Holger Magel

Prof. Assessor Dr.-Ing. Dipl.-Ing.

TUM Department of Civil, Geo and Environmental Engineering
Former professor of land management and development

Former Director of the international master programmes "Land Management" and "Land Tenure"

born May 3, 1944


Scientific work

Before Holger Magel’s appointment to TUM, where he became professor of land management and development and director of the Institut für Geodäsie, GIS und Landmanagement, he worked in the Bavarian government administration, where he ultimately became head of the Bavarian Administration of Rural Development. He founded the Bavarian village rezoning program and, through his initiatives in land-scape planning, also contributed to making rezoning a more landscape-friendly development enterprise in rural areas, satisfying the needs of both environmental protection and society. Holger Magel’s research encompasses theories, methods and processes of sustainable village renewal, participative landscape planning, community development and land usage planning as well as theories and concepts of sustainable land management in an international context. In 2000, he founded the international master's program “Land management and land tenure in urban and rural areas”. This enables future leaders, particularly from developing countries, to receive training to deal with the special challenges occasioned by urbanisation and structural problems in the rural areas of their home countries. In order to support a dialog between theoretical and practical application, Magel also founded the annual Munich Tage der Bodenordnung und Landentwicklung (land zoning and development conference), which has since become a forum for all of Germany. His strong commitment to his work has brought him national and international recognition and numerous important state, community and professional honors and distinctions. Magel also holds many honorary positions, such as president of the respected Bavarian Academy “Ländlicher Raum” (Rural Areas)


150 Alumni Stories - TUM Emeritus of Excellence Holger Magel: "I was lucky to be able to put my own theories into practice"


Short biography

1963 - 1968
1968 – 1971
1972 - 1974
1975 - 1977
1978 - 1997


1986 - 1997 
1998 - 2012


Current activities

Chair of the federal-state working group on village renovation (1984-1995)

EU representative for rural development in the former East German states (1992/1993)

President of the Bavarian Academy for Rural Areas (since 1994)

Spokesperson of the consortium of all the German Academies of Rural Areas (Arge LR) (from 2005)

Honorary president (since 2007), formerly president of the International Federation of Surveyors (Fédération Internationale des Géomètres (FIG) (2002-2006)

Member of the Bavarian Spatial Planning Advisory Board (since 1994) and the German Federal Advisory Board for Spatial Planning and Development (since 2010)

Chairman of the scientific working group Land and Real Estate Management of the German Geodetic Commission (DGK) at the Bavarian Academy of Science (2003-2009)

Member of the “Civic Involvement” round table of the Bavarian Ministry of Social Affairs
(since 2009)



  • Hans-Kudlich-Award, Ecosocial Forum Austria (1988) – the first non-Austrian to receive the award Silver Medal of Honor, Salzburg state (1988)
  • Tiroler Adlerorden in Gold (1988)
  • Bavarian Monument Protection Medal from the Bavarian State Ministry of Education, Science and the Arts (2000)
  • Soldner Medal from the Bavarian State Ministry of Finance (2006)
  • Bavarian Constitution Medal in silver awarded by the Bavarian State Parliament (2006)
  • Bavarian Order of Merit (2007)
  • Honorary citizenship of the Chinese model village Nan Zhang Lou, Shandong Province (2008)
  • State Medal in Gold of the Bavarian Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Forestry (2009)
  • Friedrich-Robert-Helmert-Gedenkmünze from the Society for Geodesy, Geoinformation and Land Management (DVW) (2009)
  • Commander of the Royal Order of SOWATHARA, Kingdom of Cambodia (2010)
  • Silver Commander´s Cross for services to Lower Austria (2011)
  • Technical adviser to the Council for Land Policy (2011) as well as the senior minister for land management – “Urban Planning and Construction” (2013) and awarded the title of “Excellency” (2013), Kingdom of Cambodia German Federal Officer's Cross of Merit (2013)
  • Golden akademic jubilee medal from the State University of Land Use Planning, Russia (2016)

You can download "Explanations of honors and awards" here [PDF] 


Key publications

Magel H: „Grund und Boden - Salz und Engpass jeder gesellschaftlichen und wirtschaftlichen Entwicklung“. ZfV. 2010; 1: 1-10.

Magel H: (2004): “Urban-rural-interrelationship for sustainable development. Stadt-Land-Beziehung für die Nachhaltige Entwicklung“. Geomatik Schweiz. 2004; 1: 19-24.

Magel H: (2003): „Landmanagement – Die neue Herausforderung an Bodenordnung und Landentwicklung“. Flächenmanagement und Bodenordnung. 2003; 1: 11-15.

Magel H: Dorferneuerung in Deutschland. Frankfurt a. M.: DG Bank, 1991.

Magel H: „Zum Stellenwert der Landschaftsplanung in der Flurbereinigung“. ZfV. 1988; 3: 13.