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Otmar Issing has been one of the most influential European central bankers over the past 10 years, being a member of the executive boards of the Bundesbank (German Central Bank) and the European Central Bank.
Having studied economics at the Universities of Würzburg (Germany), London and Paris, he wrote his PhD on Monetary Problems within the European Union. He was appointed Professor at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg (Germany), and Visiting Professor at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, for several projects he worked with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Washington D.C.
The German Government appointed him to their economic advisory board in 1988. Shortly after that he became Chief Economist and member of the executive board of the Bundesbank. In 1998 he joined the President Wim Duisenberg as Chief Economist and member of the executive board at the European Central Bank, he is the only member who has been voted for the maximum period of eight years in office. He retired from the European Central Bank in 2006.
At the European Central Bank, he was responsible for European Monetary Policy. He made all the decisions regarding the euro interest rate and was known for being the architect of the ‘Two Column Strategy’: economic indicators as well as monetary criteria (i.e. growth of money supply) must be considered for any decisions on interest rates.
Otmar Issing has published many articles and books including Monetary Policy in the Euro Area, Cambridge University Press.