1. October 2021

New DNRF Chair grant for KU with the origin of life in focus

The University of Copenhagen has received another of the Danish National Research Foundation’s latest funding instrument, the DNRF Chair, with Professor Anders Johansen at the forefront. Professor Johansen’s research examines how the wide diversity of planets orbiting around the sun and other stars has formed. The DNRF Chair was launched at the beginning of 2020 with the overall purpose of strengthening Danish research communities by bringing both international and Danish researchers to Denmark.

Professor Anders Johansen.
Professor Anders Johansen. Photo: Henry Throop.

At the beginning of 2020, the Danish National Research Foundation launched its latest funding instrument, the DNRF Chair, with the overall purpose of strengthening  research communities in Denmark. The foundation will do this by bringing both international and Danish researchers to Denmark. This grant is the fifth to be given, and the third one that the University of Copenhagen (KU) has received. This Chair grant will go to Professor Anders Johansen to support his research on the formation of planets that orbit around the sun and how the Earth’s first atmosphere was created.

“I will use the funding from the DNRF Chair grant to study the formation of planets and the composition of the Earth’s first atmosphere. Knowing the conditions on the young Earth is important for understanding the origin of life. The DNRF Chair grant is an excellent opportunity for me to direct my research on planet formation more toward the formation of habitable planets and the surface conditions for the origin of life,” said Professor Johansen.

The DNRF plans to continue the DNRF Chair instrument through December 2024, and the foundation foresees awarding about three DNRF Chair grants annually. Starting in 2021, each Danish university can submit two applications for each of the three annual application rounds.

“We are proud and happy that with this grant we can recruit a particularly excellent researcher from abroad. The Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences is concerned with research in a wide sense, so that also means research on life’s basic conditions and how life was created. Anders, with his research on planet formation and his use of supercomputers, will be able to contribute to this area – not just for the benefit of the GLOBE Institute and our faculty, but for all of the University of Copenhagen,” said Dean Ulla Wewer from the University of Copenhagen. She added:

“The Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences was one of the first to get a DNRF Chair grant. With this grant we will again take the opportunity to secure optimal conditions when we recruit internationally and hold on to our global view.”

The grants will be awarded by the DNRF board following one public call annually. Each call consists of three rounds per year. Normally, only one or two grants per round will be awarded.

You can read more about the DNRF Chair here

Read more about Professor Johansen’s research and his research group here

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