Günter Petzow was director at the Max Planck Institute for Metals Research in Stuttgart between 1973 and 1994. He is internationally known for his trend-setting research on multicomponent materials. Petzow has been a member ofn the DGM since 1960. He was a member of the society's managing board for 28 years. In the years 1989/90 he led the society as chairman. He initiated several expert committees and he is founder and publisher of the journal „Praktische Metallographie“. For more than 20 years he was editor of the „Zeitschrift für Metallkunde“ (now „International Journal of Materials Research“).
„For the DGM and its members, he always acted as a bridge builder“, said Winfried Huppmann, chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems in his laudation. Petzow understood perfectly to bridge the gap between tradition and the future and he encouraged the collaboration between different committees and organisations. „Long before the fall of the Berlin Wall he was a mediator between Western and Eastern German scientists. Especially in this time as chairman of the DGM he understood like no other person to connect longtime DGM members and newcomers“, explained Huppmann.
„With this award we can honor Prof. Petzow's outstanding scientific achievements in the field of material science as well as his great voluntary commitment to the DGM“, said Frank O.R. Fischer, managing partner of the DGM board. Petzow was nominated as honorary chairman during the so called DGM-Tag on September 22, 2014 in Darmstadt. The German Society for Materials Science (DGM e.V.) is the largest scientific society in the field of materials science in Europe.
The Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems with locations in Stuttgart and Tübingen emerged in 2011 from the Max Planck Institute for Metals Research in Stuttgart. In eight departments, scientists conduct research in the fields of materials science, computer science and biology.