Our contributors are all leaders in their respective fields and come from key stakeholder organisations, from government to local authorities and non-profit and private sector.
Director, SHARE Foundation
Prof. Vladan Joler is Share Foundation director and professor at New Media department at University of Novi Sad. He is leading a SHARE Lab, a research and data investigation lab for exploring different technical aspects of the intersections between technology and society.
Alex Meszmer is a visual artist, curator and a member of the National Committee of VISARTE – Association of Professional Artists, Switzerland. Meszmer works closely with IGBK Berlin as an expert for the European Commission for questions regarding artists’ mobility. Together with his partner Reto Mueller, he is organising a digital archive about the Swiss village Pfyn, running the Transitory Museum, an ever-changing museum, searching for the beauty of democracy with their club ‘désirer’.
Artist & Researcher
Joana is a Barcelona/Berlin based artist and researcher. Her work critically explores the way post-capitalist narratives affect the alphabetization of machines, humans and ecosystems. Her main research topics include Internet materiality, surveillance, social profiling and interfaces. She has lectured, performed and exhibited her work in different museums, art centers, universities, festivals and publications around the world. Furthermore she is the co-founder of the Critical Interface Politics Research Group at HANGAR [Barcelona] and the co-founder of The Institute for the Advancement of Popular Automatisms. She is currently a visiting lecturer at Universität Potsdam and Escola Superior d'Art de Vic [Barcelona].
Artist & Researcher
Špela Petrič, BSc, MA, PhD, is a Slovenian new media artist and former scientific researcher currently based between Ljubljana, SI and Amsterdam, NL. Her practice is a multi-species endeavor, a composite of natural sciences, wet media and performance. She envisions artistic experiments that enact strange relationalities to reveal the ontological and epistemological underpinnings of our technological societies and challenge the scope of the adjacent possible. Much of her recent work has focused on plant life. Her work has been shown at many festivals, exhibitions and educational events (Abandon Normal Devices (UK), Venice Biennial of Architecture (IT), Touch Me Festival (CRO), Pixxelpoint (IT), European Conference on Artificial Life (IT), Playaround (TW), Harvard (ZDA), Ars Electronica (AT), National Center for Biological Sciences (IN), HAIP (SI), Arscope (GER), Mutamorphosis (CZ), Galleries de la Reine (BE)...). For her work she also received several awards including the White Aphroid for outstanding artistic achievement, the Bioart and Design Award and an honorary mention at Prix Ars Electronica.
pETER Purg leads the New Media module in the Digital/Media Arts and Practices graduate/postgraduate programme at the School of Arts, University of Nova Gorica, where he acts as Associate Professor, projects coordinator, researcher, artist and expert in the realms of culture and media. He currently leads the interdisciplinary project MAST - Module in Art, Science and Technology as well as School of Arts' teams in the PAIC - Participatory Art for Invisible Communities and the EmindS projects. pETER is coordinator of ADRIART.CE, a CEEPUS network of art academies from Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Hungary, Poland, Serbia and Slovenia.
Director of equipocafeina
Ramón Sangüesa is a professor at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia (on academic leave of absence), a researcher affiliated with the Center for Organizational Innovation, the Department of Sociology at Columbia University (New York) and Senior Fellow of the Strategic Innovation Lab at the Ontario Co-llege de Art and Design (OCAD) at the University of Toronto (Canada) and a collaborator with the Illinois Institute of Technology (Chicago).
He has been a professor of Design Masters at BAU, LCI and Elisava schools in Barcelona. He is currently the director of the research area in Technology at the Elisava School of Design and Engineering and collaborator of the Elisava Research and DESISLAB Elisava groups.
Jutta Thielen-del Pozo
Head of the Scientific Development Unit, JRC
Dr. Jutta Thielen-del Pozo is Head of Unit at the Joint Research Centre, the in house science service and knowledge service of the European Commission. She is responsible for strategic scientific development programmes including the JRC's Centre for Advanced Studies, Exploratory Research, Art and Science, Collaborative Doctoral Partnerships, Open Access Research Infrastructures and Education and Training.
Working at the science-policy interface is allowing her to directly turn science into policy relevant information and action that is of relevance for our societies.
Programme Director, Castrum Peregrini
Lars Ebert (*Heidelberg, Germany, 1976) is managing board member and programme co-ordinator of the cultural centre Castrum Peregrini in Amsterdam. He also works as an independent advisor in the area of higher education and the arts for clients such as the European League of Institutes of the Arts (ELIA) the primary network for Higher Arts Education in Europe for which he has previously served in various roles, a.o. as deputy director. Lars is co-founder and chair of the board of EQ-Arts, the first transnational sector specific accreditation agency for the arts. He has extensive expertise in developing and implementing EU funded projects and engages in organisational development, both on a strategic as well as on operational level as an external reviewer or critical friend. He is a frequent facilitator, moderator and speaker during international events. Lars holds a post-graduate degree in theology.
President of Culture Action Europe
Robert Manchin is the president of Culture Action Europe and the President of Europa Nova. He is also a Distinguished Senior Scholar at the University of Pannonia Koszeg Knowledge Center. Previously, Robert Manchin was the Senior Vice President of Gallup Organisation, Princeton and the Chairman and Managing Director of Gallup Europe.
Dr Simona Neumann
CEO, City of Timisoara 2021
Simona Neumann is CEO for Timisoara 2021 - European Capital of Culture (Romania) since January 2013. She has successfully led the 4 year bidding process of the city for the European title. She has 19 years of professional experience in managing multi-stakeholder programmes in Romanian and international context in culture, education, public diplomacy, and civil society development. She worked at: the European Commission, Brussels; UNDP, Bucharest; the Institute for International Education, Washington, DC; the West University and the Intercultural Institute both in Timisoara. She holds a Ph.D. in Public Diplomacy (Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj ) and specialized in strategic management of non-profit organisations at Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government.
Head of the Artistic Unit, City of Timisoara 2021
Chris Torch was the founder and artistic director of Intercult, since 1996, a publically-financed institution, based in Stockholm, Sweden and a designated Europe Direct office, managed within the institution’s European Resource Center for Culture since 2009. In 2011, Torch carried on at Intercult as Senior Associate and Program Director, combining with other long term European projects like Matera 2019 (artistic direction group) and Rijeka 2020 (bid team and Program Director).
Apart from large-scale project design, Torch plays a role in developing intercultural politics. He lectures regularly and is currently on the Board for Culture Action Europe. He earlier served as a Trustee for The European Museum Forum (2008-2013), as a Board member of the River//Cities Platform (2005-2012) and on the Steering Group for the Platform for Intercultural Europe (2008-2013).
He is currently Head of the Artistic Unit at Timisoara 2021 - European Capital of Culture, after working with the Bid team in the closing months and taking the position in January 2017.
European Research Area Chair at Madeira Interactive Technologies Institute
Chris Csíkszentmihályi is European Research Area Chair at Madeira Interactive Technology Institute, and is director of the the Rootio Project, a sociotechnical platform for community radio. Csíkszentmihályi has been a professor at colleges, universities, and institutes, from Parsons the New School for Design to MIT. He co founded and directed the MIT Center for Future Civic Media (C4), which was dedicated to developing technologies that strengthen communities. He also founded the MIT Media Lab's Computing Culture group, which worked to create unique media technologies for cultural and political applications. Trained as an artist, he has worked in the intersection of new technologies, media, and the arts for 16 years, lecturing, showing new media work, and presenting installations on five continents and one subcontinent. His work has been featured in venues ranging from BBC, New York Times, and Washington Post to Art Journal.
Artist & Founder of Rumtiden Idea Lab
"imagination is the most important of human abilities. And the most poorly exploited. If you want to be creative, to be an inventor, you have to practice your imagination with the same persistence as an athlete."
After a career in music, releasing hundreds of records, Hakan Lidbo now creates interactive art, sound art, innovations, apps, games, books, film, radio, architecture, urban planning, virtual reality, food tech, keynotes, education, robotics and installations for museums, events and public places.
He is the founder of Rumtiden Idea Lab in Stockholm where experts within different disciplines explore innovative aspects of music, art, science, society and technology, merged into new expressions.
Secretary General, Culture Action Europe
Tere Badia holds a degree in Art History from the Universitat de Barcelona and a MA in Information and Knowledge Society by the IN3 (Internet interdisciplinary Institute) of the UOC.
She is dedicated to cultural research and production in various formats. She has carried out several studies on cultural policies, networks and R+D+i for visual arts. Tere has curated exhibitions and projects of contemporary art. She has been professionally linked to the Interarts Observatory in the 90’s, the communication and multimedia agency Goetzinger&Komplizen (Karlsruhe). Tere coordinated the platform DISONANCIAS in Catalonia for the promotion of the relations between artists and research departments of companies and organizations, as well as the network of visual arts production spaces of Catalonia xarxaprod. Until January 2018, Tere Badia was director of Hangar – center for artistic production and research in Barcelona.
Data Justice Lab
Fieke Jansen is a PhD candidate at the Data Justice Lab at Cardiff University and a freelancer in the space of human rights, privacy and technology. She is interested in re-politicizing data and technology, by understanding it’s historical, social, cultural and political context in Europe. Prior to starting her PhD, Fieke worked at Tactical Tech, a Berlin based NGO, as the project lead for their Politics of Data programme. At the Dutch Development organization, Hivos, she was engaged in topics at the intersection of human rights, internet and freedom of expression.
Chief Executive Officer, Visual Artists Ireland
Noel Kelly is Chief Executive Officer of Visual Artists Ireland, Ireland’s representative body for visual artists. He is a fellow of The Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA), President of the International Association of Art Critics – Ireland (AICA Ireland), Chair of the Royal Dublin Society Visual Arts Awards, a board member of the International Association of Art Critics – International (AICA International) and a board member of Culture Action Europe.
He is directly responsible for the delivery of the tri-annual report The Social, Economic, & Fiscal Status of the Visual Artist in Ireland (Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland [UK]); the development and introduction of Payment Guidelines for Visual Artists (Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland [UK]); the development of formal and informal international artist and information exchange with collaborations with organisation such as HIAP [Finland]; AN [UK]; Artquest [UK],CCI [France]; varied Pan-European visual arts programmes; and the creation of Ireland’s National Day for Visual Arts – Get Together.
Community Manager, Edgeryders
Natalia Skoczylas is a nomad, working in various fields: as a music critic and freelance journalist, project manager, museum curator, event producer, and community manager. Deeply interested in politics, equality, solidarity, social justice, feminism, contemporary art, and libre technologies.
Noemi Salantiu specializes in deep community building by stimulating diverse citizens to collaborate using online and offline tools. She co-founded Edgeryders, a global collective doing advanced network mapping to support debates, citizen consultations, project making and events that engage participants across the cultural and social or political strata in society.
Mobile and Social Computing Lab (MobS), Bruno Kessler Foundation
Bruno Lepri leads the Mobile and Social Computing Lab (MobS) at Bruno Kessler Foundation (Trento, Italy). Bruno is also a research affiliate at the MIT Connection Science initiative and he has recently launched an alliance between MIT Connection Science and Bruno Kessler Foundation on Human Dynamics Observatories. He is also a senior research affiliate of Data-Pop Alliance, the first think-tank on Big Data and Development co-created by the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative, MIT Media Lab, Overseas Development Institute, and Flowminder to promote a people-centered big data revolution. In 2010 he won a Marie Curie Cofund post-doc fellowship and he has held post-doc positions at FBK and at MIT Media Lab. He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Trento. He also serves as consultant of several companies (mainly telcos, banks and insurances companies) and international organizations. Recently, he co-founded Profilio, a startup active in the field of AI-driven computational marketing. His research interests include computational social science, personality computing, urban computing, network science, machine learning, and new models for personal data management and monetization. His research has received attention from several international press outlets and obtained the James Chen Annual Award for best UMUAI paper and the best paper award at ACM Ubicomp 2014. His work on personal data management was one of the case studies discussed at the World Economic Forum.
Marta de Menezes & Luis Graca
Luis Graca has an MD from the University of Lisbon; and a PhD in transplant immunology from the University of Oxford. He is Professor at Lisbon Medical School, directing a research group in cellular immunology. His most significant scientific contributions have been related with the field of transplantation and autoimmunity.
Graca has collaborated with several artists, including a long-term relationship with Marta de Menezes ( ), a pioneer in the field of bioart and possibly with the most diverse approach, having produced artworks with genetics, microbiology, developmental biology, structural biology, biotechnology, neurosciences, and immunology. Her work has been exhibited worldwide.
Deputy Head of Unit, Creative Europe
Pedro is the Deputy Head of the Creative Europe Unit since January 2018. Between 1987 and 2014, he has occupied several positions within the European Commission at the Directorate General Education, Youth, Sport and Culture, namely in the fields of Sport and Communication. During 2014, he was directly responsible of the Communication team, which launched the Erasmus+ and Creative Europe programmes. Between 2015 and 2017 he was Director for Social Innovation and Empowerment at the ICSS, an NGO based in Qatar, where he was responsible for the development of initiatives and projects based on the educational and social power of sport. www.linkedin.com/in/pevela
Chris Bruckmayr studied Communication Science and Politics at Vienna university. Has been director of products at Ars Electronica Solutions since 2018; 2013-17, business manager and creative producer on the Ars Electronica SPAXELS® crew; sound and performance artist who, under the name raum.null, produces dark techno for the vinyl-only label Belgrade dubs / Belgrade; 2015-18, performances at the Ars Electronica Festival.
Dan is software architect and entrepreneur. He is coordinator of MultipleXity, president of Smart City Association, Government advisor on OGP Romania and co-founder of Growceanu Angel Investment. Some of his current projects are MultipleXity, Upgrade My City, Timisoara Startup Ecosystem and Timisoara Data Portal.
Director General, National Institute for Cultural Research and Training
Carmen Croitoru is Director General at National Institute for Cultural Research and Training. Also a professor at the National University of Theatre and Cinema, she has 20 years of experience in teaching cultural management. She has been engaged in administration and development of cultural management in Romania. Her involvement extends to several national and international professional networks; she is member of ENCATC and Europeana, national representative member for the EU Commission for Creative Sectors, and representative in the Steering Committee for Culture and Heritage at the Council of Europe (CDCPP), founder of the Professional Association for Romanian Cultural Managers, and a co-founder of the ECUMEST Association.
Croitoru is a graduate from the Academy of Theatre and Film of Bucharest and has a master’s degree in Theatre Studies as well as a master degree in Cultural Management, a Phd in Theatre Studies and an accreditation for training and evaluating cultural public institution managers. She has played major role in contributing to the cultural creative sectors through her research as well as engagement in several important cultural projects in Romania.
Artistic Coordinator / Project Manager, Ohme
With a foot in producing performing arts and one in European cultural policy, Camilla worked in Italy, UK, Chile and Belgium. Always interested in hybridization and crossing of disciplines, Camilla worked for art organisations of all sizes focusing on multidisciplinary and multimedia theatre production and project management. She holds a MA in Performing Arts Management from Bocconi University (Milan, IT) and an MA in Arts Administration and Cultural Policy (Goldsmiths University, London, UK), thanks to which she did extended research on European Cultural Networks. Since 2016 she is based in Brussels where she is working for different Cultural Networks, and where, with a group of engineers, she co-founded Ohme, a collective curating and producing educational and artistic content at the nexus between arts and sciences.
Member of the European Parliament
Julie Ward, elected in 2014, is a Member of the European Parliament for the North West England region for the Labour Party. Before being elected as MEP, she was part of an international delegation to Belfast to discuss the role of the arts in peace processes and ran a social enterprise. She is an active campaigner for equal rights and social justice and campaigns against violence against women; organizing local events for One Billion Rising.
Ward completed her Master’s degree in Education and International Development from Newcastle in 2012. She is also a member of Committee on Culture and Education (CULT) and Delegation for relations with Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo.
Equality and Diversity Manager, Riksteatern
Yamam Al- Zubaidi has worked with EU equality law and human rights for more than 10 years, both in Sweden and internationally. He is today the Equality & Diversity Manager at the National Theatre of Sweden (RIKSTEATERN). Yamam is on the executive board of Culture Action Europe. He is also on the board of directors of the Swedish National Council of Adult Educations.
Committee on Culture, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG)
Jordi Baltà Portolés works as an advisor for the Committee on Culture of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), providing research and advice to local governments with an interest in developing cultural policies and sustainable development. He is also a freelance researcher, consultant and trainer in the areas of cultural policy and international affairs, for a range of organisations. Previously he was a researcher and project coordinator at the Interarts Foundation (2001-14). He is a member of the UNESCO Expert Facility for the implementation of the Convention on the Diversity of Cultural Expressions. Jordi teaches at the Online MA in Cultural Management of the Open University of Catalonia (UOC) and the University of Girona (UdG), as well as the Degree in International Relations of Universitat Ramon Llull (URL).
Coordinator, Michael Culture Association
Corinne is Coordinator of Michael Culture (Aisbl) since 2013, the European trans sectorial network for valorization of digital cultural heritage (public & private cultural institutions, ministries of Culture & Universities). Before she started to work full time at Michael Culture, Corinne worked for Dédale (2013-2015) (Culture + social innovation + technology) as Manager of European and International development where she developed two Creative Europe projects linked to art, culture – public spaces and empowerment of citizens and research projects linked to digital and social innovation.
Corinne is now in-charge of coordination and development of Michael Culture focusing on relation with ministries and relevant communities (culture, research, art, technology…) and she manages the European projects where the association is involved, mainly under H2020 program.
Artistic Director, Arts Catalyst
Nicola Triscott is a cultural producer, curator, writer and researcher, specializing in the intersections between art, science, technology and society. She is the founder and Artistic Director/CEO of Arts Catalyst, and Principal Research Fellow in Interdisciplinary Art and Science at the University of Westminster. Arts Catalyst is one of the UK’s most distinctive arts organisations, distinguished by ambitious artists’ commissions that engage with science, including notable projects by Tomas Saraceno, Ashok Sukumaran, Aleksandra Mir, Otolith Group and Critical Art Ensemble. Nicola lectures and publishes internationally, including books on art and technology in the Arctic, art and space, and ecological art, and blogs at www.nicolatriscott.org.
Founder of the Institute of Human Obsolescence
Manuel Beltrán is an artist, activist, and researcher. He was involved in the Indignados movement in Spain, the Gezi Park protests in Turkey and several forms of independent activism and cyber-activism in Europe and beyond. In 2012 he co-founded the art collective Plastic Crowds and since 2013 he is head and co-founder of the nomadic school and artistic organization Alternative Learning Tank. In 2015 he founded the Institute of Human Obsolescence, through which he explores the future of labour, the socio-political implications regarding our relationship with technology and the economic and governance systems surrounding the production of data.
Art historian, sound/interdisciplinary artist, essayist and art critic, Philippe Franck (Belgium) is the director and founder of Transcultures. He is the founder and director of the international sound art festival City Sonic (since 2003) and Les Transnumériques, digital arts & cultural biennale(since 2005).
Franck has curated many sound/multimedia/interdisciplinary exhibitions, events and festivals in Belgium, France and abroad. From 2010 to 2016, he has also been in charge of the urban music, sound art and interdisciplinary arts for le manège.mons. He is the representative of the European Pepinieres for young artists in Europe for the French speaking part of Belgium. He also teaches on digital arts at the National Visual Art School La Cambre since 2006 and Saint-Luc (Brussels).
Artist and Cultural Manager
He is a co-founder of Simultan Association (2005) and Director of SIMULTAN - festival for interdisciplinary arts, experimental music and sound. He works in the field of video, photography, installation and performance. As an artist, he has participated in a variety of projects in Romania, UK, Hungary, Serbia, Northern Ireland, USA, Germany. He graduated from the faculty of Arts of the West University of Timisoara.
Director, eLearning Center, Politehnica University of Timisoara
Diana Andone is the Director of the eLearning Center at Politehnica University of Timisoara (UPT). She runs the team who developed and assure daily integration of the university award winning Virtual Campus CVUPT. She is also lecturer at UPT, in the area of multimedia and web technologies. She is passionate about the ubiquitous access to technologies and how they can be used to improve people’s life.
Andone holds a PhD in Designing eLearning Spaces for Digital Students with University of Brighton, UK, an MA in European Studies, an “Learning about Open Learning”, postgraduate distance education course at the Herriott-Watt University, Edinburgh, UK; an MSc in Artificial Intelligence at the UPT, Romania. She has attended different specialisations in universities in the UK, France, Finland, Greece and Germany. She has been involved in 21 EU funded projects. She received the EDEN Fellow Title (European Distance and E-Learning Network) in 2012. Her engagement extends to several professional organisations and associations together with acting in the Board of local Romanian NGOs (Pentru Voi Foundation) and a member of Rotary International.