bestowed upon Wilhelm Röntgen in 1901. But as most of you are aware, the years 1915/16, still represent the hallmark in the history of physics. It was in this period that Albert Einstein published his theory on general relativity. This is the 66th Nobel Laureate Meeting in Lindau, following a great tradition that was started in the 1950s. In Stockholm we have a great respect and admiration for the Nobel Lindau Mission. This has been manifested during the past year by tightening the bonds between us in a formal agreement. As one example of our collaborations, the Nobel Museum in Stockholm is right now showing the global Turing exhibition, Sketches of Science, based on laureates' own drawings and popular explanations on their work. This project was initiated and evolved here in Lindau. We hope to develop the Stockholm Lindau interactions further. Because we do believe that you have found a fantastic forum for fulfilling one of Alfred Nobel’s legacies. And which may not have been spelled out in his famous will, but is nevertheless implicit from it. And let me explain what I mean. Now, there is no such thing as a typical Nobel Laureate. They are male and female, from all over the world, and from every culture and creed. Some grew up in extreme privilege, others in abject poverty. Many hold multiple PhDs, several never went to college. The Nobel Prize is about achievement, not about pedigree. The Laureates have expanded our understanding of the universe and unravelled the secrets of our DNA. They have discovered new chemical elements and transformed them into the tools we use every day. They have written great literary works, found cures for major diseases, and inspired peace in many troubled regions. Their accomplishments are as varied as their life stories. But they all share one important thing in common: a passion for making the world a better place for the benefit of mankind. Now, any of you young scientists can do the same. But you need to be inspired. And that is what this meeting is all about: Inspiration. In Stockholm, we execute the explicit instructions in Alfred Nobel’s will. We select the Laureates. We invite them to receive the prize from His Majesty The King. Fair enough, we also provide 1 or 2 decent dinners - but that’s it. We then bid farewell. Rarely it happens that the Laureate returns to Stockholm to receive a second prize. But otherwise we gradually lose contact with them. And this is where the Nobel Lindau mission comes in, because, surely, Alfred Nobel wished that the laureates should continue to serve as inspiring examples to future generations of young scientists. Young women and men driven by curiosity for the unknown, the wish to challenge dogmas, and the ambition to make the world a better place. Most Nobel Laureates can name the educational experience that set them on a lifelong journey of discovery. For some it was an amazing teacher who encouraged them to think big. For others it was travelling abroad and being confronted with new perspectives. For still others it was the act of 'learning by doing', failing 1,000 times to succeed once. Dear young scientists, at this unique meeting you will not only be exposed to the laureate’s data, theories and future visions. You will also get a chance to listen to and discuss in person with them about their experiences from the career, and get advice for your future work. So remember in the week that follows: do not be shy, be active. Interact with the Laureates as well as with the other young scientists. Get inspired. And, dear Laureates, let me say on behalf of the Nobel Organisation in Stockholm, that when I see you here, I feel, as I am certain that Alfred Nobel would have felt, immensely impressed and proud. Alfred Nobel would have appreciated not only to meet 30 outstanding scientists who have received the prize bearing his name, but also to learn that they had travelled far from other countries and continents to spend one week in Lindau to meet 400 young scientists from 80 countries. As one of the double Nobel Laureates, Marie Curie, put it, "Science is essentially international. And it is only through lack of the historical sense that national qualities have been attributed to it." Alfred Nobel would have loved the international atmosphere at this meeting, and to listen to the lectures. He would have participated vividly in tutoring sessions and master classes. So, young scientists, let him inspire you for the activities of the coming week. And with that I wish to conclude. Again, warm greetings in the spirit of Alfred Nobel from Stockholm. Enjoy the meeting. (Applause) As Klas was saying, as you all know the Lindau Meetings are extremely international. And this week, we’re welcoming young scientists from around 80 different countries. I think that fact alone deserves a round of applause. (Applause) Now one manifestation of that international aspect of the meeting is, that tomorrow, for a few hours, the entire meeting is moving from Germany to Austria. Those of you who studied your programme will see the town of Bregenz, just across the border in Austria, is very kindly hosting an international get-together tomorrow evening. And in celebration of the role of Austria as international partner for this 66th Nobel Laureate Meeting, we are very proud to welcome Heinz Fischer, President of the Federal Republic of Germany, to give the next address. (Laughter) He may have aspirations, you don’t know. And anyway as a Brit, you know, what do I know about Europe now? (Laughter. Applause) Please, Herr Fischer. (Applause) Honourable Bettina Countess Bernadotte. The president of Singapore, Doctor Tony Tan. Members of government, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen. Yesterday morning I met my friend, the President of Germany, Mr. Gauck, in Slovenia at the celebration of 25 years independence of Slovenia. And it was not necessary to assure him that I have no aspirations of any kind. (Laughter) On the contrary, I served almost 12 years as president of Austria. I was re-elected 6 years ago with 79.8%. And my term of office will end in less than 2 weeks. And so we live in total peace and confidence to each other. It was a nice gag of my predecessor here speaking, that encouraged the good mood in this gathering. I personally would like to thank you very much for the kind invitation to this year’s Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting. This is not my first visit in this area. On the contrary, already in the ‘80’s, when I was Minister of Science and Research in Austria, and in the ‘90s, when I was the Speaker of our Parliament, I had several visits in this part of Europe. And I believe that this is one of the most beautiful and interesting parts of Europe, where Germany, Switzerland and Austria are very near together, or even meet at their borders. I am particularly pleased that Austria will be in the centre of attention tomorrow, as it was just said. And I can tell you that Austria has an outstanding scientific landscape, and a new generation of young scientists who are impressive on an international scale. This is at least my judgement as a former Minister of Science who can compare the developments in the last years with the situation before. In Austria, the percentage of GDP spent on research and development increased up to around 3% in 2015. And with this figure, Austria is among the top 4 in the European Union in terms of funds spent on research and development. Ladies and gentlemen, in my country, those who think of the Nobel Prize Institution most likely first think of Berta von Suttner, who, in the year 1905, was the first woman to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. To this day, she figures among the most fascinating personalities in our younger history. Fascinating in her tireless commitment against war, and her search for allies in a world, in which dynasties, politicians and generals and others seem to move like sleepwalkers. There was very good, famous book written under the title "Towards a horrible war". The fact that this brave woman passed away right before the outbreak of World War I and that, symbolically speaking, the arms that she so wished to be laid down, then also gained the upper hand over reason, can be described as a distressing side note of history. World War I claimed 17 million lives, and brought about the unstable order characterised by dictatorship in Europe that produced civil-war-like situations in numerous countries. Austria was marked by events such as the, what we call, Wiener Justizpalastbrand, the Vienna Palace of Justice fire, in 1927, with much more than 100 people killed. As well as later on by the elimination of parliament and the Austrian civil war of 1934. The first event, the Palace of Justice fire, preoccupied Elias Canetti, winner of the Nobel Prize in literature, in 1981. All his life, his book Auto-da-Fe, completed in 1931, is dedicated to the events of those times. As is his study crowd and power, Masse und Macht - not published until 1960. In 1938, Canetti had to flee Austria to escape the National Socialist, the Hitler movement. I first met him in Vienna in the mid ‘80s, and we had interesting exchanges of views on current affairs. Austrian history after 1945 and the question, if and how a country, where Hitler was hailed so fanatically in 1938, can rid itself of the remaining poison of Nazi ideology, was of great interest to him. Ladies and gentlemen, Elias Canetti was just one of the later Nobel Prize Laureates who had been forced by the Nazis to flee and emigrate. Walter Kohn was another, whom, in fact, I had hoped to meet again here today in Lindau. As many of you may know he passed away 2 months ago, in April this year. I remember him as a very sharp and highly educated conversation partner, who still liked to recall his childhood in Vienna and his school days at the Akademische Gymnasium - despite his very bad memories and experiences. He even endowed an award at this high school for students, whose writings are considered to be outstanding works on a high humanistic level. A similar fate was experienced by Martin Karplus, Nobel Prize Laureate in Chemistry in 2013, who is with us, as far as I have seen, today here. He is, and I am very happy about that, and I am happy that I can mention him. He was also born in Vienna and had to flee from the Nazis. I first met him in New York in 2014, rather late. And found that his mistrust towards the country from which he had been expelled still was existing, still was prevailing, and had not diminished in view of the developments of recent years. Nevertheless, together with others it was possible to convince him, or to persuade him, to visit Vienna. There he was elected to the Academy of Sciences one year ago, and named an honorary citizen of the City of Vienna. I hope I am not wrong to say that his judgement about the recent development is now, at least a little bit, better than it was some years ago. Finally, I would like to mention a very good friend, Eric Kandel, Winner of the Nobel Prize in Medicine in the year 2000, who was also driven out of Vienna by the Nazis, as a boy, as a child. I meet with Eric several times a year. He is sending me his books, I am sending him my speeches or articles - or at least some of them. And I am always impressed by his keen intellect and immense scientific and cultural, historical knowledge. He reproached his old home country step by step, so to speak, and in the meantime has become a partner on many issues related to politics of memory. Distinguished guests, why am I speaking about that? Why am I telling you all this? I do it because the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting, founded, as we have heard, in 1951, shortly after the end of World War II, pursued the clear objective of contributing significantly to Germany’s intellectual reconstruction. This impressive get-together gradually evolved from that goal, and is renowned worldwide for its widely recognised initiatives to promote young scientists and internationalised research. In Austria, platforms such as the European Forum Alpbach have been striving towards this goal in their own way after 1945. Here I gladly seize this opportunity to promote Alpbach. What was once a small, almost timid, gathering of some German speaking intellectuals, became, year by year more and more, a big and colourful international forum, reaching beyond the borders of Europe with a very attractive programme every year, and roughly 4,000 participants in the last years. It was not only the war, but also the abominable ideology of National Socialism that destroyed the intellectual moral and scientific foundations in Germany and in Austria. People, like those I mentioned, have warned, and continue to warn, against the dangers of war and totalitarianism, regardless of their respective field of research. Berta von Suttner, Elias Canetti, Walter Kohn, Martin Karplus and Eric Kandel, whom I mentioned. They all represent those who, in their own lives, had to experience how quickly society can lose any form of solidarity, and how fast the poison of nationalism can spread. However, they also stand for the greatness of the human spirit in the midst of political disasters. They stand for what was once described as the will to walk upright, der Wille zum aufrechten Gang. And they deserve immense credit for having served as teachers and examples in their professional fields and beyond. So I wish you all a successful Lindau Laureate Meeting. And I wish, in particular, all young scientists gathered here at Lake Constance that they, regardless of the clouds on the horizon Who, if not you, could contribute to this goal. I thank you very much. (Applause) Now, some of you might think I’m getting a bit obsessed by this thing. But those of you who saw Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey might agree with me that it looks rather like that slab, that aliens placed on the earth and the moon to make humanity more intelligent. And given my previous mistake, perhaps I ought to go over and touch it, I’m not sure. In fact, perhaps 52% of Britain’s ought to go over and touch it. (Laughter. Applause) Now, in the opening video and Countess Bettina’s speech you were introduced to the work of Professor Wolfgang Schürer. Who for 15 years has been chairman of the Foundation for the Nobel Laureate Meetings in Lindau and has recently retired. This next section of the Opening Ceremony is going to be dedicated to a celebration of his work. You will also have heard Countess Bettina talk about the very close relationship between the Lindau Meetings and the Ministry of Research and Education here in Germany. And so it’s a particular pleasure to welcome Federal Minister Johanna Wanka to give the next address. Please. (Applause) Federal President Fischer. President of Singapore. Countess Bettina. Guests. But first and foremost Professor Schürer. When in 1951, 65 years ago, the first Nobel Laureate Meeting was held here in Lindau, the initiators, we’ve seen them before in the short movie, they were united in their cause. Which was, after World War II, to free German science from its isolation. And set up a platform for mutual understanding and exchange in science. No doubt, they’ve achieved their goal. We can say for a few years now that German science and research are a respected part of the European research area, and also draw on a global network. The 2016 meeting once more shows, how attractive Germany is as a location for science, for many researchers and scientists from all over the world. But what is happening here in Lindau during this meeting? And this year researchers from over 80 nations - we can’t take that for granted in the light of the conflicts we are facing and our societies, and the many crises around the globe. We have to realise one thing, and have to admit that what is successful here is much harder in real life: first encounter with a stranger, being respectful towards other cultures, or opinions, in everyday life. That is much harder in real life. In politics and societies we are struggling, not only in Europe, to strike the right balance with regard to openness, generosity and consideration, when it comes to that. Often in this, we take recourse to science to enhance, for example, living spaces. But also to better understand somebody else’s religion and many other things. Scientific evidence alone cannot overcome prejudice, narrowmindedness. But for that we need people who understand and who show how to be in dialogue. Who in their everyday working life are active in dialogue and exchange, who are open to the new. So people like all of you, who are here today, who are passionate proponents of progress. And it is a great pleasure for me, and also an honour, Professor Schürer, to speak here today on the occasion of the 66th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting. To honour a person who very much embodies this spirit, and who thus caries forward the tradition of the Lindau founders and initiators: Professor Wolfgang Schürer. When you, 15 years ago, Professor Schürer, presented your ideas for the future design of the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings for the first time, the situation you were witnessing here was a situation of change and renewal. The conference had successfully become some sort of family reunion, so to speak, of Nobel Laureates, with mostly German students. And this format was to be changed. It was to be made more international. It was to establish new networks of the best young scientists around the globe. And it was to raise the profile and visibility of current research in society and in the public more than before. And it was also, as always, about securing the financial future of these meetings – so some major tasks ahead for you, Professor Schürer. Under the prudent management of Countess Sonja, with the expansion of the Council and the establishment of the Foundation, had already put the meetings on the right track. But then you came in, Professor Schürer. And you used your expertise to develop the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings further, to become a source of stimulus for global research excellence. A few years later, the daily newspaper of Sankt Gallen once described you, in a very fitting headline, as the service provider in the world of powerful ideas. And this is how I see your commitment to Lindau, and how many people do indeed. You were never limited in your commitment to enforce your ideas. But to make possible the powerful ideas of science, to promote these, and to demonstrate, as well, how relevant they are for the developments in our world. I would like to pick out 4 aspects from these 15 years of your work for Lindau, to show what it means, The first is your intention to make the meetings more international. Since 2012, the number of countries which are represented her, has been increasing steadily. Sending their brightest minds here - this year over 80 countries, who want to gather new impetus, who want to network. Without your network in politics and in industry, and also in society, this process couldn’t have been achieved this quickly – this process of opening up and raising the international profile. Secondly, you were also successful in ensuring the financial stability of the meetings. And that is where I would like to honour the substantial contribution, personal contribution, that you and your wife made to the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings. And what I consider particularly relevant is, that long-term partnerships were formed. Countess Bettina always says, there’s not an immediate pay back effect, but these partnerships can only work based on trust and shared objectives. And, again, you were very successful in this. We all know how convincing you are in arguments. And you are also very successful in the cooperation with my ministry, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Our first collaboration took place in the 2005 Einstein World Year of Physics. And since the, 2005, my ministry has been providing €11 million for funding the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings. Professor Schürer, you knew again and again how to make the results of the Lindau Meetings available, and known, to the public. And that is a third aspect I would like to mention: anchoring the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings firmly within science and society. You delineated the meetings' key fields of action very clearly. It was about providing education, being a source of inspiration, and bringing together people from politics, from science, and from society. It is this trinity that became evident in many projects that you’ve initiated in the past 15 years. I would only like to mention a few. For example, the Mediatheque, which makes available the Lindau lectures, the mini lectures, and the profiles of the Laureates and brings them together to paint a broad picture of the history of science. Or the Teaching Spirit Programme that enables teachers to participate in the meetings, and also in courses. Thinking about the physics teachers, I think it’s particularly inspiring this year. And then also the establishment of the Alumni Programme, which is part of a new project to raise public awareness for the Lindau Meetings. You initiated these activities and many other things, always taking pleasure in new things. Always showing curiosity to see, how things will develop, will turn out, if you bring together topics and people, that seem mostly unrelated at first, but focus them on a new objective. And this brings me to the fourth aspect, the interdisciplinarity of the Meetings. That was completely new back in 2012, when you suggested to expand the traditional spectrum of the meetings, Chemistry, Physics and Medicine, by adding Economics. The first Economics Meeting took place in 2004. And it has become a true block buster, so to speak – both when it comes to public awareness, as well as the number of participants. It has now become an internationally acclaimed forum, where significant economic and financial issues are being discussed. It is one of the effects, I think, where Professor Schürer does this very well, to advance his ideas with courage. And he allows himself to fail too. He uses foresight, assertiveness - that’s what you need - and also endurance and to be successful in the long-term. And, of course, Professor Schürer wasn’t alone in all of this. You had fellow campaigners. You had supporters. You had sponsors yourself. People you trusted. You need them if you are in a position like you’ve been in. You had very skilled staff in the executive office. But we owe to you in person that, in Lindau, there is a climate of mindfulness and dynamism, where such developments and innovations have become possible within such a traditional institution. And the film at the beginning showed this to us. And you need a lot of intuition to open up such a traditional institution, to keep up with the times, to change according to the times. And you had this intuition when you joined the Lindau Meetings in 2000. Back then you were already a person with a successful career as an entrepreneur and consultant. So you had reached a point in your life, where many would lean back and say, ok, I’ve achieved a lot. I’m independent. I can just lean back and look back at what I have achieved. But you did not give in to this. You had the courage to take on a new challenge. And you couldn’t really tell whether it would work out well. So it was a challenge that also required much energy, much commitment. And your wife as the most important supporter and linchpin was always at your side in that. You have received honours and awards for your commitment. Last year, in 2015, you received the Knight Commanders Cross, by Federal President Gauck, to honour your commitment for the Lindau Meetings. And I know that you were very pleased about this honour. But the most important, the most wonderful recognition - and we can’t really see this here because of the darkness. But the most important recognition of your work, and recognition to this dedication, is to see all these faces of the people who have come here to Lindau to exchange across generations. In 2015, you passed on your offices and functions in Lindau to somebody else. And Professor Jürgen Kluge is indeed a worthy successor to you. But I believe, Professor Schürer, that you don’t really want to rest on your laurels even now. You want to look back on Lindau, but you also want to use your energy, your enthusiasm for big ideas, for new ideas. And for that I think I can speak on behalf of everybody: we all wish you the best of success. However, today is not about what you are planning for your future, today is about honouring your achievements for the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings. And at this point, on behalf of the Federal government, but also very personally, I would like to thank you and wish you all the best for the future. (Applause) Dear Wolfgang Schürer, thank you so much for all what you did for Lindau. Before your arrival into the Council, each year was a challenge, economy a problem, and organisation variable. Instead, you introduced a common motto, a solid organisation, and a secure economy for a long time to come. He convinced me that we all have to do our best to hold the Lindau event up to the highest standards, and to keep it in Germany. Now, a thing like that does not happen by itself. Someone has to have the idea and it has to be managed. It has to be arranged. It’s complicated. And Wolfgang Schürer, Professor Schürer, has done that for many years in a marvellously effective and charming way. He isn’t just great because he’s so efficient and good at the diplomacy of science. But I think he has actually made it part of the science of diplomacy. Dear Wolfgang, you have nurtured a unique and very precious thing. We are all immensely grateful. You have served the concepts that have been developed by the late Countess Sonja, and now Countess Bettina, in making this meeting a worldwide meeting of high scientific quality and a great place for people to gather together. It’s a pleasure to be here with my friends from Lindau, and reminisce about the wonderful occasions at the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting. I have enjoyed this so much. In particular, I’ve appreciated and admired Professor Wolfgang Schürer for his leadership, and the magnificent traits which he projected to the young scientists. Wolfgang, danke vielmals. Auf Wiedersehen. Margaret and I wish you a long life with Monica, in splendid satisfaction. So I have to thank Wolfgang for a lot of what he has done for me, for my career, and also for my own education. Wolfgang, it’s such a pleasure to have known you and worked with you, and meeting at the Lindau Meetings. I have been there twice and both were wonderful events. I know, you’re one of the main reasons that this turned out so beautifully. I thank you so much for your work. Thank you, Professor Schürer, it’s really been an honour. One morning I was late at one of those plenary lectures. When I arrived, the auditorium was totally dark and absolutely jam-packed. And you saw me and motioned that there was an empty seat next to you. Then you saw that I was accompanied by my granddaughter, who was attending the meeting as an undergraduate student, and you absolutely insisted that she should take your seat. Of course, I was terribly embarrassed - and so was she. Until I realised what had happened. I realised, that when the chairman of the board insists on giving his seat to an undergraduate student, he really showed the real spirit of Lindau. I would like to thank you very much, Professor Schürer, for everything you have done for me. I will never forget this moment when you were standing there applauding. And supporting me in every aspect, when I gave my lecture in 2014. Thank you very much. When Franz Karl Hein, Gustav Parade, and my father organised the first Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting back in 1951, they certainly didn’t imagine the developments the meetings would undergo. And yet, they had a clear idea and vision they wanted to implement: to bring generations of scientists together, to make international exchange possible again. World War II was only just a few years passed. And they felt that they had to do all they could, to build long lasting relationships between scientists from different countries. They were true believers in science cooperation and science diplomacy, long before these concepts became commonly used. The meetings became an instant success, with the number of Nobel Laureates and international students increasing from year to year. Of course, there were other and bigger conferences already taking place. But Lindau stood out with its selection of topics. Science, of course, but also other important issues, like how to manage life as a scientist. How to best walk on the long winding and tiresome path that leads to success. How to connect with peers. How to put ideas into practice. As important as it was, this concept did not generate immediate payback. And thus it became more and more difficult to finance the meetings. At certain times in the meetings history, the organisers wouldn’t know in spring if the meeting could actually take place in early summer. I know what I am talking about - my mother suffered from that many years. It was at that time, in the late 1990s, when the Council for the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings – and, Minister Wanka, you described that - decided to take action. The Foundation Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings was established. And its mission was to ensure the continuance of the meetings. This meant, first of all, to secure the necessary funds by building up an endowment. The first chairman of the Foundation was you, dear Professor Schürer. From day 1 you directed huge amounts of your energy into developing the meetings. Of course, the fundamental idea was still as convincing and intriguing as 50 years ago. But, in addition, the meetings needed strategic development. The original vision needed a modern organisational concept. And with this further development, the meetings would also be placed again in the focus of its potential and its partners – funders, academic institutions, and the media. In your never-ending pursuit for excellence, you not only collected funds, you also reactivated strategic partnerships. Furthermore, you strongly supported a rigorous evaluation system. And, thereby, the academic quality of the young scientists participating could be improved. You continuously sharpened the mission goals of the meetings, and you invested all your knowledge into organisational quality. Dear Professor Schürer, the Lennart Bernadotte Medal is the highest decoration that the Council for the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings can award. Very few outstanding contributors to Lindau’s mission have received it. Not least out of respect for the original, the golden Nobel Prize Medal given to the Nobel Laureates, the Lennart Bernadotte Medal is awarded in silver. But when we discussed, how we would like to symbolise our extraordinary gratefulness for your achievements, it became clear that this would be the time for an exception from this rule. And I am very glad that our friends in Stockholm share my view on this. Dear Professor Schürer, would you please join me up here. (Applause) Also speaking for thousands of young scientists, who have benefited from your dedication, I would like to thank you for all you have done for the meetings, for these young scientists, and the Lindau dialogue. And it is my pleasure now to award you the Lennart Bernadotte Medal in gold. I am convinced that my father is watching us right now, smiling, and joyfully approving. (Applause) You are very inspired and very active, and you have been that for the Lindau Foundation. I now want to invite 2 colleagues from the board of the Foundation for the Lindau Meetings to present, hopefully, a little surprise gift to you. There are not many things you can keep as a surprise to him, but I hope we managed this time. So, please, Nikolaus Turner and Thomas Ellerbeck, join us. Distinguished guests, today we celebrate the opening of the 66th Lindau Meeting – not counting the 5 Lindau Meetings dedicated to economics, and initiated by Wolfgang Schürer. And we salute Wolfgang Schürer’s contributions to the meetings, to the development, to the remaining in Lindau, in Germany, in Europe, and at Lake Constance. Wolfgang Schürer decided at an early stage to finally step out prior to his 70th birthday in September. With this, his enormous engagement came to an end. Looking back, it was shared 15 intense years, almost 24-7, an immensely productive and active time by telephone, emails and face-to-face interactions, from early in the morning till late. It has not always been easy. And driven by his strive for excellence, it was never his goal, nor his intention, to please everybody. The development of the meetings and the meeting sustainability were always in his mind. And whatever was needed in his opinion, these goals were on his to do list. His outstanding effort has been recognised by many. Baden Württemberg and Bavaria, the 2 German states originally involved in the meetings, with Lindau and Mainau Island as the base, honoured your engagement with their Order of Merit. Last year, and Minister Wanka mentioned it, our president, the German President, awarded you with this high ranking Knight Commanders Cross. Just a few minutes ago, Countess Bettina paid tribute on behalf of the Council, with a newly created individual honour shaped to your exceptional performance. In a few minutes, Jürgen Kluge will do so on behalf of the board of the Foundation. Tomorrow, the City of Lindau will pay tribute to your dedication and your uncountable achievements, not least the renovation of the Inselhalle and the Wellermann contribution of the Free State of Bavaria. And now, Thomas Ellerbeck and I, the 2 of us, are just in-between. We are, even though a bit younger in age, longer serving to the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings. And, indeed, the last colleagues in office from your very first beginning in 2000. Therefore, it is our sincere desire to add a few words to this course of praise. But, what else could we say, make or give to you? We cannot name a star on your behalf, nor a fellowship programme or a building. Dear Wolfgang, you can easily be disquieting as an enabler. Just to name one typical gesture of yours, you developed over the years to perfection in business, and with Monica at your side as a donor, was to enable and to support the publication of books you believed in. A habit for some, a bit out of time or old fashioned in the 21st e-century for others, an epitome of caring support to such. Dear Wolfgang, it is with this in mind that we proudly dedicate 2 projects to you today. Both are truly unique. Both reflect your commitment to excellence. And both have benefited a great deal from your support and personal engagement. With this we salute you, and acknowledge your service to the Lindau Meetings. And now I hand over to Thomas for the first one. Wolfgang, the younger one, the Sketches of Science, is a touring exhibition, presently on the display of the Nobel Museum in Stockholm. And in this project, the science photographer, Volker Steger, captures Nobel Laureate’s ideas, solutions, or inventions, that are honoured with a Nobel Prize, with regard to the benefit for mankind drawn by the laureates themselves. So far, about 90 laureates are personally involved. And when Volker Steger has completed 100 pictures, we will publish a science book of art with 100 Nobel ideas and descriptive text of today’s moderator, Adam Smith. One discipline, so far missing in this project, was the discipline of Economics. And today, we have the very special pleasure to present to you a copy of the sketch. The most senior Nobel economist, Bob Solow, you saw him in the film before, especially made it very recently for this project, to include the discipline, dear Wolfgang, that is probably closest to your heart. I will give you now the first picture, and I hope you will have a lot of fun. And the second project to name is part of Lindau’s core activities, and project since you joined in mid-2000. It’s the ongoing portrait project, Nobel Laureates photographed by Peter Badge. Peter Badge, who travels the world for Lindau to portrait all living Laureates, and thank you for you sitting down there, being part of it. His co-author Sandra Zarrinbal documented a number of impressive encounters, ingenious ones around the meetings, that take place for the portraiture in a book, Ingenious Encounters. For the occasion of you leaving the control centre of the Lindau Meetings, we have published a special edition in English - so that also the laureates can read it. Dedicated to you and for all guests of this year’s meeting, to be picked up after the opening, leaving the theatre. We hope, you and all our guests will enjoy the insights in the project. A loving description of members of the rare species of Nobel Laureates, and the fond memory of Lindau as well as a wonderful reading. The copies of this special edition are marked, And again, to me now. Dear Wolfgang, handing over the picture and the very first copy of this special edition of these Ingenious Encounters to you, we thank you warmly for a long, jointly-made journey and do hope, both presents will recall many wonderful memories over the last 15 years, and allow me 2 or 3 personal comments. Because we both probably have known each other for a very, very long time - I think now nearly 20 years. When I started, in 1999, my voluntary work on the Council and had my first meeting in Brussels, I came back to our Munich office and talked to President Herzog about the Lindau Meetings and the positioning, the governance structures, and all those things. President Herzog suggested to think about founding a foundation. And he was strongly committed to these meetings. He was strongly committed to late Count Lennart and to Countess Sonja. And he was very interested that the meetings will have a future in a very sustainable way. And then to start, well, we started the discussions about a foundation with you. And, well, Wolfgang, probably it’s not about process, it’s much about speed. I remember the first talks, I think it was in August or September. And the first presentations to Countess Sonja have been in January. So it was very speedy. And it was the start of a great journey. It was really close working together. But it’s not only working together. I think we were becoming truly friends. And I think this is important for the kind of work we have in our meetings, in the Council, and also in the Foundation. And I think for us it was a privilege to work with you, to have these challenging times. And to see today the achievements which have been mentioned by Minister Wanka a few minutes ago. And, well, I think learning from you and knowing your passion for excellence, this is a role model. I think this is a role model for all of us in the meetings, for the young people, but also for me personally. Thank you very much. (Applause) You all realise, Wolfgang Schürer is very special to the Lindau Meetings, and to the Foundation for the Lindau Meetings. And therefore, I now welcome the new chairman of the board, Jürgen Kluge, to also address you, Professor Schürer. Excellencies, ladies and gentleman. Much is said but not by everybody, so I will address you. On behalf of the board of the Foundation, I want to thank Wolfgang Schürer for his long-standing commitment for the Lindau Meeting. Dear Professor Schürer, in January I have succeeded you in the office as chairman of the board of directors. And I can assure you that the Foundation will try hard to stay true to the principles that you have implemented, and to keep up with the very high standards you have established. But before I honour you, let me briefly introduce myself and say a few more personal words to Wolfgang. I am a PhD in Physics. So I have been one of you guys long ago. Then I became a management consultant, and a German manager. I teach mechanical engineering, so I’m more a practical guy. Some tell me, I am the perfect hybrid between physics and management. Others say, I am the missing link between human and monkey. (Laughter) But that’s how physicists see managers from time to time, and vice versa. To honour my predecessor, much was said and everything is true. I thought, being a physicist myself, Wolfgang Schürer in the Physics Meeting, he is a physics miracle. There is a famous saying, quoting Karl Kraus, the Austrian author, That, politically incorrect, translates into, ‘When the sun of culture stands low, even dwarfs cast long shadows.’ This is especially not true for Wolfgang Schürer. He casts very long shadows - even in the brightest midday sun of hundreds of Nobel Laureates. So a physics' miracle. The second miracle, or his achievement: My fellow citizen, Georg Simon Ohm, you might know him, he invented the laws of resistance. Wolfgang Schürer is the inventor of connectivity. He is an early applicant of Metcalfe’s law: the value of network scales with N times N minus 1. And he brought together zillions of people. So, zillions squared is quite a high number - second achievement. Third achievement: That’s a quote often attributed to Newton, but I’m afraid it’s a little bit older, from the 12th century, Bernard of Chartres said it: "If we can see further, it’s by standing on the shoulders of giants." Wolfgang Schürer has been one of those giants. And I am happy to see a little bit further - at least I hope so. So now, to the official honouring, let me read that one: Ever since you assumed responsibility for the cause of the Lindau Meetings in 2000, you have been an exemplary trustee in pursuing excellence as guideline for superior quality, and innovation in the work of the Foundation, and in refining a unique brand. Your leadership regarding philanthropic initiatives has enabled young pioneering scientists to make a difference in their fields, to serve society at large and help make the world a better place. Your initiative to launch educational programmes and thus providing mutual inspiration and foster curiosity, creativity and learning in the multi-generational experience for laureates of today and tomorrow, was a milestone of our mission education. Dear Professor Schürer, dear Wolfgang, it’s my privilege to announce that, in recognition of your exemplary dedication and relentless efforts, the board has unanimously decided to appoint you as honorary chairman. (Applause) Congratulations - and frankly, you'll never walk alone. He is always a team player. And his first team mate is Monica. Could you please join me at the stage - because she is the biggest part of Wolfgang Schürer’s success, and his brighter side. Monica. (Applause) So this is the honorary chairman document. Congratulations. (Applause) Now it’s your turn, I guess, Wolfgang. So please, Professor Schürer, may I invite you to give your farewell address. Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to share with you a moment prior to the farewell address. I wish to say thank you twice. Firstly, for the Lennart Bernadotte Medal and the appointment as honorary chairman of the Foundation. And secondly, for allowing me to feel, for a moment, I have joined the community of scientists. I can now echo the immortal words of Isaac Newton. What dare I say over the past 15 years? I have felt the heavy weight of many giants upon my shoulders. Today recognises the hard work of many who supported me in my endeavours. And therefore, I would like to share this moment with all of you and very many people who could not be here today. My appreciation goes to all involved, not least the executive secretariat for impressive accomplishments over the years. You became an engine that moves us forward - if I might say after this induction, 'us' again. Let me also thank you with regard to endowment partners, benefactors, academic partners. And very especially to the BMBF, represented by Minister Wanka - and if I heard correctly, State Secretary Quennet-Thielen, and the Free State of Bavaria. There are very many people who deserve a special word of thanks. And allow me, in regard to the time slot, 15 minutes for 15 years, to mention very, very few. It is Anders Bárány first. Anders has been enabling all of us to translate the idea of the Mediatheque into the real project. Anders, many thanks. To Doctor Schön who served for many years in the Staatskanzlei in Munich. And to a gentleman who cannot be here but is in England presently, Richard Asquith, who served for very many years in the science department at the Commission. And for all the laureates - I could share stories, but I would like to thank one very special, it’s Aaron. Aaron, to somehow correctly quote you, "It’s a physics meeting and it’s not my discipline." But you came - thank you. Special thanks at the very end to my personal assistant, Gabriela Hauser, and the members of my team. She unerringly ensured that I’ve been at the right place at the right time over the past 15 years. So thanks to all of you. (Applause) Countess Bettina and the colleagues in the Council and in the Foundation board graciously granted me 15 minutes to share some remarks and thoughts. I entitle them 'Benefiting mankind. Inspiring care for future generations'. As I stand here on this stage, Countess Bettina already addressed it, the past is evoked. This theatre hosted the early Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings. And one can imagine Max Born sitting here, uncomfortably, across from Werner Heisenberg, respecting his science but not his values. A letter in his breast pocket from Albert Einstein, chastising Born for his return to Germany. Great drama, but terse dialogue for the young researchers attending the very early meetings. This milieu of awkwardness, uncertainty, and trepidation emulates my own path to intergenerational dialogue. I was born 1946, just after World War II, in Germany, as an iron curtain was being hung across Europe. My generation inherited a divided country - not just by borders but by age. We could not look to our elders for guidance, as they were responsible for this devastation. We inherited shame without the tools, or language, to grapple with this scale of moral devastation. We had no common ground. Only through the writings of philosophers and theologians such as Paul Tillich's ‘The Courage to Be’, and Reinhold Niebuhr’s ‘The Self and the Dramas of History’ did we begin to have a language to commence a journey to discourse. And a path to value our lives, question authority and appreciate the universal values of humanity. Yet there are different ways to engage our elders and the institutions. In Paris, in 1968, students responded by protesting for change in a confrontational manner - and not only in Paris. But bridges had to be rebuilt, bridges spanning different nations, genders, ethnicities, religions and ages. At the Hochschule St. Gallen, just across the lake in Switzerland, where I studied, I believed students should not protest violently to overthrow institutions, but rather address issues and engage for change. We created the International Student Symposium in 1969, to start a dialogue with politicians, scientists, captains of industry. So they would understand the values of a younger generation. And so we could understand the context and rationale of their decision making. This urge to understand continued through my work and studies. Though, as I grew older, I had to remind myself, no longer did I represent the voice of youth. But indeed had become an elder endeavouring to be a sounding board. Through my experiences I learned about mentorship. Being a mentor, or being mentored, is not an active passive relationship. It is one that evolves, evolves through to and fro: short chats, conversations, frustrations, differences of opinions, arguments and many, many shared moments of failure - and a few of achievement. Time builds trust and the path to genuine communication. A bond, a friendship and an affection for the interlocutor. Listening to voices, tuned to a different time, allows us that one's perception to slowly shift and move from a perspective of self, selfishness to a more inclusive thinking, and a new level of common values. Stimulating concern is imperative as we enter the Anthropocene, where human actions influence the ecosystem and the health of our planet. No longer just inhabitants of the planet, we are now its guardians. This brings upon us a responsibility of a magnitude we have never faced before, for the wellbeing of the future. The paradox of modernity is that we have greater knowledge than ever before. Yet the incentives for focusing on the immediate future are so strong - expediency, opinion polls, social media, status, profits. We act in what we perceive as our short-term interest. The gravity of the short-term lowers our time horizons. Standing here now on the stage the future provokes, the plot has not been written, the characters are yet to emerge. How can we invest ourselves in this future? Science shows us how to converse with the future. Curiosity is the driving force, the aspiration to look beyond the boundaries of what we know as of today. Scientists embark on a voyage into the unknown, pushing the frontiers ever further. They are covering new ground, widening our understanding of the world. In this endeavour, the scientific method serves as a compass to stay on course. An example is Charles Keeling. Doctor Keeling started measuring dioxide in carbon levels in the atmosphere in Mauna Loa, Hawaii, in 1957. And over the course of a life’s work he changed our perception of humanity's connection with our planet. The integrity of his scientific method meant doubters were quietened. Keeling’s science created the first urgency of the now, to act upon climate change. Moreover, his science proved a catalyst for inventions in lower carbon emission products, technology, IT. Knowledge and know-how combined in sectors such as renewable energies, energy storage, building, and transport. The Nobel Prize is an instrument which allows us to recalibrate - to recalibrate as well our time horizons. As you know, the prize is awarded to those who ‘shall have conferred the greatest benefit of mankind’. How do we calibrate the point in time, when to measure the greatest benefit? Which generation is entitled to be the recipient of this benefit? All future generations are entitled to this benefit. Applying this broader clause today, within the context of the Anthropocene, shifts the beneficiaries as responsibilities to mankind become entwined with the planet. And in this process extends the timeframe by which we measure the benefit. Responsibilities to humankind are inseparately entwined with the planet. The Lindau Meetings have a rich tradition of intergenerational dialogue and inspiring care. Discussions, referred to by Countess Bettina, with Albert Schweitzer in 1954, led to the launching of the Mainau Declaration to "We think the humanitarian side of science." At Lindau, in 1993, Rita Levi-Montalcini presented her pledge for a Magna Carta of duties. Last year, a group of Nobel Laureates led by Brian Schmidt, followed suit with their Mainau Declaration on Climate Change. I should add, this very declaration highlights the virtuous circle of scientific process. The confidence arising from the validation of science, such as Doctor Keeling’s findings, allows authority to be challenged, and policies changed. As stakeholders know, they deal with facts rather than misattributed faith. The main characteristics of the Lindau Meetings of today were forged by Count Lennart, Doctor Hein and Doctor Parade. Count Lennart understood, science can serve as a vehicle for understanding. He believed, scientific dialogue could benefit humankind. His vision though was broader. He wanted Lindau participants to be trustees for principles of science beyond the meetings. This idea of trusteeship is the rational of the Lindau Meetings, it's principle of accepting and sharing responsibilities over generations for the benefit of a noble cause, inspiring care for generations yet to be. Now standing here at this stage, I say farewell. If the first bookend of my life’s journey was the university in St. Gallen, the second bookend has been this community here in Lindau. You have inspired me. And, together, ensured that we transcend what we thought we could achieve. I have been humbled by the responsibility to continue, with my colleagues, Count Lennart’s legacy these past 15 years. I took pride in broadening our dialogue by strengthening links with the international scientific community. The Lindau Meetings have evolved from a European forum to aa global hub of exchange - as you kindly described, Minister Wanka. Learning to understand different approaches reminds us of our own limitations, and thus broadens our own view. We have been conscious, only a few can exchange thoughts face to face - you are the few for this year. For it being meaningful to enhance the outreach, we developed the mission education programme with the gracious support of the ministry. I hope that this educational material inspires scientists of tomorrow as much as school children of today. And Lindau alumni are now encouraged to become more active. In particular, I am grateful to Countess Bettina who, having grown up with the Lindau Meetings as a backdrop of her childhood, is the personification of intergenerational dialogue. You are the guardian spirit of the Lindau Meetings. I am also grateful to all colleagues, past and present, and, allow me to say, especially the Swedish colleagues, for assuming as well as carrying on responsibility for the Lindau Meetings. A special thanks to Thomas Ellerbeck and Nikolaus Turner as they were colleagues from the outset and provided me with a special surprise. I wish you all well on the next leg of the journey. Indeed, Professor Nowotny, the new vice chair of the Lindau Council, encourages us to ‘embrace uncertainty and thrive on its cusp’. This is the zest for life. And she has just recently written a book about this very topic. So as food for thought, I leave for the young researchers copies of her recent book, The Cunning of Uncertainty, which will be available by the end of the coming week. However, all efforts would be in vain without the dedication of the Nobel Laureates present here, and very many not present here, in the year of the Physics Meeting. You are investing your precious time, your intellect, and your personality for the benefit of the next generation of scientists. Having already gifted science that has benefited us, you are now educating us. All of us are deeply indebted to you for this second helping. My last words are for the young researchers: Follow Countess Bettina’s advice and actively partake in the laureates invitations to dialogue and exchange ideas. Their achievements and their character serve as an inspiration. But engaging, engaging with them, reminds us that laureates are human too. And, as Klas Kärre referred to, how many, many, many efforts it takes to come to the successful experiment and finding. The gatherings should also be a catalyst for internal dialogue. You might learn to think about an issue afresh, or ponder how to apply science to build a better society. When you return to your labs or your universities, digest, absorb, reflect and ruminate on the discussions. And begin to determine new actions or directions in your lives. With a special recognition of the difficult role female scientists have as scientists and mothers. So I leave you with one suggestion: During the discussions in the coming days, if you spot a vacant chair, don’t think it’s empty. Imagine this empty chair is occupied by a member of a generation yet to come. And think what she or he would like to inherit from you. For we are guardians of the future. Thank you. (Applause) It’s hard to follow that. But we have just a very few minutes for conversation. And I think it would be nice just to talk briefly. So there was so much contained in that. I dearly hope that the audience have the chance to review it at their leisure after this Opening Ceremony is finished. Because there was so many different themes that people should dwell on. The Mediatheque is where to find it, precisely. Please do all go and view it again, at least once. I was extremely struck by this image of science as an enabler of a conversation with the future, and the responsibility that brings. It’s so easy to get caught up, as you were saying, in the here and now. And the question of, How can I get my paper published in the best journal? Or how shall I get my next job? But, I mean, it’s distilling just one message from what you said. But you are really calling for people to live up to the responsibility of what science provides for them. Do you want to say anything more on that? I think there is no general recipe. But what I hope and wish is that you find either the embodiment by an individual, or by a text, which helps you as a normative compass. Because I think, at the end of the day, the normative compass is what makes the difference, and not the technicality. And one other thing you referred to was 'intergenerational dialogue', which is, of course, such an important part of this meeting. But that word 'dialogue', I think, is important. Because the Lindau Meetings are not a Q&A session where young people ask laureates questions and get answers. But it is a real dialogue you’re intending between the young and the older generations. Well for this I can only say thank you very much to you and your predecessors in the past 14 years. I have had endless conversations with you. I have had hundreds of email exchanges with you. And the trust, in a way, has been like the giants on the shoulders: it weighs, but it inspires. And this is what I will take back home from the past 15 years. Thanks to you to I learned, and I could somehow hope that I could grapple a little bit and contribute here and there. Thank you. Countess Bettina, can I just ask you about this question of responsibility. I mean you’ve grown up with the Lindau Meetings. You’ve seen many thousands of young scientists come through these. What do you feel is the responsibility on the shoulders of the young scientists who are here? Well, actually, it’s this first word on top of our logo: the inspiration, inspire. We hope to inspire in this meeting also to feel the responsibility. And this is clearly something that everybody has to find for themselves and to decide for themselves. But it was a wonderful picture you drew with the vacant chair, imagining that somebody from a generation to come is sitting there, and feeling that there is a responsibility towards this next generation. Wasn’t that a lovely picture? And it also shows that you don’t have to have conversations with somebody there. You could have conversations in your imagination. And those, I guess, you, most of all, would say that those are of primary importance. And talking of 'intergenerational'. You’re the next generation of leadership at the Lindau Meetings. So how do you feel about this question? Do you feel any differently about the responsibilities of the people coming to the meetings? Well, I will leave that for the young scientists. There is no free lunch or dinner. We expect you to go home in your own countries and preach and inspire your younger students in your working groups. And then we want to invite you back - but only if you are a Nobel Laureate. So I’m very sorry for that. But you only can participate once. That’s now. Make the most out of it, enjoy the week. And when you are back, be ambassadors of Lindau. And as alumni of the Lindau Meeting, please give us your help and your support. That’s your duty. Beautifully said, thank you. Thank you all. (Applause) So, in a short while we’re going to have a slight change of pace. And we’re going to meet Brian Malow, who is billed, as you will see from your programmes, as Earth’s Premier Science Comedian. And I think he is also going to tell us something about how we tell the stories of our science to those around us. But I’ll leave you to discover for yourselves what Brian is all about. Before that I’m very pleased to welcome back our musicians who are going to give us more of the Trout Quintet. Good evening.Hello, how are you doing? Well I’d like to thank all my opening acts, the Nobel Laureates, the Countess, the President of Austria. And I wanted to mention one thing, that I’m surprised no one mentioned before, perhaps out of modesty. But we all know that Germany is a world leader in renewable energy, so maybe you just take this for granted. But as an American, I think it’s wonderful that everything here, this entire week, everything you see, the lights, the microphones, computers, projectors, wifi, air conditioning - it’s all being powered using only recycled electrons. No electrons will be created or destroyed at this meeting. I think I can say what with a certain amount of certainty. And what an incredible week it’s going to be. I only learned last night that Werner Heisenberg attended 15 of these meetings. So that was an endothermic joke. It required the addition of a little energy from you, apparently. Alfred Nobel, of course, the Nobel Prize is named for Alfred Nobel because he originally funded the prizes. Using the fortune that he made from his invention of dynamite. And the significance of dynamite is that it was the first relatively stable, and thus usable, form of nitroglycerine. And at the time there were many other people working on similar solutions. But he was the first to survive the R&D phase. So they’re called the Nobel prizes. And really looking out at this impressive audience, I’ve got to say, I’m a little intimidated. I am not a scientist. I’m not a doctor. I play one in the broken dreams of my parents - thanks for laughing. Technically, that was not a joke. But I have jokes. If you want jokes I could tell you I used to be an astronomer, but I got stuck on the day shift which sucks. No offence to solar astronomers, radio astronomers. But, you know, I thought about becoming a scientist. But apparently that’s not good enough. You have to actually do a little bit more work than that. I was always a curious kid - at least that’s what the neighbours said. I think they meant well. And I’m still curious. I never lost that. I’m not a kid anymore. I already had a birthday this year which I know doesn’t make me special in any way. We’re all getting older at about the same rate. Unless you drive really fast. That’s a special relativity joke for the non-scientists in the room here in the land of Einstein. So I just hope for myself that I age gracefully. I have grey hair, I’ve had grey hair for years. I don’t care. In fact, I hope it goes all grey and then I hope it goes blue and then ultraviolet, just naturally. In fact, that’s what I’ll say if I lose my hair. I’m not bald, I have hair. It’s just outside your visible spectrum. But I think no matter how old I get, I haven’t mastered human relationships – probably one of the only things harder than physics, interpersonal relationships. Women have passed through my life like exotic particles through a cloud chamber, leaving only vapour trails for me to study for clues to their nature. I know some of you are going that, wasn’t even a joke, it was like a poem or something. Does he know that? Why can’t it be both, a little joke, poetry duality? You know these are all peer review jokes by the way. I should have said that upfront. My ex-girlfriend was a lot shorter than me. I’m not very tall. Don’t be fooled. I’m up on a stage and you’re sitting down. I’m not really this tall. But she was a lot shorter than me. In fact, the first time I saw her, I thought she was further away than she actually was. I saw a movie recently with my friend Chuck. I don’t like seeing movies with Chuck because he always has to sit in the front row. Because he thinks he gets to see the movie before anybody else. And you can’t argue with him because he always has the same last word. The speed of light is finite, Brian. And it’s true, the speed of light is finite, but it’s very fast. Does anyone here happen to know the speed of light? Go ahead, shout it out. Oh I’m sorry, I thought I mentioned that I’m an American, was that metric that you just - whatever you just said, was that, yeah? So, I’m an American, we can’t really comprehend these convenient units of 10. That makes it easier for the father of the internet maybe. So, yeah, but here’s what I told Chuck. I said, look if you had a theatre 186,000 miles long - that’s the number I was looking for, 186,000 miles per second. And if you had a theatre 186,000 miles long, you would only see the movie one second before the guy in the last row. And he said, yeah, but you’d hear it a week and a half before him. And I did do the math for that joke by the way. (Applause) I hope that wasn’t out of surprise that a comedian could have rudimentary mathematical abilities. You know what’s funny. One thing I like about that joke is comedians like laughter more than anything. I should have totally said that upfront. But clapping is another thing we get that we also like. But I sometimes with jokes, like that speed of light joke, I found I get this other reaction sometimes that I just have to appreciate and take as a compliment. Sometimes I’ll tell a joke like that and I look out. And I'll see someone and they’re sort of thinking, kind of internal. And then they’ll nod their head a little bit because they found the joke sound. Not necessarily funny, not even relevant if it was funny. Just the joke is, yeah the joke is sound, carry on, comedian. Yeah, you probably double check it when you get home. So I did, as Adam mentioned, I wanted to say something about in the spirit of this meeting, about inspiration and connecting. I wanted to say something about science communication and I wanted to tell you a story that I heard Richard Feynman say. There’s audio bit, you can find this online. And he told this story about how his father taught him so much. And that when he was a young boy, he would be sitting on his father’s lap as his father read from the encyclopaedia. And maybe he would read this entry about a dinosaur. And he would say this dinosaur attained a length of so many feet. And he would stop and he would say, you know what that means. That means that if this dinosaur was in our front yard and you looked out your bedroom on the second floor, you would be looking it right in the face. So he would translate these facts into what they really mean. And he said he has the same disease, that he does the same thing. That any time he reads something, he’s compelled to translate it into what it really means. And that resonated with me. It resonated with me as a comedian. and as a science communicator. And I hope it will resonate with you. And I’ll give you a couple of examples of what that means to me. For instance, the international space station orbits the earth at over 17,000 miles per hour. And sure that sounds fast. But that’s a number that’s a little outside our daily experience. So I like to say that it’s actually almost 5 miles per second. And that means that if you were in space, and the international space station, which is the size of a football field – American football, the kind that you don’t use your feet for. If you were in space and the international space station went by you, 1 second later it would be 5 miles away. I think that is way more compelling than just saying 17,000 miles an hour. Now, another example I think about is Pangaea. Pangaea, there was a time, a couple of hundred million years ago, when instead of all our separate continents, we had actually one land mass. So what that means to me is that international travel was really easy. About as easy as living in Europe right now, I guess. You don’t have any, as an American that’s significant to me. And I think my favourite example right now is this. How many people here know that birds are dinosaurs? By applause - do you know that? Ok, so this is not my opinion. This is, taxonomically, birds are now categorised as dinosaurs. They are avian tetrapod dinosaurs. So they were sauropods. There were tetrapod’s like T-Rex and Velociraptor. And birds existed before the extinction event some 65 million years ago. There were already birds. They are avian tetrapod dinosaurs. So dinosaurs are not extinct. They’re not extinct by a long shot. There are 10,000 species of living dinosaurs. They’re on every continent - and an incredible variety. And just think about this: here’s how embedded in our lives and culture they are. Most mornings, when I first wake up, the first thing I hear is the cries of dinosaurs outside my dwelling. I get up, maybe I have dinosaur eggs for breakfast. I go out to my car and a dinosaur has desecrated my car. It looks like more than one dinosaur did it, it looked a gaggle of dinosaurs, a parliament, a murder of dinosaurs has desecrated my car. Dinosaurs pooping on buildings is such a significant problem, that we have an entire industry that makes countermeasures to fight it. You know, those spiky things - anyone know what they’re called? I had to look it up: they’re called 'bird control spikes' or 'pigeon control spikes', if you want to get specific. So that’s, I mean, that’s how prevalent they are in our culture. They’re ruining buildings. And just in the United States, every state has a state bird. Well, what’s a state dinosaur? It is, the bald eagle of the United States is a dinosaur. It’s on our money and everything. The Beatle song, 'Black Bird Singing in the Dead of Night' - that’s a song about a dinosaur. So is 'Free Bird'. Do you know any of these songs? Is the Beatles reaching a little too far back for you? Look at the variety we have, 10,000 species of living dinosaurs. There are only 5,400 species of mammals. They’re on every continent, as I said. We’ve got giant condors with an incredible wingspan. We have humming birds, these amazing little machines. We have giant flightless ostriches and emus. And we have penguins that can dive 1,000 feet under water. We have birds of prey. We have carrion eaters. We have so many songbirds, singing dinosaurs. Parrots are talking dinosaurs. Corvids are a group of dinosaurs that are clever tool using dinosaurs. That should worry you a little. Alfred Hitchcock’s movie The Birds preceded Jurassic Park by decades, and was a terrifying dinosaur movie. I can go on endlessly. I’ll just say that once a year in America, on Thanksgiving, almost every non-vegetarian in America eats the same dinosaur for dinner. And Colonel Sanders, Kentucky Fried Chicken Colonel Sanders built an empire on his special recipe for fried dinosaur parts in a bucket. So we know what dinosaur tasted like. It tastes like chicken. And dove and pheasant and geese. So dinosaurs are very much with us. And so I hope that you’ll take Feynman’s words to heart and think about that. And when you think about talking to people about your science, communicating your science, that you tell us what it really means. And I’m going to be here for a few days walking around with a video camera. And if you want to tell me what your science really means, I want to hear about it. So I’m going to leave you now with a quotation that probably everyone in here has heard. But I think it’s remarkable and I think it bears repeating. Isaac Newton once said, "If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants." It’s astonishing that of all people Isaac Newton, inventor of gravity, universally hailed as perhaps the greatest scientific mind that ever walked the earth, believed in giants. It’s shocking. But seriously, I really do love what that says about science: that science, it’s a process. It’s not a collection of facts gathered in books to be memorised for tests. It is a living process, and that each generation benefits from the generations that came before. It’s like a relay race: each generation carries the baton as far as they can, and hands it off to the next generation. And they carry it as far as they can and hand it off. And this is happening simultaneously in a myriad of directions, in every field of human endeavour. And, you know, years ago we found ourselves conscious beings on an apparently flat earth. With a giant brilliant sun orbiting our world during the day. And at night these tiny points of light also circling the earth. What could be more obvious than that? But in generations of careful observation and thorough plotting detective work that would make Sherlock Holms proud, we’ve actually pieced together this amazing story. This 13.7 billion year history of an evolving universe, that still surprises us and astounds us, and confounds us. And yet, down here in this gravity well, what in our modern culture, what do we tend to celebrate the most? What do we apparently value? We have movie stars and rock stars and sport stars and reality-TV stars. But what about the actual stars? And what about reality? I mean, we wouldn’t even be able to celebrate any of those things the way we do, if it weren’t for the science and the engineering behind these things. Like we wouldn’t have live television broadcast from anywhere in the world, ith fancy graphics and slow motion and instant replays. We have streaming video in the palm of your hand, wirelessly. Thanks to, in part, to networks of satellites - tiny points of light that we placed in the sky. And we have stadiums that can hold 100,000 people eating hot dogs. Lasers are just cool. All of this incredible technology indistinguishable from magic, but it's science. So I am so pleased and honoured to be here and to be able to share some of this with you. To be able to talk about science, to celebrate science, and to witness this interaction. And this part of the scientific process. And this, not quite the passing of the baton, but the guiding of one generation to a younger generation. I think you’re going to remember this week for the rest of your life. And I hope, it inspires you to continue this relay race. And that you always remember what a special endeavour this is, to continue to expand human knowledge of the universe. Because that’s what it really means to be a scientist. Thank you and good night. (Applause) Thank you so much, Brian. I just wanted to ask you one thing. I’m very struck by your description of yourself as Earth’s Premier Science Comedian. It kind of leaves the option that there might be other premier science comedians out there somewhere. I think that’s only fair, yeah. I suppose humour is universal so, you know, could be out there somewhere. It’s been a pleasure meeting you, thank you. (Applause) So that’s pretty much it. We’re going to close with a little bit more music. And just before that it only remains for me to wish you all a most wonderful week, connecting with each other, educating each other, and inspiring each other. And I look forward to seeing you all in Austria tomorrow evening - assuming they still let me in. (Laughter) Thank you. (Applause)

Opening Ceremony (2016)

Opening Ceremony of the 66th Lindau Nobel Lauerate Meeting

Opening Ceremony (2016)

Opening Ceremony of the 66th Lindau Nobel Lauerate Meeting

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