Štefan Füle is a Czech politician and diplomat who currently serves as the Czech Special Envoy to the OSCE and the Western Balkans. Having started his career in the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs, he worked as Czech Ambassador to Lithuania and to the UK, as well as becoming Czech Permanent Representative to NATO. In 2010, he became the EU Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy where he was instrumental in setting up and developing the Eastern Partnership with six countries in Eastern Europe and the South Caucasus.
Catherine Gernay is an expert and consultant in science policy. She holds a licenciate and doctorate in economics and spent part of her research at Harvard Business School. She then worked at the Science Policy Ministry of the Belgian government. She is currently Member of the Board of Directors at the National Institute for Radioelements (IRE) and Executive Officer at The Belgian Nuclear Research Centre (SCK-CEN).
An established and experienced diplomat, Ana Gomes has cemented a reputation as a strident supporter and defender of democracy, human rights, social justice and the rule of law. She has previously been involved in the EU Middle East Peace Process and has led several EU election observation missions in Africa and South-East Asia. Gomes has become a vocal critic of the maladministration of EU law by multinational corporations to minimise tax costs and the negative impact this has on European citizens, governance and society.
Sylvie Goulard is a French politician who currently serves as Deputy Governor at Banque de France. Previously, she was Member of the European Parliament and, having been appointed by Emmanuel Macron, Minister of the Armed Forces in the French government. She is also the former President of the Mouvement européen-France, the oldest pluralist association defending the European ideal, and was a founder of the Spinelli Group. Additionally, Goulard continues to write regularly in a wide range of both and international newspapers.
Elisabeth Guigou is a French politician. As a Member of the European Parliament, she, together with Elmar Brok, represented the Parliament in the negotiations that produced the Amsterdam Treaty. Afterwards, she turned to French domestic politics, having been elected to the National Assembly for the Socialist Party and then serving first as Minister of Justice and then as Minister of Employment. Until 2017, Guigou worked as President of the French National Assembly's Foreign Affairs Committee. Currently, she is the President of the Anna Lindh Foundation.
Toomas Hendrik Ilves is an Estonian politician and currently Distinguished Visiting Fellow at Stanford University. After many years living and working in the United States, Ilves became Ambassador of Estonia to the United States after Estonia had restored its independence. Later, he served as Estonian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Chairman of the People's Party. Having been Member of the European Parliament, Ilves was elected as the fourth President of the Republic of Estonia in 2006, a position which he fulfilled for a decade.
Baron Daniel Janssen is a Belgian businessman. Having worked at the Union Chimique Belge as an engineer, he successively became Director of Research and Development and then President of the Executive Committee. Afterwards, he became first CEO and then President of the Board of Directors of Solvay. Additionally, Janssen was a member of the Executive Committee of the Trilateral Commission.
An experienced French diplomat and politician, Jean-Pierre Jouyet currently serves as the Ambassador of France to the United Kingdom. Previously, he held the position of Secretary-General of the Presidency of the Republic in François Hollande’s government. Additionally, he served as French Secretary of State for European Affairs where one of his missions was to make the necessary preparations for France's Presidency of the Council of the European Union in the second half of 2008.
Sony is the Director of the international think-tank Re-Define. He is an influential economist, financial sector expert and development practitioner. Sony advises the EU, central banks, large investors, governments, regulators and multilateral institutions on economic, fiscal, investment and financial policy. He has a multidisciplinary role at the London School of Economics as Strategy Adviser to the Systemic Risk Centre and Senior Visiting Fellow in Development and Public Policy. He is also a special adviser to the UNEP on green finance. Before Re-Define, Sony worked for ICICI, India’s largest investment bank. Sony co-founded the International Tax Justice Network, Europeans for Financial Reform and Finance Watch, and launched the inter-governmental Illicit Finance Task Force. His substantial contribution to financial reform, tackling the euro crisis and promoting development has been recognised by the World Economic Forum naming him a Young Global Leader and by the Royal Society of Arts electing him a Fellow.
Miroslav Lajčák is an experienced Slovak diplomat and the current Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Slovak Republic. Parallel to this, he also serves the President of the United Nations General Assembly. At the beginning of his diplomatic career, Lajčák was posted to the Czechoslovak and subsequently the Slovak embassy in Moscow. Then, he worked as the Ambassador of Slovakia in the Western Balkan countries, after which he took up the post as High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Chaima Bouhlel serves as the President of Al-Bawsala, a non-profit Tunisian NGO operating to bring transparency to political processes and engage ordinary citizens in a region wracked by government crackdowns. Chaima joined Al-Bawsala in 2014 to start and lead “Marsad Baladia” project, an observatory that monitors all municipalities across the country, and was elected as president in October 2016. Since 2016, she has also been co-hosting a weekly radio show on the National Radio discussing public policy and public institutions’ performance. Prior to joining the Al-Bawsala, Chaima worked in the micro finance sector, and in building the capacity of journalists in post-revolutionary Tunisia. During her studies at Harvard University, she was president of the Society of Arab Students, and co-organized the Harvard Arab Weekend in 2011, the biggest pan-Arab conference in North America.
Kirsten has represented the Social Democrats in the Danish Parliament since 2005. She was a rapporteur on research and higher education as well as on gender equality and food. She was appointed as Denmark’s Minister of the Environment in 2014, in the government of Helle Thorning-Schmidt. In that position, she facilitated the development of sustainable solutions and contributed to the development of industrial growth and workplaces in Denmark. In the 2015 general election, she was re-elected to the Danish Parliament. Kirsten is the co-founder of the Bilateral Network for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights. The network operates across party lines in the Danish Parliament to promote sexual and reproductive health and rights at a national and international level.
Hanke is a Dutch politician, former military officer and hockey player. Immediately after graduating from university, Hanke joined the Dutch Ministry of the Interior and Kingdom Relations as a Senior Policy Officer. She remained in this position for four years before attending the Dutch Royal Military Academy (KMA) where she undertook officer training, and specialised as an artillery commander. Assigned as a Tank Platoon Commander in 2007, Hanke served in Afghanistan and by 2009 was Acting Field Officer assisting the Director of Operations, Land Forces Commando Staff. In 2010, Hanke was elected to the Dutch House of Representatives where she currently serves as party spokesperson on health and defence issues for the Christian Democratic Appeal party, and also focuses on local government, medical law, psychiatry and sports. Hanke is a keen hockey player and was on the team that won the Rabobank Premier Division national indoor hockey championship in 2005.
Beata has been a Member of the Polish Parliament since 2005. As a member of the International Affairs Committee she focuses on Polish-Argentinian, Polish-Indian and Polish-Israeli relations. Before devoting herself to politics, she worked as an entrepreneur for eight years during which she held the post of Manager at General Motors Poland and Opel Polska. Beata graduated from Warsaw University (in Applied Social Sciences) and Warmia-and-Mazury University (in Humanities). Outside of her political career, she founded the Marian Bublewicz Foundation which advocates improving access to education.
Alex Budak is a serial social entrepreneur, Executive Director of the UC Berkeley Center for Reinventing Leadership, and a firm believer that anyone can be a changemaker. Alex co-founded, and now advises, StartSomeGood.com which has helped 700+ social impact organizations in 50+ countries raise $7M+. He is a mentor, coach and adviser to social entrepreneurs around the world, most recently running Scandinavia’s leading social impact incubator, Reach for Change, in Stockholm, Sweden. Alex has given talks on the topics of leadership and social innovation in venues ranging from Ukraine to Cambodia; LA to the Arctic Circle; and at both the World Bank and White House. His writing has been published in FastCompany, The Guardian and Huffington Post.
Hala Bugaighis is a lawyer and co-founder of Jusoor, a non-governmental organisation committed to independent policy research and human development projects for women with focus on the economic and social empowerment. As a lawyer with 15 years of experience, Hala focuses on commercial, banking, civil and investment laws, and has a sound understanding of law practice in an international context. Through her private companies, Hala has worked as a consultant to many international companies as well as Libyan private and public entities, focusing on development and capacity building. In 2015, Hala was nominated a UN Women Champion for Women Economic Empowerment – an initiative that aims to improve women’s economic standing and potential around the world.
Jane has dedicated most her life to climate and environmental issues, serving first as a strategic consultant on low carbon policy to the Mayor of London and is now running a world-class climate science and low carbon technology centre at the UK’s National Measurement Institute. In 2008, she founded Carbon Retirement, an award-winning social enterprise working with the EU ETS. Her dedication to sustainability and entrepreneurial drive was rewarded with being named as one of the ‘Top 30 UK entrepreneurs under 30’ by Real Business in 2010, a 'Social Entrepreneur of the Year' by Square Mile in 2011 and one of the ‘Top 10 Outstanding Young Persons of the UK’ by the Chamber of Commerce International in 2015, among others.
Malcolm is Head of Communications with the Higher Education Authority, the Irish state agency that advises government on higher education and research and funds the higher education institutions. He is also a councillor and former mayor for the centrist Fianna Fail party. He has previously served as Vice-President of the National Youth Council of Ireland, as Education Officer with the Union of Students in Ireland, as an Executive member of the European Students Union and as Youth Spokesperson for the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe. He previously worked as commercial manager of myhome.ie, Ireland’s most successful property website and as chief executive of a national children’s organisation. A graduate in law and arbitration from University College Dublin, Malcolm is currently completing a Doctorate in Governance at Queen's University Belfast. He has completed 26 marathons.
A young entrepreneur and security expert, Edoardo started working as a political and security risk consultant after graduating from the University of Bologna. In 2010, he established the International Security Observer, a web-based think tank seeking to foster the next generation of security experts. At the time, he was also working as a research analyst at the Italian Institute of Strategic Studies Niccolò Machiavelli, where his activities focused on insurgency, intelligence, national security policies and organised crime. Edoardo is the co-founder of Hozint (Horizon Intelligence), a consulting firm providing location-based media and social media monitoring services on political, safety and security risks. He is frequently interviewed on security issues by media in Italy and across Europe.
Since 2014, Krysztof has been the Director of the Triennial of Photography in Hamburg. He has also previously worked as the Founder and Director of the Lodz Art Centre and the Foundation of Visual Education in the city of Lodz. The Foundation is responsible for the International Festival of Photography, held annually since 2001, which is one of the largest photographic events in Europe. As Director and Chief Curator of this event, Krysztof has established an association of 30 European festivals of photography, called ‘Photo Festival Union’. He is the creator of the Lodz-European Capital of Culture campaign. In 2008 he was named Lodz Citizen of the Year.