Special Science Communication Prize for Virologist Christian Drosten

  • Author: ChemistryViews.org (Photo: © Peitz/Charité)
  • Published Date: 04 May 2020
  • Source / Publisher: Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)
  • Copyright: Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA
thumbnail image: Special Science Communication Prize for Virologist Christian Drosten

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Professor Christian Drosten, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Germany, will receive a Special Award for Outstanding Science Communication in the COVID-19 pandemic from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) and the German Stifterverband.


The award recognizes Drosten's exemplary science communication during the current pandemic and carries a prize of €50,000. The virologist and coronavirus expert takes part in the popular podcast "Coronavirus Update", which is produced by the German public radio station NDR Info and explains the science behind SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 to the German public. He has also advised politicians on the COVID-19 situation.


The DFG and the Stifterverband note that Drosten has succeeded in making research the most reliable source of orientation for managing the crisis in the public’s perception. Through a clear, fact-based approach, he explains what scientists know, how they work, and what uncertainties exist. He also corrects scientifically unproven ideas, makes the limits of his own knowledge clear, and regularly points out that science involves continuously revising what we thought we knew.


Christian Drosten studied medicine at the University of Frankfurt am Main, Germany. After his graduation in 2000, he held a variety of positions at the Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine in Hamburg, Germany. In 2007, he was appointed Professor and Head of the Institute of Virology in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Bonn, Germany, before becoming director of the Institute of Virology at Charité, Berlin, in 2017. Since 2013, Drosten has been the spokesperson for the DFG Priority Programme "Ecology and Species Barriers in Emerging Viral Diseases". In 2005, he was awarded the German Federal Cross of Merit.


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