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Marsilius Spring Academy 2015

Young and old. Two phases of life under pressure of optimization

March 22-28, 2015
at the International Science Forum in Heidelberg


The life stages of childhood or adolescence and old age are currently under an especial pressure to optimize. Young people are required, more than “earlier” in their lives, to use all possible chances and potential opportunities in their lives. Old people should do everything in their capacity to not feel old or to behave as "old". The Spring Academy poses the question: Can this continue? Where there are new opportunities and lifestyle options, and where are there potential new risks? Against the background of current research in the humanities, social, and natural sciences, major problem areas will be highlighted: questions of medical enhancement, the role of "new" media, as well as identity and inter-generational relationships. Ethical and intercultural perspectives will also be discussed. The Spring Academy bases itself on the idea that a shared view of biological and psychosocial perspective of being young and being old can improve understanding for the bettering of "interference" and also for the expansion of the scope of interventions.

The participants will have the opportunity to discuss the various issues and research approaches, as well as the chance to delve into workshops with experts from different disciplines.


Prof. Dr. Romuald Brunner (child and youth psychiatry)
Prof. Dr. Hans-Werner Wahl (psychology/gerontology)


Target Audience
PhD students and young scientists of the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities, who are interested in interdisciplinary dialogue on the topic of the Marsilius Spring Academy. The number of participants is limited.
The lectures are held in German. A good knowledge of the German language is therefore expected; in the discussions, questions and input can be formulated in English. Participation, accommodation, and meals are free of charge.


Prof. Dr. Manfred Cierpka, Universitätsklinikum Heidelberg (psychotherapy)
Prof. Dr. Jens Clausen, Universität Tübingen, (ethics and history of medicine)
PD Dr. Eva-Marie Kessler, Universität Heidelberg (psychology of age)
Prof. Dr. Vera King, Universität Hamburg (educational and socializational research)
Prof. Dr. Franz Kolland, Universität Wien (social gerontology)
Prof. Dr. Klaus Lieb, Universitätsmedizin Mainz (psychiatry and psychotherapy)
Dr. Sabina Misoch, FHS St. Gallen (sociology)
Dr. Anita von Poser, Freie Universität Berlin (ethnology)
Prof. Dr. Franz Resch, Universitätsklinikum Heidelberg (child and youth psychiatry)
Prof. Dr. Cornel Sieber, Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (gerontology and geriatrics)


Applications will be accepted until December 15, 2014.
Link to the online application



Lena Eppelmann

Lina Girdziute

Editor: office
Latest Revision: 2016-05-27
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