28 Jun 2024


Otto Hahn Medal 2024

Since 1978, the Max Planck Society has been awarding the Otto Hahn Medal to young researchers for their exceptional scientific achievements, mainly related to their doctoral studies. This prestigious award includes a monetary prize of 7,500 euros. In 2024, two researchers from Institutes within the Max Planck Law network were among the recipients of the award.


Irene Domenici with Prof. Arno Villringer (left), Chairman of the Human Sciences Section, and Vice President Prof. Christian Doeller of the Max Planck Society at the award ceremony for the Otto Hahn Medal.

Irene Domenici was recognized for her comparative legal study on maintaining ethical neutrality in the introduction of controversial biotechnologies into public health systems. Reflecting on her achievement, she stated, ‘It is a fantastic achievement and an encouragement to continue on this path with my academic career despite all the difficulties.’

She further acknowledged the support from the Max Planck Law Network, saying, ‘the Max Planck Law network supported me in my work in several ways. First and foremost, by giving me the chance to participate in the Cambridge exchange. Spending a term in Cambridge greatly helped me with the comparative work, thanks to both the insightful exchange with English scholars and the access to sources’.


Sophie-Marie Humbert (2nd from left) is delighted to receive the Otto Hahn Medal, which was awarded by Max Planck Society President Patrick Cramer. © David Ausserhofer

Sophie-Marie Humbert was honoured for her comprehensive analysis of current German law on surrogate motherhood and her proposal to regulate rather than prohibit surrogacy. Upon receiving the medal, she remarked, ‘I feel very grateful for having received the Otto Hahn Medal for my thesis. It is a special honour for me that the Max-Planck-Society has deemed my work, which took a rather unusual approach for a legal doctoral thesis, worthy of an award.’

Discussing the support she received from the Max Planck Law network, she added, ‘I attended the Inaugural conference of Max Planck Law in 2019, where I met numerous other young scientists, which motivated and inspired me. At this conference, I also met Professor Dr Konrad Duden, with whom I was later able to discuss the theses of my work in a colloquium, which was a great opportunity to further advance my dissertation.’

Many congratulations to Irene Domenici and Sophie-Marie Humbert on receiving their awards.  Max Planck Law is proud to support and recognize their outstanding work.

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