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Confirmed Digital Festival Speakers Include:

Philip Hausmeier

Founder and CEO


Charlotte Martin

Community building Enthusiast


Indy Johar

Indy Johar is a co-founder of Dark Matter Laboratories: our goal is to apply complex systems science to value chain innovation, management and relationships; turning what is generally perceived as a threat of our time – spill-over effects across borders, boundaries and silos - into a resource to solve the wicked challenges society faces in the 21st century - across two key system domains - one place based across Cities, Towns, Neighbourhoods and another spanning our corporate supply chains. Dark Matter Laboratories applies an experimentation method typical of a fieldwork scientific laboratory, it runs real-world research and prototypes to verify their validity and application on the ground. It is committed to the open sourcing of all its research, tools and techniques in order to maximise impact.

Indy, on behalf of Project00, has co-founded multiple social ventures from Impact Hub Westminster to Impact Hub Birmingham and the - Open Venture Accelerator] and has also co-led research projects such as The Compendium for the Civic Economy, whilst supporting several 00 explorations/experiments including the, Indy is an Advisor to the Earth Security Initiative and a director of WikiHouse Foundation and Civic Systems Laboratory.

Indy was Director of the Global Impact Hub Association and Impact Hub Islington [the original Impact Hub in the Hub Network] and worked with Jonathan Robinson to design the protocols and modes of the network scaling.

Indy has taught & lectured at various institutions from the University of Bath, TU-Berlin; Architectural Association, University College London, Princeton. He has given lectures and led discussions on various issues, including how strategic design meets policy and a new economy in various forums from Demos, Centre of Social Justice, Helsinki Design Lab, European Parliament, LSE, Royal Academy, Royal Society of the Arts and Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors. He has written for many national and international journals on the future of design, social systems and venturing. Indy is a Fellow of the RSA, Demos Associate, Respublica Fellow, JRF Anti-Poverty Strategy Programme Advisory Group member and a member of the Mayor of London's SME Working Group.

Matthew Falla

Matthew is an interaction designer, who trained at Central Saint Martins and the Royal College of Art. He has worked on a diverse range of projects for clients such as Accenture, the BBC, Nokia and Hasbro and now oversees user experience design at Signal Noise and is Managing Director of the company.


Karen Boers

Uniting hundreds of startups with all the incubators, accelerators, investors and public actors in the local ecosystem, operates as a one-stop-shop and matchmaker at national and international level. The impact of the Belgian Startup Manifesto underlines the importance and potential of providing entrepreneurs with a single and strong voice towards policy makers and key decision makers.

With a mixed background in marketing and HR strategy, Karen is and has been heaviliy involved in multi-stakeholder projects and programs, including the Net Futures conferences, the Digital Single Market and the development of the Flemish innovation center iMinds in its first 8 years.


Carlos Moedas

Carlos Moedas was born in Beja (Portugal) in 1970. He graduated in Civil Engineering from the Higher Technical Institute (IST) in 1993 and completed the final year of studies at the École Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées in Paris (France). He worked in engineering for the Suez-Lyonnaise des Eaux group in France until 1998.

He obtained an MBA from Harvard Business School (USA) in 2000, after which he returned to Europe to work in mergers and acquisitions at investment bank Goldman Sachs in London (UK).

He returned to Portugal in 2004 as Managing Director of Aguirre Newman and member of the Executive Board of Aguirre Newman in Spain. In 2008, he founded his own investment company, Crimson Investment management.

In 2011, he was elected for the National Parliament and was called by the government as Secretary of State to the Prime Minister of Portugal in charge of the Portuguese Adjustment Programme.

In 2014, he became a Member of the European Commission, as Commissioner in charge of Research, Science and Innovation.


Robert Madelin

Before taking up this post in September 2015, Robert was the Director General of the DG for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (known as DG CONNECT, formerly Information Society and Media) in the Commission, where he was responsible for managing the European Commission's digital agenda.

He previously served in a variety of postings in the EC. He was Director General for Health and Consumer Policies (2004-10), and between 1997-2003 he was Director in the DG for Trade, working on access to medicines, agriculture, biotechnology, corporate responsibility, food and product standards, global governance, intellectual property, investment, services, sustainable development, and relations with the Asia-Pacific. Prior to this, he was Deputy Head of Cabinet to Sir Leon (now Lord) Brittan, European Commission Vice-President.

Robert is currently working with a number of senior policy makers on the question of how to best ensure that scientific advice has the appropriate visibility in the policy making process. Robert has been interested in this topic for some time, and has contributed to projects such as the joint JRC-AAAS workshop on feeding scientific advice into policy-making; and the roundtable "Enhancing the Role of Science in the Decision-Making of the European Union", hosted by the European Policy Centre.

Born in 1957, Robert was educated in England (reading French and History at Magdalen College, Oxford), and then studied at the Ecole Nationale d’Administration in Paris. He joined the British Civil Service in 1979, serving mainly in London and then in Brussels (as First Secretary, External Relations, UK Permanent Representation to EC) before joining the Commission in 1993.


Howard Rose

Howard is CEO and co-founder of DeepStream VR, a software company bringing virtual reality NeuroGame for pain relief to the mass market. Howard has been a pioneer in virtual reality for over 20 years, creating iconic health applications like SnowWorld to relief burn pain, IraqWorld to treat battlefield PTSD, and Attack of the S. Mutans to improve self-care habits.  Howard will share his expertise on developing games that tap into the powers of human sensory system and how to bring VR NeuroGames into healthcare practice.


Alex May

Alex May (1972) is a British artist exploring a wide range of digital technologies, including video mapping, interactive installations, generative works, full-size humanoid robots, performance and video art. He is a visiting research fellow: artist in residence in the Department of Computer Science at The University of Hertfordshire.


Filippo Addarii

Before founding PlusValue in September 2015, Filippo was Director of International Strategy and Head of EuropeLab at The Young Foundation (October 2013 – November 2015). In November 2007 Filippo co-founded Euclid Network, a global network of civil society organisations’ leaders, which he directed until September 2013, and has been funded by the European Commission since 2008 uninterruptedly.

He has 15 years’ experience in designing, fundraising for and managing European multi-stakeholder projects for socio-economic development through innovative approaches, multi-stakeholder partnership and civic engagement; for instance EU Social Innovation Competition and the Naples 2.0 social innovation competition. He run projects funded by the European Commission, British FCO, UN Fund for Democracy, Intesa SanPaolo Bank Group, Unicredit Bank Group, Royal Bank of Scotland. He has led on several EU projects. He has been one of the prominent figures promoting and influencing EU policies on civil society, social innovation, social business, social investment across directorates and programmes. He regularly provides consultancy services for the European Commission and is invited to speak on European affairs. He’s a member of Strategic Forum of Digital Entrepreneurship of the European Commission and advised the Commission on regional policy, social policy, international development, sustainable development and financial regulation.

He holds a non-executive position in the impact investment fund Hub Launchpad (UK), and Nethical s.r.l. Italian company leader in e-healthcare. He is a senior research associate at the Global Climate Forum, the Berlin-based research centre for sustainable development; visiting fellow of IMT Lucca (PhD School); and fellow of the London-based think tank Counterpoint, the European Center for Living Technologies (University Ca’ Foscari, Venice), senior associate at Agirre Center for Social and Political Studies (Bilbao, Basque Country, Spain), and Goodwill Ambassador of Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund and World NGO Day Initiative. He’s member of the Policy expert group of the European Venture Philanthropy Assoication. He’s a fellow of BMW Foundation Responsible Leaders (Germany). He’s got a degree in Philosophy at University of Bologna, a MSc in non-profit management at the University of Urbino, a Leonardo bursary for research at Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense, and enrolled in executive education courses at Harvard (Kennedy School), INSEAD (ISEP) and Cass Business School (Centre for Charity Effectiveness). Filippo Addarii is a regular speaker and writer regularly active on social media. He wrote in The Guardian and Vita Third Sector Magazine.


Anna Dumitriu

Anna Dumitriu (1969) is a bioartist based in the UK. Her work investigates the microbiological world and the latest technologies we use to study it. She works with textile craft techniques, sculpture, video installation, and live bacteria, actually using the tools and techniques of microbiology as artistic media.


Antanas Guoga

Antanas Guoga is entrepreneur, Lithuanian member of the European Parliament, philanthropist, public CIO to the Mayor of Vilnius, Remigijus Šimašius.

Mr. Guoga is entrepreneurship enabler, venture capitalist who invests in start-ups in the digital area. He has been successful entrepreneur at least for a decade. More than 500 employees are working in the companies he has invested. The companies that he has created in Australia, the USA, and more Lithuania are generating great results.

Mr. Guoga is an opinion leader known for his efforts to promote a better climate for entrepreneurship and improving conditions for business opportunities. He feels fit to raise ideas in the European Parliament on how to remove red tapes for SMEs, introduce more user-friendly and less complicated regulations, create and improve single digital market. MEP Guoga believes that Digital Single Market has huge growth opportunities, including online shopping, star-ups and online businesses. He also supports the idea that market liberalization and investment in future-oriented technologies is the way forward for the EU. As an MEP and a member of the Internal Market and Consumers Protection (IMCO) Committee Mr. Guoga focuses on thriving Digital Single Market initiatives. He is an active policy maker working on numerous proposals in the areas of cyber security, copyright, Single member liability companies, modernisation of European Public administrations, Internal Single market, etc.

One of the main priorities of Mr. Guoga is encouragement of youth entrepreneurship. He is constantly motivating young people to create companies and jobs for themselves by entering the digital market.

MEP Guoga is an enthusiast of philanthropy. All of his salary earned working as an MEP is dedicated to charitable activities. In 2014 Antanas has established the Antanas Guoga Support Fund. Besides that, he has been doing philanthropic activities for more than a decade. 


Chagall van den Berg

In 2013 she moved to London to be closer to the invention of modern electronica where everyone with a bedroom can become a producer. 

Always having been interested in bringing electronic music to the stage in an intuitive way, she now writes, records and performs her work with gloves. In 2015 she created her glove song and live video ‘Sappho Song’.


Brando Benifei

Brando Benifei, 29, European Federalist, is a newly elected MEP from La Spezia, Italy. He has been chair of European affairs for the Young Democrats and Vice-President of ECOSY (youth organization of PES) for 4 years. He joined the PES working group which originally drafted the European Youth Guarantee.

His main fields of legislative work in the EP are Employment and social affairs and Foreign affairs. He is also vice-chair of the Youth Intergroup and of the Disability Intergroup. Among his primary interests are the Digital Agenda and technology-related issues, in particular for the impact they have in creating new jobs and thus on youth employment.


Colin I’Anson

Colin I’Anson is the Chief Technologist for the IOT program in the Enterprise Group EMEA where he is responsible for the design and architecture of customer solutions. His focuses include end-to-end system design, ensuring solutions deliver valuable customer outcomes, integrating partners, creating proof points and aligning product and service capabilities.

Prior to his current role, he created the technology for HPE’s Cloud28+ a catalogue of cloud services that drives business to HPE’s service provider partners. He also established the early foundations for HPE’s NFV business.

I’Anson joined HP in 1980 as a R&D engineer in Scotland and in 1986 moved to HP Labs in Bristol. Recently he has been driving new business creation based on Labs system technologies, working in a variety of senior roles in telecommunications and network architecture and engineering.

I’Anson holds a bachelor’s degree in Electronic Engineering and a Ph.D. in digital signal processing for seismology both from the University College of North Wales (Prifysgol Bangor). He is a Fellow of the Institute of Engineering and Technology (FIET).


Cathal Gurrin

Cathal Gurrin is a lecturer at the School of Computing, at Dublin City University, Ireland and he is an investigator at the Insight Centre for Data Analytics where he leads a research group of 10 people. He is also a visiting scientist at the University of Tromso in Norway.

His research interest is personal analytics and lifelogging (a search engine for the self). He is especially interested in how wearable sensors can be used to infer knowledge about the real-world activities of the individual and how such sensor data can be used to enhance the performance and health of the individual.

He has developed WWW search algorithms, multimedia content mining tools and he has gathered a digital memory since 2006 (incl. over 15 million wearable camera images) and hundreds of millions of other sensor readings. He regularly speaks at Quantified Self events and is the author of Lifelogging: Personal Big Data, published in 2014 in the FNTIR series.


Nadia El-Imam

Nadia is an engineer and designer born in Sweden, raised in Europe and Asia, now living & working in Stockholm & Brussels. She is a proud co-founder of Edgeryders, a distributed think-tank of citizen experts, combining the intense focus and rigour of consultancy with the scale, openness and democratic legitimacy of citizen consultation.


Joanna Montgomery

Joanna Montgomery was born and raised in Edinburgh, Scotland. In 2010 she completed a First Class BSC(Hons) in Digital Interaction Design from Dundee University.

Upon graduating, she started her company, Little Riot, to develop a product called Pillow Talk. In the last few years, the company has grown from strength to strength, securing vast amounts of funding and winning several awards. Given her incredible journey so far, she is keen to encourage others in the same way she has been (and continues to be) helped through her time as a start-up. She regularly speaks at enterprise events and universities and loves to meet other people who are also going against the grain.

She is a creative thinker; who likes to push boundaries and explore new things. She has travelled extensively including backpacking around parts of Asia, Australia, the USA and Canada. In her free time she enjoys sailing, windsurfing, climbing and horse riding.


Tibor Navracsics

Tibor Navracsics is the Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sports for the Commission of President Juncker (2014 – 2019).

Before this mandate, he started his career as a university professor and was subsequently appointed Head of the Prime Minister’s Office, member of the Hungarian Parliament, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Public Administration and Justice and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade. He is responsible for improving the quality and efficiency of the EU education systems, notably through the European Semester and ET 2020.

In a context of high youth unemployment and skills mismatch, the modernisation of education in the EU is crucial to meet the challenges of employability and innovation in the digital age. He is also in charge of the education dimension of the Europe 2020 Strategy, the implementation of Erasmus +, the EU’s Youth, Sports and Culture policies.


Paul Adamson

Paul Adamson joined Forum Europe as Partner and Chairman in 2014, bringing with him an unrivalled experience and in-depth knowledge of EU affairs spanning more than 30 years.

Paul works with the team on content, business development and strategy both through Forum Europe and the company's international subsidiary, Forum Global.

In addition to his role at Forum Europe, Paul is editor-in-chief and founding publisher of E!Sharp, an online magazine dedicated to covering the European Union and Europe's place in the world. He is also a Senior European Policy Advisor at Covington & Burling.

Paul is a member of Rand Europe's Council of Advisors and sits on the advisory board of YouGov-Cambridge, a polling think-tank. In addition, he is a member of the advisory group of the Washington European Society, the American Security Project, and British Influence - an organisation that promotes the UK's role in the European Union.

Paul is a patron of the University Association of Contemporary European Studies (UACES), a Fellow of the UK Academy of Social Sciences, and a trustee of the Citizenship Foundation.

He founded the consulting firm Adamson Associates, which was sold to Weber Shandwick and The Centre, which was later sold to Edelman.

In 2012, Paul was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) "for services to promoting understanding of the European Union”, a part of the Queen's 2012 New Year Honours Diplomatic Service and Overseas List.


Frank Hopfgartner

Frank Hopfgartner is Lecturer in Information Studies. His research to date can be placed in the intersection of interactive information retrieval, recommender systems, personal informatics, and multimedia content access. He is especially interested in how systems can support users in dealing with the constant flood of information that we are facing every day.


Kate Devlin

Kate Devlin is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Computing at Goldsmiths, University of London. She works in the fields of Human Computer Interaction (HCI) and Artificial Intelligence (AI), investigating how people interact with and react to technology, to understand how emerging and future technologies will affect us and the society in which we live. She is currently focusing on cognition, sex, gender and sexuality and how these might be incorporated into cognitive systems such as sexual companion robots. She is Treasurer of the UK's Society for the Study of Artificial Intelligence and Simulation of Behaviour (AISB), and is on the steering committee of the European Society for Cognitive Systems.


Ben Mason

Ben Mason is Captain of International Projects at betterplace lab, a non-profit think-tank based in Berlin. There he has led various projects including a field research programme into the civic tech communities in 21 countries and exploring the potential of big data in policymaking. Since February 2016 he has been leading betterplace lab's research into digital refugee projects.


Michael Mellinghoff

Michael Mellinghoff is Managing Director at TechFluence and a Senior Advisor and Mentor at FinTech Forum. He is a seasoned investment professional with over 15 years of experience, spanning both the traditional banking and fintech world.

Michael’s career covers a 10+ years span in traditional banking, where he held a variety of managerial positions in asset management and investment banking in Germany and abroad, including management board and supervisory board appointments in Commerzbank Asset Management and DZ Bank Group.

Since 2010, Michael has been working in the Fintech area, including a 3+ years experience as Managing Director with German Fintech pioneer, a stock centric community for investors,

Michael’s experience gives him unique insights into the financial markets scene and ability to scout new trends in the financial sector.

At TechFluence Michael heads the firms activities in the UK as well as spearheading the initiatives in digital investment management globally. He acts as a mentor to several startups as well as FinTech accelerators (Startupbootcamp Fintech and Level39). He launched the FTF On Tour | InvestTech event (London, Sep. 2015) and co-initiated the DVFA FinTech Forum series of the German Association of Investment Professionals. His focus areas are: startups in InvestTech & digital assets.

Michael has a degree in business administration at University of Bayreuth.

@Mellinghoff is author of various articles on #Fintech related topics, speaker and contributes regularly to conferences, awards and publications.

Michael is an author of @TheFINTECHBook and member of the editorial board of The Journal of Digital Banking.


Kitty Parry

Kitty Parry is the Founder and CEO of the Social Media Compliance (SMC) platform. The SMC provides a licence to trade bodies, financial institutions and regulators, enabling them to use social media compliantly. Supported by the SMC’s annual summit at the House of Lords, this comes about through the setting of the global standard for the practical application of social media regulation. Forbes has declared that Kitty has spotted a significant niche in the market, and has commented that the need for the SMC is ‘glaring’.

An overarching theme throughout Kitty’s career has been entrepreneurial vision; prior to founding the SMC, she set up her first business at 16; Templars Communications, a PR firm, at 25 and the Accelerating Change Network at 27. In recognition of these achievements, the World Economic Forum named Kitty a Young Global Leader in 2014. In 2013, she was recognised, as the Network She Young Business Woman of the Year, and in 2009, was shortlisted for PR Consultant of the Year by the PRCA. Kitty is frequently asked to speak on topics relating to regulation and social media, having participated in World Economic Forum panels at Davos and spoken on broad cast channels such as BBC Radio 4.

The drive behind all of Kitty’s work is to create, encourage and facilitate innovative practical solutions in order to listen and cater to customers and clients, improving perceptions of the financial services industry and revitalising trust in the sector.


Gerrit Sindermann

Gerrit is a German entrepreneur, living in Switzerland. He started his career with 10 years in banking - dedicated to strategy, risk management and equity research. After his MBA at IMD International he co-founded his first company, an SMS API service, and was involved into the early development of a crowdfunding platform. Later, at a Swiss telecommunications provider, Gerrit managed card issuer and retail partner projects for a mobile contactless wallet product development. In 2014, he took up the CEO role for milliPay, a Zurich-based micropayment startup with an innovative solution to monetise smallest price points and to seamlessly integrate payments into web content and services. milliPay has set out to challenge the payment industry by removing fixed fees from transaction costs. It thereby enables its customers to profitably sell for price points even down to EUR 0.001.


Henri de Jong

Henri de Jong is responsible for business development. He has a track record of more than 25 years of bringing new technologies to the market, like the first route planning systems, digital road maps and electronic publications.

Henri started his career in 1987 at AND, a Dutch public listed company. He was one of the first employees and worked for more than 12 years on digital road maps and route planning systems.

In 2001, Henri founded his management consultancy company, Velleda Consulting, supporting Dutch companies to start operations in Germany. Besides, that he got interested in “self-organizing systems” which resulted in a number of projects in the energy, logistics (founder and owner of ASK Community Systems GmbH) and healthcare markets (co-founder of REGAS Deutschland GmbH).

Henri worked on several European healthcare initiatives and is co-author of "Technology-based innovations to foster personalized healthy life styles and wellbeing".

Early 2014, Henri was invited by his former AND colleagues to join Quantoz. Blockchain Technology brings together Henri’s interest in self organization and software algorithms. His focus now is on developing the Quantoz Digital Cash solution, a settlement system that can be used for IoT payments.


Sarka Bartova

Sarka is a connector & strategic thinker, enabling new FinTech startups to bring their vision to market & shape the next generation of financial services around the world at Mambu, the SaaS banking platform, established in Germany in 2011. 

After graduating from Mendel University with a Bachelors of Science in Economics & Business, Sarka started her career in HR consulting in the Philippines working with Fortune 500 companies. While this had been a great experience, she quickly realised that her entrepreneurial calling and her passion for technology is stronger. Since 2013, Sarka has been working with a number of technology start-ups across Europe & Asia, mainly in Business Development/Growth roles, helping companies to grow and expand internationally.

Passionate about innovation & technology, Sarka contributes to building the FinTech ecosystem, working with accelerators & incubators and empowering entrepreneurs to build great companies.


John Midgley

John is responsible for international public policy at US software company Intuit, working out of the company's European HQ in London. Intuit is the leader in cloud accounting software for small businesses with over 1 million firms worldwide using QuickBooks to manage their finances online. He chairs TechUK's Public Policy Group and is a Director of the Financial Data and Technology Association.  Prior to joining Intuit in 2012, John spent over 6 years in public affairs consulting, in London and Brussels, focused on the tech sector.


Aline Muylaert

Aline describes herself as a creative nomad and has a strong interest in tech entrepreneurship and urbanization. As the co-founder of CitizenLab, a crowdsourcing platform for cities, she’s in charge of business development. CitizenLab embodies her dream of constantly realizing ideas that have a direct, positive impact on society.


Georg Ludviksson

Serial entrepreneur Georg Ludviksson co-founded Meniga in 2009. Georg started Meniga in the wake of the global financial crisis that hit Iceland in Europe really hard to help people cope with a huge drop in purchasing power. Georg has almost 20 years of experience founding, building and managing global software start-ups including video game developer Dimon Software Ltd. in 1998 and real-time stock exchange simulator UpDown Inc. in 2007. From 2004 to 2006, he served as the Vice President of Sales for Men & Mice, a provider of specialized network management software to many of the world's largest organizations. Georg holds an MBA degree from Harvard Business School with emphasis on Entrepreneurship and Finance. He also holds a BS degree in software engineering from the University of Iceland. He participated in the 1995 International Olympics in Mathematics.


Ghislaine Boddington

Co-founder and Creative Director of body>data>space and Women Shift Digital, Ghislaine is a curator, presenter and thought leader specialising in body responsive technologies, Ghislaine is recognised as an international pioneer advocating the use of the entire body as a digital interaction canvas for over 25 years. She has co-created and directed many public experiences exploring the hyper enhancement of our human senses through the digital including “me and my shadow” for the Royal National Theatre in 2012. She has been lead director of international multi-partner projects since the 90s, including the successful EU project “Robots and Avatars”. 

In 2016 she co-curates FutureFest, a radical innovation weekender (17/18th Sept 2016) led by Nesta and is curator for the EUNIC series of exhibitions”The Games Europe Plays”. She continues her research into virtual physical bodies through her Fellowship at Middlesex University and Readership at CPDA University of Greenwich.


Pavel Kravchenko

Pavel has a Ph.D. in information security and has worked as an engineer on public key infrastructures for the banking industry and government in Ukraine since 2006. From 2014 he joined blockchain industry and worked as a cryptographer in a variety of blockchain startups in the US, EU and Singapore. Pavel created an academic course about blockchain and conducted it 7 times in universities. Goal of Pavel is to build open financial web. Currently he is moving towards it step-by-step building banking, exchange, cross-border payment software that uses blockchain.


Martin Ruubel

Biography to follow.


Victoria Espinel

Victoria Espinel, President and CEO of BSA | The Software Alliance, is a respected authority on the intersection of technology innovation, global markets and public policy. She leads strategic efforts that help shape the technology landscape in 60 countries through work in BSA’s 10 global offices.

Prior to heading BSA | The Software Alliance, Espinel served for a decade in the White House, for both Republican and Democratic Administrations. Espinel advised President Obama on pivotal IP issues in her role as the first US Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator. She was the chief US trade negotiator on IP innovation as the nation’s first Assistant United States Trade Representative for Intellectual Property and Innovation. She has also served as a professor of international trade and intellectual property at the George Mason School of Law.

Espinel is a founding and ongoing co-sponsor of Girls Who Code’s Washington, DC, summer immersion program, which empowers young women to pursue careers in STEM fields. She speaks at conferences around the world to build visibility for the amazing things people can do with software, and encourages businesses, governments, and the public to support a policy environment that will enable even more software breakthroughs.

Espinel chairs the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on the Future of Software & Society and was appointed by President Obama to serve on the Advisory Committee on Trade Policy and Negotiations (ACTPN), the principal advisory group for the US government on international trade. She holds an LLM from the London School of Economics, a JD from Georgetown University Law School, and a BS in Foreign Service from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service.


Amali de Alwis

Amali de Alwis is CEO of Code First: Girls, a social enterprise who work with companies and women to increase the proportions of women in tech and entrepreneurship. They do this by running free and paid coding courses for men and women, advising companies on tech talent processes and policy, and by running a community of 3500+ women who are interested in tech. Over the past 3 years they’ve provided £1.5 million worth of free tech education, taught 2500+ women how to code, and are the largest provider of free in person coding courses for women in the UK.

Outside of the day job,  Amali is a Commissioner on the Doncaster Skills and Education Commission, a small business mentor through Start-up direct and CommonwealthFirst, a Tech London Advocate, and a fellow at the RSA.

#Digital Skills

John Higgins

John Higgins CBE was appointed Director General of DIGITALEUROPE, the association for the digital technology industry in Europe, in November 2011 following nine years leading its UK member association, Intellect. He is the public face of the digital sector in Europe and speaks regularly on platforms and at conferences throughout Europe and indeed world-wide.

After graduating from the University of East Anglia with an honours degree in Mathematics and then gaining a post graduate Diploma in Accounting and Finance, John began a career in IT. He trained as a systems analyst, held senior positions with Ernst & Young and worked in Chicago with leading software company SSA. In 1995 he was appointed CEO of the Rocket Networks, a California based that provided the world’s first online recording studios. He returned to the UK in 1998 and became Director General of the Computing Services and Software Association, one of Intellect’s predecessors.

John served as a member of the governing body of the University of Warwick for 12 years until 2015 and was chair of its audit committee. He also chaired a committee that carried out a governance review for the University. John is President of the European Commission’s Strategic Policy Forum on Digital Entrepreneurship and was recently elected to the Board of the European Internet Foundation. John’s other committee chair roles include the cross industry association council of the CBI, a government/industry space committee and the global policy action committee of the World IT Services Association, WITSA. He was board member of e-skills, the UK’s digital sector skills council and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. He was presented with two personal awards for outstanding contributions; first to the association sector in 2004 and then to the IT industry in 2008. The Queen appointed him a Commander of the British Empire (CBE) in 2005 for his services to the UK IT industry.


Adam Stark

Adam Stark is a researcher, computer scientist and musician based in London. In 2011 he completed his Ph.D. at Queen Mary University of London on digital signal processing and audio analysis in live musical performances and installations. He subsequently co-founded the arts-technology education studio Codasign

He is interested in changing the way music is composed and performed through new technologies.

He can be found working with artist Di Mainstone on the Human Harp, using audio analysis with artists in live performances or playing with London-based six piece band Rumour Cubes.


Vishal Punamiya

Vishal Punamiya is the Co-founder & CEO of DroneGrid. Vishal brings several years of corporate (C-level) experience from the logistics industry from Panalpina and Deutsche Post DHL. He is passionate about innovation and has developed and launched turnkey solutions used within the industry.


Jean-Marc Poncelet

Jean-Marc Poncelet is CEO and Founder of BetterStreet, a crowdfunding citizen app to report public issues to local authorities. After a few years as a Management Consultant, Jean-Marc jumped into the first startup wagon with Smartizens, a startup aiming at offering a communication platform for students and their teachers. Unfortunately, the financial bubble burst and he decided to join Proximus, the mobile Belgian telecoms leader, where he exercised various jobs in the CRM & Sales and Marketing department. In 2013, after more than 10 years within Proximus, he decided it was time to take up a new challenge and created BetterStreet. Jean-Marc strongly believes that digital technologies can bring citizens closer to their political representatives and offers tremendous opportunities to improve the way we interact with each others and with the authorities.


Javier Sebastián Cermeño

Having a strong scientific education and a long career in strategy and innovation consultancy, I’m highly interested in trying to understand the causes and consequences of disruptive changes on the business and economics area. Thus, I have developed valuable skills to be able to identify, analyze and assess the main trends in politics, economics, society (especially consumer behavior) and technology that can become drivers of those changes. Based on these trends, I am good at “connecting the dots” to have the big picture of what is happening and, more importantly, why something is happening. That picture serves as a foundation for sketching up a medium to long-term vision of potential future scenarios, which will help to define the most suitable strategy to answer the current situation and, foremost, to be prepared for what’s next. On the basis of this knowledge I am currently analyzing the potential impact of digital exponential technologies and business models on current and future regulation, in order to get a more solid level of digital financial services trends interpretation from a 360-degree focus.


Cheryl Miller

Cheryl Miller is CEO of Zen Digital Europe and Founder and Executive Director of the Digital Leadership Institute, a Brussels-based, international NGO whose global mission is to bridge the gender gap and digital divide worldwide by educating and empowering digital leaders of today and tomorrow.

Cheryl is a serial social entrepreneur with twenty years of international experience in the tech and ICT sectors, and her work to promote ESTEAM (entrepreneurship, science, technology, engineering, arts & mathematics) and leadership to youth and women has been recognised by the United Nations, European Parliament and European Commission. She is consulted worldwide as an expert on topics related to digital inclusion, digital literacy, gender equality, youth and female leadership, and education and entrepreneurship, particularly in STEM fields.


Torsten Vogel


  • BEng in Electrical and Electronics Engineering (London, 2000)
  • Dipl. Ing. (FH) in Computer Sciences (Bremen, 2001)

Work experience:

  • 2000 – 2001: Quality Assurance for Mercedes Benz
  • 2001 – current: Airbus Defence and Space:
    • Phoenix Electrical Systems Engineer (2001 – 2004)
    • Systems Engineering and Project Management for ISS Payloads, Implementation of a fast-track process for COTS-based equipment (2004 – 2012, Bremen, Friedrichshafen)
    • Member of the ORION-ESM System Engineering Taskforce (2013 – 2014)
    • Future Projects / Robotics (2014 – now)


Isidro Laso Ballesteros

After graduating as an Engineer from the Universidad Politecnica de Madrid, Isidro set up his on software business in the area of engineering working with sensors, actuators, Geographic Information Systems and design tools before becoming a strategic consultant to high-level executives (CEOs of large corporations), mainly in the telco and media sector.

Since becoming a Commission official he has managed research projects and drafted research strategy objectives. From 2010 onwards he has been focused on creating a new endeavour within the EU institutions related to tech start-ups; the first output of this latest work is the Startup Europe initiative.

Since 2015 Isidro he has been nominated thought leader at United Nations ITU, and is member of several advisory boards to international networks of startups (EU - India, EU - Silicon Valley). He also has a Continuing Policy Fellowship at the University of Cambridge's Centre for Science and Policy.


Alexander Thomas

Alexander James Thomas joined Télécoms Sans Frontières’ international headquarters in 2013, undertaking the role of Head of International Relations.

Alexander has deployed to some of the world’s biggest humanitarian crises including Syria, the Nepal Earthquake, Vanuatu and the Philippines to bring communications to affected populations and collaborate with United Nations agencies and governments on the humanitarian response.


Nik Subramanian

Nik Subramanian is Belgian. He holds a Master in Finance, Master in Business Administration and is a Full-stack Programmer specialized in Machine Learning.

After a 10 year-career in various management positions in the private sector (including as Director of Global Operations of a large Belgian company), Nik decided to set-up his own company, Kantify. Kantify is a high-tech start-up specialized in Big Data for retail. Kantify's mission is to enable retailers and brands to attain a leading position across all channels and products by mastering critical market information such as price, stock, and customer reviews.


Toon Timmermans

Toon Timmermans is the CEO of Kiiroo, an innovative tech company founded in 2013 which has developed a unique technology to get intimate online through a social platform, mobile app and a set of interactive toys. These devices enable both men and women to experience real-time physical interaction.


James Waterworth

James Waterworth is Vice-President, Europe for the Computer and Communications Industry Association (CCIA) advising members and policy makers on a wide range of issues including intellectual property, international trade and internet regulation. He brings with him more than a decade of experience in technology policy having held government affairs posts for Nokia, Cable and Wireless and Telefonica in Brussels and London.

He has a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and French from the University of Leeds and a master’s degree in European Politics from the University of London.


Olivier Salles

Graduated in political sciences and international relations in Paris Sorbonne, Olivier Salles has been an official in the European Commission for more than 20 years, working in several different departments. He has been in DG Internal Market and Financial Services (MARKT then FISMA) for more than 10 years, namely as Head of HR just when the financial crisis started. He contributed to aligning the organisation to this huge challenge. He was also negotiator for several trade agreements namely with Canada and the US. More recently, he established and was interim Chair of the Single Resolution Board, the newly created EU resolution authority. He has been appointed as Head of unit for Retail Financial Services and Payments in September 2015.


Rosanna Kurrer

Rosanna is Cofounder and Digital Literacy Lead at the Digital Leadership Institute (, a Brussels-based, international NGO whose mission is to bridge the gender gap and digital divide worldwide. She is an Architectural Engineer by training and holds a Masters Degree in Building Physics from Kyoto University in Japan. Rosanna is an experienced CAD designer and cut her teeth on Fortran programming to model building heat-transfer. For the past several years, Rosanna has led development of innovative, hands-on curricula to promote uptake of digital skills, particularly among girls and women. As Community Manager at DLI, she regularly leads hands-on, fun and result-oriented workshops in the areas of computer programming, data visualisation, the Internet of Things, gaming, robotics, electronics and 3D design.


Janne Elvelid

Janne currently works with public policy in digitisation for the European Commission and has experience working as CEO, COO, analyst, project manager, consultant and advisor, from the public administration to academia and as an entrepreneur in the private sector. I've worked for about 10 years on the study "Swedes and the Internet" and the "World Internet Project" to understand the digital transformation of our society due to the impact of data and new technologies.


Annika Ostergren Pofantis

Currently, Annika is a Policy Officer for DG CONNECT at the European Commission, working on projects such as Digital Champions, Digital Future, EU Code Week, Going Local, Digital4EU. She is also an Instructor for Friskis&Svettis. Previously, she has worked in Luxembourg as a Communication Officer and Team Leader for Internal Communication at Eurostat, European Commission, as well as within DG Environment between 2000-2002. Annika studied at the University of Gothenburg and received a Masters in Communication and Media Studies at Uppsala University.


Anne Collet

After working for 10 years as a Knowledge and Information Manager, Anne went back to university to follow a degree in ICT. End of 2014, she launched (and since then, drives) Le Wagon, Brussels. End of 2015, she started (and since then leads) the first activities of Le Wagon in Amsterdam! An ambassador of Rails Girls, she loves helping others to overcome the sometimes frustrating learning process and seeing the bright light in their eyes when the magic of coding gets unveiled!


John Walsh

John Walsh is an information strategy specialist and has over 30 years experience across both the Business and IT domains and across different industries. Having experienced the massive information disconnect that exists in many organisations today, he recently co-founded Smart Insights Lab to enable companies be data driven and business conscious. Naturally, data protection and ethics is a core service to create corporate awareness of not just the legal and technical issues but of the ethics involved which is the often forgotton glue that engages the bottom-up approach of avoiding harm and doing good.

John is a frequent speaker at different international conferences on topics related to information strategy, data governance and analytics. John holds a degree in Computer Science and Mathematics for UCC. In addition, John is certified in different disciples such as Enterprise Architecture, Quality Assurance, Program Management and Service Management.


Alessandro Perta

Digital Transformation is fascinating because there is no "one size fits all" solution for every business challenge. By incorporating what Big Bad Wolf does best - VR, AR and interactive experiences on web and mobile - Alessandro comes up with purposeful solutions to make businesses and individuals communicate and work better.

Because he loves to challenge the status quo, Alessandro will invite you to think about how VR is going to change brand experience in the next few months.


Daan Kip

Daan started his career at a large Dutch corporate where he gained lots of hands-on experience with Scrum, Agile and Lean Startup techniques. He puts his experience to good use mentoring start-ups at Rockstart in Amsterdam and is involved in their smart energy accelerator program. More than a year ago he started the Dutch Virtual Reality meetup, bringing together everyone passionate about VR in the Netherlands. In summer 2015 he organized the first European meetup at NUMA in Paris, uniting the Dutch, German, Belgian and French communities. Recently he joined the Parisian-based startup VideoStitch as their VP Strategic Partnerships. Finally he is always up for letting people know how passionate he is about VR as a public speaker at events.


Philip Hausmeier

Philip Hausmeier is the founder and CEO of Fabric, the Virtual Reality Museum for Art that brings artists and art lovers to the power of VR. Fabrics's first exhibition will take place in Silicon Valley this fall with eight renowned artists. Hausmeier is also the founder & organizer of the VR Berlin Meetup, Germany's biggest VR community. He has been working as a lecturer for spatial design at the University of Applied Sciences Düsseldorf and as a visiting lecturer for VR design at the BTK University of Art & Design Berlin.


Lenard Koschwitz

Lenard Koschwitz joined Allied for Startups in 2015. Previously he was the senior advisor to a Member of the European Parliament and Spokesperson for Justice and Home Affairs. During his time in Parliament he focussed on the data protection reform, cyber security and the Common European Asylum System. Further he was involved in coordinating the legislative work of the Parliamentary Group and its the position papers on these issues. Lenard is a passionate European, member of the European Federalists and the Europa Union. He studied political science, German literature and psychology in Germany and European Studies in Brussels. Lenard speaks German, English, French and Italian. During high school he founded an online magazine and event agency for music and lifestyle.


Valentina Platzgummer

Biography to follow.


Alin Stanescu

Alin has been working with Qualcomm Government Affairs Europe, based in Brussels since November 2008. He designs and implements strategic campaigns related to the development of ICT industry and the Internet of Everything, EU and national regulatory and technology frameworks, trade, IP and market access. He covers Qualcomm’s work within the various trade associations and the OECD Business and Industry Advisory Committee.

Alin’s experience includes working in the cabinet of the European Trade Commissioner, Pascal Lamy; as a coordinator for CSR Europe; and as a founding associate with the Brussels based think-do tank The Centre. Alin studied law and political sciences, is an alumni of the Florence School of Regulation and the Understanding China program. He is a certified Yoga Alliance Teacher (RYT200) and RYA Skipper.


Ester Fernandez

In charge of business development and product strategy for TV and data markets. She has always been involved in the Telecommunications Industry, now working in a Satellite Operator and before joining Hispasat he worked at abertis telecom, now rebranded Cellnex Telecom also involved in business development tasks for telecommunications network roll out.

Telecommunications Engineer by Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (1988-2003)


Andrew Faiola

Andrew leads the newly created Mobility Solutions sales team in Europe. If it floats, flies, or rolls, we’ve got it covered. Prior to this, Andrew led the European sales team and also led Intelsat’s Global Accounts teams on the Mobility and Broadband side of the business.

Prior to joining Intelsat, Andrew was European Sales Director at New Skies Satellites in the UK, and held various sales and marketing roles at ESATEL Communications, a small, independent teleport in the USA. In what seems like another life, he worked in the Americas Program at the Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS), the Embassy of Mexico in Washington, DC, and at NASA, where he conducted project development and implementation work for Latin America and the Asia-Pacific involving the provision of Internet service and remote sensing for environmental purposes.


Mary McMillan

Captain Mary McMillan is the Vice President of Aviation Safety and Operational Services for Inmarsat, Plc. As the leading global mobile satellite telecommunications provider, Inmarsat has been powering aviation safety since the introduction of oceanic surveillance and communications services in the early 1990s.

Captain McMillan brings a unique combination of airline, air traffic, regulatory, and international aviation experience to her role, working with Inmarsat’s partners, airlines and air navigation service providers on the introduction of the next generation of enhanced satcom-enabled flight deck services. Captain McMillan’s portfolio includes the live trials of SwiftBroadband safety and flight tracking services, the cockpit applications powered by Inmarsat’s world leading GX Aviation satellite constellation and the safety and operational development of the satellite/Air to Ground European Aviation Network.


Nastasia Rykaczewski

Nastasia is a Brussels-based Berliner and a multipassionate communicator, event organizer and blogger. As an active member of the “Hack with Refugees” initiative, she is now co-leading the Belgian chapter of Techfugees. Techfugees Belgium connects and gives visibility to social, tech and civic innovations that respond to the needs of asylum seekers and refugees in Belgium. Techfugees organises conferences, workshops, hackathons and meetups in around the world in an effort to generate tech solutions that can help refugees.


Katrien de Schrijver

STEM = Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics

The STEM Charter aims to increase the number of students in STEM education and we want to encourage them to get involved in STEM jobs once they are graduated.

Another important aspect is to increase the social value and appreciation of technical and technological professions.

This project is set up by the Flemish government in order to reach their goal: By 2020 Flanders has to be one of the top economically innovative and sustainable regions.


Charlotte Martin

Curious traveller and social gangster at MakeSense, Charlotte believes tech and innovation can re-engage civic life. Passionate about getting people together in order to act globally and make awesome things happen, she wants to promote civic innovation and new ways to upgrade democracy for the internet era by facilitating exchange, collaboration and visibility between civic entrepreneurs.


Ivan Verbesselt

Ivan Verbesselt is Senior Vice President Group Marketing with NAGRA.

Previously, Ivan was Vice President in charge of Alcatel’s TV business otherwise known as Information, Communication and Entertainment (ICE) after having led the Product Marketing and CTO office of Alcatel’s DSL business.

Ivan started his career in telecommunications in 1990 with Alcatel's Corporate Research department where he enjoyed contributing to the design of several category defining products in the broadband access space.

Ivan has also held various positions in product management for broadband access products and services, both within Alcatel and Belgacom, and was Principal of Quadratio Consulting Ltd focusing on Broadband TV.

Ivan Verbesselt holds a Master of Science in Applied Physics and Electronic Engineering from Brussels University and an Executive Degree in Business Administration from Solvay Business School (CEPAC). He is a frequent industry speaker and has also been active as a guest professor in Marketing at the International University in Geneva.


Nicola Walsh

Nicola Walsh is an Inside Sales Representative with Amazon Web Services Public Sector for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and has a rich track record in commercial and public sector functions at international tech giants including Dell, Sage, Telefonica, PayPal and Sky. Nicola educates children on mental health and mindfulness awareness, and volunteers to promote animal welfare.


Aurélie Pols

Aurélie Pols designs Data Privacy best practices: documenting data flows in order to limit Privacy backlashes, minimizing risk related to ever increasing data uses while solving for data quality.

She spent the past 15 years optimizing (digital) data-based decision-making processes. This allowed her to co-found and successfully sell her first start-up in Belgium to UK based Digitas LBi (Publicis).

She recently joined leading DMP Krux Digital Inc. as Data Governance and Privacy Advocate while also being part of the European Data Protection Supervisor’s Ethics Advisory Group. She teaches Privacy and Ethics at IE Business School in Madrid and serves as an advisor to the IAPP, the International Association of Privacy Professionals.


Eva Paunova

Eva Paunova is an EPP Group MEP, a passionate European and visionary politician. The Financial Times included her in their “New Europe 100” ranking of personalities that are changing the status quo through their ideas and innovative solutions. She was included in Politico 28, the top eye-catching “28 people from 28 countries who are shaping, shaking and stirring Europe”. Eva is also part of the European Forbes’ 30 under 30 list, featuring the brightest young entrepreneurs and change agents in 20 different sectors. Just recently, Eva Paunova was selected by Politico readers as one of the top 40 most influential MEPs.

Eva Paunova is member of the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee and the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee, as well as the Delegations to the United States and China. Among her signature topics are the completion of the Digital Single Market, supporting innovation and enhancing investment opportunities. She is the EPP’s rapporteur on Portability and Digital Content. Eva is Vice-President of the European Movement International and honorary member of the Council of Women in business in Bulgaria.  


Achim Klabunde

Mr Klabunde is the head of the IT Policy Sector at the secretariat of the European Data Protection Supervisor. Before joining the EDPS, he was a policy officer at the European Commission, in the data protection unit of the Directorate General for Justice and before that in DG Information Society and Media where he led the team in charge of privacy and trust policy for electronic communications for the 2009 Telecom Reform process.

Before joining the EU administration, he had worked in the private sector for 15 years. Mr Klabunde has a master's degree in Computer Science and Communications Research from Bonn University. He has worked in data management, network planning, data protection and IT security.


Chris Sherwood

Chris joined the Allegro Group in 2013 as Head of Public Policy - the first permanent Brussels public policy professional to be employed by a European Internet company. Chris previously worked for Yahoo, the US Department of Commerce, a public affairs consultancy in Brussels, and PwC as an IT systems implementation consultant. He speaks fluent English, French, German, and Polish. He has UK, French, and US nationalities.

Chris Burns

Chris Burns is a Franco-American journalist and media expert with 30 years' reporting experience in Europe, the U.S., Africa, Central Asia and the Middle East. He's covered armed conflicts, election battles, financial crises, natural and human disasters as well as film festivals. He was host of the talk show “The Network” on Euronews and a Bloomberg TV reporter based in Brussels and Berlin. He was a CNN correspondent based in Germany and the White House, and reported for the Associated Press from Paris, New York and Nashville. He's also a media consultant, media trainer and video producer, and has moderated panels including for the World Economic Forum, OECD, OSCE, United Nations, World Bank and EU institutions. A graduate of political economy at the University of California, Berkeley, Chris speaks five languages, has dual US-French nationality, and lives in Brussels with his wife, two kids and three guitars.


Dries Van Ransbeeck

As a big believer of the crowd economy and its key values of trust, transparency and collaborative thinking, Dries is on a mission to contribute to this emerging paradigm. He is currently working as a Growth Architect at Crowd Angels. Crowd Angels helps communities to have their own crowdsourcing platform.

In the last months Dries gained many insights on co-creation, citizen participation and smart cities by doing research, attending various events, talking with renowned experts and working on CitizenLab, a crowdsourcing platform for cities.

As from 29 June, he'll be on a bike journey through the Nordics and Baltics. Apart from moving through the beautiful landscapes day by day, he is keen to discover local initiatives and passionate entrepreneurs in the collaborative economy.


Jetzabel Serna

Jetzabel M. Serna-Olvera is an Assistant Professor at the Deutsche Telekom Chair of Mobile Business and Multilateral Security at Goethe University Frankfurt. She holds a PhD from the “Universitat Politécnica de Catalunya, BarcelonaTech” (Barcelona, Spain), and since 2001 she has been working in IT-Security, at both national and international levels. She has collaborated in numerous Spanish and EU-funded research projects, mainly focused on Security, Privacy and Identity Management. She also worked for the financial sector in a range of projects including strong authentication and security intelligence. Currently she is the head of the training programme of the Privacy&Us Marie Curie ITN, and is strongly involved in the implementation of privacy-by-design and by-default in the CREDENTIAL H2020 EU-funded project.


Giulio Soro

Giulio Soro graduated in Electronic Engineering and has a Ph.D. in Telecommunications from the University of Cagliari, where he continued as External Professor for Audio Digital Processing and Digital Communications.

Later Giulio worked in various technical roles in several verticals from Telecoms to Road Safety R&D and Public Sector.

Giulio has worked as a Project Manager for various initiatives in the Local Government, including the City Development programs, eHealth projects and government datacenter consolidations.

Since 2014, Giulio is leading technical cloud adoption in the Public Sector for Amazon Web Services in several countries within EMEA.
He is also a Smart Cities enthusiast and subject matter technical expert for AWS.


Gert Marien

Holding an Engineering degree, Gert has a track record in Media innovation within the Telco industry and is one of the founding fathers of ProximusTV; one of the very first European IPTV services launched in 2005, back then called BelgacomTV. Today he is responsible for Incubation of TV & Telco cloud services within Proximus’ Technology Strategy group, amongst which the Smart Advertisement initiative for which he has the technology lead.


Marc-Julien Ettori

Marc Ettori holds a Master in Chemistry and Physics, and a Master in Business Administration.

After an 8 year-career in various positions in Airbus Defense and Space, Marc is now responsible for identifying new trends and developing new projects where the COLUMBUS module can be an asset for technology maturation.

Up to now Humans remain very much in the loop of space operation and activities, where deep space exploration will request robotics devices and intelligent processes which go beyond simple replication of human activities. It’s to capture this potential and reinvent the way that space business is made that Airbus Defense and Space focus on Digital technologies and on how they are changing the way we work.


Fanuel Dewever

Fanuel Dewever is Founder and CEO of, a crowd engagement platform where people ask for non-monetary help first. Crowd Angels enables communities like Crowd Girls for entrepreneurial women, Sports Angels for athletes, Qayros for Heritage or Crowdville for civic crowdsourcing and citizen engagement.

Previously Fanuel gained extensive hands-on experience in the area of Strategy & Innovation, Digital Transformation, eLearning, and IT strategy at Big 5 consultancies PwC, IBM, and Accenture.

Mr. Dewever is and international speaker acknowledged for his contributions to two books and is the author of several articles and papers. He holds an MBA (Henley Management College, 2008), and Master degrees in Organizational and Managerial Informatics (1998) and in Applied Economics, from Brussels University (VUB).


Julien Denoël

A tech-driven Marketing Strategist & Executive VR Producer, Julien co-founded Exzeb on the unwavering belief that Virtual Reality can elicit behavior-altering emotions, thereby disrupting the way audience engage with organisations. Since 2014 Exzeb has helped brands in the fashion, retail and entertainment sectors to build loyalty and drive sales through powerful VR experiences, while constantly looking to push the boundaries of 360 storytelling.


Wouter Baljon

Wouter advises a broad group of clients on political and regulatory developments in the wider digital economy at Kreab, an international strategy consultancy (headquartered in Stockholm, but with large offices in other EU capitals such as Brussels, London, Madrid, Copenhagen and Helsinki). Prior to joining Kreab, Wouter was Head of EU Affairs for SWIFT. His previous professional experience includes a career in another public affairs consultancy, in the Government Affairs team of Bank of America Merrill Lynch and a traineeship at the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Dutch Embassy in Benin). He has led various advocacy campaigns on legislation affecting financial technology and organized outreach activities aimed at EU institutions and representations of EU member states and other key jurisdictions in this context. Wouter obtained his Master’s Degree in EU Policy Studies (Honours Program) from the University of Amsterdam and his Bachelor’s Degree in European Studies from the University of Maastricht.


Estelle Massé

Estelle Massé is a Policy Analyst at our Access Now. Her work focuses on Data Protection, Privacy, Surveillance and Net Neutrality. Prior to joining Access Now, Estelle interned with European Digital Rights (EDRi), an association of 31 privacy and civil rights groups across Europe and at the UNESCO in Barcelona. Estelle graduated a Master in European Law from the University of Granada, Spain.


Camille Françoise

Camille Françoise is a specialist in Cultural Institutions and Technologies. She currently leads Les Voyageurs du Code (Code Voyagers), a digital literacy and permanent education program of Libraries Without Borders, in Belgium. This project aims to raise awareness about the importance of coding among young people, teenagers and adults. Passionate about learning and the democratisation of knowledge, Camille has studied Art History, Museum Studies and Programming, and has experience in project management and co-creation projects.


Friedger Müffke

Friedger Müffke is engaging in the global Android developer community and founder of OpenIntents, different Android user groups and the Android conference Droidcon. He is professional Android developer since the early days.

He likes to prototype on the latest technology in particular everything related to Bluetooth Smart.


Remco Ploeg

In my role as Senior (IoT) Solution Architect at Winvision I help my customers with their (IT) strategy. Together with the business, boards and IT departments I create (IT) road-maps and ICT architectures for the future of these companies. I have a strong focus on the topic 'Internet of Things' and helping my customers to be disruptive in their market.


Emmanuelle Duquenne

With two masters in law and a ten years’ experience as public policy advisor for the Belgian government, Emmanuelle pivoted her career to entrepreneurship in the digital field five years ago.

Back to the private sector, she worked as a consultant for Deloitte Luxembourg and for Microsoft Belux.

Politics enthusiast interested in technology, she explores worldwide initiatives around the concepts of civic techs, open government and open data. Strongly confident in the transformative power of technology in the public and nonprofit sectors, she seeks to gather like-minded people to build a community aiming at growing such initiatives in Belgium.


Eirini Zafeiratou

Eirini Zafeiratou is Director of Public Policy, based in Brussels and responsible for European public policy at Amazon.

Prior to joining Amazon, Eirini managed the Brussels representation of the Vodafone Group as the head of EU affairs.  She also held various roles in the telecoms industry and was the director of GSM Europe Brussels, the European interest group of the GSM association and legal adviser at ETNO the fixed telecoms association.

Eirini is a Greek lawyer trained in European and telecommunication laws in Athens Greece and in Saarbruecken University of Saarland Germany.


Jason Albert

Jason Albert is an Assistant General Counsel in Microsoft Corporation’s Regulatory Affairs Group.  In his current role, Jason drives the company’s policy and regulatory engagement related to financial services, with a focus on fintech, payments, and blockchain.  He also provides legal support to Microsoft’s EU government affairs team on a range of European policy priorities.

Previously, Jason helped drive Microsoft’s Trusted Cloud initiative where he focused on cloud policy engagement and supported commercial efforts to enhance trust in cloud computing.  Previously, Jason led Microsoft’s Intellectual Property Policy team where he directed the company’s engagement on patent reform and led strategic planning around use of IP assets. 

Jason received his J.D. magna cum laude from Harvard Law School and clerked for Senior Judge Richard L. Williams of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.


Aristotle Tzafalias

Aristotle Tzafalias studied Computer Science at the University of Crete in Heraklion. He works for the Trust and Security Unit of the European Commission Directorate General for Communications Networks, Content & Technology (DG CONNECT).

His responsibilities include the strategic programming of H2020 funded research in Cybersecurity and DIgital Privacy (over a 7 year period with a budget of approximately 500 million Euro).

Mr Tzafalias also acts as liaison with other parts of the European Commission with an interest in Cybersecurity matters such as the Directorate General for Mobility and Transport (Aviation, Land and Maritime Security) and the Directorate General for Trade (Dual Use, Export Controls).

His professional interests include cybersecurity risk management, economics of information security as well as the societal and ethical aspects of information security.


Diego López

With almost 15 years working at HISPASAT in sales I have been in charge among other tasks of Latin-American’s commercialization, Audiovisual Sales and IP Sales.

I have also been working for Antena 3TV, the most relevant private TV network in Spain, as  Director of Distribution of TV Channels  (three years). I am currently responsible for Sales for Western Europe & IP Services and I take care of some special projects such as those related with connectivity on Trains.


Adam Kinsley

Adam Kinsley is Director of Policy for Sky. His remit encompasses all of Sky’s business areas including its 30+ television channels, its digital satellite platform, and its telephony and broadband business.  Adam represents Sky on a number of external groups  where he is a Board Member of COBA, the industry body for commercial broadcasters who invest in the UK independent of public funding or incentives, and the UK Council for Child Internet Safety.


Juan Bossicard

Juan Bossicard, an Alumni of AIESEC, a traveler, a VR Enthusiast and a happy father, started his career at Microsoft Europe, working on Corporate Responsibility and Startups. After leaving Microsoft, Juan became a consultant on Community, PR and Government Affairs. Today, Juan works at as an advisor to SME and startups in ICT and Audiovisual.


Alberto di Felice


Martin Bresson

Martin is a Senior Advisor to FleishmanHillard’s Practice in Brussels. He specialises in delivering senior counsel to the clients in all sectors on policy and regulatory issues impacting their organisations, including financial services, competition policy, consumer protection, corporate governance, company law, energy, ICT and trade.

Martin joined FleishmanHillard in 2012 from a decade with the Danish public administration including serving on a number of cross ministerial coordination units and 4 years as Director for the International Secretariat of the Danish Ministry for Business and Growth where he was responsible for Danish-EU relations as well as world trade/free trade negotiations and maritime affairs. Latterly Martin acted as Minister Counselor for the Danish Permanent Representation to the EU where he was responsible for overseeing Denmark’s chairing of the Presidency on financial services and market and industry policy issues. 

Before joining the civil service Martin worked as a political consultant in Danish trade organizations representing both Industry and primary producers.   

Martin holds a Masters of Laws from the University of Copenhagen and a Master of Executive Business Strategy, as well as postgraduate diplomas in negotiation and dispute resolution and global business development. Martin was for six years external assistant professor at the University of Copenhagen at the faculty of European Law. He is fluent in both English and Danish and has a working knowledge of German and French.


Walter Van Uytven

Walter Van Uytven has more than 20 years of experience in the ICT sector.Before joining Awingu, Walter worked as Director Cloud & ICT Channels for the Belgacom Group and as CEO of Belgacom Bridging ICT. 

Walter was hired by Belgacom in 2009 to bring entrepreneurship and business development expertise to the Belgacom group. Before that, he was the President & CEO of the Belgian Informatics Association and owned an IT integrator company. Walter holds a bachelor degree in both Informatics and Tax Law and an Advanced Management degree of the Vlerick Business School. In January 2014, Walter received the "ICT Channel Personality of the year" award.


Anis Bedda

Cofounder of transforma bxl, a coworking and innovation space hosting a community of entrepreneurs, innovators and creatives. I also co-founded the Intrapreneurship Conference the premier global gathering of Intrapreneurs, corporate entrepreneurs, innovation managers and innovation experts.

After working in Tunisia, Turkey, Spain, and Canada, I finally settled down in Brussels, Belgium where I cofounded BottomUp Innovation, a company helping organisations innovate from the bottom up using the principles of Intrapreneurship, open innovation and crowd sourcing. We help organisations tap into the potential of their staff to generate innovation in return of engagement, fulfilment and happiness at work. 

In my student years I joined AIESEC* and stayed an active member for 6 years. During these years, I passionately lived the leadership development experiences provided by this wonderful network and helped members and stakeholders develop and become change agents. 

This experience has shaped the man that I am today (Entrepreneur, innovation enabler, multilingual and a global citizen...) and left me with one obsession: Personal fulfilment at work.

I speak 5 languages fluently (Arabic, French, English, Italian, Spanish) and Dutch (intermediate level). My international insight has enabled me to develop a cultural awareness that is critical to successfully building relationships and communicating effectively with multicultural audiences. Building up on this international experience I followed a couple of trainings on intercultural communications to strengthen my knowledge of the topic: Cultural detective and Initiation à l’approche interculturelle - Centre Bruxellois d’Action Interculturelle

*AIESEC is a global youth network positively impacting the world through leadership development experiences.