Prof. Dr. Martin Zimmer (FB 2)

Zoologist Martin Zimmer has held the professorship for Mangrove Ecology in the Faculty of Biology/Chemistry since May 2014. He leads the accordant research group at the University of Bremen’s Center for Marine Tropical Ecology (ZMT). Zimmer studied biology at the University of Cologne and worked on his doctoral project in Cologne and Ann Arbor, (USA). His research within the context of a post-doctoral dissertation and position as Privatdozent at the University of Kiel brought him into contact with coastal ecological systems. Most recently he was leader of a research group for terrestrial ecology at the University of Salzburg. While at the ZMT, Zimmer will pursue his research interest investigating the interactions of biotic communities under changing environmental conditions in mangrove ecosystems. Scientists predict that there will be a major impact on this habitat due to the changes taking place within the global environment, like global warming or the rise in sea levels, for instance. This is aggravated by the growing pressure from humans to utilize resources. What effect do these factors have on the ecosystem? Zimmer is investigating the answer to this question on the example of the interaction between individual components of the system, the symbiotic interactions, and material flows in mangroves and their neighboring ecosystems. Together with partners in Australia and the USA he is planning a project in China to research the geographic limits of mangroves and the climate-related changes taking place.

Prof. Dr. Anya Waite (FB 2)

Anya Waite was appointed Profesor for Oceanography in the University of Bremen’s Faculty of Biology / Chemistry in June 2014. After studying for a Diplom in Biology in Halifax, (Canada), in 1992 she was awarded a doctorate in Biological Oceanography by the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. Following post-doc positions at WHOI in the USA and the Victoria University in New Zealand, Anya Waite spent 17 years at the University of Western Australia in Perth, where she was the sole biological oceanographer. During that period she was leader of research groups in the institute for marine studies, and at the same time she taught environmental engineering. She has done research on the dynamics of mesoscale eddies in the East Indian Ocean, the nitrogen cycle in oligotrophic systems, and the biology of spiny lobster larvae in Australian waters. From 2011 till 2014 the oceanographer was a board member of the Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO). She is the official representative of the Helmholtz Center Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in Bremerhaven at the Antarctic Climate & Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre ACE CRC in Tasmania.

Prof. Dr. Emily J. King (FB 3)

Emily J. King has been researching and teaching as a Junior Professor for Computational Data Analysis in the Faculty of Mathematics / Informatics since April 2014. This professorship was established within the context of the Excellence Initiative. The main focus of the professorship is on two bridge projects: In one of these, Emily King is working together with Professor Eva-Maria Feichtner from the Institute for Algebra, Geometry, Topology and Related Applications (ALTA). They are researching the hybridization of Frame Theory and algebraic geometry. At the same time she will be cooperating with the Institute for environmental Physics (IUP) on developing new mathematical methods for atmospheric remote sensing. Born in Dallas, Emily King studied mathematics at Texas University. After graduating, she was awarded a Ph. D. from the University of Maryland for her dissertation titled “Wavelet and Frame Theory: Frame Bound Gaps, Generalized Shearlets, Grassmannian Fusion Frames, and p-adic Wavelets". Before coming to Bremen she held a Humboldt Stipend and worked as a researcher at the Universities of Bonn, Osnabrück and the TU Berlin.

Prof. Dr. Maike Vollstedt (FB 3)

In October 2014 Maike Vollstedt was appointed to the post of Professor for Mathematics Didactics (with the specialty secondary education) in the Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science at the University of Bremen. As a student teacher she studied mathematics and English at the universities of Kiel, Cologne, and Aberdeen (Scotland). Following this she was a scholarship holder in a DFG Graduate School at the University of Hamburg, where she was awarded a doctorate for a dissertation in which she investigated the motivations for learning mathematics on the part of students in Germany and Hong Kong. After a period working as a post-doc at the Leibniz Institut für die Pädagogik der Naturwissenschaften und Mathematik (IPN) in Kiel and then deputy professor at the University of Hamburg, she was appointed Professor for Mathematics Didactics at the FU Berlin. Beside the development of purpose-related teaching methodology, Maike Vollstedt’s research interests lie in investigating the impact of affective characteristics on mathematical-scientific competences in first-level vocational training, and teacher training in international comparison.

Professor Dr.-Ing. Udo Frese (FB 3)

Professor Dr.-Ing. Udo Frese was appointed Professor for Multisensory Interactive Systems (MSIS) in the University of Bremen’s Faculty of Mathematics/Informatics in March 2014. He is associated with the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) and the Collaborative Research Center “Spatial Cognition”. After studies in informatics, Frese worked at the Institute for Robotics and Mechatronics belonging to the German Center for Aviation and Space Research (DLR). He was awarded his doctorate by the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg in 2004, and in 2008 took up a post as Junior Professor for Real-time Image Processing at the University of Bremen. The main research focus of his MSIS work group is on the evaluation of data gathered by special sensors, including cameras, inertial sensors and laser range finders. In contrast to other data, the data gathered by sensors is subject to many influencing factors. For this reason, predictions involve uncertainty and the modeling of probability calculus. This occupies much of his time. A particularly good example is the methodology connected with the robotic football team B-Human (reigning world champions), where cognition of a robot’s movement, its position on the playing field, and the position of the ball and the opponents are vital to success.

Prof. Dr. Jens Rademacher (FB 3)

In April 2014 Jens Rademacher took up his appointment as Professor for Applied Analysis in the Faculty of Mathematics and Informatics at the University of Bremen. After Diplom studies in mathematics, philosophy and informatics in Bremen, Göttingen, Santa Cruz (USA) and the FU Berlin, he obtained a doctorate from the University of Minnesota (USA) for a dissertation on non-lineal waves and bifurcation theory. After working as a post-doc in Vancouver and at the Weierstraß-Institut in Berlin he held a position at the Dutch research institute "Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica" in Amsterdam, where he set up a work group on the analysis of coherent structures, while also teaching at different universities. In Bremen he is building up a local research group as well as theory-led and application-oriented cooperation projects. His main research interest is on the mathematics of self-organization in the form of non-lineal waves and coherent structures. Here, the focus is on a mathematical view of vegetation patterns, neural impulses, and other non-lineal waves.

Prof. Dr. Jürgen Pannek (FB 4)

Jürgen Pannek has been working as a Junior Professor for Dynamics in Logistics in the University of Bremen’s Faculty of Production Engineering since 1 February 2014. Pannek studied Mathematical Economics at the University of Bayreuth and the University of Warwick. After obtaining a doctorate in mathematics from the University of Bayreuth he held different positions at the Curtin University of Technology Perth, the University of Western Australia, and the Bundeswehr Universität München. Having changed his subject area several times, he gathered experience in mathematics, mathematical economics, as well as aviation and space technology. Pannek now brings his wide experience and interdisciplinary skills into the Bremen Research Cluster for Dynamics in Logistics (LogDynamics) in the high-profile research area of logistics. His specialty encompasses topics like intelligent transport, autonomy in decision-making processes, robust synchronization, and modular robotics.

Prof. Dr. Michael Freitag (FB 4)

On 1st October Michael Freitag accepted the chair for Planning and Control of Manufacturing Systems and Logistics in the University of Bremen’s Faculty of Production Engineering. At the same time he assumed leadership of the area Intelligent Production and Logistics Systems at the BIBA – Bremen Institute for Production and Logistics. Freitag studied electronic engineering at the BTU Cottbus with majors in automation and communication engineering. He obtained his doctorate at the University of Bremen with a dissertation on the non-lineal dynamics of production systems. In 2004 he became the Director of the Bremen Collaborative Research Center 637 “Autonomous Control of Logistics Processes”. Then in 2008 he accepted a senior position at the ArcelorMittal steel manufacturing enterprise, where he led the group “Optimization of Logistics Processes”. During this time he also taught at the Jacobs University Bremen. Now at the University of Bremen, he will focus on the modeling, simulation, and optimization of complex production and logistics systems, the development of planning and control methods, and with the automation of material flows using robots and flexible conveyor systems.

Prof. Dr. Johannes Kiefer (FB 4)

Johannes Kiefer was appointed Professor for Technical Thermodynamics in the Faculty of Production Engineering in February 2014. Following studies in chemical engineering at the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg he was awarded a doctorate there for his dissertation titled “Non-lineal optical  spectroscopy for diagnostics in combustion processes”. In 2010 Kiefer took up a position at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, where he was a senior lecturer until January 2014. His main research focus is on the development and application of optical – mostly laser-based – analysis methods for the investigation of materials and processes of interest in process engineering. In so doing, the main objective is to gain a better understanding of the relationship between processes on the molecular level as well as macroscopic properties. In Bremen, Kiefer wants to develop this approach with the aid of combined analysis procedures. The ultimate objective is to develop innovative methods to predict the properties and behavior of materials and processes.

Prof. Dr. Andreas Rittweger (FB 4)

In February 2014 Andreas Rittweger was appointed Professor for Space Technology in the University of Bremen’s Faculty of Production Engineering. At the same time he became the new Director of the Institute for Space Systems belonging to the DLR (German Aerospace Center). Rittweger studied aerospace technology at the RWTH Aachen, where he was awarded his doctorate from the Institut für Leichtbau for his work on calculating anisotropic shell structures. He worked in the space industry, where he gathered experience working on the development of the Ariane 5 rocket, initially in Bremen, then later in Les Mureaux near Paris. There he led the area “Space Engineering”, and among other things was responsible for the mechanics, thermal control, and design of the Ariane 5 rocket and future delivery systems. While at the Institute for Space Systems in Bremen, Rittweger will study concepts for future space systems and space missions, design and develop small satellites and planetary landing vehicles, and participate in research on crucial system-relevant technologies for future space transport systems as well as landing and scientific missions.

Prof. Dr. Olaf Eisen (FB 5)

In January 2014 Olaf Eisen was appointed Professor of Glaciology in the Faculty of Earth Sciences. At the same time he is doing research at the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research in Bremerhaven (AWI), where he is responsible for the area “Field Measurements”. His fascination for ice and snow led him to study geophysics at the TU Karlsruhe. He came to glaciology at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks, where he carried out research on the correlations between glacier dynamics, weather and climate. In 2003 the University of Bremen awarded him a doctorate for a thesis on the application of electromagnetic reflection processes in ice. After this he researched with an Emmy Noether Stipend at the ETH Zurich. From 2008 till 2013 he led an Emmy Noether Young Researcher Group at the AWI and the University of Heidelberg’s Institute for Environmental Physics. In 2010 he submitted his post-doctoral dissertation in Physics to the University of Heidelberg, where in 2013 he accepted an extraordinary professorship. In Bremen he intends to further develop the application of geophysical methods to research the properties of ice in order to gain a better understanding of the mass balances of large ice sheets and their flow characteristics.

Prof. Dr. Jutta Günther (FB 7)

Jutta Günther has been Professor for National Economics in the Faculty of Economics at the University of Bremen since April 2014. Jutta Günther, a product of second-chance education, studied social science and economics at the Universities of Oldenburg, Osnabruck and Albany/New York. In 2002 she was awarded a doctorate by the University of Osnabruck for a dissertation on the role of foreign investors in the transformation. From 2002 till 2014 Jutta Günther was a researcher and policy advisor at the Leibniz Institute for Economic Research in Halle, where she was a head of department and member of the management board. She submitted her post-doctoral dissertation to the chair for micro-economics at the Friedrich-Schiller University of Jena (2014). Her empirical research concentrates on structural change, innovation and system transformation. In Bremen her work will focus on the economics of innovation and structural change. She is currently engaged in putting her research group together.

Prof. Dr. Carolin Decker (FB7)

Carolin Decker was appointed Professor for Management and Organization in the University of Bremen’s Faculty of Economics on 1st October 2014. Carolin Decker studied Business Education at the University of Mainz. After this she studied for her Ph.D. in Leipzig and Paderborn, before submitting her dissertation at the FU Berlin in 2007. As a post-doc she was teaching and researching at the Chair for Value Added Knowledge Management and in the DFG Graduate School „Pfade organisatorischer Prozesse“. From 2011 till 2014 she was Junior Professor at the WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management in Vallendar, where she developed a research area on the topic “Family Offices” (a form of financial management specialized in preserving the value of family assets). Towards the end of this period she submitted her post-doctoral dissertation at the FU Berlin. Her main research interests lie in the management of inter-organizational relations, disinvestment and reorganization strategies, and family enterprises. In Bremen she intends to develop these research foci further and integrate her findings into teaching activities here.

Prof. Dr. Ruth Schilling (FB 8)

On 1st September 2014 Ruth Schilling took up an appointment as junior professor for “Communication of Museum-based History of Science” in the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Bremen. She takes on the professorship in cooperation with the German Ship Museum Bremerhaven/ Leibniz Institute for German Shipping History. The museum sees itself as a research institution, a place for research in and with its comprehensive maritime collection. However, it is also a place at which research is made visible as a process, in particular the research conducted at the University of Bremen. Ruth Schilling is responsible for establishing and maintaining this link between museum and university. Her research interests include investigations into the consequences of museum work and research projects and how research questions influence exhibition concepts.

Prof. Dr. Betina Hollstein (FB 9)

On 1st April 2014 Betina Hollstein took up her appointment as Professor for Sociology in the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Bremen. Within the context of a Bridge Professorship funded by the Excellence Initiative she is responsible for interdisciplinary networking in the high-profile research area of the university’s social sciences, as well as for cooperation with the University of Oldenburg. Betina Hollstein has considerable experience in research and teaching at German and foreign universities. Following studies at Philipps-Universität Marburg and the FU Berlin she worked at the LMU in Munich, the University of Mannheim and the HU Berlin. She also spent time at Harvard, Yale, Vienna. Most recently she held a professorship for micro-sociology at the University of Hamburg. Her specialties are sociology of the life course, social networks, and social inequality. Within the context of strengthening the high profile area, the Bridge Professorship focuses especially on coordinating lectures and international workshops on mixed methods, methods of networking analysis, and comparative methods.

Prof. Dr. Michi Knecht (FB 9)

In March 2014 Michi Knecht took up her post as Professor for Ethnology at the Institute for Ethnology and Cultural Studies in the Faculty of Cultural Studies. Michi Knecht studied social and cultural anthropology, sociology and pychology. In 2000 he obtained his doctorate from the Institute for Empirical Cultural Studies at theUniversity of Tubingen with a dissertation on protest forms of Christian life protection caught between politization of religion, the sacralization of biology, and attempts at a moral reconstruction of gender relations. Following this she was a university assistant and research associate at the Institute Institut for European Ethnology of the HU Berlin. In her post-doctoral dissertation (2011) she investigated new forms of family relationships and ethnographic knowledge production in the field of reproduction medicine and in-vitro technologies in Istanbul and Berlin. Currently, her research focus is on health crises and welfare bricolage in „super-diversen“ city suburbs, the science history of ethnology, as well as the change and social productivity of anonymized regimes. In Bremen, among other things she will do research at the interfaces and changing boundaries bwteen culture and the natural sciences in the fields of medicine / health and the environment.

Prof. Dr. Marcus Callies (FB 10)

In March 2014 Marcus Callies was appointed Professor for English Linguistics in the Faculty of Linguistics and Literary Studies, where he had already been teaching as a junior professor for the past two years. Callies studied English and History in Marburg, where he obtained his doctorate in 2006. After this he moved to Freiburg; then in 2009 he was junior professor for English Linguistics in Mainz, before accepting another post as junior professor in Bremen in April 2012. Callies researches the linguistic variations in native and non-native varieties of English with the aid of large digital text corpora. He leads this research within the context of the focus project “Lexico-gramatical variations in advanced learning varieties” supported by the University’s Central Research Funding Unit. The project is building up a computerized corpus of texts to form the basis for empirical research on academic writings published in English. Callies is co-editor of the International Journal of Learner Corpus Research and Vice President of the Learner Corpus Association.

Prof. Dr. Karin Wolf-Ostermann (FB 11)

On 1st April 2014 Karin Wolf-Ostermann took up her appointment as Professor for Nursing Care Provision in the Faculty of Human and Health Sciences. At the same time she became head of the department for nursing care provision at the Institute for Public Health und Care Research (IPP). Karin Wolf-Ostermann studied statistics and theoretical medicine, and she has extensive teaching experience in the area of social and health research at different universities and research institutions. In 1996 she received the Research Prize awarded by the Ärztlicher Arbeitskreis Rauchen und Gesundheit [Doctors’ smoking and health association]. In 2004 she started work in the area of empirical social and care research at the Alice Salomon Hochschule Berlin, where she established a research concentration on care provision for people suffering from dementia. The health expert is also Deputy Chairperson of the Ethics Commission of the German Association for Nursing Science. In Bremen she intends to further develop research in the field of care and health provision in Germany and strengthen international networking.

Prof. Dr. Florian Schmidt-Borcherding (FB 12)


In February 2014 Florian Schmidt-Borcherding was appointed Professor for Empirical Teaching-Learning Research and Pedagogical Psychology in the University of Bremen’s Faculty of Pedagogical and Educational Sciences. Schmidt-Borcherding studied psychology, mathematics, and German Studies at the University of Marburg. In 2006 he was awarded a doctorate by the University of Gießen for his thesis on the learning efficacy of multimedia learning platforms. After this, working together with educationalists and experts on instructional design in the research group “Empirical Education Research” at the University of Kassel, he developed methods on how to support self-learning processes. This was followed by deputy professorships (University of the Saarland, University of Göttingen), and most recently management of the media center of the Blindenstudienanstalt Marburg e.V. While at the University of Bremen, Schmidt-Borcherding wants to contribute toward the professionalization of instructional staff by developing concepts and applying the findings of teaching and learning research to teaching activities.