Athanasia Nikolaou has studied physics in Athens, Greece, holds a MSc in climate science and a PhD in planetary science. She has worked in the Advanced Concepts Team of the European Space Agency in the Netherlands and in the German Aerospace Center in Germany. She is part of the international science consortium of the ARIEL space mission, currently working in La Sapienza University of Rome, Italy. Her research focuses on planetary evolution, the stability of dynamical systems and climate processes on early Earth and on exoplanets. She is a co-founder of Lecturers Without Borders.