From 1985 - 1988, Dr. Dirk Oberhagemann worked as scientific employee in the working group „Physical - chemical process engineering/safety technology“ of the University of Dortmund.
The main aspect of the work was the preventive explosion protection. This work was concluded in 1988 when he obtained his PhD for his work on autoignition temperatures of mixtures. The organisation of research projects was continued in 1988 at the DLR in Bonn and at the German Federal Ministry for Research and Technology. From 1989 to 1994 he was responsible for the management of the research programme „Safety research and technology“ on behalf of the BMFT at the VDI in Düsseldorf. Since 2006 he is working for vfdb the German Fire Protection association. He is responsible for the organisation and coordination of different research projects. In this regards he has been the coordinator of a project called “Risks associated with major public events – Planning, assessment, Evacuation and rescue concepts”. Since end of 2016 he is the general secretary of vfdb.