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June 7, 2019

Lectures of two top scientists and congratulations of the Austrian President – thus celebrated IST Austria

High-ranking visitors from politics and research celebrated 10-year anniversary this week

Ten years after its official opening in 2009, IST Austria has become one of the top research institutes of the world. This week, IST Austria organized a series of events to celebrate its anniversary and huge success over the ten last years. A festive event on June 4 marked the beginning of the series, with high-ranking visitors from politics and research including Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen, who congratulated the institute. Public lectures of two top scientists on June 5 and 6 rounded off the program of the anniversary week.

Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen and Lower Austrian State Governer Johanna Mikl-Leitner congratulating IST Austria President Thomas Henzinger

More than 300 invited guests from research, politics and economy convened on June 4 in the Raiffeisen Lecture Hall of the IST Austria campus to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the institute. “It is great to have a place like IST Austria in Austria, where national and international big shots in science come together,” stated Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen in his speech during the festive event. In his view, a research institute like IST Austria has made a miracle happen in Austria. Lower Austrian State Governor Johanna Mikl-Leitner and the President and Rector of the “Central European University” Michael Ignatieff also congratulated IST Austria President Thomas Henzinger on the impressive development of the research institute.

Paul Nurse delivering IST Lecture

On June 5, Nobel laureate Sir Paul Nurse gave a fascinating IST Lecture in front of 200 people. In his talk “Science as Revolution“ the geneticist and cell biologist argued that science can be considered the longest lasting revolution in human history. From prehistoric to present-day times, inquisitive minds have been following scientific principles to research nature. Based on rigorous thinking, experimental methods and reproducible results, science has acted as a major driver of culture and civilization.

Bernhard Schölkopf giving ÖAW-IST Lecture

On June 6, the ÖAW-IST Lecture by one of the leading computer scientists from Germany, Bernhard Schölkopf, concluded the anniversary week in a fully booked Raiffeisen Lecture Hall. In his lecture “Can Europe catch up in artificial intelligence?“ he talked about the current gold rush mentality around AI, discussing how Europe can partake in these developments by playing an active role in AI research. His final recommendation was that we need to make sure that the highest level of research in this field will continue to be performed in the open societies of Europe.


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