“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” Confucius

Since 2004 I have been head of the department of energy, transportation and environment at the German Institute for Economic Research in Berlin (DIW Berlin) and Professor of Energy Economics and Energy Policy at Leuphana University. I was  professor of energy and sustainability at the Hertie School of Governance, in Berlin until 2019. From 2004 until 2009 I was professor of environmental economics at Humboldt University Berlin. My research focuses on the economic assessment of climate and energy policy strategies.

As reviewer and policy consultant I am member of numerous sustainability advisory boards and commissions. Since 2016 I am member of the German Council on the Environment. In the High Level Group on Energy and climate I advised EU President José Manuel Barroso and act in diverse scientific advisory boards. I am member of several juries as the German Sustainability Prize as well as the German Environment Prize.

I studied economics at the University of Bielefeld in Oldenburg and at Stanford University. After completing my PhD in 1998, I worked as a researcher at the Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM) in Milan. This is also when I began working as a political consultant between in Rome and Bonn. 

Upon my return to Germany, I headed a research group at the Institute for Rational Energy Use at the University of Stuttgart. In 2000 I was invited to the University of Oldenburg as assistant professor, where I headed a research team until 2004. I held lectures in St. Petersburg, Moscow und Siena. In 2006 I was awarded the high level prize as one of the top eleven young scientists in Germany by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Science Foundation), the Helmholtz- and the Leibniz-Foundation. In 2011 I was awarded by the Urania Medaille as well as the B.A.U.M. environmental award for best public science, in 2016 followed the Adam Smith Award for a social-ecological economy as well as the German Solar Award. I am member of Club of Rome, since 2016 in the steering committee.

I was born 1968 in Delmenhorst; I live in Berlin and Oldenburg with my husband.