management imgThe COPERNICUS Alliance was established and is run by members, for its members. It is registered as a not-for-profit organization under German law. The CA is self-financed and uses its funds to achieve its mission. It also seeks external funding for projects and activities.

The network is coordinated by a Leadership Team, currently composed by three Co-Presidents, and supported by an Advisory Board and a Network Manager. The Leadership Team and Advisory Board members are volunteering positions. The Leadership Team is elected by the CA members for a period of two years, the terms of Advisory Board members are four years. 



Leadership Team


  • Asst. Prof. Elisabeth Hofmann, Université Bordeaux Montaigne  

Anne Zimmermann

Elisabeth Hofmann is Assistant Professor at Université Bordeaux Montaigne, France. After undergraduate studies in Germany (her native country), Elisabeth did a PhD in Development Economics in France. She then worked in project evaluation and gender and development for NGOs in Africa and held a half-time teaching position for a bachelor degree for project managers in sustainable development in the Global South, which she is now coordinating. She is head of the UNESCO Chair in Training of Sustainable Development Professionals which she co-founded in 2000. In this context, she contributed to a competence framework for SD project managers and in the expert committee involved in the conception of Green Comp. She is a founding member and former coordinator of "Genre en Action", a francophone international network on gender and development. Being a full time Assistant Professor since 2009, she is a member of the research laboratory “Les Afriques dans le monde” in Bordeaux. Her applied research concerns integrating a gender approach in development initiatives through transformative learning. She has been involved in certain activities of the European Society for Research on the Education of Adults since 2011 and recently in the Erasmus+ project “Pushing the boundaries of online transformative learning” (OnTL). 

  • Asst. Prof. Tom Kuppens, Hasselt University & Vrije Universiteit Brussel  

MulaTom Kuppens is Assistant Professor (tenure track) in environmental economics at the Centre for Environmental Sciences (CMK) of Hasselt University (UHasselt), Belgium. He is also assistant professor of economics teaching methodology at the School for Educational Studies (SES) at UHasselt and the Multidisciplinary Institute for Teacher Education (MILO) at Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB). He holds a doctorate in business economics, in which he developed a methodological framework for societal techno-economic assessments to facilitate complex decision making in which economic, environmental and societal impacts of technological innovations within a biobased, circular economy interact. Motivated by speeding up the necessary change for urgent sustainability problems, Tom started doing educational research as well with a focus on how to integrate transformative learning for sustainable development in the economics and business curriculum. Tom explored the green competences required for a transition to a biobased and circular economy, developed innovative educational materials (e.g. using virtual reality, art-based and collaborative learning). His research focuses at the moment on the influence of teacher-student interactions in terms of the roles of a business person towards sustainability on the one hand, and teacher professional development on ESD for pre- and in-service teachers on the other hand.  

  • Prof. Eglė Staniškienė, Kaunas University of Technology  

MulaEglė Staniškienė is a professor at the Sustainable Management Research Group, School of Economics and Business, Kaunas University of Technology (KTU), Lithuania, and holds a PhD in Social Sciences. Her research topics extend from quality management to sustainable development, corporate social responsibility, education for sustainable development, and interdisciplinary research. From 2008 to 2013, she has worked as the Head of Quality Department at KTU. She led the development and implementation of the project for the improvement of the internal quality assurance system at KTU. Eglė is an expert of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), and in 2020, she participated in the Expert Group Meeting on “Socially just transition towards sustainable development: The role of digital technologies on social development and well-being of all”. Currently, she is a member of the Expert Council of the Lithuanian Responsible Business Association (LAVA). She has published more than 60 scientific publications and participated in more than 20 national and international projects. She uses and develops her scientific competence in the study process and in cooperation with business and public sector organisations.


  • Mario Diethart, MSc
      Network Manager  

DiethartMario Diethart holds a master in Environmental System Sciences with focus on geography from the University of Graz, Austria. He is working in the field of Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) as part of "Sustainability4U", a collaborative initiative of the four universities in Graz (University of Graz, University of Technology Graz, Medical University of Graz, and University of Music and Performing Arts Graz). He was involved in various EU projects focusing on innovative education approaches (e-learning, international, intergenerational settings) and more recently on participatory city planning and sustainable tourism. 



Advisory Board

ab imgThe Advisory Board members are elected for a period of four years by the CA members. They can be CA member representatives, student representatives or assume an extended advisory board role. The current members are:

  • Prof. Matthias Barth  
      Member representative   
    President, Eberswalde University for Sustainable Development, Germany

  • Prof. Kim Ceulemans, PhD  
      Extended Advisory Board Role    
    Assistant Professor, Department of Control, Accounting and Auditing at Toulouse Business School, France 

  • Dr. Jana Dlouhá 
      Member representative  
    Researcher at Charles University Environment Centre and former CA Vice-President, Czech Republic

  • Assoc. Prof. Dr. Rebeka Kovačič Lukman
      Member representative  
    Professor of Environmental Sciences at University of Maribor, Slovenia

  • Dr. Clemens Mader 
      Extended Advisory Board Role  
    Co-Director at RCE Zurich, and scientist at Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences, Switzerland

  • Asst. Prof. Dr. Ingrid Mulà  
      Member representative   
    Assistant Professor at University of Girona, Spain

  • Dr. Estibaliz Saez de Camara Oleaga
      Member representative  
    Director of Sustainability at University of the Basque Country, Spain

  • Dr. Anne Zimmermann  
      Extended Advisory Board Role  
    Associate Senior Research Scientist, Centre for Development and Environment, University of Bern, Switzerland
  • Michael Winter
      Student representative    
    oikos International, Switzerland