Subject: MG11 shift in spacetime to Berlin July 23-29 2006
Date: December 8, 2005
We announce a slight shift in location and dates of the Eleventh Marcel Grossmann Meeting on recent developments in theoretical and experimental general relativity, gravitation and relativistic field theories (MG11). Instead of St Petersburg July 2-8, it will take place in Berlin July 23-29, 2006. Regretfully, St. Petersburg could not deliver economically viable agreements for hotel arrangements, conference facilities and services. Fortunately, Berlin offered help. The Freie Universität Berlin (Free University of Berlin) is the new location --- it is an attractive destination for both practical and historical reasons.
It is situated in the park-like district Berlin-Dahlem, the home of an academic colony of worldwide reputation. The most famous German researchers of the early 20th century lived and worked there, among them Einstein, Planck, Heisenberg, Bothe, Debye, Geiger, Haber, Hahn, Meitner, Strassmann, von Laue, Warburg, Butenandt and Meyerhof. Otto Hahn's former home is just around the corner from the MG11 conference site, close to the former Kaiser-Wilhelm Institute of Physics where Hahn, Meitner, and Strassmann discovered the fission of uranium in 1938. Near the institute is the house where Einstein lived after moving to Berlin from Zürich in 1914 .
The Freie Universität Berlin was founded in 1948 as an alternative to the historic Humboldt University in the Soviet section of Berlin. Henry Ford donated a substantial amount of money for a library, which provided a basis for teaching and research. Various faculties were housed in private villas. The number of students grew rapidly and the Freie Universität today is one of the leading universities worldwide with outstanding recent architectural additions to its splendid campus. Some of the speakers at MG11 will be accommodated in the famous Harnack House, inseparable from the "Dahlem Legend". Established during the Weimar Republic by the theologian Adolf von Harnack, the first president of the Kaiser-Wilhelm Society, it achieved rapid fame. Nobel Prize winners and their students met here for social interaction and academic discussion, participating in lectures and colloquia. Here they could lunch, read the international press, drink coffee in the garden, engage in sports, and play music. The list of former guests and lecturers reads like a "Who's Who of Science": Albert Einstein, Peter Debye, Werner Heisenberg, Fritz Haber, Adolf Butenandt, Otto Hahn, Lise Meitner, Otto Meyerhof, Max Planck, Max von Laue and Otto Warburg. One Nobel Prize winner, the biologist Hans Fischer, even received the news of his award during his stay at the Harnack House. Ricarda Huch, the Swiss art historian Heinrich Wolfflin, and the Indian philosopher Rabindranath Tagore also added to the House's luster and prestige. In 1935, in direct opposition to the government, Max Planck led an impressive commemoration of Fritz Haber here. The Kaiser-Wilhelm Institutes were later reorganized and renamed in the former physicist's honor as Max Planck Institutes.
The MG11 conference banquet dinner will take place at the Ritz Carlton Hotel next to Potsdamer Platz. The Marcel Grossmann Awards ceremony will be honored by the presence of German public personalities, and a rich series of events is planned for the social program. We look forward to a successful scientific program facilitated by this spectacular conference venue and hope to see you there.
We urge you to to seriously consider possible candidates for delivering engaging and timely plenary talks and send us your suggestions, including those for the still unfinished tentative lineup of parallel sessions available at the meeting website. To be most effective these suggestions should be received by email in the next two weeks, with a target date of January 15 for a preliminary program to be completed. Some useful feedback has already been received from some members of the ICC and LOC committees for which we are deeply appreciative.
Finally we ask your patience in dealing with this unprecedented change in a Marcel Grossmann Meeting location. We had high hopes for holding it for the first time in Russia which has made enormous contributions to the fields which lie under the MG umbrella, but the support infrastructure so important to the success of a large international meeting did not materialize. We look forward to some future date when it will be possible to reconsider holding a meeting in Russia and hope that many of our Russian colleagues will still be able to participate with us in Berlin which is relatively close to the original destination, and we are making a special effort to offer fellowships, transportation facilities and accommodations which allow as many possible scientists from Russia to attend as we had initially planned for. Best regards, Remo Ruffini, chair of the International Organizing Committee Robert Jantzen, chair of the International Coordinating Committee Hagen Kleinert, chair of the Local Organizing Committee website: http://www.icra.it/MG/mg11/ email: firstname.lastname@example.org Some relevant links: The Free University of Berlin: http://www.fu-berlin.de/en/index.html Berlin Tourism: http://www.berlin-tourist-information.de/index.en.php http://www.berlin.de/english/index.html The Kaiser Wilhelm Institute (the tower on the left housed a Van de Graaf "atom-smasher"): http://www.icra.it/MG/mg11/Images/kaiser-wilhelm-institute.jpg Bothe Nobel Prize: Institute: http://nobelprize.org/physics/articles/states/walther-bothe.html The Harnack House: http://www.harnackhaus-berlin.mpg.de/eng-main.htm The new library built by Norman Foster: http://www.fu-berlin.de/info/philbib The Einstein Tower in Potsdam: http://www.aip.org/history/einstein/ae38.htm The Brandenburg Gate (symbol of the German reunification): http://www.dailysoft.com/east-berlin/mitte/bgate.htm The Bellevue Castle (residence of the German President) http://www.berlin-tourist-information.de/cgi-bin/sehenswertes.pl?id=13671&sprache=english The Charlottenburg Castle: http://www.spsg.de/index.php?id=134 The zoo: http://www.zoo-berlin.de The Friedrichstadt Palace: http://www.friedrichstadtpalast.de The MG11 Banquet site: http://www.ritzcarlton.com/hotels/berlin/ The Mapquest Map centered on the Free University: http://www.mapquest.com/maps/map.adp?formtype=address&searchtype=address&country=DE&address=fabeckstrasse+21&city=berlin&zipcode=14195 <paste together long link if broken by email program>