x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Discover the unknown

This event occurred on
November 2, 2018
6:00pm - 10:00pm CET
(UTC +1hr)
Münster, Nordrhein-Westfalen

Once upon a time, when not all continents had been discovered, unknown areas were marked with a dragon. The unknown was a dangerous area.

The unknown is still insecure. Nobody knows what to expect. Many people prefer to stay in their safe zone rather than face the danger of the unexplored. But there have always been the adventurous who wanted to discover a little bit more about the world – and posed many questions about human existence.

In later centuries, dragons disappeared from maps and the unknown was marked with white spots. Fear faded. Scientists had become more important and as a consequence the urge to explore the world grew. People were drawn to the unknown. This is where we are today and this is the theme of this year’s TEDx Münster.

Discover the Unknown!

Today, there are no more white spots on our globe, but even with all that people have discovered comes the knowledge of what we don’t know. The unknown has become larger. People still need courage to tread into new areas, not necessarily because they fear for their life but often because they want to defend their trusted comfort zone.

At TEDXMünster 2018, people will talk about how they have discovered their unknown, what they have learnt, discovered. We will let you know over the next weeks, what this unknown will be.

Have you got an idea that has to do with the Unknown? Or do you know someone that does, who you think should be up on stage. Then click here.

We ourselves are moving from the university castle into the unknown with a new and larger venue for TEDxMünster at the Theatre Münster.

Theater Münster
Neubrückenstraße 63
Münster, Nordrhein-Westfalen, 48143
Event type:
Standard (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Anas Alhakim

Student & founder of makeitgerman.com
Anas Alhakim already wanted to study computer science as a young boy. But he had some obstacles. He has a rare disease and is in a wheelchair. And he grew up in war torn Syria. Today Anas is 27 years old and a computer scientist. At TEDxMünster he will talk about he managed to turn his fears into courage – and how he managed to face the unknown more to Germany and make his dream come true.

Atilla Gum

School was nothing but frustration for Atilla Gum, and the communication challenges didn’t stop there. As a Native Signer he was also confronted with a hearing world that has never heard much of Sign Language before. This is what motivated Atilla to become Austrian Sign Language (ÖGS) trainer and to set up an online ÖGS lab to share his knowledge. Together with two hearing colleagues, he recently founded Lingvano.com, an online learning platform for Austrian sign language. Like spoken language, Austrian sign language is different from American sign language (ASL).

Campbell Wilson

Rector of Peebles High School
As a child, Campbell Wilson lost one of his classmates in the Lockerbie bombing. He himself was recently near death from a stroke. After that he has learned how the human brain processes terrible experiences. At TEDxMünster, he will explain how he is using his own stroke experience and neuro-plasticity (the brain’s ability to adapt) and training as a teacher to help young people overcome terrible childhood experiences.

Carla Reemtsma

Carla is a 21 year old Politics and Economics student in Münster. When she is not active for climate change, she is in the gymnasium either training the school children or herself. Last winter, when she saw in her Facebook feed how Greta’s speech at the climate conference in Kattowitz went viral, she co-organized the first strikes in Münster It was silent, drizzly and there were only 10 people. A few weeks later, tens of thousands of people joined the strike against the coal commission. Because there was no political engagement on climate, hundreds of groups were formed in Germany. Children were labelled as kids bunking off school without a clue but nevertheless strikes with thousands of people were organised. On Friday 20 September, as adults were called to join the action1,4 million people took to the streets in Germany.

Christian Weinheimer

Professor of Physics at the Westfälische Wilmhelms-Universität Münster
The universe has five times more matter than we know about and what it consists of has not yet been explored. Christian Weinheimer, a professor of physics is trying to answer this big scientific question: what is dark matter? At TEDxMünster, he will explain how scientists are trying to solve this puzzle and what the implications for humanity could be.

David Middelbeck

David Middelbeck stands up for a world without digital illiterates as the Chairman of the European nonprofit organization TechLabs. The organization was co-founded by David two years ago in Münster, and now helps hundreds of students every year to learn coding skills at its three locations in Münster, Barcelona and Copenhagen. Furthermore, David is a Co-Founder and Managing Director of the startup edyoucated, a digital education platform that helps companies to upskill their workforce to digital roles. He is a passionate social entrepreneur with 8 years of nonprofit leadership experience and former Head of Product at an early-stage data analytics startup from Münster. Before, he studied Information Systems, Data Science, Philosophy, and Entrepreneurship at Harvard University, MIT, WWU Münster, and QUT Brisbane.

Dirk von Gehlen

Head of digital Innovation Süddeutsche Zeitung
We live in complex times and it is only human to take refuge in the past. This is not only the case for immigration attitudes but also in the way we handle new technologies. In order to have a relaxed approach to the new and the unknown, one needs to look at the future with hope. The journalist Dirk von Gehlen calls this attitude ‘cultural pragmatism’. At TEDxMünster, he will talk about how we can accept our helplessness and use it to find new solutions to problems.

Dorothée Loorbach

In August 2016 Dorothée Loorbach gave away her entire fortune: it was 3,97 Euro. The entrepreneur had nothing left, she was broke. At TEDxMünster Dorothée will tell about how she not only got rid of her financial worries through a book project, but also changed her previous convictions, learned a lot about money and discovered that the project wasn’t about money at all.

Hans-Dietrich Reckhaus

CEO of Reckhaus GmbH & Co. KG
Hans-Dietrich Reckhaus used to sell fly traps and ant baits. He was the head of a family business. But then one day, he took pity on the insects. At TEDxMünster, he will talk about how he became an advocate for biodiversity, and the entertaining story on how he saves insects today – and how he now earns his money.

Johann Butting

Johann Butting is Head of EMEA at Slack, a Workplace Collaboration Hub, and has worked in the technology sector in the US and Europe for almost 20 years. Being an engineer at heart, he is interested in finding solutions to the challenges the world faces today. He believes that, in the era of digital transformation, we as a society and a global economy, have to switch from an “individual first” to a “team first” mentality. This is not to say that we should lose our individuality. But if we focus on sharing and collaboration, if we define team spirit and meaningful interactions as the new, legit and most important measurements of success, this new mindset will have a deep and lasting positive effect on our economy and society.

Marian Grau

Germany's youngest travel blogger
Six years ago, Marian Grau’s brother died of a metabolic disease. Marian was nine years old. His brother’s death was an intense shock, but he understood that the emotional pain from loss can also shape a person’s character. At TEDxMünster, he will talk about how he has travelled around the world together with his mother, written a book at the age of 14 about his discoveries and found new strength in his grief.

Max Kops

Max Kops is a best-selling author, public speaker and disruptor, who helps start-ups and established companies to grow with innovation. For several years, he has been working with Blockchain Technologies and ‘Security Token Offerings’ (STO) to help financing of start-ups and big companies. Max studied at the University of Münster and came back to share what he has learnt about innovation and people, particularly with examples of how security tokens can improve start-up investments and personal finance, giving people freedom and power over their own finances.

Natalie Deewan

Natalie Deewan works as artist with signs of different kinds. She is subvertising signs in the urban, rural and virtual space and finds language solutions all along the way. Recently, she started to learn Austrian sign language and teamed up with the native signer and entrepreneur Atilla Gum for a bilingual talk on „signs, signs, signs“ at the Typo Berlin 2018 design conference.

Nora Hespers

Freelance Journalist
Stephanie Borgert’s and Nora Hespers’ norahespers (at) web (dot) degrandfathers both lived in the Nazi era, one as an SS man, the other as a resistance fighter. At TEDxMünster, the two women will talk about the parallels between the men’s stories, what meaning it has for them personally and what we can all learn from their stories.

Sherin Khankan

Founder of Denmark's first female mosque
As the first female Imam in Denmark Sheriff Kankan knows what it’s like to fight against and overcome prejudice. At TEDxMünster she will talk about what it is like to stand up for female freedom in a male dominated world, to oppose extremism and how things that are supposedly stuck in stone can change.

Stephanie Borgert

Stephanie Borgert’s and Nora Hespers’ grandfathers both lived in the Nazi era, one as an SS man, the other as a resistance fighter. At TEDxMünster, the two women will talk about the parallels between the men’s stories, what meaning it has for them personally and what we can all learn from their stories.

Thabet Azzawi

Thabet Azzawi, 27, is Syrian born and came to Germany via Jemen, Turkey and Djibuti. Since 2015 he has been living in Dresden in the east of Germany, where he got a scholarship to study medicine. He is a musician and plays the oud - together with the Banda Internationale, a band of refugees from a number different countries.

Thomas Bartoschek

Thomas Bartoschek (*1980) is a research assistant at the Institute of Geoinformatics at the University of Münster. He has a doctorate with a thesis on "Spatial Learning with Geotechnologies". Over the past 13 years, he has built up the GI@School student and research laboratory, in which new technologies are developed and researched in the context of digital education. Thomas is the brain behind the "senseBox", a Citizen Science Toolkit, which will also be the topic of his talk. In 2018, he founded Reedu, a company where his research and development work in the context of digital education is developed further and grown into products. His work has received several awards, including the CeBIT Innovation Award 2017 "Special Award for Digital Learning and Teaching" and the ACM Eugene Lawler Award 2013 of the International Computer Science Association for his humanitarian and social contribution to computer science.

Tobias Sudhoff

Tobias is a chef, food activist as well as a cabaret artist and musician. For TEDxMünster, he will talk about his idea: ‘We top chefs will save the world through gratification’. Whoever looks at this theory on sustainability in the kitchen quickly notices - what Sudhoff has developed there is not a crazy utopia but a scientifically founded idea that can have a great influence on the way we humans feed ourselves in the future. Surveys from scientists show that the greatest threat to the planet is the extinction of species and agriculture and food production have the greatest impact. We need to change. As a food activist, he also knows that scolding cannot bring about social change. That's why he shows us how top chefs can bring this "change through enjoyment". Sudhoff is living proof that everyone can learn this craft: he managed to do it without training as chef of a star restaurant and continues to cook at the highest level in his restaurant in cooperation with ISUN (Institute for Sustainable Food) and foodlab Münster University.

Organizing team


Münster, Germany


Muenster, Germany
  • Jin Rhee
    Team member
  • Ramathulaschi Srimurugan
    Team member
  • Wiebke Borgers
    Post production