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!





  • Yuri Santos Rego, Petra Schwer: The galaxy of Coxeter groups, arXiv:2211.17038 [math.GR], (2022)
  • Elizabeth Milićević, Petra Schwer, Anne Thomas: Chimney retractions in affine buildings encode orbits in affine flag
     varieties, arXiv:2207.12923 [math.GR], (2022)
  • Corina Ciobotaru, Linus Kramer, Petra Schwer: Polyhedral compactifications,arXiv:2002.12422 [math.MG] (2020)

Reviewed articles:

  • 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] , published at GMD, (2022)
  • 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) .
Conference papers:

Practice-based Articles:

Further Writing:




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 is Professor for Geometry at the OVGU Magdeburg since 2018.

Former positions include

  • 2014-2018 Juniorprofessor for Geometry, KIT Karlsruhe
  • Spring 2018 Prof invitée in Saint Étienne (Frankreich)
  • Winter 2017/18 substituting Prof. for Geometry,  RKU Heidelberg
  • 2011-2014 Research position (DFG Eigene Stelle), WWU Münster
  • 2010 DAAD Scholarship,  UC Davis (USA) and Institut Elie Cartan Nancy (Frankreich)
  • 2010 - 2011 Comodity Risk Controlling,  RWE Power AG in Essen.
  • Winter 2007 Lecturer,  Tufts University, Boston (USA)
  • 2009 PhD in Mathematics,  WWU Münster - Stipendium der Studienstiftung des deutschen Volker für die Promotion
  • 2005 Diplom in Mathematics,  Uni Bonn

Find a short CV behind this link. 


Current teaching:

Current teaching:

This summer I am teaching :

 For more on current courses @OVGU follow this link.


List of courses (since 2018):

Since winter 2018 I taught 17 distinct courses at the OVGU. Out of these 5 were aimed specifically towards students in Math Education and 5 towards students of other departments.

In 2022 I was nominated for the OVGU Lehrpreis.

Lectures offered towards students in either Bachelor or Master of Mathematics, or students studying towards a degree in Math Education: 

  • Grundlagen und Geschichte der Mathematik
    Winter 2018/19 and 2019/20,  2SWS 
    Bachelor Berufsbildung, Fach Mathematik, Beruf und Bildung
  • Einführung in die Geometrie
    Summer 2019, 2021, 2022, 2+2 SWS 
    Berufsbildung, Beruf und Bildung, Lehramt an allgemeinbildenden Schulen
  • Metrische Geometrie
    Summer 2019, 3+1 SWS
    Master Mathematik
  • Geometrische Gruppentheorie
    Winter 2019/20 and  2021/22, 4+2 SWS
    Bachelor and Master Mathematik
  • Lineare Algebra 1
    Winter 2020/21    and  2022/23, 4+2 SWS
    Bachelor Mathematik
  • Lineare Algebra 2
    Summer 2021 and 2023, 4+2 SWS
    Bachelor Mathematik
  • Endliche Spiegelungsgruppen
    Winter 2022/23, 2 SWS
    handschriftliche Vorlesungsnotizen
    Lehramt an allgemeinbildenden Schulen Fach Mathematik, Bachelor Mathematik
  • Coxetergruppen und Gebäude
    Summer 2023, 3+1 SWS
    Master Mathematik


Service Teaching (courses taught towards students of other departments): 

  • Mathematische Methoden 1
    Winter 2019/20, 2+2 SWS
    Bachelor Berufsbildung, Beruf und Bildung, BWL, VWL, Curltural Engineering
  • Mathematik 1 für Informatik (Zyklus B)
    Winter 2020/21, 4+1 SWS
    Bachelor Informatik, Computervisualistik, Ingenieuirinformatik, Wirtschaftsinformatik
  • Mathematik 1 für Ingenieure (Zyklus B)
    Winter 2021/22, 6+2 SWS
    Bachelor Berufsbildung, Beruf und Bildung, Ingenieurpädagogik, Elektromobilität, Elektrotechnik und Informationstechnologie, Smarte Systeme, Mechatronik, Medizintechnik, Systemtechnik und technische Kybernetik, Wirtschaftsingenieur
  • Mathematik 2a für Ingenieure (Zyklus B)
    Summer 2022, 4+2 SWS
    Bachelor Berufsbildung, Beruf und Bildung, Elektromobilität, Elektrotechnik und Informationstechnologie, Mechatronik, Medizintechnik, Systemtechnik und technische Kybernetik, Wirtschaftsingenieur
  • Mathematik 2b für Ingenieure (Zyklus B)
    Winter 2022/23, 4+2 SWS
    Bachelor Berufsbildung, Beruf und Bildung, Elektromobilität, Elektrotechnik und Informationstechnologie, Mechatronik, Medizintechnik, Systemtechnik und technische Kybernetik, Wirtschaftsingenieur, IT-Smarte-Systeme


Seminars (topics courses where the students prepare and give talks (approx. 60 to 90 minutes) based on assigned material)

  • Seminar CAT(0) kubische Komplexe
    Summer 2022, 2 SWS
    Master Mathe
  • Proseminar Symmetrie
    Summer 2021, 2 SWS
    Lehramt Mathe, Bachelor Mathe
  • Seminar Geometrische Gruppentheorie
    Summer 2020, 2 SWS
    Master Mathe
  • Proseminar Perlen der Mathematik
    Summer 2019, 2 SWS
    Lehramt Mathe, Bachelor Mathe


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: 14.07.2023 - Contact Person: Petra Schwer