My research group focuses on investigations of key fundamental properties of functional - mostly energy relevant - oxides. In addition to our expertise and traditional focus on proton conducting oxides, which show potential for next-generation intermediate temperature fuel cells, we are studying phosphors for use in solid state lighting, and most recently different types of hydride-ion conducting materials. A unifying theme is to investigate the mechanistic aspects of structural defects and dynamical excitations (local vibrational modes, diffusional motions) on the atomic length scale, and to correlate those elementary materials properties to the functional, macroscopic, properties of the materials. The primary tools to this end involve the use of the wider range of neutron scattering techniques and light spectroscopy, often combined with other, complementary, techniques, and theoretical modeling in collaboration with our research colleagues. We are therefore frequent users of instruments available at neutron sources and free-electron laser facilities around the world and to some extent also involved in the development of such methods.