Award-winning medicine

10 theses on medicine, research support and the philosophy of promotion

Ernst and Claere Jung were of one mind that the promotion of medical progress on the highest level is an especially meaningful and effective way of serving the public good, practicing humanity and easing suffering. This is the spirit which defines the Foundation’s work.

Special abilities deserve special recognition. TheJung Foundation for Science and Research is interested in honouring outstanding achievements with a form of appreciation which is more than just praise, it actually pays. Work that provides new insight in medicine should also pay off for the highly competent researchers responsible for it.

Rewarding and promoting free thinking. The sum awarded is comparatively quite high and is intended to provide freedom for researchers and their projects. It frees their work from economic restrictions and disciplinary influences for a certain period of time. The bestowal of the Ernst Jung Gold Medal for Medicine allows the recipient to grant a scholarship at his or her discretion. This is intended to express how valuable and important it is to ensure that the next generation is free to conduct research of their choice.

Making knowledge noticeable. The more complex and detailed medicine and its related fields are, the more important it becomes to emphasise it and ensure that new discoveries and insights are noticed. Medical awards are a good way of doing this. The review regularly shows that the Jung Foundation’s awards have highlighted groundbreaking new ideas.

Preventing misery is essential. After all, there's no better remedy in medicine than competence. Basic research certainly is expressly appreciated, but the Foundation focuses on honouring approaches which lead to clinically effective new treatment possibilities. The patient’s well-being is the guideline and benchmark.

Finding answers before the questions become urgent. The process of selecting the projects and laureates often factors in medical tasks of great consequence. It is essential to take initiative in supporting the search for solutions to problems which can develop into major issues for individual health or healthcare policy worldwide (due to demographic development, for instance).

Doing work that's not only disciplined, but interdisciplinary as well. Interdisciplinarity and creativity often play a special role in advancing understanding, aid and treatment. The Jung Foundation for Science and Research takes this into account by recurrently awarding prizes to scientists who have not (or not exclusively) studied medicine and whose qualifications or functions transcend the borders of academic disciplines, such as the borders between physics, chemistry, biology and technology.

Shaping the future at home. Favourable overall conditions in other countries often lead top talents from Germany to decide to work abroad. The Career Advancement Award offers outstanding young researchers from Germany an economically secure opportunity to return to Germany and obtain further qualifications there. This not only contributes to fighting the ‘brain drain,’ it also provides a harmonious balance to the foundation’s great internationality: the Foundation laureates hail from a total of 14 different nations, and the Foundation’s awards have been presented to recipients from seven different foreign countries.
Promoting competence is a collective responsibility. A healthy population is the ideal state for society. On one hand a utopian idea by its very nature, it is also a fascinating challenge to seek to come as close as possible to the goal. Awards encourage this endeavour, making them a form of social responsibility in practice as a contribution to improving the healthy quality of life.
Promoting research without fixating on disciplines. The Jung Foundation for Science and Research deliberately refrains from selecting subjects according to discipline. The prizes should not be awarded according to medical disciplines or be limited to a selection of them. Instead, they should be awarded based on the benefit they have already rendered or can be expected to yield: clinical relevance is the core criterion.
Human medicine means medicine which serves humans. The Jung Foundation speaks out against the common misapprehension of misinterpreting laboratory work in medical technology and other research work which appears to be far removed from the patients as being the opposite of ‘human medicine.’ Everything must be measured according to the mindset of helping and the intent to help. Wherever this mindset is present, it can be considered to be human medicine. This means that a solitary, but clinically relevant experiment conducted far off behind the scenes can still be a gesture of medical devotion and altruism.


Award ceremony 2015

The next award ceremony will be held at the Bucerius Law School in Hamburg on 8 May 2015.

Brain drain

The Jung Foundation is actively committed to combating the ‘brain drain,’ i.e. the tendency for highly qualified people to move abroad.