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Managing Board

Dean: Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Werner Mellis

studied mathematics and physics, and gained his doctorate in Mathematics in 1980 at the University of Cologne with a thesis from the field of basic mathematical research. Until 1984, he continued to work at Cologne University as a research assistant, focusing on the computer simulation of mathematical skills alongside his basic research. In 1984, he accepted a post at the Nixdorf Computer Corporation in the branch of artificial intelligence. From 1989 to 1992, he headed various research departments at Daimler Benz AG. He was also responsible for a series of national and international research projects from 1984 to 1992.

Since 1993, Professor Mellis has been Director of the Department of Information Systems and Systems Development at the University of Cologne, where he is devoted in particular to the subject of software development management. In addition, he has chaired the supervisory board of the SQS Group in Cologne from 2000 to 2014. In the course of his work, he has advised numerous companies in questions of software development management and was a long-time member of the board of trustees of the Fraunhofer Institute for Experimental Software Engineering (IESE), in Kaiserslautern. Since 2011, he has been Dean of Studies at the WiSo Faculty.
His activities within the scope of software development management have centred on quality management and software process configuration. He is specifically interested in the way strategies employed by software manufacturers influence the design of software processes as well as in empirical studies on the success of software projects. His scientific publications include works of basic mathematical research, mathematics education, artificial intelligence and software development management. He is moreover the author of three textbooks on the subject of software development management.


To the website of Prof. Dr. Werner Mellis



Vice-Dean: Prof. Ulrich Thonemann, Ph.D.

studied industrial engineering and management at the Universities of Berkeley, Paderborn and Stanford. He gained his Ph.D. at Stanford University in Management Science and Engineering. After that, he worked there for three years as an assistant professor, followed by another three years as a consultant with McKinsey & Company in Cologne. He started his academic career in Germany at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, before coming to Cologne. Here in Cologne, he heads the Department of Seminar für Supply Chain Management & Management Science at the WiSo Faculty. Meanwhile, he has declined offers for chairs from the University of Mannheim, the Technische Universität Darmstadt, the University of Vienna, and the Technische Universität München.

As Associate Dean for International Relations since March 2010, Professor Thonemann is responsible for the internationalization of teaching and research at the WiSo Faculty. His research work is devoted to the field of supply chain management, with a prime focus on incentive systems, stock optimization and service management. He is among the most published authors in the domain of Business Administration in Germany and co-edits a number of international scientific journals, as well as being the author of several textbooks. Professor Thonemann is moreover a member of the Academy of Sciences of North Rhine-Westphalia and of the Verein für Socialpolititik

To the website of Prof. Ulrich Thonemann, Ph.D.



Vice-Dean of Studies: Prof. Dr. Frank Schulz-Nieswandt

studied social sciences at the University of Bochum. He obtained his doctorate in 1986 and his postdoctoral lecture qualification (habilitation) in 1991. His research assistance term was spent at the Universities of Bochum, Cologne and Regensburg. Following visiting and interim professorships in Constance, Regensburg, Göttingen, Kassel, Bielefeld and Bochum, he accepted the post as Scientific Director of the German Centre of Gerontology (DZA) in Berlin. He declined the offer of a Chair for Health Policy in Kassel, rather accepting the Chair for Social Policy in Cologne in 1998.

Professor Schulz-Nieswandt was a member of the Second and Third Commissions for Reporting on Ageing instituted by the German Federal Government. Since 1998, he has been the president of the Association for Social Progress. He is a member of the scientific advisory boards of the DZA and the Gesellschaft für Öffentliche Wirtschaft (GÖW); he is moreover a member of the International Scientific Commission on Social and Cooperative Economy of the International Centre of Research and Information on the Public, Social and Cooperative Economy – CIRIEC.

To the website of Prof. Dr. Frank Schulz-Nieswandt



Vice-Dean of Research: Prof. Dr. Marita Jacob

studied Social Sciences, Mathematics and Economics at the Justus-Liebig-University Gießen, at Westminster University London and at the Freie Universität Berlin. Since May 2011, Marita Jacob has been a professor of Sociology at the Institute of Sociology and Social Psychology (ISS).

Her research work is devoted to social inequalities in the life course, especially educational inequalities and employment market issues. Further, Marita Jacob is involved in the promotion of interdisciplinary empirical educational research. Her research work has been published in leading sociological journals (e.g. Social Forces, European Sociological Review, Research in Social Stratification and Mobility). Topics addressed, includes the influence of social background on educational decisions and pathways, and the correlation between education and fertility as well as labour market entry and unemployment. 

To the website of Prof. Dr. Marita Jacob


Vice-Dean of International Relations: Prof. Dr. Felix Höffler

is a full professor of economics at the University of Cologne since 2011. From 1989 to 1995 he studied History, Politics and Economics at the University of Tübingen. Following his doctoral studies in Economics at the University of Bonn and at the London School of Economics in 1999, Höffler completed his doctoral degree at the University of Basel. After six years outside academia with positions in the public administration, as a business consultant, and in industry, he became a post-doctoral research fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods, Bonn. From 2007-2011, Höffler was a full professor of economics at the Otto-Beisheim School of Management, WHU Koblenz-Vallendar.

His research interests include applied industrial economics, regulatory economics, energy economics, law & economics, organisation theory and the economic analysis of historical institutions. Prof. Dr. Höffler is also director of the Institute of Energy Economics at the University of Cologne (ewi).

To the website of Prof. Dr. Felix Höffler



Marketing Commissioner: Prof. Dr. Franziska Völckner

is Director of the Department of Marketing and Brand Management at the University of Cologne. After taking her degree in Business Administration, she did her doctorate at the University of Hamburg, where she went on to gain her postdoctoral lecture qualification (habilitation). Research stays abroad took her to the Australian Graduate School of Management, the University of Technology Sydney, the Waikato Management School and Georgia State University, among others.

According to the May 2009 ranking of business researchers by the German daily paper Handelsblatt, Professor Völckner’s current achievements have placed her among the top 25 (out of 2,100 scientists from Germany, Austria and German-speaking Switzerland). Her research and interest priorities focus on brand and price management as well as on market and consumer research. Her academic accomplishments have received numerous awards, including 1st prize of the German Brands Association (Markenverband) and the research prize of the Deutsche Marketing-Verband. In 2008, she was awarded the prize for junior scientists by the German Academic Association for Business Research. Professor Völcker is moreover a member of the jury for the German Marketing Prize conferred by the Deutsche Marketing-Verband, and of the board of trustees of G.E.M. (Gesellschaft zur Erforschung des Markenwesens).

To the website of Prof. Dr. Franziska Völckner



School´s Managing Director: Dr. Gunther Zander

is the School's Managing Director.

He is responsible for the efficient and targeted orientation as well as the implementation of the School's administration and services.