born 1955. After her studies in psychology and history she worked as Executive director of the international NGO study center El Taller/Tunis, as Senior advisor on Foreign affairs in the European Parliament and for international human rights organisations. Currently head of the Division for Culture, Memory of the World of the German UNESCO Commission and chair of the Steering Committee on Culture of the Council of Europe. Merkel publishes about democracy development, cultural politics and conflict studies. She lives in Cologne.