Mariska's main research focus is on intergroup conflict and the trust assessment between conflict parties. She is particularly interested in which dimensions shape trust in conflict in order to understand how trust can be built systematically. She has conducted her research to date mainly in the context of the Moldovan-Transdniestrian conflict.
In a related line of research, Mariska focuses on conflict assessment and the preparation of conflict interventions, in particular, conflict mediation. She has worked as a trainer and facilitator in numerous training and conflict settings, and is also is part of an international conflict facilitation team that works with municipal delegates from countries with ethnic conflict such as Cyprus, Israel, Ireland, Iraq, and Kosovo.
Mariska received her PhD from the University of Hamburg, Germany, in July 2012.