New leadership in office at Jacobs University

New leadership in office at Jacobs University
Jacobs University begins the new year with Heinz-Otto Peitgen as President and Katja Windt as Provost.

On January 1, 2013, Jacobs University’s new executive management took up office: Prof. Dr. Heinz-Otto Peitgen is the President, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and spokesman of the executive management at Jacobs University. Prof. Dr.-Ing. Katja Windt stands alongside him as second CEO and Provost responsible for the academic development of the university. They succeed Prof. Dr. Joachim Treusch, whose term as President and CEO of Jacobs University ended after more than six years on December 31, 2012.

January 3, 2013

In June 2012, the internationally renowned mathematician and multiple award-winning scientist and entrepreneur Heinz-Otto Peitgen was elected president by the Jacobs University Board of Governors. As one of the founding fathers of Jacobs University, who already had been a member of the university’s planning committee in 1998, and as a longstanding member of the university’s board of governors, Prof. Peitgen has strong ties to the university for more than 15 years.

Furthermore, since the beginning of the year, the university’s executive management is supported by a management board. Board members, alongside Prof. Peitgen and Prof. Windt, are Chief Operating Officer Dr. Thorsten Thiel and Chief Financial Officer Marc Janke. After successfully focusing on Jacobs University’s academic profile, the most important task of the newly positioned extended leadership will be to strengthen the university’s market position and its sustainable financial development.

Prof. Dr. Heinz-Otto Peitgen, Jacobs University President
The career of Jacobs University’s new president Heinz-Otto Peitgen is characterized by an extraordinarily successful combination of science and business experience. Peitgen received his habilitation in Mathematics at the University of Bonn in 1977 and was awarded a professorship in mathematics at the University of Bremen in the same year. There, he played a decisive role in the creation and development of the Institute for Dynamic Systems.

In 1992, Heinz-Otto Peitgen became the director of the Center of Complex Systems and Visualization (CeVis) at the University of Bremen. Three years later, in 1995, he founded the non-profit MeVis Research GmbH, which was transformed into an institute of the Fraunhofer Society under the name “Fraunhofer Institute for Medical Image Computing MEVIS” in 2009. In 1997, Peitgen set up a MeVis-spin-off company together with some of his colleagues: MeVis Medical Solutions AG (MMS) has been listed at the German stock market since 2007. The company is one of the world’s leading independent producers of software products for diagnosis of breast and lung cancer and offers services in liver surgery. On October 1, 2012, Peitgen left Fraunhofer MEVIS to devote himself to his new tasks at hand.

Prof. Peitgen has received numerous academic honors and awards. He is a member of the Academy of Science in Göttingen and of the European Academy of Sciences and Arts, and has held visiting professorships at universities in Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Italy, and the USA, amongst others at Florida Atlantic University from 1991 to 2012 as Professor of Mathematics and Bio-medical Sciences. In 1996, Peitgen was awarded the Federal Cross of Merit First Class of the Federal Republic of Germany by Roman Herzog, Germany’s Federal President at the time.

Prof. Dr. Katja Windt, Jacobs University Provost
Katja Windt has been at Jacobs University since 2008, when she took on the professorship in global productions logistics endowed by Bremen-based logistics entrepreneur Bernd Rogge. In the same year she was awarded the “Alfried Krupp Prize for Young Professors” endowed with €1 million and was also named “Professor of the Year 2008” by the German Association of University Professors and Lecturers.

Katja Windt finished her PhD at the Institut für Fabrikanlagen und Logistik (Institute of Production Systems and Logistics) in 2000 after her degree in mechanical engineering at Leibniz University Hanover. Before joining Jacobs University, Windt was a departmental head at the Bremer Institut für Produktion und Logistik (BIBA) at the University of Bremen as well as a member of its Collaborative Research Center (CRC 637) “Autonomous Cooperating Logistic Processes”, which received funding from the German Research Foundation (DFG) until June 2012.

At Jacobs University, Katja Windt set up an interdisciplinary global production logistics work group, whose research is focused on solutions for complex and networked manufacturing and distribution systems. Katja Windt was also instrumental in further developing the Bachelor program “International Logistics Management and Engineering”, which was introduced in close cooperation with the logistics industry in 2007. In 2010, a graduate program for master students was added.

Katja Windt is a member of the National Academy of Science and Engineering acatech. Furthermore, she was a member, and for one year also the speaker, of the “Young Academy”, a joint project of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities and the National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina. Katja Windt also has excellent industry ties and business contacts. In 2011, she was elected as a member of the supervisory board of Deutsche Post AG and as a member of the executive board of the German Logistics Association BVL. In May 2012, Windt was called to be a member of the supervisory board of Fraport AG and the advisory board of BLG Logistics Group AG & Co. KG.


Office of the President Heinz-Otto Peitgen
Kirsten Mussel, Assistant to the President 
Telephone: +49 421 200-4100

Office of the Provost Katja Windt
Anke-Jutta Schreiber, Assistant to the Provost
Telephone: +49 421 200-4330

Author: Jacobs University