A number of these LMU foundations and endowments are introduced in the sections below. For an exhaustive view, please visit Stiftungen@LMU (Foundations@LMU).
“Many people have no idea that we at LMU independently administer so many foundations. No other university in Germany does the same,” says Ernst G. Wittmann, Head of Foundation Administration at LMU. This stand-out position indeed has a long tradition: Even the inception of LMU by Duke Ludwig IX of Bavaria-Landshut in 1472 can be seen as a foundation. LMU’s foundations are likewise bound up in the history and architecture of Munich – two examples being the Ducal Georgianum and the Café Reitschule.
Given the sheer variety of foundations managed by LMU, it is not hard to dispel one persistent myth: It doesn’t take immense wealth to create a foundation. Anyone can do it, and people do so for a whole raft of reasons and motives. Some benefactors have themselves studied at LMU and want to give something back. Others have more interdisciplinary and socially minded intentions.
Care for Rare Foundation: Research that heals
“In the medical world, children with rare conditions are treated like poor relations,” says Professor Christoph Klein, Director of the Pediatric Clinic and Outpatient Unit at LMU’s Dr. von Haunersches Children’s Hospital. Many young patients come here after an odyssey that has taken them to countless doctors. The less common a disease, the harder it is to find experts who know how to diagnose and treat it.
Based on the principle that no child should suffer because a disease is too rare and has therefore been the object of too little research, Klein therefore set up the Care for Rare Foundation in 2009. The foundation helps bring hope of healing to children with rare diseases – across national borders and irrespective of their origins or financial situation.
Heinz and Sibylle Laufer Foundation: A testament to science
The Heinz and Sibylle Laufer Foundation was established following the death of Munich Professor Heinz Laufer. It supports students and researchers in the field of political science.
Munich lawyer and political scientist Heinz Laufer served as Professor of Political Science and Public Law at LMU (starting in 1969), a member of the Board of Directors of the Geschwister Scholl Institute and Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences. Prior to his death in 1996, he anchored an instruction in his will to establish a trust foundation at LMU to promote political science in the study of statecraft. The foundation was to be attached to LMU itself (Stiftungen@LMU).
Climate kit for schools – LMU Faculty of Physics endowment fund
“One person can’t save the world,” says astrophysicist and coordinator of public relations at the LMU Faculty of Physics Dr. Cecilia Scorza. “But everyone can make a start in their local area.”
Scorza thought about what she could do in her immediate environment to protect our planet. She already had a vague idea. But when a student asked her whether taking cold showers could stop global warming, it became clear to her that schoolchildren need better education on this subject. The idea for the “Climate Change – Understanding and Action” project was born.
At the heart of the project, which is funded from donations through an LMU endowment fund, is the climate kit, which schools can order (at cost price) for their classrooms.
The Princess Therese of Bavaria Foundation: Support for female researchers
Since 1997, the “Princess Therese of Bavaria Foundation for the Promotion of Women in Science” has been handing out prizes in recognition of exceptional scientific achievements by female researchers at LMU.
Princess Therese of Bavaria (1850-1925), after whom the foundation is named, was a researcher whose activities transcended disciplinary boundaries, a dedicated member of numerous scientific societies at the turn of the century, and the first – and still only – female honorary member of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and Humanities. In 1897, the daughter of Prince Regent Luitpold and the Tuscan Princess Auguste became the first woman to be awarded an honorary doctorate by LMU.
The foundation’s most important funding instrument is the Princess Therese of Bavaria Prize, which is awarded every two years. Researchers from the four overarching subject groups at LMU are chosen in alternation: the natural sciences; the humanities and cultural studies; animal and human medicine; and economics, social sciences and law.
The Rudolf Marx Foundation supports children suffering from blood diseases
Retired LMU physician Wolfgang Schramm builds bridges between medicine, science, and humanitarian policy. Through the Rudolf Marx Foundation for Hemostaseology, he promotes scientific research into blood clotting disorders and especially hemophilia.
The blood of people with hemophilia flows considerably slower than in other people. As a result, their wounds take a long time to heal. Moreover, the disrupted blood clotting can lead to internal bleeding that damages organs, muscles, and joints. Once known popularly as “the royal disease,” hemophilia is officially classed as “rare” and affects some 6,000 patients in Germany.
Wolfgang Wilmanns Foundation: Initiatives for research and practice in tumor treatment
The Wolfgang Wilmanns Foundation for the support of leukemia and tumor research at Munich’s universities and at the Munich Tumor Center (TZM) was established in 1988 by the professor of the same name.
The not-for-profit foundation awards prizes to young researchers for outstanding performance in leukemia and tumor research. In addition, it supports numerous initiatives in the fields of nutrition, complementary medicine and psycho-oncology for tumor patients.
Overview of LMU’s foundations:
Stiftungen@LMU: Services related to foundations and donations