Dr Hans-Joachim Preuß is a businessman and agricultural economist. After completing his postgraduate studies at the German Development Institute (today: IDOS), he initially worked for five years for the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ; today: GIZ) in Mauritania and Benin. He then supervised a doctoral programme for African agricultural economists at the Centre for Regional Development Research at the Justus Liebig University in Giessen and received his doctorate with a thesis on the organisation of national agricultural research systems in Africa. He was then employed as a senior management consultant at GTZ headquarters before moving to Bonn as head of the programme department at Deutsche Welthungerhilfe. There he took over the position of Secretary General in 2002. In 2009, the GIZ Supervisory Board appointed him to the company's Management Board. From 2018 until his retirement, Preuß was the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung's regional representative for Benin, Burkina Faso and Togo, based in Cotonou.
In addition to his work on the supervisory board of the Berlin Governance Platform, Preuß is a lecturer at the Rheinische Wilhelms-Universität Bonn, a member of the board of Andheri-Hilfe Bonn, chairman of Tagungshaus Hunsrück e.V. and a member of the advisory board of the Zeitschrift für Außen- und Sicherheitspolitik.
He is married and has three grown-up daughters.