Bert Hölldobler

Bert Hölldobler bigraphy, stories - Generals

Bert Hölldobler : biography

25 June 1936 –

Bert Hölldobler (born 25 June 1936) is a German behavioral biologist and Sociobiologist whose primary study subjects are social insects and in particular ants. He is a co-winner of the Pulitzer Prize for his work on The Ants (1991) with Edward O. Wilson. In 1990, he received the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, which is the highest honour awarded in German research. He also collaborated with Wilson to write Journey to the Ants (1994). In 2008 he and Wilson co-authored their third book about superorganisms. He holds positions at the University of Würzburg and at Arizona State University, at the latter of which he is a Foundation Professor in the School of Life Sciences.

Videos and interviews

In addition to his published scientific papers and books, Hölldobler’s work was the subject of the documentary film "Ants – Nature’s Secret Power" the winner of the 2005 Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festivals Special Jury Prize. His 2007 interview on the Ask A Biologist podcast program details his early life growing up in Germany as well as his interest in ants and writing.


  • Bert Hölldobler, E.O. Wilson: "The Ants, Harvard University Press, 1990, ISBN 0-674-04075-9
  • Bert Hölldobler, E.O. Wilson: "Journey to the Ants: A Story of Scientific Exploration, 1994, ISBN 0-674-48525-4
  • Bert Hölldobler, E.O. Wilson: "The Superorganism: The Beauty, Elegance, and Strangeness of Insect Societies", W.W. Norton, 2008. ISBN 978-0-393-06704-0
  • Bert Hölldobler, E.O. Wilson: "The Leafcutter Ants: Civilization by Instinct", W.W. Norton & Company, Inc., 2011, ISBN 978-0-393-33868-3