Niklas Mascha

Niklas is an intern at PlanAdapt’s Coordination Hub and is currently based in Bonn, Germany.

As a practitioner in the field of disaster risk management, Niklas brings over five years of experience to his role. His portfolio encompasses designing, executing, and monitoring projects and programs within disaster risk governance, risk reduction, early warning and anticipatory action. His professional trajectory has enabled him to collaborate with diverse organisations, including the National Ministry of Health in Austria, the United Nations University, and universities in Germany and Spain. He has engaged in research, capacity building, training, and project management within these contexts, working with multicultural and multidisciplinary teams in Austria, Germany, and Spain. He is also a member of the German Committee for Disaster Risk Reduction.

His commitment to disaster risk management extends beyond a professional capacity, reflecting a genuine passion for understanding and tackling socio-ecological challenges. This passion has led him to engage in various projects, where he has applied a diverse methodological toolkit to understand and mitigate disaster risks. His involvement in voluntary social work, such as at a homeless shelter, a home for the elderly, and a youth camp, highlights his strong social conscience and a keen interest in social justice. Niklas is drawn to holistic, systems thinking approaches, suggesting a passion for integrating diverse knowledge fields and perspectives to address complex problems. Niklas’s work intersects with several SDGs, including Good Health and Well-Being (SDG 3), Clean Water and Sanitation (SDG 6), Reduced Inequalities (SDG 10), Sustainable Cities and Communities (SDG 11), Climate Action (SDG 13), Life on Land (SDG 15), Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions (SDG 16), and Partnerships for the Goals (SDG 17).

Before his involvement with PlanAdapt, Niklas was engaged in multiple university projects, critically exploring disaster recovery heuristics for decision-making in Dominica, investigating cascading risks from Covid19 in Austria, analysing riverine flood risk along the Rio Magdalena in Colombia, investigating similarities and differences between EbA and sustainable land management, revitalising famine theories through socio-ecological lenses, analysing EbA for water security in Mongolia, assessing vulnerabilities to COVID-19 in Germany, and exploring cascading risks and challenges for inter-organisational collaboration in Sierra Leone. His methodological skills encompass qualitative (interviews, focus groups, workshops), quantitative (bibliometric network analysis, regression), geospatial (ArcGIS) and literature reviews, underlined by holistic systems thinking.

Niklas holds a bachelor’s degree in Geography from the University of Bonn and is completing a joint master’s in Geography of Environmental Risks and Human Security at the United Nations University and the University of Bonn. He is multilingual, proficient in German and English, and currently learning Spanish; and has been privileged to live and work in multiple countries, including Austria, Germany, Spain, and Dominica. Additionally, he completed extracurricular certificates on disaster risk simulation exercises (WHO) and foundations of climate and disaster risk finance and insurance (United Nations University). Furthermore, he attended several summer and winter schools on topics such as refugee laws and rights (University of Olomouc), sustainability and economics of nature-based solutions (United Nations University), sustainability on islands (University of the Aegean) and cascading disasters and resilient institutions (University of Groningen).