Heike Solga, Prof. Dr., has been Director of the research unit "Skill Formation and Labor Market" at the Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB) and Professor of Sociology at the Institute for Sociology at the the Free University in Berlin since 2007/8. Within NEPS, she is Coordinator of stage 6 "Vocational Training and Transition Into the Labor Market". She is also member of the Board of Directors of the Institute for Sociological Research G&ouml;ttingen (Germany). Prior to this, she was Professor of Sociology at the University of G&ouml;ttingen (2005&ndash; 2007), Leipzig (2004&ndash;2005) and Head of the independent research group &ldquo;Lack of Training: Employment and Life Chances of the Less Educated&rdquo; at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development (2000&ndash;2005). With her work on school-to-work transitions of disadvantaged youth, she has introduced a historical and interdisciplinary perspective on the life courses of less-educated persons into the scientific debate. As Co-Head of the East German Life History Study from 1995&ndash;2000 and Doctoral Fellow from 1991&ndash;1994 (at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development), she is among the very few scholars who have studied the East German transformation process from a longitudinal and historical perspective (including the life and employment experiences of East Germans before 1989). For her dissertation thesis on social mobility in the former German Democratic Republic she was awarded the Otto Hahn Prize of the Max Planck Society. She was also Visiting Professor at Yale University (2004) and at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Z&uuml;rich, and University Z&uuml;rich, Switzerland (2003) as well as Visiting Research Fellow at Harvard University (1997). She is coeditor of the &bdquo;K&ouml;lner Zeitschrift f&uuml;r Soziologie und Sozialpsychologie&ldquo; and Chair of the German Council for Social and Economic Data (appointed by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research). She is a member of the Statistical Advisory Board of the FRG, the Senate Committee and the Authorizing Committee for research training groups of the German Research Foundation (DFG), the Scientific Advisory Board of the Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training (BIBB), and the Council of the German Sociological Association. She was a founding member of the German Young Academy (2000&ndash;2005). Her research interests are education, labor markets and the life course in a comparative perspective. In this line of research, she has edited (together with Karl Ulrich Mayer, Yale University) a book on "Interdisciplinary and Cross-National Perspectives on Skill Formation and the Reform of Vocational and Professional Training", which includes authors from psychology, economics, sociology and political science. Among others she is directing the project "The discovery of youths&rsquo; learning potential early in the life course" (funded by the Jacobs Foundation) and the evaluation studies of the school intervention projects for students at risk in lower secondary school "Abschlussquote erh&ouml;hen &ndash; Berufsf&auml;higkeit steigern" in Lower-Saxony and "Werkstatt-Schule" in the Saarland. She has published eight books and written about 90 articles in refereed journals, social science journals and in edited volumes.