ESOF2020 Programme Committee

Responsible for the content and organisation of the Science Programme and the Keynote speakers at ESOF 2020.

Luke Georghiou

Deputy President and Deputy Vice-Chancellor at University of Manchester, UK


Luke Georghiou is Deputy President and Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Manchester and Professor of Science and Technology Policy and Management in the Manchester Institute of Innovation Research at the Alliance Manchester Business School. He is responsible for business engagement and commercialisation activities as well as general executive duties. He continues to be active in research and policy advice to governments and business with current work on innovation management, public procurement and innovation and evaluation of the national demonstrator project for Internet of Things (CityVerve).

Gregor Anderluh

Professor at the National Institute of Chemistry, Slovenia


Gregor Anderluh works at the National Institute of Chemistry, in the Laboratory for Molecular Biology and Nanobiotechnology, where he heads the group Molecular Interactions. He is interested in protein-membrane interactions at the molecular level. Specifically, he studies pore forming proteins that can perforate lipid membranes in a multi-step process involving membrane binding, oligomerization and pore formation.

Martin Andler

Professor Emeritus at Université de Versailles Saint-Quentin, France


Martin Andler teaches mathematics at the University of Versailles Saint-Quentin; he has held visiting positions at MIT and Rutgers University. His research focuses on two main areas: representation theory of Lie groups, and the history of 20th century mathematics. He is the chairman of Animath, a French organisation promoting mathematics for kids.

Roberto Antonione

Secretary General at the Central European Initiative


Roberto Antonione has been Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and President of the Autonomous Region Friuli-Venezia Giulia, among other key roles in the Italian public life.

He is currently secretary general of the Central European Initiativ

Mauro Bussani

Full Professor of Comparative Law University of Trieste, Italy
Adjunct Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Macao, S.A.R. of the P.R. of China


Mauro Bussani is Professor of Comparative Law at the University of Trieste Law School, Italy, and Adjunct Professor at the Faculty of Law at the University of Macao, Special Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China. Mauro Bussani is considered an outstanding expert of comparative law, and his work has been broadly recognized worldwide. His research focuses, among other themes, on the comparative law of contracts, torts, and security interests, on European private law and legal harmonization, on law and development, human rights and the law of globalization(s).

Ulrike Felt

Austrian social scientist, active in the field of Science and Technology Studies.
Chair for Social Studies of Science and is Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Vienna


Ulrike Felt is Professor of Science and Technology Studies since 1999 and Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences. Ulrike Felt has wide experience in running nationally and internationally funded research projects working with a broad spectrum of social science research methods. She has been visiting professor in a number of institutions, among them at GERSULP/Université Louis Pasteur (Strasbourg), at the Centre Interuniversitaire pour la Recherche en Science et Technologie, Universite du Québec à Montréal, at the Maison des Sciences de l'Homme in Paris, at the Collegium Helveticum, ETH Zurich and at the STS group at Harvard.

Maurizio Fermeglia

Full professor of Chemical Engineering and former rector at the University of Trieste, Italy


Maurizio Fermeglia graduated in Chemical Engineering at the Engineering Faculty of the University of Trieste in 1980. Professor Fermeglia's research interests are focused on: multiscale modeling for materials design and life science, phase equilibrium and applied thermodynamics, process simulation, molecular simulation, nanotechnology, nanomedicine. He is full professor at the Engineering Faculty and director of the Ph.D. School of Nanotechnology at the University of Trieste.

Andrea Gambassi

Associate Professor of theoretical physics at SISSA, Trieste, Italy


Andrea Gambassi is professor of theoretical physics at SISSA - International School for Advanced Studies, Trieste and director of SISSA Interdisciplinary Laboratory for Natural Sciences and Humanities (ILAS). After receiving his PhD in 2003 from the Scuola Normale Superiore in Pisa, Italy, he spent six years as research associate at the Max-Planck Institut für Metallforschung in Stuttgart, Germany. His field of research is statistical physics, fluctuation-induced and non-equilibrium phenomena both in classical and quantum physics. He has also been coordinator of the “Physics” course at the Master in Science Communication at SISSA as well as an active organiser of a number of seminars on the relationship between science and literature, history and society in general.

Mounir Ghribi

Director, Sustainable Blue Growth Initiative – In-Charge of International Cooperation and Strategic Partnerships. OGS - Trieste (National Institute of Oceanography and Applied Geophysics), Italy


Mounir Ghribi is in-charge of International Cooperation and Strategic Partnerships and Director of the Blue Growth Initiative at OGS (National Institute of Oceanography and Applied Geophysics).

Former United Nations Officer, in charge of technical assistance programmes on coastal zone management, sustainable industrial development, cleaner production and renewable energy technologies at the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) Centre for Science and High Technology.

He has been nominated from the Italian Ministry for Education, University and Research (MIUR) to represent Italy in various international initiatives namely: the Euro-Mediterranean Dialogue Forum (Dialogue 5+5) and the G7 Future of Seas and Oceans.

Paolo Gasparini

Director of the Hospital Burlo Garofolo, Trieste, Italy


Prof. Paolo Gasparini graduated in Medicine from the University of Turin in 1985, and the resdidencies in Haematology and in Medical Genetics at Verona University in 1988 and 1992, respectively. He is full professor of Medical Genetics, University of Trieste, Head of Medical Genetics Service, IRCCS-Mother Child Hospital, Trieste, and Head of the Department for Advanced Diagnostics and Clinical Trials, IRCCS-Mother Child Hospital.

Jennifer Cassingena Harper

Consultant at the Malta Council for Science and Technology, Malta


Jennifer Cassingena Harper is a graduate of the London School of Economics and the University of Malta. Her current research interests include the strategic use of foresight to address disruption and engineer transition, the evaluation of foresight impacts, skills foresight, and use of foresight to advance smart specialisation and R&I policies in small economies. She has been engaged with the Malta Council for Science and Technology since 1989 in various capacities. She currently retains a part-time consultancy role with the Council. She is active at the European and international level in the area of foresight and research and innovation policy with a particular focus on the EU research programme in the role of expert/advisor, reviewer and observer.

Christine Heller Del Riego

Manager at WAIART, Project Manager at Science stories - Copenhagen, Denmark


Christine Heller del Riego is interested in exploring the use of art to evoke emotions related to scientific challenges. Based in Copenhagen, she divides her efforts as artist manager of Yolanda del Riego at WAIART, and project manager/promotion editor of ScienceStories, a non-profit, editorially independent digital platform exploring the perspectives of science and the humanities.

She was a professor of Electrical Engineering at Comillas University’s Engineering School ICAI from (1997-2012) in Madrid, Spain. She received her Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from UPMC Sorbornne Universités, after completing an EU Research Fellowship (Human Capital and Mobility Programme) at Supélec, France.

Christine has been an advocate for science in Europe for nearly 20 years. Governing Board Member of EuroScience (2018-2022), she served earlier on the board (2000-2008) after being a member of Governing Board of the Marie Curie Fellowship Association (1998-2000). Committed to communicating science to society, she was a member of the Steering and Programme Committees of the 1st EuroScience Open Forum (ESOF 2004) in Stockholm and the ESOF 2014 Programme Manager in Copenhagen.

Pavel Kabat

Chief Scientist and Research Director, World Meteorological Organization (WMO), Switzerland


Trained as a mathematician and hydrologist, Professor Kabat’s more than 30-year research career has covered earth system science and global change, with a specific focus on land-atmosphere interactions, climate hydrology, the water cycle, and water resources. In WMO, Professor Kabat is leading the overall strategic direction of the WMO science, and its underlying research activities, including the World Climate Research Programme, the World Weather Research programme and WMO’s Global Atmosphere Watch which monitors greenhouse gas concentrations, air quality and the ozone layer.

Jadran Lenarčič

Director Jožef Stefan Institute, Ljubljana, Slovenia


Prof. Jadran Lenarčič, Ph.D. received B.Sc., M.Sc., and Ph.D. degrees from the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, in 1979, 1981, and in 1986, respectively. He has been appointed by the J. Stefan Institute, Ljubljana, since 1979. He also holds a professorship at the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, University of Ljubljana, since 1988. Lenarčič is the initiator and chairman of Advances in Robot Kinematics. ARK is a series of international symposia, the first was organized in 1988 in Ljubljana (Slovenia) and the last in 2016 in Nice (France). Many new discoveries in this area were first reported in ARKs.

Francesca Matteucci

Associate Professor in astrophysics at the University of Trieste, Italy


Francesca Matteucci is associate professor at the University of Trieste, Italy, where she teaches Stellar Physics. She is a recognized leader in the field of chemical evolution of galaxies. Her interests are also devoted to stellar evolution and nucleosynthesis, supernovae and supernova progenitors and chemical enrichment of the intracluster and intergalactic medium.

Vinny Pillay

Senior Science & Technology Representative to the EU of South Africa’s Department of Science & Innovation


Ms Vinny Pillay is the Senior Science & Technology Representative to the EU, of South Africa’s Department of Science & Innovation. She is currently based at the South African Embassy in Brussels.

She holds a Masters Degree in Science, and a Masters Degree in Business Leadership, with experience in international relations, the science and technology sector as well as the environmental sector.  In her previous role as Chief Director- Bilateral Cooperation, she managed the science, technology and innovation cooperation between South Africa and strategic partners in Europe, Americas, Asia and the Gulf.  In engaging with bilateral partners, she negotiated value addition to the South Africa science system, promoting research, exchanges, human capital development as well as policy dialogues in key science, technology and innovation priority areas.

She has also been involved in environmental and sustainable development issues through various roles, including as Senior Policy Advisor in International Sustainable Development and Trade Co-operation at the South African National Department of Environmental Affairs.  A large part of the portfolio included engagement with multilateral environmental agreements.  She also has experience in national level environmental planning, having worked with the various tiers of Government in South Africa.

Bernd Pulverer

Head of scientific publications at the European Molecular Biology Organisation (EMBO), Germany


Following undergraduate studies in Cambridge, Bernd received his PhD in 1992 from the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, London, for uncovering posttranslational regulation of the transcription factors c-Jun and c-Myc by the JNK and MAP kinases. He carried out postdoctoral research at the Ontario Cancer Institute, Toronto, the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle and at the University of Innsbruck. Bernd was associate and then senior editor at Nature from 1999 until 2002 and subsequently chief editor of Nature Cell Biology. He has been the chief editor of The EMBO Journal and Head of Scientific Publications at EMBO since 2009.

Christophe P. Rossel

Emeritus Senior Research Staff Member of IBM Research Laboratory, Zurich, Switzerland


Dr. Christophe Rossel is a Condensed Matter physicist with education and academic professional experience in Switzerland (Univ. of Neuchâtel and Geneva) and in USA (Temple Univ., Philadelphia and Univ. of California, San Diego). In 1987 he joined the IBM Research-Zurich Laboratory pursuing a scientific career focused on the physics of superconductors and later on nanoscience and the integration of advanced functional materials for CMOS semiconductor technology. As member of various international panels and president of the Swiss (2008-2012) and European Physical Societies (2015-2017) he has engaged in science policy issues, representing the community of physicists and advocating the contribution of physics and open science to the economic and cultural advancement in Europe. He is a member of the Open Science Policy Platform (OSPP) of the European Commission since 2016 and member of the executive board of the Swiss Academy of Sciences (SCNAT) since 2018.

Mart Saarma

Academy Professor at University of Helsinki, Finland


Mart Saarma is an Estonian molecular biologist, member of the Estonian Academy of Sciences. He is academy professor and director of the Centre of Excellence in Molecular and Integrated Neuroscience at the Institute of Biotechnology, University of Helsinki, Finland.  His main research is dedicated to plant viruses and virus resistance, the development of the nervous system and the mechanisms of the death of nerve cells and the possibilities to use nerve growth factors in case of treating neurodegenerative diseases.

Judit Sandor

Full Professor at the Legal Studies, Political Science, and Gender Studies, Departments of the Central European University (CEU), Vienna, Austria


Judit Sándor is a full professor at the Faculty of Political Science, Legal Studies and Gender Studies of the Central European University (CEU), Budapest. She was one of the founders of the first Patients' Right Organization (‘Szószóló’) in Hungary, she was a member of the Hungarian Science and Research Ethics Council, and currently a member at the Hungarian Human Reproduction Commission. She participated in different national and international legislative, standard setting and policy making activities in the field of biomedical law and bioethics.