Head of Society and Innovation, Member of the Executive Committee
World Economic Forum (WEF)
Bio of Nicholas Davis
Nicholas Davis is Head of Society and Innovation and Member of the Executive Committee at the World Economic Forum in Geneva, Switzerland. Originally from Sydney, Australia, he is a strategy and scenario expert with 15 years’ experience in managing a variety of projects related to understanding the complexity and uncertainty of the global business environment and developing appropriate strategic responses involving collaboration across public, private and civil society stakeholders.
As Head of Society and Innovation, Nick focuses on how innovations in technology, society and policy are combining to both exacerbate and solve a wide range of social and economic challenges. His work brings together expertise from entrepreneurs, multinationals, political leaders and civil society representatives to examine the impact of rapidly-shifting technological contexts on the future of social and economic systems.
Nick is a Certified Professional Facilitator through the International Association of Facilitators and Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts (FRSA) in the UK. He sits on the European Commission’s expert group on Digital Entrepreneurship and is an author of journal articles, reports and other publications on innovation, entrepreneurship, social development and scenario thinking.
Secretaría General Iberoamericana (SEGIB)
Bio of Rebeca Grynspan
Rebeca Grynspan was unanimously elected as Ibero-American Secretary-General at the Extraordinary Meeting of Ministers of Foreign Affairs held in Ciudad de Mexico, on 24th February 2014. She took office on 1st April 2014 and in 2018 her mandate was renewed for a further four-year term.
In 2010 she was named Deputy Secretary General of the United Nations (UN) and Associate Administrator of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP). From 2006 to 2010, she was UNDP Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean.
Prior to joining the United Nations, Ms Grynspan served as Vice-President of Costa Rica from 1994 to 1998. She was also Minister of Housing, Minister Coordinator of Economic and Social Affairs, and Deputy Minister of Finance. In addition, she has been a member of the High-Level Panel on Financing for Development, convened by former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan in 2001.
She is a renowned advocate of human development, who has helped to focus the world’s attention, and also that of Latin America, on relevant issues such as the reduction of inequality and poverty, gender equality, South-South cooperation as a tool for development, and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), among others.
She was also a delegate to the United Nations Commission for the Reconstruction of Haiti, a group consisting of the Haitian government, the former President of the United States Bill Clinton, and other prominent international partners.
In June 2014 she was appointed as chair of the Board of Trustees of the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), one of the most influential organisations worldwide in the field of policy research, devoted to the study of the interface between development and the environment.
Rebeca Grynspan is a member of the steering committee of the UNICEF Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement; member of the Governing Council of the Society for International Development (SID), a global network of individuals and professionals at the forefront of development; and member of the ILO Global Commission on the Future of Work, among others.
In addition to her experience as a conference lecturer and advisor to a number of international organisations and institutions, she has been actively involved in key United Nations initiatives, such as the Millennium Project’s Task Force on Poverty and Economic Development and the High-level Panel on Financing for Development.
In 2014 and 2015, she was recognized as one of the 50 leading intellectuals of Latin America. Since 2016 she serves as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Complutense Institute for International Studies (ICEI), which forms part of the Universidad Complutense, Madrid. In 2017 she received the Forbes Award for Excellence and the Spanish government awarded her the Gran Cruz de la Orden Civil de Alfonso X El Sabio.
Rebeca Grynspan holds a degree in Economics by the University of Costa Rica and a MSc in Economics by the University of Sussex. She has been awarded a Doctorate Honoris Causa by the University of Salamanca, the University of Extremadura and the European University of Madrid in recognition of her professional career.
Board of Directors
Bio of Esteban Pelayo
Esteban Pelayo (m) joined EURADA in 2015 as CEO. He started his professional career in the European Innovation Relay Center Network helping companies to establish transnational technology transfer agreements (IPR licensing) in the University of Alicante (1996-2000) and in the Regional Development Agency of Murcia (200-2004). He coordinated the network of technology centers of the Regional Development Agency (2004-2011) and he worked in the EU office of the Region of Murcia in Brussels (2011-2015). Esteban is graduated as agriculture engineer, hold a postgraduate degree in innovation management and is a Spanish certified patent and trademark attorney.
Professor and Head of Group
RWTH Aachen University I Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
Bio of Prof. Frank Piller
Frank T. Piller is a Co-Director of the MIT Smart Customization Group at the MIT Media Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA, and a chair professor of management at the Technology & Innovation Management Group of RWTH Aachen University, Germany, one of Europe’s leading institutes of technology. Before entering his recent position in Aachen, he worked at the MIT Sloan School of Management (2004-2007) and has been an associate professor of management at TUM Business School, Technische Universitaet Muenchen.
Frequently quoted in The New York Times, The Economist, and Business Week, amongst others (and listed as the only German professor on LDRLB’s “Top50 Profs on Twitter” list), Frank is regarded as one of the leading experts on strategies for customer-centric value creation, like mass customization, personalization, and innovation co-creation. His group at RWTH Aachen is considered to be one of the globally leading research centers for open and distributed innovation and is supported by competitive research grants of about US$1million annually. This research has been acknowledged, for example, by a finalist nomination for the “Innovating Innovation” Award by Harvard Business Review and McKinsey for their work on implementing open innovation or the Global Co-Creation Award by PDMA (the largest professional association for product and service development) for their work on ideation contests with senior citizens. His recent research focuses on need of established corporations to deal with disruptive business model innovations and supporting organizational structures and cultures.
Based on his strong background of rigor and relevant research, Frank Piller is an acclaimed speaker at management conferences and in executive education programs around the world. He has delivered customized executive classes for many Global1000 companies, innovative startups and top business schools alike. He has been elected twice “teacher of the year” (2001 and 2006) at TUM Business School and was a recipient of the RWTH Teaching Award in 2010 and 2015, and received an award for innovation in teaching within the German Exzellenzinitiative in 2012/2013. As a member of the board of directors or scientific advisers, he works with a number of innovative technology companies to turn his research into practice.
Research, Innovation and Cooperation with the business sector
DG Environment European Commission
Bio of Sven Schade
Sven Schade develops policies for innovation and cooperation with the business sector in DG Environment of the European Commission. Prior to that he was project officer at the European Commission, DG Enterprise and in this role responsible for the European Commission’s lighthouse project for better innovation management support services for SMEs (“IMP³rove”). Sven Schade has been instrumental in the development of a sustainable business model that ensures continued access to and further development of these services. His visionary ideas led to the successful establishment of IMP³rove – European Innovation Management Academy as a private non-profit organisation in 2014. He holds a post graduate degree in geography from the university of Bayreuth, Germany.
Director of COSME Programme, SME, Start-up and Scale Up Policy in DG GROW
Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs European Commission
Bio of Kristin Schreiber
After obtaining the Diplôme de l’Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris (with a special focus on International Relations, Economics and European Law), a Master’s degree from the University of Kent at Canterbury and the Diplôme des Etudes Approfondies of the College of Europe in Bruges, Kristin worked as a Graduate Lecturer at the University of Kent in Canterbury and a researcher on the Single Market in Bonn, before joining the European Commission in 1990 where she held a large variety of positions. Kristin was appointed to her current position in 2015 after serving as Director for Governance of the Single Market and International Affairs in DG MARKT.
Previously, she was Head of Cabinet of Employment Commissioner Vladimir Špidla, Deputy Head of Cabinet of Internal Market Commissioner Michel Barnier and member of the Cabinets of Enlargement Commissioner Günter Verheugen and Competition Commissioner Karel Van Miert. She also served as Head of Unit for International Affairs in the DG for Employment and Social Affairs and was a member of the Merger Task Force of DG Competition.