No, 2001/158 of the 28.09.2001
Lichtenberger awarded honorary doctor's degree
Prof. Dr. Dr. h. c. Elisabeth Lichtenberger
Today, the evening before
the 53rd Conference of German Geographers in Leipzig, an honorary doctor's degree
was conferred upon Professor Dr. Dr. Ms. Elisabeth Lichtenberger, Vienna, by the
Faculty of Physics and Geosciences of the University of Leipzig
Time: 28.09.2001, 4 p.m.
In her laudatory speech, Professor Ms. Helga Schmidt of the Institute of Geography of the University of Leipzig, acknowledged Ms Lichtenberger as an distinguished personality in European geography having significantly influenced the development of her discipline, particularly by her inspirational research in the fields of urban and regional geography. The wide range of topics of Lichtenberger's more than 20 books and 220 publications was mentioned: from cultural landscapes studies to regional, especially Alpine, research and to questions of political geography and research on the geography of the future around a substantial core of urban studies. At the subsequent Conference Lichtenberger would deliver the central lecture on "Why does society need cities?" In the next few days, moreover, her new book " Die Stadt; Von der Polis zur Metropolis." will appear.
Particularly deserving mention are the valuable work done by Lichtenberger from 1972 to 1995 as Professor of Geography at the Institute of Geography and Regional Research of the University of Vienna, where she established the special field of Applied Geography, Area Studies and Spatial Development, in addition to founding the Institute for Urban and Regional Research at the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna.
The honorary doctor's degree was also a token of recognition for Lichtenberger's long-standing good contacts with Leipzig University. Even before 1989, she had enabled Leipzig geographers to spend research time in Vienna and countered their isolation by organizing joint workshops. Following the demise of the GDR, Lichtenberger actively supported the re-establishment of the geographical sciences at the time-honoured location of Leipzig, Five years ago the Institute of Geography of the University of Leipzig, which was closed in 1968 in the context of the reform of higher education in the GDR, was re-opened again. By now over 400 students have graduated from the diploma study course and, given the heavy demand, a university numerus clausus has had to be restored.