The European Academy of Sciences and Arts is the result of a long maturation process. Its development began in 1985 with a working group in Salzburg, and concluded with the founding of the Academy by: Heart surgeon Felix Unger from Salzburg, the former archbishop of Vienna – Franz Cardinal König, and the political scientist and philosopher Nikolaus Lobkowicz.

With his vision of an academy, Felix Unger aimed for a clearly-defined goal: With the help of a dense network of European scientists and artists, the problems and questions facing Europe should be examined from different perspectives and ultimately answered.

Unger always had an interest in other scientific fields and therefore saw the opportunity for a mutual exchange of ideas with colleagues. Moreover, he hoped to contribute to a positive development of European societies and cultures. This approach was shaped in his early years by his parents and grandparents, who had taught him to respect people of different religions and philosophies and to seek dialogue with those holding opinions different to his own.

Since the mid-80s, Unger and Cardinal König held regular meetings with renowned scientists from Vienna, Munich, Innsbruck and Salzburg. For König, the question of ethics in science was particularly in the foreground: He regarded ethics as the reflection of reason with regard to human action – not just the differentiation between right and wrong, but between good and bad, between positive and negative values.

Cardinal König †   also held the opinion that the differentiation of academic fields and research was a risk. From his point of view, the differentiation of specialized knowledge and terminology would make communication more difficult as well as preventing the view of the whole: This whole was more to him than just the sum of various fields.

In the course of the meetings in Salzburg, Unger and König decided to institutionalize the dialogue. They recognized the need for a new academy, which should take into account mankind’s changing conceptualization of the world while also considering the transformation of the meaning of science: Topics relevant to society should be dealt with vividly and in an interdisciplinary, transnational way.

In 1988, Cardinal König introduced Felix Unger to the political philosopher and later president of the Catholic University of Eichstätt, Nikolaus Lobkowicz. It wasn’t necessary to convince Lobkowicz of the benefits of an academy – he was enthusiastic from the beginning.

Nikolaus Lobkowicz had sought for possibilities to stem the decline in values which he saw in Europe. He realized that this challenge called for representatives of all disciplines – philosophers and historians, scientists and engineers. With the European Academy of Sciences and Arts he saw a way to convince its members and thereby science as a whole to do more joint research in this direction. An academy with competent international members could tackle the decisive problems of Europe and meet its pioneering role.

The connection, which resulted from personal motives and reasons of these three persons finally proved to be the perfect foundation for establishing an academy. The goal was achieved on March 7, 1990: The European Academy of Sciences and Arts was founded.

Founding Members

Salzburg, March 7th, 1990

Adam Dieter, Munich †

Meitinger Otto, Munich

Andreae Clemens-August, Innsbruck †

Menzel Christian, Salzburg

Bauer Günther G., Salzburg

Morel Julius, Innsbruck †

Berger Alterzbischof Karl, Mattsee †

Mortier Gérard, Paris †

Berger Albert, Klagenfurt

Müller Lothar, Munich

Berner Peter, Paris †

Ottmann Henning, Munich

Brücke Peter, Linz

Pachinger Otmar, Innsbruck

Bühler Wilhelm, Vienna

Peichl Gustav, Vienna

Bürkle Horst, Starberg

Peter Klaus, Munich

Cernusca Alexander, Innsbruck

Precht Manfred, Freising

Chen John-ren, Innsbruck

Rastetter Johann Wolfgang, Munich

Deutsch Manfred, Vienna

Repgen Konrad, Bonn

Diemath Hans Erich, Salzburg

Ritschel Karl Heinz, Salzburg

Eder Rudolf, Vienna †

Rotter Hans, Innsbruck

Ehrlenspiel Klaus, Munich

Sandhofer Friedrich, Salzburg

Eibl-Eibesfeldt Irenäus, Andechs

Schmidtke Heinz, Garching †

Falise Michel, Lille

Schmölz Franz Martin, Salzburg †

Felten Florens, Salzburg

Schwandt Peter, Munich

Finsterwalder Ottokarl, Vienna †

Schwarz Helmut, Vienna

Fischer Michael W., Salzburg †

Spaemann Robert, Munich

Franz Chlodwig, Vienna

Spängler Johan Wolfgang, Munich

Friedrich Heinz, Munich †

Spann Wolfgang, Munich †

Gneuss Helmut, Munich

Stierstadt Klaus, Munich

Gornik Erich, Vienna

Stremitzer Heinrich, Lienz †

Grötzbach Erich, Eichstätt †

Szczypiorski Andzej, Warsaw †

Grün Oskar, Vienna

Thurau Klaus, Munich

Haas Hans-Dieter, Gröbenzell

Trümper Joachim, Garching

Hepp Hermann, Munich

Unger Carl, Vienna †

Hippius Hanns, Munich

Weinmann Hans-Martin, Strasslach

Hofstädter Ferdinand, Regensburg

Wetzels Egon, Bernau †

Jeglitsch Franz, Leoben

Wilhelm Klaus, Munich

Kenner Thomas, Graz

Winnacker Ernst-Ludwig, Munich

Landesmann Hans, Salzburg †

Wozniakowski Jacek, Kraków †

Lesch Otto Michel, Vienna

Ziegler Hubert, Munich †

Marko Hans, Gräfelfing