About me

About me

  • since 2017: Full Professor at the Institute of Geography, Kiel University, “Social Dynamics in Coastal and Marine Areas”, member of the research cluster  The Future Ocean
  • IMG_37682012-2016: Postdoc position as Principal Investigator of the research project: Climate change and mobility – new rights and resources for environmental migrants in the Pacific region, Research Centre for Sustainability Studies, University of Bremen
  • 2010-2012 Postdoc position at the International Research Training School INTERCOAST, University of Bremen and University of Waikato, New Zealand,
  • 2006-2010: International Research Training School “Critical Junctures of Globalization”, University of Leipzig and Max-Planck-Institute for Social Anthropology, Halle & , PhD-project: Europe between border control and the protection of refugees. An ethnography of the Mediterranean Sea border. OPEN ACCESS http://www.oapen.org/search?identifier=646421;keyword=fl%C3%BCchtlingsschutz
  • 1996-2003 Humboldt University, Berlin: Master’s degree in Social Anthropology, Subsidiary subjects: Political Science and Italian


  • 2012-2017: member of the German Young Academy of Scientists (Die Junge Akademie)
  • 2012: Christiane Rajewsky Award, German Association for Peace and Conflict Studies
  • 2011: Nominated for the German Thesis Award, Körber-Stiftung
  • 2010: Research Academy Leipzig (RAL), University of Leipzig, Award for the best social science PhD 2010


  • Political Ecology, social and cultural effects of climate change, critical climate change adaptation research, Mobility studies, Legal Anthropology, Political Anthropology, border anthropology, Science, Technology and Society (STS), Mediterranean region, Oceania



  • 2015 Research Fellow at the Pacific Center for Environment and Sustainable Development at University of the South Pacific, Suva, Fiji
  • 2015 Fieldresearch in Fiji and Kiribati/ Central Pacific
  • March – June 2011: Field research in Kiribati/Central Pacific and New Zealand on the topic of climate change and mobility
  • November-December 2010: Field research in Vanuatu/South Pacifc on the topic of climate change and mobility
  • April – October 2007: Field research in Southern Italy and Malta to learn more about the practices of national and European border security forces handling the phenomenon of irregular migration in the Mediterranean Sea
  • October – November 2006: Field research in Tripoli/Libya to analyse the living and detention conditions of transit migrants and refugees in Libya and the effects of the Italian-Libyan border co-operation
  • April 2006: Research trip to Sicily, Italy funded by the German NGO Pro Asyl to undertake research and write a report on the situation of immigrants and refugees in the Italian sea-border region
  • June – September 2004: I spearheaded an empirical research team in Lusaka, Zambia, to provide information for the Zambian-German technical cooperation project “STEP IN” which was funded by the ASA Programme of InWEnt gGmbH (Capacity Building International, Germany). In an intercultural research team an assessment of possible forms of cooperation amongst informal sector operators was undertaken.
  • March – August 2002: Field research for my thesis: “Arrival and Reception of Refugees in Italy”. Conducted surveys on the situation of refugees in Puglia Region/ southern Italy and in the city of Turin/ northern Italy. Research also included an analysis of the Italian policy in the European process of harmonising migration and refugee law.
  • September 1998 – April 1999: Erasmus Exchange Programme in Naples, Italy: Undertaking of a self-designed empirical research project on the situation of unemployed young people in Naples, their social networking and survival strategies.