Oliver Owcza: Transatlantic Challenges—European Perspectives

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“Transatlantic Challenges – European Perspectives”

Today´s world faces a growing number of challenges: unsettled political and humanitarian crises in the Middle East, North Africa and Afghanistan; a corresponding increase of migrants challenging established immigration systems of receiving countries; an increasingly negative perception of globalization and even a growing skepticism about the merits of international cooperation and trade. Against this background the transatlantic partnership has been and is an essential pillar for jointly addressing these challenges and constantly highlighting the potential of trust and value based cooperation. The discourse intends to summarize the most important ones from a European/German perspective.

About Oliver Owcza

Since July 2015 Oliver Owcza serves as Head of Division for North America in the Federal Foreign Office in Berlin.

In the academic year 2014/15 he has been invited as Fellow to the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard University, where he has researched and lectured in the area of Fragile States and International Crisis Diplomacy.

Previously, he has been serving as Germany´s Deputy Ambassador in Kabul between 2012 and 2014. His responsibilities encompassed the whole range of the German political, military, police, development and cultural engagement in Afghanistan. It included regular field visits, in particular to the Northern provinces.

In May 2012 he attended the UN Senior-Mission-Leader´s Course in Kigali/Ruanda.

From 2008 till 2012 he was Deputy Head of the Task Force Humanitarian Aid in the German Foreign Office. Activities included the management of German contributions to humanitarian crisis in Africa, extensive field visits, i.e. to Sudan, Chad, DR Congo and Kenya. In addition he managed the merger of the transitional aid-budget from the Ministry of Development Cooperation (BMZ) and the formulation of a new Humanitarian Aid strategy.

From 2005 to 2008 Oliver has been DHM in the German Embassy in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Primary activities included the bilateral strategic partnership, trade promotion, export control and the function as NATO Contact Point Embassy.

From 2003 till 2005 Oliver has been serving as Special Advisor to SACEUR at NATO´s Strategic Headquarters (SHAPE) in Mons, Belgium. As part of the US-led International Affair´s Office he advised SACEUR and DSACEUR on Eastern Europe and the Common European Foreign and Defence Policy. Previous to that he was Political Officer at Germany´s Permanent Mission to NATO in Brussels, mainly involved with NATO operations in the Balkans (SFOR, KFOR). Further postings in the German Foreign Office include the Public Information Department, the German Embassy in Mexico City and the Diplomatic Academy. He entered the German Foreign Service in 1993.


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    T. Jesse Brannen
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    Fletcher Moore
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