about myself



I was born in Munich as daughter of an American mother and a German father and grew up in the north of Germany. My main occupation is working as psychologist, researcher and professor for developmental psychology at the Medical School Hamburg. In addition, I enjoy working as mediator and systemic counselor/ therapist (DGSF) with individuals, couples, (separated) parents and families.  In addition, I offer systemic counseling and mediation for groups and teams. In my free time I enjoy being with my family, friends, books and music. Whenever possible, I spend time at the sea.



Dr. Sonja Bröning



mission, vision, values


For my work, I draw on my expertise from educational science and psychology. My qualifications in systemic counseling and mediation have provided me with specialized training that focuses on helping people resolve conflicts and improve their most important interpersonal relationships, and above all, their relationship with themselves.


Within the counseling process, I use a variety of creative methods. However, even more important than this is a basic attitude of acceptance, respect and openness for all individuals that seek counseling with diverse issues. I frequently work with unusal relationship formats.


I offer my clients new perspectives and custom-made support at eye level.





certified mediator (BM)

certified systemic counselor(DGSF)

bachelors degree in business administration

masters degree in educational science

doctors degree in psychology

certfied systemic therapist (equals couple and family therapist) according to DGSF- standards.

professorship for developmental psychology




... long-standing expertise in the area of developmental psychology, mediation and counseling


... several years as systemic counselor and family therapist at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Outpatient Treatment Center for Drug- and Alcohol-Abusing Adolescents, Young Adults and their Families


... four years as addiction and prevention researcher at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE), project manager for the development and evaluation of group programs („Trampoline“ – for children from substance-affected families and „Strengthening Families Program“ – a family-based prevention program)


... professional experience as Human Resources Manager in diverse areas such as recruiting, international delegations, HR development, consulting managers and staff, and moderating team meetings


... co-developer of the award-winning group program „Kinder im Blick – ein Gruppenangebot für Eltern in Trennung“ (Looking out for our kids/LOOK – a group program for separated parents – prevention award of the German League for the Child)


... native speaker in German and English

... advanced Spanish and experience in latin-American culture due to a year in Panama 

selected publications

Bröning, S., Sack, P. M., Haevelmann, A., Wartberg, L., Moesgen, D., Klein, M., & Thomasius, R. (2019). A new preventive intervention for children of substance‐abusing parents: Results of a randomized controlled trial. Child & Family Social Work.

Wartberg, L., Kriston, L., Bröning, S., Kegel, K., & Thomasius, R. (2017). Adolescent problematic Internet use: Is a parental rating suitable to estimate prevalence and identify familial correlates?. Computers in Human Behavior, 67, 233-239.

Bröning, S., Sack, P.-M. & Thomasius, R. (2017). Psychosozial höher belastete Kinder profitieren von der Teilnahme an „Familien stärken!“ – Eine explorative Langzeit-Katamnese zu differenzieller Wirksamkeit. SUCHT.

Ganzer, F., Bröning, S., Kraft, S., Sack, P.-M. & Thomasius, R. (2016). Weighing the Evidence: A Systematic Review on Long-Term Neurocognitive Effects of Cannabis Use in Abstinent Adolescents and Adults. Neuropsychology Review, 1-37.

Baldus, C., Thomsen, M., Sack, P.-M., Bröning, S.,Arnaud, N., Daubmann, A. & Thomasius, R. (2016). Evaluation of a German version of the Strengthening Families Programme 10-14: a randomized controlled trial. European Journal of Public Health.


Schindler, A. & Bröning, S. (2014). A Review on Attachment and Adolescent Substance Abuse: Empirical Evidence and Implications for Prevention and Treatment. Substance Abuse, Substance Abuse, 36:3, 304-313.


Bröning, S., Sack, P. M., Thomsen, M., Stolle, M., Wendell, A., Stappenbeck, J. & Thomasius, R. (2014). Implementing and evaluating the German adaptation of the “Strengthening Families Program 10-14 “–a randomized-controlled multicentre study. BMC public health, 14(1), 83.

Thomasius, R. & Bröning, S. (2014). Kinder von Suchterkrankten – Patienten von morgen? Wege aus der Sucht: Abhängigkeiten erkennen – behandeln – bewältigen, 92, 12-13.

Klein, M., Moesgen, D., Bröning, S. & Thomasius, R. (2013). Trampolin: Kinder aus suchtbelasteten Familien entdecken ihre Stärken. Manual. Göttingen: Hogrefe.


Bröning, S., Kumpfer, K., Kruse, K., Sack, P.-M., Schaunig-Busch, I., Ruths, S., Moesgen, D., Pflug, E., Klein, M. & Thomasius, R. (2012). Selective prevention programs for children from substance-affected families: a comprehensive systematic review. Substance Abuse, Treatment, Policy and Prevention, 7-23.


Bröning, S., Wiedow, A., Wartberg, L., Ruths, S., Haevelmann, A., Kindermann, S., Moesgen, D., Schaunig-Busch, I., Klein, M. & Thomasius, R. (2012). Targeting children of substance-using parents with the community-based group intervention TRAMPOLINE: A randomised controlled trial – design, evaluation, recruitment issues.BMC Public Health, 12-223.


Bröning (2012). Arbeiten mit hochstrittigen Familien in Trennung – das Beispiel Kinder im Blick. In Roesler C. (Hrsg.) Interprofessionelle Kooperation, Mediation und Beratung im Rahmen des FamFG. Studien und Praxiskonzepte zur Arbeit mit hochstrittigen Eltern bei Sorge- und Umgangsrechtskonflikten (S. 103-128). Frankfurt a.M.: Metzner Verlag.


Bröning, S., Moesgen, D., Klein, M. & Thomasius, R. (2012). Ressourcenorientiertes Arbeiten mit Kindern aus Suchtfamilien. Das Beispiel „Trampolin“. Psychotherapie im Dialog. Themenheft „Sucht“, 13(4), 44-48.


Bröning, S., Krey, M., Normann, K. & Walper, S. (2012). Kinder im Blick – ein Gruppenangebot für Familien in Trennung. In K. Menne, Hermann Scheurer-Englisch, A. Hundsalz, Jahrbuch für Erziehungsberatung, Band 9,222-242. Weinheim/Basel: Beltz Juventa.


Bröning, S. (2011). Charakteristika von Hochkonflikt-Familien. In S. Walper, J. Fichtner, K. Normann-Kossak (Hrsg.), Hochkonflikthafte Trennungsfamilien. Forschungsergebnisse, Praxiserfahrungen und Hilfen für Scheidungseltern und ihre Kinder. München: Juventa.


Bröning, S. (2009). Kinder im Blick. Theoretische und empirische Grundlagen eines Gruppenangebotes für Familien in konfliktbelasteten Trennungssituationen. Münster: Waxmann.


Bröning, S. (2009) Autonomie und Verbundenheit in jungen Paarbeziehungen. In C. Beyer

(Hrsg.),Paarbeziehungen - Paardynamiken, Norderstedt: Books on Demand.


Walper, S. & Bröning, S. (2008). Bewältigungshilfen bei Trennung und Scheidung. In F. Petermann & W. Schneider (Hrsg.), Angewandte Entwicklungspsychologie (Enzyklopädie Psychologie, Serie V: Entwicklung Band 7). Göttingen: Hogrefe.


Bröning, S. & Walper, S. (2007). Risikofaktoren und Ursachen für Scheidungen. Familie, Partnerschaft, Recht, 13(6), S. 260-264.


Schäffer, H., Bröning, S. & Schönknecht, N. (2004). Ich glaube, Sie wollen meinen Job! Mediations-Lehr-DVD mit Praxisfall und Methoden-Demos. Stephans-Buchhandlung, Würzburg.


​© 2019 Dr. Sonja Bröning, Praxis für systemische Beratung und Mediation.

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