Cooperation and competition

In Germany, the "economic sages" advise the federal government. Get to know one of them here: Veronika Grimm

Veronika Grimm advises the federal government.
Veronika Grimm advises the federal government. picture alliance/dpa

The federal government is advised in many important areas concerning Germany by experts from science and research. We introduce you to the most important persons and committees. Here Professor Veronika Grimm, one of the "economic sage" who make up the German Council of Economic Experts.

"Soccer is a super sport: you learn to play in a team", said Veronika Grimm, Director of the Department of Economic Theory at Friedrich Alexander University (FAU) in Nuremberg/Erlangen in an interview. "The interplay between cooperation and competition - that's what's particularly fascinating about team sports." Grimm, who specializes in the economic aspects of energy and climate policy, also recommends a modified version of this thesis to politicians. The state, she wrote in a newspaper article, is needed in the transformation to a sustainable economy "less as a financier than as a trailblazer, [...] creating conditions for the transformation". Grimm continued: "unfortunately, we still rely too much on government support programs and too little on price mechanisms". After all, "market mechanisms would be much more effective for coordinating all actors".

Grimm studied economics and sociology in Hamburg and Kiel, earned her doctorate at the Humboldt University in Berlin, conducted research in Spain and Belgium, and completed her habilitation at the University of Cologne. Since 2020, she has been one of the five "economic sages". They are the best-known advisory body to the German government.

Practical suggestions for CO2-efficient economic management

Grimm's expertise is not exhausted by a theoretical view of the economy; she also makes very specific proposals. For example, the conversion of steel production to direct iron reduction (DRI), which would reduce emissions by two-thirds even when natural gas is used instead of coke. If only one third of all blast furnaces were converted by 1930 [Surely 2030 is meant – right?], a quarter of the CO2 reduction required for German industry as a whole could be achieved in this way. Grimm sees another great opportunity for German industry in the construction of vehicles powered by batteries or fuel cells.

And when the mother of three is not teaching, researching or consulting? Grimm likes to run long distances, go bouldering or snowboarding, and coach her daughter's soccer team.  

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