History of the DPG

With a tradition going back to the year 1845 the DPG is the oldest and comprising more than 62.000 members also the largest national physics association worldwide. It regards itself as an open forum of physicists and being a non-profit association does not pursue economic interests. The average age of DPG members today is mid-30 and almost half of their members are pupils or students. Furthermore science journalists and teachers are represented in the DPG as well as patent agents, industry scientists, professors and Nobel laureates. In addition researchers renowned worldwide were presidents of the DPG - so Max Planck and Albert Einstein.

Foundation and development

The DPG links to the tradition of the former "Physikalische Gesellschaft zu Berlin", reaching back to the year 1845, and the "Deutsche Gesellschaft für technische Physik e.V." founded in the year 1919.

Since 1963 the DPG is successor of the "Verband Deutscher Physikalischer Gesellschaften e.V.", founded in the year 1950, in which the five regional associations emerged after 1945

  • Nordwestdeutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft e.V.,
  • Physikalische Gesellschaft Württemberg-Baden-Pfalz e.V.
  • Physikalische Gesellschaft in Bayern e.V.,
  • Physikalische Gesellschaft zu Berlin e.V.,
  • Physikalische Gesellschaft Hessen-Mittelrhein-Saar e.V.,

had joined, as well as since 1990 of the

  • Physikalische Gesellschaft der DDR.

The two former associations disbanded in 1973, the four last-mentioned associations constitute regional associations of the DPG, resp. joined the DPG in 1990.

The anniversary celebration in November 2010, in which the reunion of the physical societies was commemorated, is documented here.