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Front of the ESMT building

Leadership & governance

Jörg Rocholl

"Our mission at ESMT Berlin is to develop entrepreneurial leaders who think globally and act responsibly. Responsible leaders who make a difference have the courage to make difficult decisions, take risks, and even make mistakes. At the same time, they inspire others to take on challenges and embrace positive change. We are committed to developing our students into leaders who embody a sense of responsibility, share knowledge and resources, and actively work to create a better world for all.”

                                                               – Jörg Rocholl, President, ESMT Berlin 


School governance

ESMT Berlin has two spheres of governance: corporate and academic. The corporate governance of the school regulates all strategic and operative issues. The president and CFO of ESMT are its legal stewards. They are controlled by the supervisory board and advised by the Management Committee (MC) as the supreme advisory body of the school. Its members are, besides the president and CFO, the dean of faculty and research, and the dean of programs.

The academic governance of ESMT covers all matters of faculty policy, research, and education. There are two main bodies: The academic board is an independent advisory body for academic matters. The academic committee supervises and advises the president on fundamental issues of research, academic instruction, and the further development of the study program. The president is in charge of ESMT and represents the school in both spheres of its governance.

Governing and advisory bodies

  • Supervisory Board of ESMT GmbH

    The supervisory board is a controlling governing body of ESMT GmbH. It controls and advises the managing directors of the school.

    • Chairperson: Dr. Werner Zedelius, Senior Advisor, Allianz SE 
    • Prof. Dr. Andreas Dombret, former Board Member, Deutsche Bundesbank AG
    • Dr. Joachim Faber, former Member of the Board, Allianz SE
    • Stefan Grosch, Member of the board of management and director of industrial relations, Robert Bosch GmbH
    • Jürgen Hartwig, Member of the Board of Management - Human Resources, Daimler Truck Holding AG
    • Marion Höllinger, Spokeswoman of the Management Board (CEO), HypoVereinsbank - UniCredit Bank AG
    • Sabine Kohleisen, Member of the Board of Management, Human Relations & Labor Director,Mercedes-Benz Group AG, 
    • Bernd Leukert, Chief Technology, Data & Innovation Officer, Member of the Management Board, Deutsche Bank AG
    • Dr. Thomas Ogilvie, Member of the Board - HR and Labor Director, DHL Group
    • Judith Wiese, Chief People and Sustainability Officer (CPSO) and Member of the Managing Board and Labor Director, Siemens AG
  • Management Committee

    Members of the management committee provide updates from their areas and give recommendations to the managing directors on various administrative and operative issues.

    • Chairperson: Prof. Jörg Rocholl, PhD, President and Managing Director, ESMT Berlin
    • Georg Garlichs, Chief Financial Officer and Managing Director, ESMT Berlin
    • Prof. Harald Hungenberg, Dean of Programs, ESMT Berlin
    • Per Olsson, Dean of Faculty and Research, DHL Group Professor in Sustainable Accounting
  • Advisory Committee (AC)

    The Advisory Committee (AC) consists of eight members from different parts of ESMT. The mission of the AC is to support the work of the MC by bringing in diverse perspectives from different areas of ESMT. The AC has the mandate to provide input and propose concrete actions by developing new policies and procedures, developing strategies and plans to address business challenges, and driving forward crosscutting, new projects within ESMT. The members are:

    • Molly Ihlbrock, Director of Corporate Communications 
    • Rebecca Loades, Director, MBA Programs
    • Carolin Ludwig, Deputy Director of Human Resources
    • Angeliki Papachroni, Senior Lecturer in Strategy, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship and Faculty Lead of the Master in Innovation and Entrepreneurship program
    • Henry Sauermann, Professor of Strategy, ESMT Chair in Entrepreneurship, and Director of the Institute for Endowment Management and Entrepreneurial Finance (IFEE)
    • Roland Siegers, Director, External Engagement
    • Sonja Tolsdorff, Director of Accounting and Controlling
    • Valentina Werner, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs
  • Academic Board

    The Academic Board consists of leading academics of international reputation. Members of the Academic Board are proposed by the faculty and appointed by the president. They advise ESMT and its president on all fundamental academic issues and provide feedback on ESMT’s academic development.

    • Amy C. Edmondson, Novartis Professor of Leadership and Management, Harvard Business School
    • Alfonso Gambardella, Professor of Management and Head of the Department of Management and Technology, Università Bocconi
    • Martin Gargiulo, Professor of Entrepreneurship, INSEAD
    • Michael J. Page, Professor of Finance and Management, Bentley University
    • Manju Puri, J. B. Fuqua Professor; Duke University, The Fuqua School of Business
    • Xuan Tian, JD Capital Chair Professor of Finance, "Cheung Kong Scholar" Distinguished Professor 
    • Edward A. Snyder, Professor of Economics and Management, Yale School of Management.
    • Reinhilde Veugelers, Full Professor, Department of Management, KU Leuven
    • Heli Wang, Dean, College of Graduate Research Studies; Janice Bellace Professor of Strategic Management, Lee Kong Chian School of Business
    • Chairperson: Florian Zettelmeyer, Nancy L. Ertle Professor of Marketing, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University
  • Academic Committee

    The Academic Committee is an academic supervisory and advisory body of ESMT. Current members are:

    • Chairperson: Prof. Jörg Rocholl, PhD, President and Managing Director, ESMT Berlin
    • Prof. Matthew Bothner, PhD, ESMT BerlinProf. Gianluca Carnabuci, PhD, ESMT Berlin
    • Prof. Dr. Harald Hungenberg, Dean of Programs, ESMT Berlin
    • Jingze Nate Niu, PhD Student, ESMT Berlin
    • Prof. Per Olsson, Dean of Faculty and Research, ESMT Berlin
    • Prof. Catalina Stefanescu-Cuntze, PhD, ESMT Berlin

    Student representatives (two votes):

    • Anna Chevychalova, MAAI Class 2023-2025
    • Pascal Chiaravalle, MBA Class 2023-2024
    • Nils Donat, MGM Class 2023-25
    • Ogbogu Kalu, MBA Class 2023-2024
    • Fabian Unger, MIM Class 2022-2024
    • Yasmin Zahra, MIE Class 2023-2025
    • Maria Zambrano. EMBA Class 2022-2024


  • ESMT Foundation Board of Trustees

    Executive Committee

    • Chairperson: Ola Källenius, Chairman of the Board of Management, Mercedes-Benz Group AG
    • Vice Chairperson: Christian Sewing, Chief Executive Officer, Deutsche Bank AG

    Additional members

    • Prof. Stefan Asenkerschbaumer, Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Robert Bosch GmbH
    • Dr. Roland Busch, President and Chief Executive Officer, Siemens AG
    • Timotheus Höttges, Chief Executive Officer, Deutsche Telekom AG 
    • Dr. Markus Krebber, Chief Executive Officer, RWE AG
    • Carsten Spohr, Chairman of the Executive Board and Chief Executive Officer, Deutsche Lufthansa AG
  • International Advisory Council

    The International Advisory Council (IAC) was instituted by the Board of Trustees of the ESMT Foundation to provide external perspective, assessment, and support to the school. As a body of ESMT Foundation, its main goals are to foster the mission of ESMT by acting as an advocate for us around the world, to support our founding principles and values, and to promote the relationships with our founders and other individuals and organizations associated with the school. 

    • Chairperson: Ola Källenius, Chairperson of the Board of Management, Mercedes-Benz Group AG
    • Mansoor Ebrahim Al-Mahmoud, Chief Executive Officer, Qatar Investment Authority
    • Dr. Patrick Adenauer, Managing Partner, Bauwens GmbH & Co. KG
    • Klaus Becker, CEO, KPMG AG Wirtschaftsprüfungsgesellschaft
    • Dr. Clemens Börsig, Former Chairperson of the Board of Management, Deutsche Bank Stiftung
    • Sapthagiri Chapalapalli, Head, TCS Europe
    • Dr. Gerhard Cromme, Chairman and CEO, P.A.C. Consulting
    • Dr. Julian Deutz, Member of the Executive Board, Axel Springer SE
    • Dr. Michael Diederich, Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice Chairman, FC Bayern München AG
    • Michael Diekmann, Chairperson of the Supervisory Board, Allianz SE
    • Katja van Doren, Member of the Executive Board / Chief Human Resources Officer and Labour Director, RWE AG
    • Dr. Corinne Flick, Founder and Chair, Convoco Foundation
    • Sigmar Gabriel, Chairperson, Atlantik Brücke e.V.
    • Jan-Hendrik Goldbeck, Managing Director, GOLDBECK GmbH
    • Dr. h. c. Christoph Henkel, Chairman of the Management Board, Dr. Jost Henkel Stiftung
    • Dr. Achim Kassow, Member of the Board of Management, Munich Re  
    • Carsten Kratz, Managing Director, Bridgepoint GmbH
    • David Knower, Chief Operating Officer and Managing Director, Cerberus Deutschland Beteiligungsberatung GmbH
    • Torsten Kurth, Managing Director & Senior Partner, Boston Consulting Group GmbH
    • Dr. Anja Langenbucher, Director, Europe Office, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
    • Dr. Johannes-Tobias LorenzSenior Partner, McKinsey & Company, Inc
    • Frank Mattern, Director Emeritus, McKinsey & Company, Inc.
    • Philippe Oddo, CEO and General Partner, ODDO BHF AG
    • Dr. Thomas Ogilvie, Member of the Board - HR and Arbeitsdirektor, DHL Group
    • Arne Puls, Chief Representative, Volkswagen Financial Services AG
    • Thomas Schmall-von Westerholt, Member of the Board of Management, Technology, and CEO of Volkswagen Group Components, Volkswagen AG
    • Professor Hermann Simon, Honorary Chairman and Founder, Simon, Kucher & Partners
    • Zoltán Szalai, Director General, Mathias Corvinus Collegium