Knowledge Landscape, Technical Innovation and Political Order

Academic Responsibility

Univ.-Prof. phil. Drs. Hc. Armin Heinen

Chair of Modern History and its Cultures of Knowledge and Technology
RWTH Aachen

PD Dr. Ines Soldwisch

Chair of Modern History and its Cultures of Knowledge and Technology
RWTH Aachen

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Joost-Pieter Katoen

Chair of Software Modeling and Verification 
RWTH Aachen

Contact Person





Wednesday, 4:30-6:00 pm


Lecture hall HS I | Hauptgebäude
Templergraben 55
52062 Aachen


Aachen is a European city; the Charlemagne Prize is awarded here every year to prominent figures who have rendered outstanding services to European unification. European spirit can be found in many places in the city and also at RWTH Aachen University. Yet Europe is far more than a continent or the sum of many individual states. It is a diverse cultural area with a turbulent history, but also a political system that wants to compete with powers like the United States or China. This competition is conducted on different levels – politically, militarily, economically and not least in the field of science and research.

In this lecture series, the complex topic of “Europe” will be examined from different perspectives, which are oriented towards the idea of Europe as a peace order and as a knowledge society. The central questions: How was and is knowledge generated, exchanged and organised in Europe? Which political order systems existed and still exist, and how does European peacekeeping succeed? What forms of cooperation exist today in science, business and technology? What room for manoeuvre do Europeans have in view of the manifold global challenges of the 21st century?

In a first thematic block, the general perspective is addressed. This includes, for example, the developments in the culture of knowledge from the old European monasteries to the modern promotion of science and the development of political systems of order from the Congress of Vienna to the Lisbon Treaties. This is followed by a closer look at current European projects in politics, science and business. These include the European electricity grid, the planned Einstein telescope and the EU’s Horizon 2020 research programme. A panel discussion with the students is also planned on the occasion of the awarding of the Charlemagne Prize of Aachen.

Learning Outcomes

Students know the historical, political, cultural, economic and scientific dimensions of Europe. They can compare Europe with other world regions. They critically discuss the future of European cooperation and the role of Europe in the face of future global challenges.



Quo Vadis Europe?

Prof. Dr. Armin Heinen und Prof. Dr. Max Kerner
Historical Institute, RWTH Aachen University


The non-presence and failure of Europe

PD Dr. Ines Soldwisch
Historical Institute, RWTH Aachen University


Discussion with students „Europe and Technology“
Question: Can the future be solved through technology or renunciation?

Prof. Dr. Stefan Böschen und Prof. Dr. Armin Heinen/ PD Dr. Ines Soldwisch 
Human Technology Center (HumTec), Historical Institute, RWTH Aachen University


The Einstein telescope – Europe’s future in gravitational wave research

Prof. Dr. Achim Stahl
Physical Institute B


„Horizon 2020“ and European Cooperation in Computer Science and Mathematics
 Prof. Dr. Joost-Pieter Katoen and Sebastian Dornieden

Chair 2 for Computer Science and Rectorate Representative for EU Research Funding, ZHV of RWTH Aachen University, EU Application and Project Consulting, EIT-KIC


A European electricity grid as a prerequisite for a sustainable, secure energy suppl

Prof. Dr Albert Moser
 Institute for Electrical Installations and Networks, Digitalisation and Energy Economics, RWTH Aachen University


The European “Green Deal”, the Climate Policy of the EU Commission

Dr. Raphaela Kell
Institute for Political Science, RWTH Aachen University


How to write a history of Europe through the lens of technology?

Prof. Dr. Andreas Fickers
Director of the Luxembourg Centre for Contemporary and Digital History

Procedure/Working method​

Depending on the course of studies, module and examination, credit points can be achieved through participation.


Certificate of Participation (0 CP, not graded)
Questionnaire (2 CP, ungraded)
Participation in a panel discussion (3 CP)
Blog entry (4 CP)

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