I earned my Diploma (2005) and PhD (2009) in Physics from the Westfäische Wilhelms-Universität Münster (Germany), focusing on self-interaction corrections to density-functional theory in Johannes Pollmann’s group at the Institute of Solid State Theory. A postdoctoral fellowship from the German Academic Exchange Service allowed me to work with Alexei Maradudin at University of California Irvine (USA) on optical interactions and scattering at nonideal surfaces. I then joined the Polymer Theory group of Kurt Kremer at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research in Mainz (Germany) to work on multiscale simulations in soft matter. After six years, first as a research associate and later as project leader “Computational Chemistry”, I moved to starts as Assistant Professor at Eindhoven University of Technology in September 2015. In 2020, I was promoted to Associate Professor.
The research activity in my group is devoted to the development and application of multiscale simulation techniques for the study of electronic transport processes in soft matter. Our models combine techniques from computational chemistry, statistical physics, and mathematics and will allow for the analysis of the interplay between molecular electronic structure and material morphology, relevant for many opto-electronic device properties or bio-molecular processes.
I believe that my role as a teacher is not only to pass on information to my students. It is more difficult, both for the teacher and for the student, to also teach them how to think. In evolving fields such as physics, chemistry, or materials science, factual knowledge changes rapidly but the ability to reason is what allows us to master these changes.