Born in Düsseldorf in 1938, Heinrichs studied Philosophy in Tübingen and Hamburg before obtaining his degree in 1966. After working at the Federation of German Scientists’ research centre under Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker until 1968, he switched to the Max Planck Institute in Starnberg, performing research on the international division of labour and upheaval in the global economy there until it closed in 2005. Member of the board at the Starnberg Institute for Research of Global Structures, Developments and Crises.
From 1973 to 1983 Heinrichs was the president of the pro familia charitable organisation, focusing on family planning, sex education and fertility as a human right. He also founded “Pro Familia” magazine.
Since 1988 Heinrichs has performed research and published works on involuntary sterility and infertility, in particular prevention of fertility problems.
He has penned numerous monographs and co-written books and journal articles.