Friday, 29 January 2016 10:54

Rolf Funck died on August 24, 2015

Obituary for Rolf Funck


Rolf Funck died on August 24, 2015, with the age of 85. He was one of the most active and distinguished German regional scientists and President of the Regional Science Association International 1988/89.


After his studies of economics at the University of Münster, Ph.D. and habilitation, he was appointed Professor of Economics at the Universität Karlsruhe (TH) in 1963 and founded the Institute of Economic Policy Research, which thereafter existed for 50 years. His thinking was truly inter-disciplinary; for instance he founded two inter-faculty institutes, one for regional and one for cultural sciences. In 1996 he received the honorary doctorate of the University of Poznan, Poland, for his inter-disciplinary work.

In the final phase his activities he focused on the economics of culture and was most active with promoting the establishment and supporting the development of the ZKM Center for Art and Media, which has become a major point of attractiveness and has fostered the international cultural reputation of the city of Karlsruhe. Corresponding to his main interests his last works were on cultural and regional themes, which were published by the end of 2014.


He has co-edited a Festschrift for the 20th anniversary of the ZKM and a monograph on regional science issues entitled “Man, Space, Time and Environment: Economic Interactions in Four Dimensions.” This monograph includes a host of papers contributed by colleagues, who accompanied Rolf’s scientific life for a long time, and which are brought together under the umbrella of the four dimensions. It can be regarded his spiritual heritage for regional science: treat “man” in research as a real being with individual, social and cultural feelings, consider that “man’s” activities are processed in “space” and “time,” and protect the “environment” for future generations to live in.


Werner Rothengatter


Funck, R., and W. Rothengatter, editors, Man, Environment, Space and Time – Economic Interactions in Four Dimensions, Karlsruhe Papers in Regional Science, number 34, Nomos, Baden-Baden, Germany.

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