I am passionately creative, engaged and persistent, a team leader, and productive.
As a mother of two wonderful children I strive to balance work and family life.



Dr. phil. in sociology – summa cum laude
Freie Universität Berlin, Department for Sociology, Prof. Dr. Martin Kohli
Jul 2007 - Jul 2012

Visiting Scholar
New School for Social Research, Department for Sociology, New York
Jan 2007 - Jul 2007

Magister – graduated with “very good” (highest GPA)
Carl von Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg, majors: sociology and business
Oct 2002 - Dec 2006


Work Experience

Research Group Leader
Technical Univeristy Berlin, Department for Sociology, Freigeist-Fellowship "Entrepreneurial Group Dynamics"
Since Jan 2017

University of California Berkeley, Department for Sociology, Academic Hosts: Prof. Heather Haveman & Prof. Marion Fourcade, Berkeley
Jan 2014 - Jun 2016

Research Associate in Political Consulting & Research Agency
GIB – Gesellschaft für Innovationsforschung mbH, Berlin
Jun 2012 - May 2013

Research Associate
Freie Universität Berlin, Department for Sociology, Project: From Generation to Generation – Succession in Family Businesses, Berlin
Jul 2007 - Dec 2010

Part-time Assistant in Business Consultancy
procedo Unternehmensberatung GmbH, Oldenburg
Oct 2002 - Dec 2006

Student Assistant
for Prof. Dr. Gerd Vonderach (Story Hermeneutics) and Prof. Dr. Stefan Müller-Doohm (Habermas Biography)
Carl von Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg
Oct 2004 - Dec 2006

Training as Management Assistant in Advertising
Mattfeldt & Sänger Marketing und Messe AG Kempten
Sep 2000 - Jul 2002



Project Management
Through my experiences in advertisement, business consulting and policital advisory I am conversant with project-based work. I have participated in company audits, the implementation of quality management systems, and the promotion of a state initiative to foster family friendly work practises in Bavaria. These experiences have taught me how to plan, budget, implement and evaluate projects. A skill that has been tremendously helpful for my academic work. At present I lead the research group "Entrepreneurial Group Dynamics". In addition, I pursuit a number of research projects on entrepreneurial groups, solo self-employed, Exit in German Mittelstand and crowd science with colleages from Germany, France, Sweden, the US and Australia.

My research work often takes the shape of international and interdisciplinary research collaborations. I am used to initiate such collaborations and introduce structures for a productive and collegial exchange. To do so, I exploit the virtual possibilities of our digitalized working world without neglecting regular personal contact, especially during start-up and high phases. I am the initiator of the DFG-Network "Venturing Together" that allows 15 researchers form four countries to meet biannually. 


Academic Honors & External Grants

Outstanding Teaching Award, Faculty VI TU Berlin
2020, Value: 1.500 EUR

FBR Best Article Award in 2018 with Frank Barbera & Rocki-Lee DeWitt, Family Business Review.
2019, Value: 5.000 USD

Freigeist-Fellowship funded by VolkswagenFoundation
supporting the research group "Entrepreneurial Group Dynamics" at Technical University Berlin,
Jan 2017-Dec 2021, Value: approx. 1.000.000 EUR

Best Paper Award
with Frank Barbera and Rocki-Lee DeWitt at the 10th Family Enterprise Research Conference, Portland 
2014, Value: 1.500 USD

FOBI-Scholar 2014
with Frank Barbera and Rocki-Lee DeWitt. Funding received by the Family Owned Business Institute at Grand Valley State University to further promote the framework of ‘Intergenerational Innovation’,
2014, Value: 5.000 USD

Research Scholarship funded by German Research Foundation (DFG)
supporting the research project: „Life Course Dynamics in American Family Businesses“ at the University of California at Berkeley
Jan 2014 - Jun 2016, Value: approx.: 200.000 EUR

Forum for Junior Researchers funded by the Volkswagen Foundation
with Anita Bader, Nicole Schmiade, Daniel Kersting and Jan Schmirmund,
March 2010, Value: 25.000 EUR

Peter Waskönig Scholarship
supporting the book publication of my master thesis
December 2006, Value: 5.000 EUR


International Experience

Post-Doc Fellow
University of California Berkeley, Department for Sociology, Berkeley
Academic Hosts: Heather Haveman & Marion Fourcade
Jan 14 - Jun 16

Visiting Scholar
New School for Social Research, Department for Sociology, New York
Jan 07 - Jul 07

Intern - Manhattan Chamber of Commerce, New York
Sep 04 - Feb 05

Exchange Student - Allen High School, Texas
Aug 97 - Jul 98

Several multi-week travels to France, Italy, Sweden, Croatia, Austrai, Switzerland, Spain, Greece, England, Israel, USA and Mexico.


Academic Service


Family Business Review, Journal of Family Business Strategy,       Journal of Business Venturing, Entrepreneurship and Regional Development, Journal of Marriage and Family, Canadian Review of Sociology, Soziologische Revue, Business History, Academy of Management Learning



I initiated and now head the international und interdisciplinary network „Venturing Together!“ (members include for example Prof. Nicola Breugst, Prof. Anna Brattström, Prof. Frederic Delmar or Prof. Nadine Kammerlander); I am spokeswoman of the standing working group “Die Arbeit der Selbständigen” jointly with Prof. Hans Pongratz, Prof. Andrea Bührmann and Dr. Lena Schürmann; and am invited member of the „Round-Table Mittelstand“ organized by the Institut für Mittelstand (Bonn) and the German Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs under the lead of Prof. Friedericke Welter. Further, I am member of multiple academic associations (e.g. DGS, ASA, SASE, IFERA, FIFU).

During my Post-Doc time at UC Berkeley, I was board member of the Humanities and Social Sciences Association, Fellow at the Berkeley Institute for Data Science, member of the CCOP Working Group (Prof. Neil Fligstein), the Nets and Organization Workshops at Stanford University (Prof. Woody Powell) and the D-LAB Qualitative Research Working Group at UC Berkeley. In addition, I was affiliated member of the Successful Transgenerational Entrepreurship Practise (STEP)-Project Team at Stetson University Florida. Since then, I have maintained close relationships to these various networks. 


Family Businesses and Associations

As object of my research and potential career paths of my students, I maintain close relationships to family businesses and associations. This includes regular excursions (e.g. Stiftung Familienunternehmen, local family businesses), the supervision of master thesis in close collaboration with practice, invited talks for family businesses and associations (e.g. Family Business Network), as well as professional exchange about business projects with firm platforms and executive recruitment companies.

Practitioners have picked up on my research in various ways. For example, my writings on daughters in family businesses have been the basis for a self-assessment tool, I have been invited by the Family Business Network to present my findings on storytelling to family businesses in Vienna, and, most recently, the FFI Practitioner has reported about our findings on entrepreneurial legacies.