Otto Schott Research Award honors distinguished glass scientist

Monday, June 24, 2024, Mainz, Germany

  • Setsuhisa Tanabe from Kyoto University receives the Otto Schott Research Award with a prize of €25,000.
  • Tanabe was recognized for his far-reaching scholarly impact and long-standing contributions in the field of optically active materials.
  • Named after specialty glass pioneer Otto Schott, this award has recognized outstanding scientists in glass and ceramics since 1991.

Awarded for the 18th time, this year’s Otto Schott Research Award goes to Prof. Setsuhisa Tanabe from Kyoto University in Japan. The Ernst Abbe Board of Trustees recognizes Prof. Tanabe as a “recognized leader in the international field of active doped optical materials.” He is also appreciated for his long-standing contributions to education and training in Japan and internationally. Endowed with a prize of €25,000, the award recognizes outstanding scientific and technological achievements in glass, glass-ceramic, and related advanced materials. The award has supported researchers from around the world since 1991.

The award winner with a piece of glass in hand
The award winner Mr. Setsuhisa Tanabe, whose work has influenced important innovations at SCHOTT.

Award winner Mr. Setsuhisa Tanabe is a professor of material chemistry at Kyoto University’s Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies in Japan. He is also a Fellow of the International Society of Optics and Photonics (SPIE) and the American Ceramic Society (AcerS). With an impactful body of literature, Prof. Tanabe is a prominent name in the fields of rare-earth doped glass, glass-ceramic, and optically active ceramic materials. In addition, he made important contributions to education and training at Kyoto University and in international glass and ceramic organizations as well. 

Since 1991, the Otto Schott Research Award has been endowed biennially with 25,000 euros to recognize outstanding achievements in basic and applied research related to glass, glass-ceramics, and advanced materials. The award is granted by the Ernst Abbe Fund and managed by the Association for German Science (Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft). Previous winners of the prize include chemists and physicians from around the world.

The award is named after Otto Schott who developed ground-breaking glass solutions for optics, pharmaceuticals, and many other technical applications and is credited as the inventor of specialty glass. Together with Ernst Abbe and Carl Zeiss, Otto Schott founded the Schott & Associates Glass Technology and Laboratory in 1884, which has grown into SCHOTT AG, a global leader in specialty glass and materials today. The Carl Zeiss Foundation is the sole shareholder of SCHOTT AG and Carl Zeiss AG.

“We are honored to recognize Professor Tanabe’s long-standing and influential work through this year’s Otto Schott Research Award,” said Dr. Matthias Müller, Head of R&D at SCHOTT AG and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Erst Abbe Fund. “His contribution to advancing knowledge and education in the field is invaluable and he has also helped advance important product developments at SCHOTT.”

Learn more about the Otto Schott Research Award

Learn more about the innovative R&D at SCHOTT


International technology group SCHOTT produces high-quality components and advanced materials, including specialty glass, glass-ceramics, and polymers. Many SCHOTT products have high-tech applications that push technological boundaries, such as flexible glass in foldable smartphones, glass-ceramic mirror substrates in the world's largest telescopes, and laser glass in nuclear fusion. With their pioneering spirit, SCHOTT’s 17,050 employees in over 30 countries work as partners to industries such as healthcare, home appliances, consumer electronics, semiconductors, optics, astronomy, energy, and aerospace. In fiscal year 2023, SCHOTT generated 2.9 billion euros in sales. In addition to innovation, one of its important corporate goals is sustainability, where it is pursuing climate neutral production by 2030. SCHOTT was founded in 1884 and is headquartered in Mainz, Germany. The company belongs to the Carl Zeiss Foundation, which uses its dividends to promote science. Further information at

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Corporate Marketing Communication Yixuan Jin
Yixuan Jin