Immediate Past President, Presidential Adviser, former Austrian Student Ombudsman,Vienna, Austria

Joined the Austrian Ministry of Higher Education in 1988; he served as adviser to three ministers in the 1990s and early 2000s on such issues as academic internationalization, higher education, national and European scholarship programs, and students’ rights and duties.

Head of the Office of the Austrian Student Ombudsman since 2001, enshrined in law 2011.

Josef started his professional career as a television journalist in the early 1980s, including in-depth research on Austrian contemporary history and publications on post-war relations. He was awarded a doctorate by the University of Vienna in 1986. In 2012 he completed his MA in mediation.

Beginning in 2001 he played a pivotal role in setting up a complaint and acceptance management system for Austrian higher education institutions and a central agency for students’ complaints at the Ministry. He is a co-founder (together with Kristl Holtrop) of the European Network of Ombudsmen in Higher Education (ENOHE) and has co-organized all annual conferences since 2003. He served as ENOHE president from 2019 until 2023 and is now holding the position of a presidential adviser.

He is the editor of ENOHE’s occasional papers and of conference publications.