Theodor Wanner Award

Refugee children peer in through the window at the International Medical Corps (IMC) facility in the Domiz Camp for Syrian Refugees near Dohuk, Iraq on Nov. 22, 2013; © Foto: Ed Kashi, 2013
A Syrian refugee, Muna, 16, makes a phone call outside her family tent located in the desert of Ereinbeh, Jordan on Nov. 14, 2013; © Foto: Ed Kashi, 2013
Reem, 13, with her siblings in her family tent at the Al Za’atri refugee camp for Syrians, near Mafraq, Jordan on Nov. 18, 2013. Reem is suffering from mental health issues. She has been living at the Za’atri camp since January 2013; © Foto: Ed Kashi
Children gather in an enclave of tents at the Al Za’atri refugee camp for Syrians near Mafraq, Jordan on Nov. 25, 2013; © Foto: Ed Kashi, 2013
A young girl enjoys a lollipop while watching shoppers in the Domiz Camp for Syrian Refugees in Dohuk, Iraq on Nov. 23, 2013; © Foto: Ed Kashi, 2013
A sugarcane worker, 29, suffering from Chronic Kidney Disease of non-traditional causes, CKDnT, poses for a portrait in Chichigalpa, Nicaragua on Jan. 7, 2015; © Foto: Ed Kashi, 2015
A former cane worker, 29, poses with his father, 58, in the cane fields of Chichigalpa, Nicaragua. Both men suffer from CKDu; © Foto: Ed Kashi, 2015
© Photos: Ed Kashi
A former cane worker, 67, in the fields that he worked in for 25 years, in Chichigalpa, on April 25, 2014. He is sick with CKDu and after he spoke out against one of the worker organizations, he has stopped receiving food provisions; © Foto: Ed Kashi, 20
A cane worker slices through the burnt stalks of sugar cane in a field in Chichigalpa, Nicaragua on May 1, 2014; © Foto: Ed Kashi, 2014

Theodor Wanner

Theodor Wanner (1875-1955) was a Stuttgart citizen, patron of the arts, patriarch and at the same time a busy manager. His name is synonymous with bourgeois, Swabian entrepreneurship. Motivated by his own experience abroad, he founded and established countless cultural initiatives, such as the Württembergische Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaften (Association of Württemberg Patron of the Arts) and the Deutsches Ausland-Institut (German Foreign Institute, DAI), the predecessor to today's Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen (ifa). Theodor Wanner was the long-year chairman of the Handelsgeographischer Verein (Association of Trade Geography), which gave rise to the Staatliches Museum für Völkerkunde (State Museum of Ethnology), today the Linden Museum, in Stuttgart.
Theodor Wanner is an embodiment of lasting, personal commitment to cultural dialogue.


The Friends of ifa donate the prize money of 10,000 euros, which are appropriated to a project chosen by the winner. The award winners are honoured in a ceremony. The trophy was designed by Axel Kufus, professor for creation and development in design at the Berlin University of the Arts.


The award winners are selected by a majority vote of the jury, which includes among others the directors of the Friends of ifa and ifa itself. The jury is free to choose as it wishes.

Current jury members include:

  • Ursula Seiler-Albring, ifa President
  • Stephan Brübach, Chairman of the Friends of ifa
  • Bernt Graf zu Dohna, ifa Vice President and Member of the Friends of ifa
  • Otto Ruthenberg, Member of the ifa executive board and Daimler AG
  • Ronald Grätz, ifa Secretary General

Suggestions can be made by among others members of the Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen (ifa), members of Friends of the Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen, the advisory boards, and ifa employees.

Former Award Winners

Since 2009, the Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen (ifa) has conferred the Theodor Wanner Award to those who significantly contribute or have contributed their scientific, social, socio-political, artistic, entrepreneurial or financial expertise to foster dialogue among cultures. The award was launched at the initiative of the Friends of the Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen. The patron of the Theodor Wanner Award is the Foreign Minister of Germany.

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