The name behind the prize is that of architect Max Taut (1884-1967), who was the first Dean and co-founder of the study programme in architecture at what was then the College of Fine Arts (HfbK) in Berlin. From 1945 to 1953 he worked here as a professor and director of the Department of Building and Architecture.
When the prize was awarded for the first time in 1995, the key aim of professors in the study programme Architecture was to initiate a special award for the best diploma theses in each year. In the main, the prize is endowed by the professors of the study programme Architecture and handed over at a ceremony combined with the presentation of graduation certificates.
Every year, there is a wide spectrum of nominations, reflecting the students' free choice of themes. The Max Taut prize-winners of recent years convinced the jury with their outstanding contributions to building design, experimental investigations in technical engineering, and independent interior design achievements using innovative methods of representation. While the jury initially consisted of members of the professorial staff, soon the decision was made to ask external jury members from the fields of architecture and art to evaluate the works.
In order to advertize the high quality of these works to those outside the university, all the nominations are shown in an exhibition at the main building, 33 Hardenbergstraße.