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I am an Assistant Professor at the KRDB Research Centre for Knowledge and Data at the Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Principal Investigator in the EU FP7 project COINVENT, co-project leader of the OntoIOp (Ontology Integration and Interoperability) standardisation activity of OMG, on the Editorial Board of the journal Applied Ontology, and elected member of the Executive Council of the International Association for Ontology and its Applications (IAOA), for which I currently serve as Vice-President.

Before joining the University of Bolzano, I was a researcher at the Transregional Collaborative Research Center "Spatial Cognition" (SFB/TR 8) in Bremen, working with John Bateman, Carsten Lutz, and Till Mossakowski in the project OntoSpace (concerned with ontologies as a backbone for spatial reasoning and cognition) and then spent one year working at the Department for Knowledge and Language Engineering (IWS) (Formal Methods and Semantics) of the University of Magdeburg.

I studied Architecture at the University of Dortmund, Mathematics & Philosophy at the University of Bochum, Cognitive & Computer Science at the University of Sussex at Brighton, and Mathematics & Philosophy at Humboldt University at Berlin and Free University Berlin.
In 2000, I obtained an M.Sc. degree from Humboldt University with a thesis on Kripke-type semantics for modal predicate logics, supervised by Marcus Kracht and Ronald B. Jensen.

Between 2001 and 2004 I worked with Frank Wolter in a DFG project on the combination of Modal and Description Logics, first, in the Intelligent Systems Department at the University of Leipzig, and later in the Logic and Computation Group at the University of Liverpool.

I was awarded my Ph.D. in 2005 from the University of Liverpool for the thesis "E-connections and Logics of Distance", supervised by Frank Wolter, and refereed by Wiebe van der Hoek and Melvin C. Fitting. I received a BCS/CPHC Distinguished Dissertations Award (Finalist) in the 2004/2005 competition.

I then joined the Information Management Group at the University of Manchester (2004-07), where I worked with Ulrike Sattler in an EPSRC funded project on extending expressive Description Logics, co-designing the logic SROIQ underlying OWL 2 DL.