Michael Matthiessen

Michael Matthiessen is a Principal Advisor in the Asia and Pacific Department of the European External Action Service (EEAS) in Brussels, responsible for the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM). In this capacity he is also the Alternate Senior Official for the EU in ASEM and the Vice Chair of the EU Committee in the Council for Security Cooperation in the Asia Pacific (CSCAP).


Prior to becoming Principal Advisor for ASEM in July 2013, Michael Matthiessen was the EU Visiting Fellow at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore for the academic year 2012-2013. Prior to his Fellowship in Singapore, Michael Matthiessen had a diplomatic career for over 30 years, the last 15 years in senior positions in the European institutions. He joined the General Secretariat of the Council of the European Union in 1999 as a Head of Unit in the “Policy Unit” of the High Representative, responsible for the Situation Centre and civilian crisis management. In 2001, he became Director for civilian aspects of EU crisis management (ESDP). He then became the Personal Representative of the High Representative for Human Rights from 2005 to 2007 and for Parliamentary Affairs from 2007 to 2009. With the creation under the Lisbon Treaty of the European External Action Service (EEAS) in 2011, he became Director for Parliamentary Affairs in the EEAS.


Prior to joining the European institutions, Michael Matthiessen was a diplomat in the Danish Foreign Service from 1982 to 1999. He served as Head of Department for European Affairs in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Copenhagen from 1997 to 1999 and as Counsellor at the Permanent Representation of Denmark to the EU in Brussels from 1992 to 1997. He was the Private Secretary to the Prime Minister of Denmark from 1988 to 1992 and seconded as Deputy Director of the Private Office of the Secretary General of NATO in Brussels from 1985 to 1987.


Michael Matthiessen holds a Masters’ degree in Political Science from the University of Aarhus in Denmark (1982) and a Diplome d’Etudes Approfondies (DEA) from Science Po Paris (1981). In addition to his mother tongue Danish, he is fluent in English and French.