Ulrich Beck, born in 1944 in Stolp in Eastern Pommerania, studied Sociology, Philosophy, Psychology and Political Science in Munich, where he obtained his Ph.D in 1972. Seven years later he was promoted to Professor in Sociology. His main scientific interest lies in the fundamental change of modern societies, in particular under the influence of globalisation. He concerns himself with the theoretical, empirical and methodological questions arising from this, as well as the consequences and risks, which this change entails for economics, politics, culture and the mass media. Since 1980 Beck has been Editor of the journal Soziale Welt [Social World]. He has been awarded several honorary doctorates by European universities and numerous prizes.