Profile of the Heinz König Award

Since 2004, ZEW has annually presented the Heinz König Award, endowed with 5,000 euros, for outstanding scientific work. Instead of adding to the multitude of prizes for established researchers, ZEW’s intention is to specifically promote young academics with this award. It is aimed at young economists under the age of 35 who have been able to make a demonstrable impact in their field of research with their research and who strive for a widespread knowledge transfer of their results. The award, whose thematic focus changes annually, is sponsored each year by a different, theme-related company from the ZEW Sponsors’ Association. From the large number of papers submitted, an external jury selects the best scientific papers, whose authors are invited to Mannheim where they can discuss their work with other young economists and renowned researchers. The best submitted paper will be honoured with the Heinz König Award at a conference at ZEW Mannheim.

Who was Heinz König?

Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Heinz König

Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Heinz König is the scientific founding father of ZEW Mannheim. As one of the leading economists in Germany, he was instrumental in establishing the research institute and helped ZEW achieve its current status in the international research landscape. He led the institute from its foundation in 1991 until 1997. König’s high scientific reputation, his experience as a science manager and his talent for identifying committed and scientifically talented staff had a lasting impact on ZEW. Even after his retirement as scientific director in 1997, he remained closely associated with the institute as an advisor on scientific and strategic issues until his death in 2002.

After studying economics, earning his doctorate at the University of Mainz and completing his habilitation at the University of Münster, König’s academic career led him to the USA, where he was a Rockefeller Fellow at MIT, Harvard University and Stanford University. In 1962, he was appointed professor by the University of Mannheim, to which he remained loyal until his retirement in 1996. Among other positions, he was dean of the Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences, director of the Institute for Economics and Statistics and rector of the University of Mannheim from 1979 to 1982. König is considered one of the pioneers of empirical economic research and econometrics in Germany and has influenced generations of scientists. He was member of numerous scientific and economic policy committees at national and international level. In addition to research and teaching, the transfer of knowledge of research results and scientifically sound policy advice were of particular concern to him. He received countless awards for his work, including the Federal Cross of Merit 1st Class and an honorary doctorate from the University of Tübingen.

Heinz König Award 2022

The Heinz König Award 2022 was sponsored by SAP SE. The award ceremony took place during the 20th ZEW Conference on the Economics of Information and Communication Technologies (6–8 July 2022).

List of previous award winners

  • Research focus: Changing the design of workplaces through information and communication technologies (ICT)
  • Country of Origin: Luxembourg

  • Research focus: Research of populism
  • Country of Origin: Switzerland/Germany

  • Research focus: The role of the ECB in instilling confidence for government bonds of EU countries such as Spain and Italy during the government debt crisis of 2012

  • Research focus: Effects of regulated TV advertising for both TV viewers and advertisers/Efficiency of mobile communications markets following frequency auctions
  • Country of Origin: - /Austria

  • Research focus: Uncertainty effects in the working schedules of employees/Employment and welfare effects of short-time work in Germany during the recession from 2008 to 2010
  • Country of Origin: USA

  • Research focus: Effect of a pay-per-bag tax on household waste
  • Country of Origin: Switzerland

  • Research focus: Effects of parental leave benefits on birth rates
  • Country of Origin: USA

  • Research focus: Relationship between current account deficits and budget deficits
  • Country of Origin: Germany

  • Research focus: Impact of environmental regulation in different countries on foreign direct investments

  • Research focus: Development of an international model of economic activity, explaining the strong volatility of international trade
  • Country of Origin: United Kingdom

  • Research focus: Relation between economic uncertainty and varying economic outlooks
  • Country of Origin: USA

  • Research focus: Mothers returning from maternity leave/Can employees fully protect themselves from unexpected short-term wage cutbacks?
  • Country of Origin: Switzerland/Germany

  • Research focus: Sunk costs in research and development and their influence on innovation behaviour
  • Country of Origin: Portugal

  • Research focus: How do the obligation of former monopolists affect telecommunication markets?
  • Country of Origin: Portugal

  • Research focus: A Test of Spatial Interdependence using Local Government Tax Efficiency Ratings
  • Country of Origin: Belgium

  • Research focus: Growth correlation between the states of Eastern and Western Europe
  • Country of Origin: Germany

  • Research focus: Climate change and agriculture
  • Country of Origin: Germany


Head “International Co-operation and Public Relations”

Phone: +49 (0)621 1235-109