The geoscientific subjects at the Bavarian Universities of Würzburg and Erlangen-Nuremberg were affected by profound structural changes in the years 2004 to 2007. These changes were preceded by the retirement of the former professor of mineralogy, Prof. Dr. Martin Okrusch, in the year 2000. The chair remained unoccupied for four years until the appointment of Prof. Dr. Hartwig Frimmel from the University of Cape Town to the Department of Mineralogy with effect from 01.09.2004. Surprisingly, the senate of the University of Würzburg decided on 12.05.2004, still during the negotiations for the appointment, to stop the diploma courses for geology - palaeontology and mineralogy.
While large parts of the Institutes of Geology and Palaeontology were relocated to the university of Erlangen on the basis of a decision of the bavarian Government, most of the Institute of Mineralogy remained in Würzburg at the campus Am Hubland. This part, under the leadership of Prof. Frimmel, developed a new direction in which the previously divided subjects geology and mineralogy were brought together. The chair of crystallography and part of the geochemistry were shifted to Erlangen. The part of geosciences remaining in Würzburg was included in the organization structure of a new, enlarged Institute for Geography. This led to the formal closure of the institute of mineralogy and Crystallography on 30.09.2007, but the Chair remained open.
The Department of Mineralogy, by decision of the university administration of 28.04.2008, was renamed to the Department of Geodynamics and Geomaterial Research, following the reorientation of the Chair from purely mineralogical-crystallographic themes to more geological and mineralogical subjects, both in teaching and research. In view of the structural and personnel changes over these years, it seem appropriate to prepare an interim report on the achievments of the former Institute of Mineralogy and Crystallography until its closure on 30.09.2007. For the period up to the year 2000, a detailed performance balance of the institute was already compiled by Prof. Okrusch, then retiring at the time. The activities of the Chair since 01.10.2007 are recorded in separate reports.