Institute of Medical Psychology

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Curriculum Vitae

Prof. Dr. Ernst Pöppel, ML

Personal information

  • place of birth: Schwessin, Pomerania (now Poland)
  • date of birth:  April 29th, 1940

Academic career

  • 1976 Professor of Medical Psychology (Ordinarius) (Emeritus 2008)
  • 1976 Habilitation in Psychology (Dr. phil. habil.)Faculty of Natural Sciences, Leopold-Franzens-Universität,Innsbruck, Austria
  • 1974 Habilitation in Sensory Physiology (Dr. med. habil.)Faculty of Medicine, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich, Germany
  • 1968 Ph.D. in Psychology (Dr. phil.), Innsbruck, Austria
  • 1962 – 1968 Academic Education in Psychology and Biology
    Universities at Freiburg/Breisgau, Munich and Innsbruck
  • 1960 -1961 Military Service (German Navy)
  • 1959 Abitur (Graduation from High School), Kepler-Gymnasium,Freiburg/Breisgau, Germany

Positions held

  • since 2009 Scientific Director of the “Peter-Schilffarth-Institute of Sociotechnology” Bad Tölz, Germany
  • since 2006 Board Member of the “Festo Program of Applied Knowing”, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich, Germany
  • since 2002 Guest Professor of Peking University, Department of Psychology, Beijing
  • since 2001 Co-Director of the “Parmenides Center for the Study of Thinking” Capoliveri/Elba and Munich
  • since 2000 Director of the “Generation Research Program” (GRP) , Bad Tölz, Germany
  • since 1997 Chairman of the Human Science Center, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich, Germany
  • 1992 – 1997 Member of the Board of Directors, Research Center Jülich, GermanyResponsibilities: Life Sciences (Brain Research and Biotechnology), Environmental Research, Mathematical Modeling
  • 1977 - 2008 Chairman of the Institute of Medical Psychology Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich, Germany
  • 1976 - 2008 Professor of Medical Psychology (Ordinarius)
  • 1973 – 1976 Research Associate and Group Leader Max-Planck-Institute of Psychiatry, Munich, Germany
  • 1972 – 1973 Staff Scientist, Neuroscience Research Program (NRP) Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge/USA
  • 1971 – 1973 Research Associate Department of Psychology and Brain Science Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge/USA
  • 1969 – 1970 Postdoctoral Fellow of the Volkswagen Foundation Max-Planck-Institute of Psychiatry, Department of Neurophysiology, Munich, Germany
  • 1966 – 1968 Fellowship of the Max-Planck-Society Max-Planck-Institute of Behavioral Physiology, Andechs and Seewiesen, Germany
  • 1965 – 1966 NASA Fellowship Max-Planck-Institute of Behavioral Physiology, Andechs and Seewiesen, Germany


  • 2008 Honorary Lecturer of the European Society of Radiology, Vienna
  • 2007 Golden Medal of the Peutinger Collegium, Bavaria
  • 2005 Bayerische Verfassungsmedaille in Silber
  • 2004 Dean of Science of the European Academy of Sciences and Arts
  • 2002 Humboldt Professor of the University of Ulm
  • 1995 Exhibit in “Deutsches Museum Bonn”
  • 1993 Member of the “Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina” (ML)
  • 1991 and thereafter: Guest Professor in Jena /Germany, Nijmwegen /Netherlands, Madrid /Spain, Edinburgh /UK, Helsinki /Finland
  • 1991 Offer as Chairman of the National Research Center KFA, Jülich/Germany
  • 1988 J. E. Purkinje Medal of the Czech Medical Societies
  • 1984 Levinson Award of the American Poetry Association
  • 1983 Award of the Association of German Medical Journalists
  • 1975 Offer of Professorship (Chair) of Medical PsycholoyRheinisch-Westfälische-Technische-Universität (RWTH) Aachen, Germany
  • 1959 Scheffel Award (for German language in high school)


  • International Brain Research Organisation (IBRO)
  • European Brain and Behaviour Society (EBBS)
  • European Neuroscience Association (ENA)
  • Society for Neuroscience
  • Neurowissenschaftliche Gesellschaft
  • Deutsche Physiologische Gesellschaft
  • Deutsche Gesellschaft für Medizinische Psychologie (past president)
  • Deutsche Gesellschaft für Psychologie
  • Deutsche Gesellschaft für Naturforscher und Ärzte
  • Deutscher Hochschulverband


since 1968 Lectures, Seminars and Courses in  Medical Psychology, Neuropsychology, Psychophysics, Sensory Physiology and Special Topics of Philosophy at the

  • Faculty of Medicine, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich Seniorenstudium, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich
  • Faculty of Natural Sciences, Leopold-Franzens-University,Innsbruck, Austria
  • Department of Psychology, Peking University, China

Academic supervision:

Habilitations of 32 scientists from the Institute of Medical Psychology More than 250 doctoral dissertations (Ph.D. and M.D.) and diploma theses of candidates from the Institute of Medical Psychology, Munich and the Institute of Psychology, Innsbruck

Refereeing activities

  • European Research Council (ERC)
  • European Union (EU)
  • Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)
  • Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung (AvH-Stiftung)
  • Bundesminister für Bildung und Forschung (BMBF)
  • Bayerische Forschungsstiftung Max-Planck-Gesellschaft (MPG)
  • Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (DAAD)
  • Wissenschaftskolleg Berlin
  • Bosch-Stiftung
  • Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes
  • EXPO 2000, Hannover
  • Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung
  • Hanns-Seidel-Stiftung
  • Cusanus-Werk
  • Carl Friedrich von Siemens-Stiftung
  • National Science Foundation (NSF), USA
  • National Institute of Health (NIH), USA
  • The Rockefeller University, New York
  • Neurosciences Research Program (NRP), Boston
  • Tokyo Institute of Technology
  • Kyoto University
  • The Wellcome Trust, London
  • Knowledge and Human Development Authorities (KHDA), Dubai

Research Activities (Past and Present)

  • Neuroplasticity
    Description of residual vision (“blindsight”)
    Restitution of function after brain injury
    Plasticity and rigidity of neural representations
  • Time and Timing
    Experimental description of the “subjective present”
    Experimental description of “system states” of the human brain
    Development of a hierarchical model of temporal perception
  • Neuro-Anaesthesiology
    Development of a new method to monitor the depth of anaesthesia
  • Chronobiology
    Circadian rhythms in humans; desynchronization of functions
    24-hour-rhythm of physiological and psychological functions
  • Theory
    Development of a taxonomy (classification) of cognitive functions
    Description of modes of knowledge and their unifying principles
  • Learning and Knowledge Creation
    Development of a model of goal directed learning
    (“learning by consequences”)
  • Statistics Development of a mathematical algorithm for the analysis time series
  • Gerontology
    Analysis of mental functions in the aging brain
    Man-machine interface (human adequate technologies) for the “generation plus”
  • Neuro-Economics
    Development of a benchmark for brand representation in the human brain
  • Neuro-Esthetics
    Biological aspects of the  arts
    Neuroscientific foundation of esthetics

Publications and Public Appearance

  • Approx. 400 publications in internationally reviewed journals and invited contributions
  • Approx. 25 books and monographs as author or editor (for the scientific community and for the general public)
  • Approx. 1000 presentations (many for the general public)
  • Interviews for print media, radio or television and scientific advisor for the international TV  series “The  Magic Universe of the Brain”

International Academic Cooperations (Past and Present)

  • Peking–University, Department of Psychology and the Center for Speech and Hearing Research / China
  • Chinese Academy of Science; Beijing / China
  • Tokyo Institute of Technology, Yokohama / Japan
  • Honda Research and Development, Tochigi / Japan
  • Korea University, Seoul, Korea
  • Sassoon Hospital, Psychiatric Department, Puna / India
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Psychology and Brain Science, and the Neuroscience Research Program / USA
  • Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio / USA
  • City University New York (CUNY), New York / USA
  • Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) / Mexico-City
  • Nencki-Institute of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw / Poland
  • Czech Academy of Science, Prague / Czech Republic
  • Russian Academy of Science, Pawlow-Institute, St. Petersburg / Russia
  • Center for Sppech Rehabilitation, Moscow / Russia
  • University College, Department of Anatomy, London / UK
  • Karolinska Institute, Stockholm / Sweden
  • University of Innsbruck, Department of Psychology / Austria