Rüdiger Willems is new General Secretary of the Max Planck Society

The lawyer, who has many years of leadership experience in the Max Planck Society, is closely acquainted with research administration and national and international science policy

June 22, 2017

The Senate of the Max Planck Society, at its meeting on Thursday, June 22, 2017, confirmed Rüdiger Willems as Secretary General. The lawyer has already been holding the office on an interim basis. He had been unanimously nominated by the finding committee, who had identified a total of five women and nine men as potential candidates.

Since February, Willems has already held the position on an interim basis, after his predecessor Ludwig Kronthaler had moved on to the Humboldt-Universität Berlin as Vice President for Finance, Personnel and Technical Matters. Since 2006, Willems has been Deputy Secretary General, and has already been involved in the administrative management of Germany's leading organization for basic research for more than ten years.

 "Through his previous activities within Administrative Headquarters, Rüdiger Willems has acquired extensive knowledge and is extremely well connected within the Max Planck Society. He has already successfully represented the Max Planck Society externally on numerous occasions. This makes him the ideal candidate, and I am delighted that he has been confirmed as Secretary General today, "said Max Planck President Martin Stratmann.

The new Secretary General wants the work of the Administrative Headquarters to be science friendly, pragmatic, and correct. "The balance between social and legal conditions on the one hand, and the needs of science on the other hand, is a really exciting, satisfying, as well as an eminently important task," so Rüdiger Willems.  The new Secretary General has promised to continue to maintain and improve the exchange with the institutes and politics in order to guarantee the best possible conditions.

The Administrative Headquarters of the Max Planck Society are based in Munich and led by a Secretary General in accordance with the Max Planck Society's statutes. The Secretary General is appointed by the President on the basis of a Senate resolution. Prior to his time as Deputy General Secretary, Rüdiger Willems was head of the Personnel and Personnel Law Department from 1997 to 2006. In 1991, the lawyer, who took his second state exam in Rhineland-Palatinate in 1982, joined the Administrative Headquarters as a Head of Unit.

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