Agricultural economics: Farm management economics, international markets and trade, micro and macro-economic data analysis, modeling approaches, environmental and socio-economic frameworks and approaches.
Interactive innovation approaches: Knowledge exchange between farmers and researchers, co-operation networks, closing the gap between farming practice and rural academics
Rural development research and policy analysis: Contribution of the agricultural sector to employment and value added in rural regions, value added food chains, agri-environmental measures, climate change policy, institutional frameworks in urban and in rural communities, role of agriculture in modern society.
Information, communication, facilitation: Dissemination of research results, producer and consumer groups, inter- and transdisciplinary knowledge exchange.
While doing her PhD at the University of Rostock, Faculty of Agri-Ecology , SvM specialised in micro-economic analysis. SvM graduated as an Agricultural Engineer (Ag. Diploma, equal to MSc.) at the Georg-August-University of Goettingen (1993), focussing on agricultural economics (farm business and marketing, agri-cultural politics and law).
SvM studied Agriculture in Goettingen (1987-1992). Before, she deepened her practical experience working on farms in Colombia (1986), Western Australia (1986/87) and Germany (1987). During her studies, she received a fellowship in the EU-funded Erasmus programme for studies at the Catholic University of Louvain-la-Neuve in Wallonia/Belgium (1989, French language).
In May/June 2014, SvM was involved in project work with the Centre for Grassland of Lower Saxony/Bremen.
Since 2011, SvM has been working with the University of Applied Sciences Eberswalde. As a senior researcher, she is responsible for the economic analyses of the project ‘Livelong Learning in Organic Farms in the State of Brandenburg’ (2011-2013), the CORE Organic project ‘HealthyGrowth – from Niche to Volume with Integrity and Trust’ (2013-2016) and ‘SUFISA — Sustainable Finance for Sustainable Agriculture and Fisheries’ (2015-2019).
From 2009 to 2010, SvM was Senior Policy Analyst in the Monitoring and Evaluation Group of New Zealand’s Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (now: Ministry of Primary Industries). Her main duties consisted of the economic analysis and the regular forecasting of New Zealand’s sheep meat, beef, venison and wool industries. She was responsible for economic forecasting of these export markets.
Earlier (2005-2009), SvM worked with the Institute of Rural Development Research at J.W.-Goethe-University Frankfurt (IflS), Department of ‘Global Change, Sustainable Development and Multifunctionality of Rural Space’. She was Senior Researcher and was responsible for research projects related to farming, forestry and the related processing industries and rural tourism. Her focus was on socio-economic analyses and policy advice regarding sustainable development issues. She undertook field studies, delivered reports, organised project meetings and presented the studies’ results for three research projects:
‘Enlarging the theoretical understanding of rural development – ETUDE’, client: EU Commission, FP7 Research Programme, 2007-2009;
‘Common Agricultural Policy (CAP): Cross Compliance and advancement of agri-environmental schemes’, client: Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, 2005-2008;
‘Socio-economic assessment of organic farming in terms of its contributions to rural development: Case studies in different regions of Germany, client: Federal Ministry of Consumer Protection, Food and Agriculture, 2005-2006.
In 2003, SvM received her PhD from Rostock University, based on her work at the Institute for Farm Economics at the Thuenen-Instituts (TI) from 1993 to 1999. During this time, she developed a farm economic model for low-intensity beef cattle systems