Rudolf Niessler was born in Austria. He studied economics and informatics at the Vienna University and holds a PhD in economics. After qualifying he worked in economic research in Vienna. In 1991 he moved to the Federal Chancellery and then to the OECD in Paris where he was councillor for trade and environment. In 1997 he joined the European Commission where he served in several functions, as Director for policy coordination and policy development as well as for policy implementation. On 1June 2019 he took up duty as Principle Adviser for International Relations. In this function, he is coordinating the cooperation on regional and urban policy matters with the EU’s main strategic partners and with neighbourhood countries.