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Up-coming journalists honored in Nuremberg

ZVEI and Siemens reward top entries in the 5th. Technical Journalism Competition

(PresseBox) (München, ) The 5th Technical Journalism Competition of the ZVEI (German Electrical and Electronics Manufacturers' Association) and Siemens came to a close on Friday with the awards ceremony for the top participants. Almost 150 up-coming editors of student newspapers and campus media had researched material covering all aspects of automation engineering at trade shows in Hanover, Düsseldorf and Nuremberg in the fall of 2007. The best articles and radio pieces were honored at a ceremony by the organizers and the Bavarian State Ministry for Education and Culture. The submitted entries covered a wide range of topics from energy efficiency, through plastics production, right up to ethical issues in technology. The winners come from all over Germany.

How can I save energy in industry with automation and drive engineering? What is the day-to-day work experience of an engineer? Or what has Harry Potter got to do with automation engineering? These are just three of the questions put to exhibitors at the automation show SPS/IPC/Drives in Nuremberg, the plastics fair K in Düsseldorf, or the machine tool show EMO in Hanover at the end of last year. The questions were posed by the new generation of journalists in the course of researching material for reports to be entered in the Technical Journalism Competition.

The Technical Journalism Competition of the ZVEI (German Electrical and Electronics Manufacturers' Association) and the Siemens Sector Industry was held in the fall of 2007 for the fifth time. Youngsters and young adults were again called upon to take a good look at the world of technology and also careers in the technology sectors, and to do so with outstanding knowledge of technology and journalistic flair. Dr. Reinhard Hüppe, Manager of the Automation Association in the ZVEI, summarized his impressions as follows: "The entries submitted are characterized by a high level of journalistic ability, and they reflect the new generation's enthusiasm for and knowledge of technology."

According to von Hüppe, the annual increase in the number of participants, and the unanimously positive response from the companies exhibiting at the trade fairs, are evidence that the idea of the Technical Journalism Competition has struck a chord not only with young people but also with the industrial companies. The project is without doubt an important factor in the promotion of new talent. "Developments in society worldwide create fields of activity in industry that demand creativity and enthusiasm for technology, and that offer exciting work opportunities", says Hüppe. The competition has succeeded from the start in getting this message across and forging links to generate more interest in technology. For the Bavarian State Ministry for Education and Culture, one aspect was worthy of particular note: "The Technical Journalism Competition has obviously succeeded in bringing girls and young women into closer contact with automation engineering", says Thomas Fischer, who conferred the honors in place of the patron, State Secretary Bernd Sibler.

Siemens, as main sponsor and organizer, intends to continue with the project together with the ZVEI, not least due to its success. Both the industry and the relevant editorial offices in magazines, newspapers, and broadcasting depend on interested and qualified up-coming talent. "We must interest young people in technology and highlight the possibilities in the technological sectors. And we use the most diverse methods to do this", says Klaus Helmrich, CEO of the Siemens Motion Control Division. "With the Technical Journalism Competition now well established, we in the automation engineering sector can provide a view behind the scenes and show how exciting, creative and diverse technical careers are." At the start of the new business year, Siemens AG advertised almost 2,500 jobs for scientists and engineers in Germany alone. "The increased response to each competition shows that we're on the right track", says Helmrich. "We know from participants who have completed periods of practical training with Siemens A&D on the basis of their participation in the competition that they have since enrolled for university courses in engineering sciences or technical journalism."

Siemens again invites the winners of each competition category to the RTL School of Journalism in Cologne where they can gain initial experience of TV editing. In addition, the German Technical Press Association has offered periods of practical training in the editorial offices of technical publications. According to the Association, the technical journal scene in Germany has enjoyed an upward trend in recent years, reaching the highest point to-date in 2006 with around 3,800 titles. "And for these editorial offices, we need qualified and committed new editors and journalists", says Michael Himmelstoß, Chairman of the Association's 'Editorial Commission'.

You can find more information at www.siemens.de/technikjournalismus.