Max Planck becomes President of the KWS

1930

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Photo: Max Planck in the 1930s, Archives of the Max Planck Society.

Max Planck was appointed President of the Kaiser Wilhelm Society in 1930. The Society was highly renowned at that time and its seven Nobel Prize winners made it one of the country’s key research institutions. Nevertheless, the 72-year-old physicist took office at a difficult time. Membership dues were in decline as a result of the global economic crisis. The Reich and Prussia were cutting their grants. Planck had formulated his quantum theory in 1900 and achieved international fame as a result. He later played an instrumental role in structuring the German science system. As secretary to the Academy of Sciences, he was tasked with helping to ensure the advancement of physics research in Berlin. He had succeeded in bringing Albert Einstein to Berlin in 1914 to head the new Kaiser Wilhelm Institute of Physics there.

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