Dr. Sonja Katharina Schiffers has been working for the Heinrich Böll Foundation since May 2021 and will head the South Caucasus Regional Office from August. Before joining the Heinrich Böll Foundation, she worked at the German Bundestag, initially as Senior Advisor for Eastern European Affairs for the green parliamentary group, then as Foreign Policy Advisor to Cem Özdemir MdB. She is a member of the Advisory Board to the German Government for Civilian Crisis Prevention and Peacebuilding and publishes regularly on German and EU foreign policy towards (South-)Eastern Europe and Eurasia as well as on the UN Agenda Women, Peace and Security.
Schiffers received her doctorate from Freie Universität Berlin with a dissertation on Russian and Turkish illiberal influence in Bosnia-Herzegovina and Georgia. From 2017-2019 she was a Visiting Fellow at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs, Eastern Europe and Eurasia Division. She served as President (2017-2019) and Head of Program Gender and International Politics (2016-2020) at Polis180, Grassroots Think Tank for Foreign and European Affairs. In 2015, as part of the “German Studies Russia” program, she taught a semester-long class in international relations at the Moscow State Institute for International Relations (MGIMO). She studied International Relations and European studies in Berlin, Maastricht, Saint Petersburg and Bordeaux.