The Independent Institute for Environmental Issues (UfU e.V.) is both a scientific and officially recognized non-governmental organization that consists of four departments:

  • Energy Efficiency & Energy Transition
  • Climate Protection & Transformative Education
  • Environmental Law & Participation
  • Nature Protection & Environmental Communication

Approximately 30 employees are currently working at UfU. In addition, there are regular cooperations with freelance collaborators.

UfU is mainly working on research assignments and model projects financed by federal ministries, federal states and municipalities as well as foundations. In addition to its scientific activities, the institute initiates and engages in local and international projects and networks.

UfU regularly publishes the results of its work as studies, proceedings, educational material and handbooks as well as in papers and journals.

The main office of the institute is in Berlin with a branch in Halle/Saale that has existed since the institute’s foundation (see Contact).


UfU is an officially recognized not-for-profit organization that is managed and overseen by:

  • The managing board
  • The executive board
  • Scientific advisory council
  • General assembly

The managing board’s main responsibility is to lead UfU and see to the application of the general assembly’s decisions. Further, the managing board also oversees the finances and the institute’s operational program. It is elected every three years by the general assembly.

The executive board applies the guidelines set up by the managing board. UfU is currently managed by Dr. Michael Zschiesche.

Through its members, the scientific advisory council of UfU e.V. supports and advises the association, by being the link to partner organizations or by featuring as experts on panel discussions.

The general assembly consists of about 200 members and discusses the budget and the institute’s development in terms of its focus. In addition, the general assembly decides which internal UfU project should be sponsored. Only members of the association have a vote, since the internal UfU project is entirely financed through the membership fees and donations to the association.