Director for Finance and Human Resources
Martin Steinacher studied physics, mathematics and astronomy before going on to gain his doctorate in experimental physics at the University of Basel.
After completing his studies, Steinacher moved to the University of Berne, where he worked for seven years as a scientific collaborator on space research projects. Then he continued at the Foreign Ministry where he acted as a delegate for Switzerland and was responsible for planning the Swiss financial contribution to the European Space Agency, European Southern Observatory and other international organisations.
These skills led to Steinacher being appointed the Scientific Adviser for the Federal Office for Education and Science, before being appointed the Deputy Head of international Cooperation at the State Secretariat for Education and Research.
In his role as Chairman of the CERN Finance Committee Steinacher worked closely with CERN Member States which led to the unanimous approval of a new method to calculate the annual scale of contribution.
In 2013, Steinacher was promoted to Head of International Research Organisations Unit, giving him high-level roles in the ESO and CERN Councils. His achievements while in this position include helping to negotiate ESO’s accession of Poland and also securing a funding agreement for the Swiss participation in the European Spallation Source project until 2026.