Our Authors

Milena Paglia

Milena Paglia holds a BA in Oriental Culture and Civilizations and a MA in African and Asian Languages and Cultures from the University of Bologna (Italy).

She works at a freelance journalist for online media and as a freelance translator for Global Voices. Her main focus is on the Arab world, particularly on the topic of mass media and political and social change in the MENA region.

She has dedicated her univerity career to the study of Arabic to learn which she has travelled to Tunisia and Syria. She is now intern researcher at the European Institute of the Mediterranean (Barcelona).


Sonja Peteranderl

Sonja Peteranderl is a freelance journalist who reports from abroad on politics, the economy and digital trends for print and online media such as Spiegel Online, the Tagesspiegel and the Freitag weekly. She studied in Berlin and Munich, graduated from the Deutsche Journalistenschule (DJS), and was awarded a scholarship as part of the Deutsche Studienstiftung and Dr Alexander and Rita Besser Stiftung's foreign correspondent programme.

Together with journalist Julia Jaroschewski, also a foreign correspondent programme scholarship recipient, she has been following developments in the Brazilian favelas in the run-up to the 2014 World Cup with the BuzzingCities multimedia project since 2011. In 2013 they moved to the Rocinha favela in Rio de Janeiro to blog from the favela live. Together they are also investigating the influence of the internet on the slums.


Thomas Petermann

As a Senior Programme Manager at GIZ (former InWEnt), Thomas Petermann is responsible for capacity building programmes in the fields of natural resources management, including water development, nature conservation and integrated land use planning.

He joined DSE/InWEnt in 1993 and has since then conducted policy dialogue, professional training and regional networking with programmes in Sub-Sahara Africa, the MENA region, Southeast Asia, Central Asia, Southern Caucasus and the Andes.


Barbara Ilse Petzold Horna

Barbara Ilse is an artist and cultural anthropologist. She was born in Lima, Peru in 1985. Growing up surrounded by painting, photography, dancing and theater, artist practice has always been an integral part of her development. She earned a master’s degree in ethnology, political science and Ibero- Romance philology at the University of Bonn where she also worked as a lecturer. Today she is an independent artist and lecturer in Sao Paulo.


Mario Pezzini

Mario Pezzini is Director of the OECD Development Centre. Before joining the Development Centre in 2010, Mario Pezzini held several senior management positions at the OECD. Before becoming Deputy Director of the Public Governance and Territorial Development Directorate, he was Head of the Regional Policy Division that covers policy analysis on urban development, rural development, regional competitiveness and public governance. Prior to joining the OECD, Mr. Pezzini was Professor in Industrial Economics at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines de Paris and has held posts at US and Italian universities as well. Mr. Pezzini has also served as an advisor in the field of economic development, industrial organisation and regional economics in international organisations and on think tanks (e.g. ILO, UNIDO, the European Commission, and Nomisma in Italy). Mr. Pezzini started his career in the government offices of the Emilia-Romagna Region


Jonathan Pfahl

Jonathan Pfahl is a 31-year old entrepreneur and MD of Rockstar Group & Rockstar Youth.


Alexander Pfeuffer

Alexander works as a filmmaker (e.g. "The Bereaved", which premiered at the Max-Ophüls-Award Festival in 2010), as a writer of teleplays ("Polizieruf 110") and as a screenwriting lecturer in Berlin.

He studied dramatic writing, screenwriting and film production in Berlin and Los Angeles. He wrote theatre plays (e.g. "Vermisst", presented, inter alia, at the "Dramafest" theater festival, Mexico) and screenplays (e.g. "Was nützt die Liebe in Gedanken", winner of, inter alia, the European Film Award, the Award of German Film Critics and many more).


Andris Piebalgs

EU Development Commissioner Andris Piebalgs is an experienced Latvian politician who has occupied key positions in both the national and European political fields.

During the first Barroso Commission, starting in November 2004, he was the European Commissioner for Energy. In that capacity, he led the development of a more competitive, sustainable and secure European energy system, which is one of the crowning achievements of the Barroso Commission.

In 2011 he was invited to join UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's High-Level Group on "Sustainable Energy for All", leading the task force on universal access.

In recognition of his leadership in European energy policy, in 2009, the Energy Efficiency Global Forum presented him the Energy Efficiency Visionary Awards for his "outstanding contributions to the advancement of energy efficiency". Before joining the Commission, Andris Piebalgs pursued a political career, operating strategic ministerial portfolios, and helping Latvia to play its role in the EU.

Andris Piebalgs participated in the Minds for Change conference.

Minds for Change conference

Video statement at YouTube


Nadine Piefer

Nadine Piefer is a Ph.D. researcher at the Department of Political Science at the Technical University Darmstadt, Germany, and a freelance consultant. Her research and consultancy work focuses on new development partners, triangular cooperation and energy relations with the BICS. She works in these fields as consultant for the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), e.g. in South Africa, Mexico, Brazil and Germany. Nadine Piefer is the project manager of the international interdisciplinary research project “Challenges of European External Energy Relations with Emerging Powers”. She studied Political Science and Sociology in Darmstadt, Mexico City, Freiburg, Durban, and New Delhi and holds a master degree of the Global Studies Programme.


Oliver Pieper

Oliver Pieper has worked for GIZ and the Deutsche Welle Akademie (as a development worker) in Ecuador since 2012. His work focuses on strengthening quality journalism especially in community media. He has also worked for the Deutsche Welle and Deutschlandfunk as an editor and moderator specialising in Latin American issues.


Isabel Pleisnitzer

Isabel Pleisnitzer holds two Bachelor degrees in Economics and Comparative Cultural and Religion Science and completed her studies with a Master in Development Economics. She has been working as intern for the Development Policy Forum of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and is deputy board member of the association Yatima e.V.


Jan Pospisil

Jan Pospisil is an Affiliated Researcher at oiip – the Austrian Institute for International Policy and Assistant Professor for International Relations and Political Theory at the Institute for Political Science at the University of Vienna.

Since 2004 he has been working on links between the security and development complexes along with questions of fragility and armed conflicts in the periphery. His regional focal points include East Africa (Sudan and Uganda in particular) and Sri Lanka.


Robin Poulton

Robin Poulton is consultant for the EPES Mandala team and for other organisations with expertise in the broad field of Security Sector Reform. Together with Ibrahim Bangura he studied at Fourah Bay College in Freetown, Sierra Leone; they were students in the same place, but in different centuries.


Alexandra Pres

Alexandra Pres is acting as free lance consultant in the field of Capacity Development.

Having been responsible for the overall coordination of InWEnt's (German Capacity Building International) rural development division and beforehand of InWEnt's water portfolio, she has been involved in the elaboration of various policy concepts of the German Development Cooperation and bilateral agreements with the German partner countries. In this context, she closely cooperates with the World Bank Institute, the Arab Water Council and several bilateral donors, too.


Johannes Preuß

With his company, jfp-films, Johannes Preuß has produced films for international DC since 2010. To date his work has primarily been on financial and agricultural projects in West Africa. In a series of short films and the recently released “E Go Better” mini-series, he explores cinematic and entertaining ways of increasing financial literacy. He often collaborates with local film makers and lay actors. His approach is based on the ‘participatory video’ method.

Mr. Preuß is currently studying directing at The Filmakademie Ludwigsburg. He holds advanced degrees in political science and journalism. In addition to films for DC, he also works on scenic projects, music videos and documentaries, and holds workshops.



Lutz Preuss

Lutz Preuss is Reader in Corporate Social Responsibility at the School of Management of Royal Holloway University of London.

His research has addressed a range of cross-national issues around corporate social responsibility, not least differences in approaches to CSR between firms from developed and developing countries. He holds a PhD from King's College London and has published widely in leading academic journals in the field of CSR.


Dirk Prüfer

Dirk Prüfer is Professor of Plant Biotchnology at Münster University and Head of Department "Functional and Applied Genomics" at the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology (IME).

After his Postdoc Studies in Cologne and Strasbourg he inter alia worked at the Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental Chemistry and Ecotoxicology and did his postdoctoral studies at the University of Giessen.


Detlef Puhl

Detlef Puhl is Senior Advisor to the NATO Deputy Secretary General on newly emerging security threats.

From 2008 to 2011 he was Vice Director of the "Délégation aux Affaires Stratégiques" of the French Ministry of Defence in Paris. He was a spokesperson for the German Ministry of Defence from 1998 to 2001.

He has also served as Deputy Head of Faculty at the "College for International and Security Studies" at the George C. Marshall Center in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, and worked as expert on security issues for the daily "Stuttgarter Zeitung".