Barbara Siegmund is a trained analytical chemist and achieved her university grades at Graz University of Technology. She achieved her master in chemistry and her PhD in food chemistry from 1987 to 1997 (both with highest distinction). In 2009 she achieved the venia docendi for the scientific area of food chemistry. Barbara started her scientific career as a post-doc at the Institute of Food Chemistry and Technology at Graz University of Technology in 1997, followed by a position as a project senior scientist at the Institute of Analytical Chemistry and Food Chemistry between 2009 and 2016. After holding an assistant professor position between 2016 and 2018, she was appointed as associate professor for food chemistry at the Institute of Analytical and Food Chemistry at the TU Graz in 2018.
At present, the flavour of foods with a focus on plant material is of Barbara’s main interest in order to understand the flavour properties, but also the (bio)formation pathways of flavour active compounds. She approaches these problems using two complementary techniques (i) sensory evaluation using sensory experts as well as consumers and (ii) instrumental techniques for the identification of odour active compounds in foods, mainly using gas chromatographic techniques.
Promoting sensory science in Austria in the fields food technology, quality assurance or product development is one of Barbara’s great professional concerns. Therefore, she is co-founder of the Austrian sensory society SNÖ and has been the SNÖ president since 2013. She is Austrian delegate of the European Sensory Science Society E3S. During a research stay at University of Reading, UK in 2015 she had the opportunity to complete the ‘Flavourist Training Course’, organised by UoR together with the British Society of Flavourists. The knowledge she could gain during this course allows her to even better understand the flavour of foods. Since then, she is also elected associate member of the British Society of Flavourists.