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Professor from Saarland University receives prestigious French research award

April 14, 2016

Joachim Weickert, professor of mathematics and computer science at Saarland University, is to receive the Jean Kuntzmann Prize 2016. Jean Kuntzmann, a mathematician who died in 1992, was not only a pioneer of computer science, but he also transformed the Université Grenoble Alpes and the city of Grenoble into prestigious locations of applied mathematics and information technology. Therefore, research institutes PERSYVAL-Lab and Laboratoire Jean Kuntzmann have awarded an internationally renowned, interdisciplinary research-based mathematician and computer scientist with the Jean Kuntzmann Prize every year since 2014. Joachim Weickert is considered as one of the world's leading experts on math-based image analysis.

"I am very happy about this award. It is one of most important awards in my research career so far," says Joachim Weickert, professor of mathematics and computer science at Saarland University and head of the Mathematical Image Analysis Group.

The requirements for the Jean-Kuntzmann Prize are to be an outstanding international scientist whose research is original, interdisciplinary, excellent and significant for society. Weickert recently caused a stir by using principles of nature to solve complex problems of image processing solving and computer graphics. In this way, processes occurring in osmosis, electrostatics and thermal conduction help not only to refine digital images automatically, but also to compress them in a highly efficient way. Thus, they can be reconstructed from the greatly reduced image data without visible loss. "We believe that these new methods have the potential to beat JPEG and other common standards of image compression," Weickert says.

Weickert also investigates how to teach computers to see like humans. Algorithms he has developed are used both in driving assistance systems of modern automobiles and medical imaging methods used by physicians and radiologists to examine patients.

Six years ago, the German Research Foundation awarded Joachim Weickert with the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize, one of the most prestigious and most lucrative research awards in Germany. Furthermore, Weickert is one of the most cited scientists at Saarland University.

On April 14, Professor Joachim Weickert will receive the Jean Kuntzmann Prize at 17:30 in a public ceremony at the Museum of Grenoble.
Press photos are available at

Media Inquiries:
Prof. Dr. Joachim Weickert
Mathematics and Computer Science
Tel .: 0681 302-57340
Email: weickert (at)

Gordon Bolduan
Computer science competence center Saarland
Phone: +49 681302-70741
Email: bolduan(at)

Saarland University

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