A German historian, born on 17 July 1947 in Dollnstein, he has had a long career as professor of foreign studies at the faculty of economics and social sciences of the Friedrich-Alexander-University of Erlangen-Nuremberg. He is the author of numerous publications on Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American history. Since his dissertation on anarchism and the civil war he has dealt with the subject of anarchism in several articles.
In 2007 he was honoured with the Cross of Comendador Ordinario de la Orden Isabel la Católica for his outstanding services to the study of Spanish history and the dissemination of the Spanish language. In 2009 he was awarded the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany. Since 2011 he has been a full member of the European Academy.