Erwin obtained a PhD in chemistry from the University of Ghent, where he graduated on nitrosamines in rubber. He worked for sixteen years in the chemical industry in different positions in production, technical services, research and development and regulatory affairs. In 2001, with the publication of the white book, he was confronted for the first time with REACH, the new European legislation on chemicals. Since then he follows this very closely and this legislation brought him to the Belgian federation of the chemical industry and the life sciences, essenscia in 2004, where he was responsible for product and innovation policy.
In 2008 he moved to Cefic, the European Chemical Industry Council, where he was director REACH/Chemicals policy. He was an observer in the Competent Authorities Meeting for REACH and Classification and Labelling, as well in different Committees of ECHA and he was Sherpa in the Directors Contact Group. In June 2019, Erwin joined ECHA as Head of Unit Support and Enforcement.