Prof. Dr. Oliver Lah

Head of Research Unit UN-Habitat Collaborating Center

Oliver Lah
Tel.:+49 30 2887458-16

Education and Academic Training

  • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Faculty of Planning Building Environment, Technische Universität Berlin
  • Master of Environmental Studies, Victoria University of Wellington
  • Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Political Science, Victoria University of Wellington
  • Bachelor of Arts (B.A.), History, Political Science, Economics, Humboldt University Berlin
  • Hotel Business Specialist (Hotel InterContinental Berlin, IHK Berlin)

Professional Experience

  • Coordinator, Urban Living Lab Center, a UN-Habitat Collaborating Center, co-hosted by Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Technical University Berlin, Wuppertal Institute, since 2023
  • Head, Research Unit, UN-Habitat Collaborating Center at Wuppertal Institute, since 2023
  • Head of Research Unit Mobility and International Cooperation, Wuppertal Institute, 2017 - 2022
  • Adjunct Professor, Swedish School of Planning, Blekinge Institute of Technology (BTH), since 2021
  • Research Affiliate, MIT Energy Initiative, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, since 2021
  • Head, Urban Change Maker Group, joint research group with the Technical University Berlin, since 2019
  • Lead Consultant (Urban Pathways), United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), 2018 - 2019
  • Coordinator, Urban Electric Mobility Initiative (UEMI), a UN-Habitat Action Platform, since 2014
  • Project Coordinator, Wuppertal Institute, 2011 - 2016
  • Research Fellow, Environmental Policy Research Centre (FFU), Freie Universität Berlin, 2013 - 2016
  • Consultant, Urban Mobility, Urban Basic Services, United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), 2013 - 2016
  • Consultant, Project Evaluation, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), 2015 - 2016
  • Consultant, Sustainable Urban Mobility, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), 2014 - 2015
  • Senior Advisor, Office of the Chief Executive, New Zealand Ministry of Transport, 2008 - 2010
  • Senior Research Fellow, Centre for Applied Policy Research, Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich, 2004 - 2008
  • Parliamentary Adviser, Hans Martin Bury, MdB, Minister of State to the Federal Chancellor / Minister of State for Europe, 2001 - 2004
  • Various Positions, Hotel InterContinental Berlin, MV Berlin, SY Lili Marleen, MV C. Columbus, 1994 - 2000

Research Focus

  • Sustainable transport in developing and emerging countries
  • Transport sector climate change mitigation and adaptation policies
  • Policy processes and institutions
  • Strategies for sustainable development


  • Lead Author, Working Group III, Transport Chapter of the Fifth Assessment Report, Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change (IPCC), 2010 - 2015
  • Policy Unit Expert for Urban Services and Technology, Habitat III in preparation of the New Urban Agenda, 2015 - 2016
  • Temporary Advisor to the World Health Organisation Working Group on Climate Change and Health, 2014
  • Member of the Board of Directors of the SLoCaT Foundation, Partnership on Sustainable, Low Carbon Transport, 2014 - 2016
  • Member of the ERIA Working Group Greening the Industrial Economies: Corporate Management and Change Pathways, 2015 - 2016
  • Member of the International Scientific Committee of several international conferences such as, CODATU conference 2015 (Cooperation for urban mobility in the developing world), Better Air Quality (BAQ) Conference and the World Clean Air Congress 2016, EU-US Symposium on Transport and Climate Change of the Transportation Research Board and the European Commission 2017
  • Member of the working group on greenhouse gas emission reduction strategies for the transport sector, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) / International Transport Forum (ITF), 2009 - 2011
  • Member of the Working group on Climate Change and Green Asia (ADB, ADBI), 2011 - 2012


  • Technische Universität Berlin, Urban Management, Urban Design, since 2017
  • Erasmus University, Rotterdam, Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies (IHS), since 2015
  • University of Hagen, 2013 - 2016
  • Munich University of Applied Sciences, General and Interdisciplinary Studies, 2012 - 2014
  • Sino-German School of Postgraduate Studies, Tongji Universiy, 2008 - 2010
  • Qingdao University of Sciene and Technology, 2007

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