The is the oldest continuously existing institution among the eight scientific academies in Germany, that are united under the umbrella of the Union of German Academies of Sciences and Humanities. It was founded in 1751 as the Royal Society of Sciences by King George II of Great Britain, who was also Elector of the Holy Roman Empire as well as Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg, which included the university city of Göttingen. academy
The academy functions as a community of scholars whose members are divided into two classes with equal rights: The Mathematical and Natural Sciences Class and the Humanities and Social Sciences Class. Each class comprises a maximum of forty native members from the Northern German region and a maximum of one hundred corresponding members from Germany and abroad.
Among the alumni of the academy are Albert Einstein, Carl Friedrich Gauss, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, the brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, Otto Hahn, Werner Heisenberg, the brothers Alexander and Wilhelm von Humboldt, Felix Klein, Georg Christoph Lichtenberg and the polymath Albrecht von Haller who also served as the first president of the academy.
In the field of computer science, Turing Award laureate Stephen A. Cook and mp3 pioneer Georg Musmann currently belong to the academy. The mathematician and Fields medalist Gerd Faltings is also a corresponding member of the academy. Furthermore, the Göttingen Academy can boast a total of 74 winners of the Nobel Prize.