A trusted adviser to governments, agencies, and foundations seeking to promote economic development and green growth in developing countries

About Jens

Jens is one of the founders and global coleaders of McKinsey’s Economic Development Practice, which supports the governments of more than 50 developing and emerging economies in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East. An expert on the development in Africa, Jens is also the co-founder and one of the leaders of McKinsey’s East Africa Office.

He advises government ministers and development agencies on a wide range of economic and social-development topics, including economic policy, development strategy, national and sector competitiveness, industrial growth, agricultural development, FDI attraction, poverty alleviation, and the inclusion of marginalized groups.

Jens has a deep interest in development aid effectiveness—a subject he pursues both in his work with clients and through his leadership of research and knowledge-development efforts at McKinsey. An expert in improving government delivery, he helped develop an integrated approach that enables governments to collaborate intensively with other stakeholders to achieve breakthrough results.

In addition, Jens is a global leader in our Sustainability Practice and supports clients with green growth initiatives. He is a frequent speaker at conferences on sustainable economic development, as well as a contributor to our thinking and publishing in this field.

One of Jens’s recent client projects involved supporting a West African government in developing a post-Ebola recovery-and-transition plan. He helped establish a President’s Delivery Unit as a means for coordinating action between different government agencies, donors and the private sector.

Before joining McKinsey in 1998, Jens spent several years as a postdoctoral researcher studying environmental-impact assessment.

Published work

Leaders: It’s OK to not know everything,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, July 2018

Delivery as a management problem,” The Art and Science of Delivery, April 2013

Reducing deforestation: The land-use revolution,” McKinsey on Sustainability and Resource Productivity, Summer 2012 (PDF–340 KB)


Dresden University of Technology
MS in environmental management 

Cambridge University
PhD in biochemistry

Heidelberg University
MS in biology