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Research Activities and Responsibilities

1966-1968: Student of law while working as a journalist/critic and insurance company agent.

1967: Doctor of Jurisprudence.

1968: Assistant, Law Faculty, Karl-Franzens University, Graz.

1972: Doctor of Political Science.

1975: “Habilitation” (university lecturing qualification) in Economic and Social History.

1977: Professor of Economic and Social History and Chairman of the Department of Social and Economic History at the Faculty for Social and Economic Sciences (SOWI Faculty).

1985-1989 and 1997-2004: Dean of the SOWI Faculty and Chairman of the “Fakultätskollegium” (Assembly of the Faculty).

Additional Teaching Activities

1992-to date: University lecturer.

1997 to date: Guest Professor at the Technical University in Graz (subjects: Economics and International Economic Relations).

1995-2004: Director of Media Studies at the Karl-Franzens University. Member of the Advisory Board of Interdisciplinary Gerontology. Director of the University Programme for the Management of Social and Health Facilities.

Important Publications and Areas of Research

Publications on recent Austrian economic history; social relations; insurance history; oral history and the history of the Liechtenstein dynasty. Director of the interdisciplinary research project “Altern – Lust oder Last” (Ageing – Pleasure or Burden).


1989: Research Director of the official Styrian Exhibition (Judenburg: Men & Money & Markets)

1993: Research Director of the official Styrian Exhibition (Krieglach, Birkfeld, St. Kathrein: Peter Rosegger)

1995: Advisor for the Carinthian Exhibition

1996: Director of Research for the Special Exhibition (Riegersburg: History of the Liechtenstein Dynasty).

Activities in Adult Education

1972-2004: Chief Editor of the cultural magazine “Steirische Berichte”. Member of the Advisory Board of the “Steirisches Volksbildungswerk” and “Steirische Volkswirtschaftliche Gesellschaft”.

1989-1991: President of Urania (vocational education institute).

Other Functions

1991-1996: Chairman of the Association of University Professors (UVP); delegate of the Federal Professors’ Conference, Vienna; awarding jury member of the Erzherzog Johann prizes for research, chairman of the Styrian awarding jury for the “Humanitas-Medaillen”.

1993-2001: Member of the “Regionalradiobehörde” (Vienna).

1998-2004: Deputy member of the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) of the Council of Europe, Strasbourg.

9 April 2004: Elected Member of the Styrian Government (Minister for Economy and Europe).

2005-2010: Representative of the Styrian Parliament.

2009-2013: President of the Red Cross, Landesverband Steiermark.

2013-to date: President of the Austrian Red Cross.

Honours and Awards

Theodor Körner Prize for Research, Josef Krainer Research Award.

“Großes Goldenes Ehrenzeichen” (Decoration of Honour) of the Styrian Government.

Ehrenkreuz für Wissenschaft und Kunst 1. Klasse. (Cross of Honour for Research and Art, First Class).

Kommandeurkreuz pro Merito Melitensi.

Austrian Red Cross: Verdienstkreuz 1. Klasse.