Petra Schwer

Prof. Dr. Petra Schwer

Institut für Algebra und Geometrie (IAG)
Geometry Group
Universitätsplatz 2, 39106 Magdeburg,
Sprechzeiten: upon request

Since December 2018 I am professor for geometry in Magdeburg.

My research interests lie at the interface between geometry and group theory. I am particularly interested in metric spaces of nonpositive curvature, polyhedral complexes and group actions on them. I study geometric and combinatorial aspects of Coxeter groups, (Bruhat-Tits) buildings and their generalizations.

Most of what I do is inspired by methods in geometric group theory and metric geometry. But I do like to apply these methods to other areas.

I am (among other things) active as

If you are interested in writing your PhD with me feel free to contact me. 
I am also happy to support postdoc applications, e.g. via suitable DFG, DAADMarie Curie or  Alexander von Humboldt programs.  


In 2020 I wrote a guideline (in German) on how to read mathematics, such as text books, lecture notes, etc.. as part of my inverted classroom Linear Algebra course.
Feel free to share it!





  • Elizabeth Milićević, Petra Schwer, Anne Thomas: Chimney retractions in affine buildings encode orbits in affine flag
     varieties, arXiv:2207.12923 [math.GR], (2022)
  • Stefanie Rach-Ufer, Silke Neuhaus-Eckart, Petra Schwer: Lesen mathematischer Texte und Entwickeln von Freude an Mathematik: Einblicke in ein Flipped-Classroom-Konzept in der Studieneingangsphase. (2021)
  • Aiko Voigt, Petra Schwer, Noam von Rotberg, Nicole Knopf. TriCCo -- a cubulation-based method for computing connected components on triangular grids, arXiv:2111.13761 [math.GR] (2021) under discussion at GMD
  • Corina Ciobotaru, Linus Kramer, Petra Schwer: Polyhedral compactifications,arXiv:2002.12422 [math.MG] (2020)

Reviewed articles:

  • Elizabeth Milićević, Petra Schwer, Anne Thomas: Affine Deligne-Lusztig varieties and folded galleries governed by chimneys. arXiv:2111.13761 [math.GR], to appear in Annales l'Institut Fourier (2022).
  • Elizabeth Milićević, Yusra Naqvi, Petra Schwer, Anne Thomas: A gallery model for affine flag varieties via chimney retractions. arXiv:1912.09911 [math.RT], Transform. Groups (2022).
  • Petra Schwer: Shadows in the wild -- folded galleries and their applications. arXiv:2109.02293 [math.RT], Jahresbericht der DMV (2022) .

Weitere Schriften




You have possibly seen me (or will have the chance to see me) give a talk on one of the following occasions (since 2018):



Juni - Conference "Representation Theory", Lyon (F)
Mai - GAGTA 2023, Wien (AT)
Januar - Vortrag in der Reihe "Karriereeinblicke" der Fakultät für Mathematik in Halle, (D)
Januar - Vortrag im Kolloquium der Mathematik, Halle (D)


Dezember - Vortrag in der Reihe "Frauen in der Mathematik" des Mathematischen Seminars der Uni Kiel, (D)
September - DMV Tagung, Algebra und Zahlentheorie Session, Berlin (D)
September - Conference "Geometry meets combinatorics", Bielefeld (D)
Juni - Algebra Seminar Frankfurt (D)
Februar - MFO Workshop "Geometric Structures in Group Theory", Oberwolfach, (D)
Januar - Kolloquium der Mathematik, Uni Hamburg (D)



November - Geometry and Algebra Seminar in Newcastle, Newcastle (GB)
September - Workshop ”Combinatorics and representation theory“, Lausanne (CH)
August - Summer School The dual approach to Coxeter and Artin groups; Garside theory and applications“, Berlin (D)
Januar - Algebra Seminar Halle–Jena, virtuell



Mai - Virtual Workshop Polyhedral Products in Geometric Group Theory“, Fields Institue Toronto, Toronto (CA)
März - Workshop "Combinatorial Coworkspace", Kleinwalsertal (AT)
Jan - Math+ Friday: Kolloquium der  Berlin Mathematical School (D)



Nov. - Workshop "Buildings and applications", MPI Leipzig (D)
Okt. - EWM Meeting, Leipzig (D)
Aug - Algebra Seminar, Sydney (AU)
July - Felix-Klein Kolloquium, Leipzig (D)
May  - Mathematical Kolloquium, Göttingen (D)
Feb. - Conference "Geometric Analysis meets Geometric Topology", Heidelberg (D)
Feb. -  ABCD Workshop, Aachen (D)
Jan. -  Algebra Seminar, Köln (D)
Jan. -  Bär Kolloquium, Magdeburg (D)
Jan. -  Seminar Sophus Lie, Gießen (D)



Nov. - Workshop "Groups in Madrid", Madrid (ESP)
Nov. - Workshop on Algebraic Combinatorics, Berlin (D)
Okt. - Buildings 2018, Münster (D)
Sept. - Fall school in Besse (F)
May - Oberseminar Analysis JLU-Gießen (D)
April - Séminaire Algèbre ICJ, Lyon (F)
March - Conference \emph{Geometry and Representation Theory of Algebraic Groups}, Bad Honnef (D)
Jan. - Algebra Seminar, TU Kaiserslautern (D)



 Current supervision

PhD students

  • Marco Lotz (OVGU, since 2019, joint with Thomas Kahle)
  • Isobel Davies (OVGU, since 01/2021)
  • Anna Michael (OVGU, since 04/2021)

Master theses

  • Noam von Rotberg (2022, OVGU)
  • Max Zander (2022, OVGU)

Bachelor theses

  • Maria Grammel: Die Mathematik im Briefwechsel zwischen Escher und Coxeter (Summer 2022, OVGU)
  • Nico Fischer (gemeinsam mit Alexander Trost, Sommer 2022, OVGU)


Theses written under my supervision

PhD students

Master/Diplom theses

  • Mireille Soergel (SS 2018, Heidelberg)
  • Valentin Braun (WS 2017/18, KIT)
  • Peter Breul (WS 2017/18, KIT)
  • Holger Mühlsteph (WS 2017/18, KIT)
  • Marius Graeber (SS 2017, KIT)
  • David Weniger (WS 2016/17, KIT)

Bachelor theses

  • Yannick Steinkamp (2021, OVGU)
  • Noam von Rotberg (2020, Uni Heidelberg)
  • Jonas Labonte (SS 2018, KIT)
  • Lena Eid (SS 2017, KIT)
  • Laura Jesser (WS 2016/17, KIT)
  • Stefan Lais (SS 2015, KIT)




Petra Schwer studied mathematics at the Universities in Ulm and Bonn and received her PhD in Münster under the supervision of Linus Kramer and Richard Weiss. After postdoc positions in the USA and France she worked as a commodity risk controller at RWE Power AG in Essen for 10 months. 

She returned to research with DFG "Eigene Stelle" funding before she became a Junior Professor at KIT. During the winter term 2017/18 she was a visiting professor in Heidelberg, in the spring 2018 she worked in Saint Étienne (France) for a month as a prof-invitée.

Schwer became a professor for geometry at the Otto-von-Guericke University on December 1st 2018.



Current teaching:

For more on previous and current courses @OVGU follow this link.


Some old material:

Lecture on CAT(0) groups and geometry

In the summer of 2017 I was teaching the RTG lecture of our research training group in which I explained some of the nice properties CAT(0) groups and spaces.
The other half of the lecture was shared by Karin Melnick and Beatrice Pozetti.

Here are the scans of my lecture:

First session on Basics and examples.
Second session on The Bruhat-Tits fixedpoint theorem .
Third session on Gromov's link condition and other ways to test for CAT(0).
Fourth session on CAT(0) groups and Isometries of CAT(0) spaces.
Fifth session on The visual boundary and its relatives.


Teaching in Heidelberg Winter 2017/18

During the winter term 2017/18 I am a Visiting Professor at the University of Heidelberg replacing Prof. Anna Wienhard. I gave a student seminar on buildings as well as an introduction to Geometric Group Theory.



Weitere Infos zu den Lehrveranstaltungen finden Sie auf den entsprechenden Seiten im IAG.

Last Modification: 10.11.2022 - Contact Person: Prof. Dr. Petra Schwer