Following studies in mineralogy and crystallography at the University of Münster, in 1982 Bednorz gained a doctorate at the Laboratory for Solid Body Physics at the ETH Zürich, and began working the following year at the IBM research lab in Rüschlikon. Together with Karl Alexander Müller, in 1986 he discovered high-temperature superconduction in ceramic copper oxide compounds. A year later the two scientists received the Nobel Prize in Physics for their discovery. In 1987 Dr. Bednorz was made an IBM Fellow and in 1998 a Fellow of the American Physical Society. There followed further awards, such as the German Grand Cross of Merit with Star and Riband and honorary doctorates at the Universities of Salzburg, Regensburg, Tbilisi and Katowice. Since April 2017 Dr. Bednorz has been an honorary member of the superconductor industry association ivSupra.