academics Award
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Young Researcher of the Year 2013: Prof. Dr. Walid Maalej


Prof. Walid Maalej from the University of Hamburg has been honoured by academics as Young Researcher of the Year 2013. Maalej is a junior professor in the field of computer science, his research focusing on the interface between software engineering and the social aspects of computer science.

Nachwuchspreis© Walid MaalejProf. Dr. Walid Maalej is the Young Researcher of the Year 2013
In addition to his own academic work, he also organises international workshops and is involved in 'Schotsteck', the Hamburger Programme for the Interactive Promotion of Talent and Careers.

Born in Tunisia, Maalej studied Computer Science and Economics at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and received his PhD in Computer Science with summa cum laude. In 2012 he also received the SIGSOFT Distinguished Paper Award.

Additional awards

Alongside Walid Maalej, three further young researchers were recognised:
  • Dr. Jan Lieder (Friedrich Schiller University Jena)
  • Dr. Katja Siefken (Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand)
  • and Dr. Romana Schirhagl (Department of Physics at ETM Zurich).

About the academics award

This is the seventh time academics has awarded the prize for young researchers, which this year represents a sum of 5,000 Euros. The prize honours young researchers, who, through outstanding engagement, innovative thinking and exemplary work, fundamentally influence science, research and development for the better. Early career researchers from any field up to the age of 35 can be considered for the prize. Last year it was awarded to the deaf researcher Dr. Ingo Barth of the Max Born Institute in Berlin.


The academics award was presented on 24th March 2014 at the 'Science Gala' hosted by the German Association of University Professors and Lecturers. The Young Researcher of the Year Award will be presented alongside the prize for University Lecturer of the Year, which this year is going to Professor Anne Bohnenkamp-Renken, director of the 'Freies Deutsches Hochstift' (Free German Foundation) and the Goethe-House in Frankfurt.