JKU and the Kepler Salon

Two institutions with a common vision.

Since the beginning of the year, the Johannes Kepler University Linz has been the responsible body for the Kepler Salon. Both institutions have joined forces in a common effort to contribute to informing and educating the public by fulfilling a comprehensive mission focusing on education and research. The new quarterly program from April to the end of June reflects both institutions’ intent.

Norbert Trawöger, director of the Kepler Salon, remarked, “Two institutions, the Kepler Salon and the Johannes Kepler University Linz, are not only joined by name but also in their original intentions.” What exactly does he mean? Two partners of the same namesake are coming together to pursue their intuition and mission as well as to also better educate the public and bring knowledge to the people. Both institutions were founded for this reason and have now found one another. JKU Rector Meinhard Lukas remarked, “Digital competence will always be a main focus, now and in the future. In all of its importance, we often overlook the fact that this is primarily about methodological competence. The true skills needed in a digitized world today are creativity and critical reflection. This is why cultural alliances and the partnership with the Kepler Salon are so important to the JKU. The Kepler Salon addresses these skills and abilities. The open-access attitudes found at the Salon fit well with the JKU’s image: The goal is critical-reflective access and approach to education. Our joint efforts aim to support an understanding of science for the public and in conversation with members of the public.” Norbert Trawöger added that docking the Kepler Salon to the JKU is going at a pace simply based on the fact that this connection is consistent in every respect. At the beginning of the second quarter the Salon’s program will also be a part of the JKU’s scientific publication, the “Kepler Tribune”: “Being part of the Kepler Tribune is a quantum leap in the Salon’s visibility.”

From Tree Sounds to the Anton Bruckner’s “Zeroth” Symphony

In keeping with a principle of a “public understanding of knowledge”, the program differs from academic symposia, conference-style presentations and university conferences. Both Norbert Trawöger and Rector Lukas insist, “Scientific and academic research and findings should be conveyed in a popular and more entertaining format. This is a place to exchange ideas freely and support the idea that learning can be fun.” And the upcoming program at the Kepler Salon has much to offer.

On April 1, at the beginning of the quarter, Uli Fuchs, one of the Kepler Salon’s initiators, returns to Linz. As the deputy artistic director of the Linz90 Capital of Culture, he and JKU Rector Meinhard Lukas will discuss what a Capital of Culture means for Linz in 2019 and what must be done. This is the first of four evenings dedicated to the topic “Linz09 – 10 Years Later” and will take place together with LinzKultur.

Trawöger added, “On May 20, harpsichord maker Martin Pühringer will tell us what a tree sounds like. A podium discussion with city and traffic planners will clarify what a city of the future needs and talk about not just what disruption is, but what it means in concrete terms.”  On May 6, a new format titled “Weit über Linz” will feature over seventy representatives from the Bruckner Orchestra at the podium. In this regard, the Salon will not take place at its Rathausgasse location but on campus at the JKU Ceremony Room. Under the direction of Markus Poschner, the renowned local orchestra will play Bruckner’s Zeroth Symphony. Before that, there will be an interesting academic presentation and discussion afterwards on what disruption has to do with the genius composer’s symphony.

On June 24, renowned Austrian cabaret artist Florian Scheuba will close the public lecture series with his amusing talk about factual circumstances so absurd that you could not even make them up if you tried. He asks what the truth means, talks about why it is worth standing up for, and elaborates as to why lies are not opinions.

An Overview of Upcoming Events (all presentations are in German)

  • April 1, 7:30 PM: Linz09 – 10 Jahre danach
  • April 8, 7:30 PM: Linz 2040: Was braucht die Stadt der Zukunft?
  • April 24, 6:00 PM: Kepler Salon Extra Extern: Poschner trifft Lukas
  • April 29, 7:30 PM: Herzen aus dem Takt
  • May 6, 7:30 PM: Kepler Salon Extra Extern: Weit über Linz: Was ist Disruption?
  • May 13, 7:30 PM: Auf dem Weg zu einem konsensualen Geschichtsbild?
  • May 20, 7:30 PM: Cembalobauer Martin Pühringer: Wie klingt ein Baum?
  • May 27, 7:30 PM: JKU-Surprise mit Reinhold W. Lang
  • June 3, 7:30 PM: „Freunde sind wir ja eigentlich nicht“
  • June 17, 7:30 PM: Multiversum. Wie kuratieren?
  • June 24, 7:30 PM: Schrödingers Ente: Warum eine Lüge keine Meinung ist