blue marble

“We can’t change the wind
but we can set the sails differently.”


… or we can manufacture the sails from a new material. Or invent a new, more aerodynamic shape for the sails. Or use the wind completely differently. Or make changes to the boat. The possibilities are varied. Just like in sustainability. It’s not about keeping what is as it is, but about finding new ways and taking on new perspectives in order to ensure the long-term success of a company or organization in its environment.

Dr. Vera Calenbuhr

Dr. Vera Calenbuhr is the founder and owner of BlueMarble. For more than 20 years, she has been advising governmental organizations, national governments, private companies, non-governmental organizations and scientific institutions on complexity research, sustainability, technology and policy.

At the Institute for Technological Studies of the Joint Research Centre (JRC) in Seville, she headed the European Science and Technology Observatory (ESTO), a Europe-wide virtual think tank, as well as projects in the areas of environmental policy, sustainable development and impact assessment. Among others, she advised the Commission President’s staff on the concept of the European sustainability strategy and the precautionary principle.

For the Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commission, she coordinated a process to strengthen methods from the theory of complex systems in scientific policy advisory (network theory and index of economic complexity in the service of the circular economy; dynamics of social innovation in decarbonization of the energy system; game theory approach and artificial intelligence to combat hybrid risks).

Most recently, she chaired an international expert commission for the Finnish Academy of Sciences on sustainable growth. As part of her own consulting firm BlueMarble, she primarily works with business leaders and strategists.


Dr. Vera Calenbuhr has a degree in chemistry from the University of Cologne and a PhD in natural sciences from the Université Libre de Bruxelles. Her academic career has focused on modeling and computer simulations of complex systems and especially self-organization. Since 2003, Dr. Calenbuhr is a lecturer at the University of Basel.


Together with Alexander S. Mikhailov she co-authored the book “From Cells to Societies” (Springer Verlag, 2002).


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You can find an excerpt from my customer portfolio here.

Dr. Silvia Maier

Dr. Silvia Maier is Senior Advisor at BlueMarble. She supports organizations and individuals in making smart long-term decisions and implementing them successfully.

After holding positions at the University and ETH Zurich, she has more than ten years of experience as a project manager, in leading cross-functional and international teams, and as a modeler.

Before her research career, she worked more than ten years as a consultant on communication and recruitment of young leaders for companies and public institutions.

Using insights and methods from brain research, cognitive psychology and experimental economic research, Dr. Silvia Maier supports the process of creating a better basis for decision-making and systematically collecting and weighting information for decisions under uncertainty and on wicked problems.

To this end, she uses the latest findings from behavioral sciences and neuroeconomics on behavioral change in individuals and organizations such that processes and innovations support the achievement of goals that are most rewarding in the long-term. She also provides methodological advice on data collection, modeling and analysis.


Dr. Silvia Maier completed a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy & Economics (University of Bayreuth) with a focus on decision theory and international management, trained as a newspaper editor, and holds a master’s degree in cognitive science (University of Vienna) and a doctorate in neuroeconomics (University of Zurich). She conducted research on cognitive psychology and modeling of decision-making processes and neural systems at universities in Vienna and Budapest as well as at the Center for Neuroeconomics and at the Translational Neuromodeling Unit of the University and ETH Zurich. In 2020, she was elected as inaugural member of the Swiss Young Academy.


  • Contribution to the book “Weiterbildungsmanagement in der Praxis” (Managing Professional Education Programs in Practice) (2021, Springer Verlag)
  • Invited lectures at Harvard, Stanford, Cambridge and Columbia University, among others
  • Transdisciplinary work on scientific policy advisory at the Swiss Young Academy


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