AASE Governance Structure

AASE is a group of directors, deans and lectures from European Higher Education. It is lead by the president and three vice-presidents, the AASE Executive Board, and advised and supported by the AASE Advisory Board:

AASE Governance structure

All Members are elected during the AASE Annual Conferences. Current members of the AASE Executive Board and the AASE Advisory Board are:

AASE Executive Board

Dipl.-Ing. Thomas Röhr

ESTA Belfort (France)

Contact: President [at] aase-eu.org

Thomas Röhr studied mechanical engineering with specialisation in railway vehicles and logistics at the Rheinisch-Westfälisch Technischen Hochschule (RWTH) Aachen/Germany. He worked and lectured at the Traffic Management department of the University of Kassel (Germany) followed by nearly 10 years at the Traffic Management department of BMW Group in Berlin and Munich.

In 2007 Thomas Röhr moved to France where he first worked on projects in line with the European positioning system GALILEO and other mobility related topics. In 2011, he integrated ESTA School of Business & Technology, where he is currently Head of International Relations. He teaches Project Management for Sales Engineers, supervises 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th years’ placements, and coordinates student exchanges with the partner institutions.

Thomas Röhr is closely cooperating with the French competitiveness cluster Vehicle of the Future, where he is responsible for the development of European collaborative R&D projects. He is also member of the committee of experts evaluating research projects from its members.

One of the initiators and founding member of the AASE, Thomas Röhr was president of the WG Education (2014-2019) until he was elected president during the AASE Annual Conference 2019 in Vienna.

Prof. Dr. Kati Lang
Vice-President Strategy & Development

Düsseldorf University of Applied Sciences (Germany)

Contact: VP-Strategy [at] aase-eu.org

Kati Lang holds a PhD in Business (Bergische University Wuppertal). During her doctorate in the field of entrepreneurship and online marketing, she advised spin-offs and start –ups in their founding activities. After that, she was a consultant for marketing and sales, specialized on industrial goods for leading high-tech companies.

In 2009, she started teaching at the University of Applied Sciences, heading the degree program “International Technical Sales Management”. In 2010, she moved to the University of Applied Sciences Düsseldorf, heading the study program “Industrial Engineering and Management (Electrical Engineering)”. Her teaching areas include ‘market psychology and negotiation management’, ‘sales, product, services’, ‘industrial marketing’ and other, application-oriented modules.

Kati Lang is active in the department of Technical Sales and Product Management at Germany’s largest engineering society, the VDI. There, she also heads the Expert Council “Profile Sales Engineering: Competences and Career”.

She is part of the founding team and present vice president of the Academic Association of Sales Engineering (AASE). Her main research topics are ‘selling digital goods and digital selling’ as well as marketing and psychology-oriented questions within the context of industrial sales.

Prof. Dr. Thomas B. Berger
Vice-President Research & Education

DHBW Stuttgart (Germany)

Contact: VP-ResearchEducation [at] aase-eu.org

Thomas Berger holds a PhD from Cardiff University in the field of regional economics. He studied Business Administration at the DHBW Stuttgart after working as a cabinet maker. Later he started working as a consultant in M&A (Banking) before becoming a consultant in Risk Management were he later was a member of the partner’s board responsible for acquistion of new projects and co-ordinating existing ones.

He also spent two years at a machinery company, helping setting-up the consultancy branch, defining processes and products and selling them. In 2009 he moved on to become a professor at a private University and then 2013 joined the DHBW Stuttgart. There, he is currently responsible for the programme International Technical Sales. He also conducted several funded research projects with a Focus on India, where he also lectures at the KJ Somaiya Institute of Management, Mumbai and other Universities.

Dr. Timo Holopainen
Vice-President Funding

Turku University of Applied Sciences (Finland)

Contact: VP-Funding [at] aase-eu.org

Timo Holopainen holds a PhD in chemistry (University of Joensuu, Finland) and MBA (Henley Business School, UK). Timo Holopainen has  over 20 years of experience working as local and global leadership and management, international sales and business development, research, development and innovation,  technical and customer service, trouble shooting, quality, training and consulting professional.

During his career Timo Holopainen has lived in UK, Norway, USA, Indonesia and Estonia and has worked in European, Asian, North, Middle and South American, Australian and Japanese markets, working with wide range of individuals, talents, cultures, companies and corporates.

Currently Timo Holopainen is working in Turku University of Applied Science as Principle Lecturer and Leader of Business Development.

Timo Holopainen is chairman of the European Sales Competition Association and vice president of the Academic Association of Sales Engineering (AASE).

His main research topics are value creation, international and technical sales.

AASE Advisory Board

Dr. rer. oec. Luis Barrantes

Ruhr-University Bochum (Germany)

Dr. rer. occ. Luis Barrantes studied economics at the Ruhr Universität Bochum (RUB). From 1997 to 2002 he worked as business consultant, with emphasis on business economics and sales engineering. He received his PhD in 2003 and took the position of course of studies coordinator for “Sales Engineering and Product Management” and counselor for the field of studies “Sales Engineering and Product Management”.

Dr. Barrantes is member of the “Verein Deutscher Ingenieure” VDI (association of German engineers) and joined their panel of experts “VDI-GPP FA 201 Sales & Marketing“ and “VDI-GPP FA 206 Profile Sales Engineer“ in 2005. He is coauthor of several VDI guidelines such as “VDI 4501 Professional field technical sales and distribution” and “VDI 4506 Strategic Sales”. Since 2015, he is also member of the VDI “GPP FB2 Advisory Committee for Sales Engineering and Product Management”.

Initiator and founder of the Academic Association of Sales Engineering AASE, he occupied the functions of Vice-President (2014-2016) and President (2016-2109)

His fields of studies include: Industrial customer and sales management, B-2-B Marketing, sales conception and controlling in the industrial goods sector and Sales and Technology Management.

Dr. Barrantes is member of the university’s self-administration which includes the examination board, coordination of teaching, the commission for improvement of the course of studies SEPM and quality improvement and the electoral committee for the “Sales Engineering Award”.

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Jobst Görne

Aalen University of Applied Sciences (Germany)

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Jobst Görne did his PhD at the WZL of the RWTH Aachen in the field of manufacturing technology in 1986. He worked in different companies in Europe in the function of sales and marketing manager and got experience in sales in the automotive and machine tool industry, where he was responsible for world wide sales activities. During this time he applied for four EU-funded research corporations and was rewarded with three of them. In 2002 he joined the university of Aalen in the program of “International Sales Engineering”. He covered the functions of dean and program manager for a couple of years. During this time, he was manager of the working group “Sales Engineering” at the German Engineers Association VDI in Stuttgart. Prof. Görne is head of the alumni-association of the Aalen sales engineering students with over 250 members. Since 2009 he is member of the Global Sales Science Institute, GSSI  and chair of this assocication from 2015 until 2017 and organized one of it’s global conferences at Aalen. Beeing founding member of the AASE he was board member for a couple of years and is currently member of the advisory board.

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Görne had been Vice-President Research from 2014 to 2018. He retired in 2019, but continues teaching and to support the work in the associations.

Dr. Liisa Kairisto-Mertanen †

Turku University of Applied Sciences (Finland) †

Dr. Liisa Kairisto-Mertanen is one of the developers of innovation pedagogy – Innopeda® for Turku University of Applied Sciences. She has been working for the university since year 2000 in several positions. Until end of 2017, she served as a dean for a multidisciplinary faculty contributing strongly to the development of multidisciplinary education. Now she works as an executive lecturer in the field of sales and innovation pedagogy. She received Dr.Sc. in marketing in year 2003 and her special interests are developing Innovation pedagogy and sales education for business and engineering studies. Prior to joining the university, she served in business life both in sales and in product management. She has published and presented about the mentioned topics in many domestic and international forums. She is a member of Academic Association for Sales Engineering (AASE), a board member in the Global sales science institute (GSSI) and in the European sales competition association (ESCA).

Dr. Tero Reunanen

Turku University of Applied Sciences (Finland)

Tero Reunanen has quite wide experience regarding different development, design and management activities. My experience includes, in the field mechanical engineering: 3D-modelling, FEM, fluids, simulation, programming, manufacturing technologies, robotics, R&D, and in the fields of management: leadership, management, project planning, project executing, international projects, process development projects, LEAN development projects, production technology projects, R&D. Nowadays strategic planning, process management, business model development and LEAN-thinking are prevailing in his work. He also has good experience in logistics, supply chain management and as a peculiarity, he has done process development in health care.

His former focus area was mostly in machine and metal industry, maritime industry and automation industry. In wide perspective everything concerning manufacturing and designing is close to his interest. Logistics and logistic networks are in core, and point of view is in efficient and excellent leadership and management. Strategic planning, business model development and networked business development consultation and coaching including time management and utilisation of LEAN-thinking are his main working fields. Present research areas are in the fields of leadership and management.

Specialities: Tero Reunanen’s specialities are mostly in fields of emotional and social intelligence. Good skills in these fields make him kind of organizer and doer who get´s people to do their best and with good mood. Entrepreneurial attitude with holistic point of view guarantees combination which provides best benefit for partners.

AASE was prepared by

Prof. (FH) Mag. (FH) Roman Anlanger, University of Applied Sciences BFI Vienna (Austria)
Vice-President Public Relations (2014-2019)

Dr. rer. oec. Luis Barrantes, Ruhr-Universität Bochum (Germany)
Vice-President (2014-2016), President (2106-2019), Speaker of AASE Advisory Board (since 2019)

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Jobst Görne, HTW Aalen (Germany)
Vice-President Research (2014-2019), member of AASE Advisory Board (since 2019)

Dipl.-Ing. Thomas Röhr, ESTA Belfort (France)
Vice-President Education (2014-2019), President (since 2019)

Prof. Dr. Ing. Ludger Schneider-Störmann, TH Aschaffenburg (Germany)
Founder of AASE, President (2014-2016), Vice-President (2016-2019), Vice-President Strategy & Development (2019-2020)

Former Board members

A list of former Board members can be found here

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