Prof. Dr. Josef K. Fischer, born in 1950, completed his doctorate (Dr. rer. pol.) in 1979 and was research associate at the Department of Economics and Social Sciences of the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg (FAU). Since 1991, he has been Professor of Finances and Economics at the Technische Hochschule Nürnberg Georg-Simon-Ohm; his work focuses on corporate finance, financial, bank and investment management, and micro and macroeconomics. He has also supervised exam courses for auditors for AOK Bayern, Nuremberg Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and the German Insurance Academy (DVA) as part of a training course in business administration for insurance (Versicherungsbetriebswirt). He is member of the DVFA Rating Standards Committee and its expert group on mezzanine finance and balance sheet rating. He has published numerous articles in professional journals and is sought after as a speaker and seminar leader. He is also academic director of postgraduate Rating Analyst and Restructuring Manager courses at the Management Institute of Technische Hochschule Nürnberg.