Kurt was appointed Director General of DG CLIMA on 16 January 2023. Until then, he was the Green Deal and Health advisor to President Ursula von der Leyen since 1 December 2019. He had joined the cabinet of the President coming from DG Research and Innovation where he was Director for Policy & Programming since 1 February 2016 and Acting Director for Research & Innovation Outreach since 1 June 2019. Before that, he was Director for 'Climate action and resource efficiency' at DG Research and Innovation since July 2013. He served in the Cabinet of Research Commissioner Philippe Busquin (1999-2004) and as Head of the Cabinet of Janez Potočnik, who was Commissioner for Research and Innovation (2004-2009) and subsequently for Environment (from 2010). Kurt joined the European Commission in 1996 as co-ordinator of the Commission’s Intermodal Transport Task Force and of the Transport Research Programme. Before entering the Commission, Kurt worked for 4 years as a manager at Ernst & Young Association Management, where he set up, managed and represented international trade associations. After reading French and Italian literature at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (KUL) and obtaining a degree in Public and International Affairs at the University Catholique de Louvain-la-Neuve (UCL), Kurt gained a Master of Arts degree in International Relations at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (S.A.I.S.) in Bologna, Italy and Washington D.C., US.