2016 Speakers

  • Carine Alfos

    Innovation Director ITERG

    Chemical Engineer profile, graduated from the Higher School of Clermont Ferrand chemistry, Carine Alfos first started her career at FPI (French Petroleum Institute) where she supported a project to upgrade heavy crude oils for three years. At the end of this experience she started her career in the world of plants and oleochemistry at ITERG (French Fats and Oils Institute), as engineer then taking the direction of the Lipochemistry department allowing her to sit the development of this competence within the Institute. Alongside that she worked towards the establishment of a unit dedicated to Customer Relationship before the ride. Today is Director of the Innovation Department at ITERG bringing together all research, development and transfer on such diverse markets as the food industry, nutrition and health, cosmetics and industry (building, transport, materials, biomolecules, additives,….).

  • Dr Yvonne Armitage

    Bioeconomy Specialist KTN UK

    Yvonne Armitage is a Bioeconomy Specialist at Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN). KTN is part of the Innovate UK family and connects people to speed up innovation, solve problems and find markets for new ideas. Established to foster better collaboration between science, creativity and business, KTN has specialist teams covering all economic sectors – from defence and aerospace to the creative industries, the built environment and robotics to biotechnology – and has helped thousands of businesses secure funding to drive innovation and succeed. 

    Yvonne is responsible for setting internal strategy for IB and synthetic biology, driving uptake of IB across the UK chemistry-using industries on behalf of the industrial biotechnology forum and works with the IBLF to set UK national strategy and more broadly with colleagues in BIS, Innovate UK and BBSRC to develop bioeconomy strategy for the UK.

    Prior to joining KTN Yvonne spent most of her time in industry (Ciba, BASF) where she was responsible for new technologies, including IB, working for several years in corporate research developing new biocatalytic and biobased products for a wide range of applications. Immediately prior to joining KTN in 2011, Yvonne worked for ISP in business development, where she was responsible for several global market sectors, including biotechnology, paper, mining and minerals. 

    Yvonne has a degree in chemistry and a PhD in microbiology and biochemistry. She is a member of the UK Industrial Bioechnology Leadership Forum, EuropaBio IB Council and sits on the scientific or management boards of a number of national or EU funded projects.

  • Alex Baker

    Chief Operating Officer Leaf Resources Ltd

    Alex is the Chief Operating Officer of Leaf Resources Limited. He is an experienced executive with over 20 years multi-sector experience in the life sciences and industrial biotechnology areas delivering technical product innovation and management. He has worked in a range of companies including listed Australian stock exchange (ASX) groups and was part of the listing team for one of Australia's largest IPO's in the biotechnology sector. He has held senior management roles with start-up ventures or companies resetting via business transformation including CEO and SVP roles. His tertiary qualifications include a Master of Technology Management, Graduate Diploma in Biotechnology and a Bachelor of Science and he is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

  • John Barratt

    Core Technology Officer for Polyacrylamide BASF plc

    John Barratt is the Core Technology Office for Polyacrylamide (PAM), BASF plc. His role is to lead the development of new production technologies for the global business. Polyacrylamides are mainly used in water treatment, paper making, mining and oil recovery. BASF have PAM production plants in the UK, USA, China and Australia.

    After graduating in chemical engineering from Imperial College London in 1982, John worked for an international engineering contractor on the process design of nuclear and mineral processing plants and completed a masters degree in Applicable Mathematics. He then moved to ICI in the north east of England working in production management in phenols, before leading the surfactants and then methacrylates process design teams for ICI.

    In 1997 he joined Allied Colloids in Bradford. He first led the site engineering team and subsequently global process development groups as the business was first acquired by Ciba and then BASF. He spent 2 year setting up a new polymer research group in Germany following the BASF acquisition. He has several process technology patents to his name. John is a member of the UK Chemistry Innovation Strategy Board and is on the industrial advisory boards of several universities.

    His main interests are innovation management and culture and also flexible and distributed production technologies.  

  • Harry Baumes

    Director, Office of Energy Policy and New Uses (OEPNU) U.S. Department of Agriculture

    Harry Baumes is the Director of the Office of Energy Policy and New Uses (OEPNU). He was appointed by the Chief Economist Director in December 2010. For the four years prior, he served as the Associate Director. Dr. Baumes served a partial detail to the Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office serving as a Senior Executive Advisor to the director (August 2015-April 2016).  In addition to administrative and management responsibilities, he focuses on renewable energy and bioeconomy policy and evaluation. Dr. Baumes chairs the Bioeconomy Council Coordinating Committee at the USDA which coordinates renewable energy, heat and power, and biobased product-related activities among USDA agencies and performs duties as assigned. His office works with and coordinates USDA interaction and collaboration with the DOE and with the EPA on various feedstock and renewable energy issues such as the renewable fuel standard (RFS), the proposed and final rule for implementing the RFS provisions of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, and RFS waiver requests. Dr. Baumes also serves as a member of Biomass Research and Development Board’s (an interagency board co-chaired by USDA and DOE) Operations Committee and co-chairs the subsidiary Board Analysis Committee. He was responsible for the overall agenda and for the Agriculture, Forestry and Rural Development program for the ministerial level of the Washington International Renewable Energy Conference which had representation from over 120 countries and 100 minister level officials, and more than 5000 attended (March 2008).

    Baumes holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University (1974), a Master of Science degree (1976), and a Doctorate of Philosophy degree (1978) in agricultural economics from Purdue University. Baumes’ graduate studies concentrated on quantitative methods.

  • Elena Benedetti

    Director of Product Application AEP Polymers

    Elena graduated in 1999 from the University of Trieste and worked for 6 years in the molecular pathology field at the  International Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology in Trieste.  She then moved to the materials science sector starting with a researcher position in a polymer formulation laboratory in Trieste in 2004. Elena focused on polymer formulations for coatings and composite materials, managing specific product lines, publicly funded R&D projects and consultancy activities for private companies. Elena was appointed Technical Director and Business Unit Manager for the biobased materials business in companies in Europe and US, coordinating production, marketing, licensing and sales activities. Since September 2013, Elena is Director of Product Application at AEP Polymers.

  • Marlene Beyerle

    Technology Intelligence/R&D Project Manager

    Marlène Beyerle holds an engineering degree in biochemistry and biotechnologies from the INSA Lyon (France). She started her career as a downstream purification R&D scientist at Sanofi Pasteur (Toronto, Canada). Marlène joined Novasep in 2012 as an R&D engineer within the Industrial Biotech business unit (Lyon, France). She became Technology Intelligence/ R&D project manager early 2015. Her work focuses on the development and optimization of innovative and cost-effective purification processes for fermentation and chemical commodities.

  • Joško Bobanović

    Partner Sofinnova Partners

    Joško Bobanović joined Sofinnova Partners  in 2010 as Partner dedicated to activities in renewable chemistry and industrial biotechnology. Prior to joining Sofinnova he spent eight years in venture capital with iNovia Capital and its predecessor fund MSBi Capital in Montreal, Canada. While at iNovia Joško was responsible for cleantech practice at the fund, and focused on seed and early stage investments in cleantech and information technology. He currently sits on the board of Metgen, Synthace, Cellucomp and Comet Biorefining.

  • Eilidh Brunton

    Compostable Products Consultant Vegware

    Eilidh is Compostable Products Consultant at Vegware, the only completely compostable packaging firm operating globally. Vegware specialises in the development, manufacture and distribution of environmental foodservice packaging along with providing full creative and environmental consultancy.

    Eilidh leads Vegware’s Environmental Team, advising clients how to divert their compostable foodservice packaging from landfill. Eilidh is the key technical liaison with the waste sector for the Food Waste Network, mapping all UK food waste recycling and matchmaking any UK business with local services. Eilidh was named Rising Star of the Year at the Scottish Resources Awards 2015.

  • Dr Frank Buckel

    PCS Sustainability Director Covestro Deutschland AG

    Dr Frank Buckel studied & graduated in chemistry at the University of Stuttgart in 2000. He joined Bayer in 2000 as R&D chemist in the central research. Since 2014 he has been responsible for sustainability within the business unit polycarbonate (PCS) of Covestro (former Bayer MaterialScience).

  • Michael Carus

    Managing Director nova-Institute

    Michael Carus (MSc) (Germany) physicist, founder and managing director of the nova-Institute, has worked for over 20 years in the field of Bio-based Economy. This includes biomass feedstock, processes, bio-based chemistry, polymers, plastics, fibres and composites.

    The focuses of his work are market analysis, techno-economic and ecological evaluation as well as the political and economic framework for bio-based processes and applications (“level playing field for industrial material use”).

    Carus is also managing director of the European Industrial Hemp Association (EIHA); nova-Institute as executive office of EIHA was member of the Lead Market Initiative (LMI)„Ad-hoc Advisory Group for Bio-based Products“ (2010-2013), and is member of the Technical Committee, CEN/TC 411 "Bio-based products" (since 2011), member of the “Expert Group on Bio-based Products” of the European Commission (since 2013), member of the Thematic Working Groups "Biomass supply" and "Market-making" of the "Bioeconomy Panel" of the European Commission (since 2013), as well as member of the SCAR Foresight experts group "Sustainable Bioresources for a Growing Bioeconomy" (since 2014). (SCAR means Standing Committee on Agricultural Research).

    Michael Carus is main author of different fundamental reports and policy papers on Bio-based Economy in the EU: http://www.bio-based.eu/nova-papers

    Today, Michael Carus is considered to be one of the leading experts and market researchers in Europe on Bio-based Economy and especially the industrial material use of biomass. He is actively involved in building networks in the fields of agricultural and forestry resources, bio-based chemicals and materials (bio-based plastics, natural fibre reinforced plastics, WPC) and industrial biotechnology and biorefinery. Mr. Carus is a member in many societies, associations and international organisations. Carus is consultant on policy in different countries in Europe, Asia and America.

  • Bernard Chaud

    VP for Industrial Strategy Global Bioenergies

    Bernard Chaud is 55, and graduated from Ecole Polytechnique and Ecole Nationale du Génie rural des eaux et des forêts. He is experienced in the process industry with connections to agriculture and he likes promoting new activities and new business based on new technologies.

    As early as the he beginning of its career - in the mid 80’s just after the oil crisis of the 70’s- , he got involved with biofuels with “Institut français du Pétrole” known as IFP. But with depressed oil prices, interest for biofuels vanished at the end of the 80’s and resumed only in the beginning of the present century. He has been involved again in biofuels since 2003.

    He joined Globalbioenergies in 2015 as Vice President for Industrial Strategy and is CEO of IBN-One. IBN-One is a joint venture between Globalbioenergies and Cristal Union (N°2 beet sugar producer in France). IBN-One’s project is to build and operate the first commercial plant producing bio-based isobutylene.

    Before that Bernard was at Tereos (biggest French sugar beet producer) in charge of development policy in the field of biofuels from 2007.

    Previously he was head of unit for Biomass and biofuel in the french department for agriculture. From 2003-2005 he participated in the revision of the European sugar “Common Market Organisation” on the behalf of France and took an active part in the French “plan biocarburant” in 2006.

    During the 90’s Bernard worked for the French potash industry. During this period he had the opportunity to deal with chemical and fertilizer production and business.

  • M Carmen de Vicente Coll

    Research Program Officer, Key Enabling Technologies, DG Research and Innovations European Commission

    M Carmen de Vicente Coll graduated in Biology in the Universidad de Navarra, Spain. She has a Master of Science from the Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Zaragoza (Spain) and a PhD from Cornell University (United States). She has had scientific, managerial and leadership responsibilities in the public sector in Spain, the private sector in France, and the international public sector.  Carmen has over 20 years of worldwide international research and development experience as a program leader and project manager. She has lived and worked in Europe, the Middle East, North and South America.  One of her main professional interests has been the delivery of research outputs, in particular through public and private collaboration. She joined the European Commission in 2014, where she works as a programme officer in the DG of Research and Innovation, Directorate D –Key Enabling Technologies –, in Advanced Manufacturing Systems and Biotechnologies, focusing on projects under the theme “Cutting-edge Biotechnologies”. 

    • Belgium
  • Daniele Colombo

    President Lombardy Green Chemistry Cluster and Co-Chair, Vanguard Bioeconomy Pilot

    Daniele Colombo started working on bioeconomy related topics while serving as Seconded National Expert in the European Commission, in the framework of the Renewable Raw Materials Lead Market Initiative. He’s an active member of the Renewable Raw Materials Working Group managed by ERRMA and co-chair of the Awareness Raising working group of the Commission Expert Group on Bio-based Products whose mission is to assist the Commission with the ongoing implementation process of the EC bioeconomy strategy.  

    He’s one of the founders and President of the Lombardy Green Chemistry Cluster, an initiative launched by the Regional Government to boost the development of the bioeconomy in Lombardy and co-chair of the Bioeconomy Pilot within the Vanguard Initiative where he coordinates the "Biogas beyond energy" topic.

    With an economic background and special focus on industrial policy and innovation, he’s been dealing for most of his career with European projects and transnational networks aimed at fostering cooperation between companies and RTOs.

  • Gwenole Cozigou

    Director for Industrial Transformation and Advanced Value Chains, DG GROW European Commission

    An economist by training, he has been an official in the European Commission since 1985 in the fields of Enterprise and Industrial Policy and of External Relations.

    First working in the area of food industry within the Internal Market and Industrial Affairs Directorate-General (DG), he joined the service in charge of relations with Central and Eastern Europe and the USSR in 1989, and became Assistant to the responsible Deputy Director-General in 1990 until 1996 when he came back to Enterprise and Industry DG.

    A former Deputy-Head of Office of Commissioner Liikanen in charge of enterprise and industrial policy, he has occupied several management positions:

    - Food Industry and Biotechnology;

    - Coordination of the internal market legislation for goods;

    - Enterprise and Industrial policy;

    - Defence, Aerospace and Maritime Industries.

    Since December 2008, he has been Director in DG GROWTH (DG Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs), in charge of competitiveness issues and EU internal market legislation for several industrial sectors, including REACH, engineering industries, medical devices, raw materials, etc..

    His main responsibilities today cover: circular economy, energy union and energy-intensive industries, construction, automotive industries, raw materials, engineering industries.

  • John Cumbers, SynBioBeta

    John Cumbers

    Founder SynBioBeta

    John Cumbers has a strong background in the synthetic biology industry as founder of SynBioBeta, a global activity hub and community of entrepreneurs, thoughtleaders and investors. He has earned several degrees, including a PhD in molecular biology from Brown University as well as a masters degree in bioinformatics from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland and an undergraduate degree in computer science from the University of Hull in England. John is passionate about education and on the use and adoption of biological technologies. He has received multiple awards and grants from NASA and the National Academy of Sciences for his work in the field. John has been involved in multiple startups producing food for space and using microbes to extract lunar and martian resources. He worked at NASA for seven years working on the issues of resource utilization, extremophiles and sustainable technologies. He was instrumental in starting NASA’s program in synthetic biology and most recently, the lead for planetary sustainability at the NASA Space Portal. A super connector, community builder and consultant, John has devoted himself to helping those around him improve themselves and gain the resources that they need to break through scientific boundaries and succeed.

  • Jarno Dakhorst

    Consultant Energy & Biobased Economy NEN | Netherlands Standardization Institute

    Jarno Dakhorst (1977) is consultant at NEN, the Netherlands standardization institute, at which he is involved in a broad variety of standardization and certification activities related to energy and the bio-based economy.

    Concerning the bio-based economy, Jarno facilitated the development of and is currently managing the Better Biomass (NTA 8080) certification system that enables demonstrating the sustainable production of biomass for bioenergy and bio-based products. Furthermore, he is involved in the development and management of the European certification scheme to demonstrate the bio-based content of products (EN 16785-1) in order to make robust claims. Jarno was also convenor of one of the working groups that were responsible for developing ISO 13065, Sustainability criteria for bioenergy. Furthermore, he participated in several (research) projects, for example about identifying gaps in biofuels standardization, investigating feasibility of implementing sustainability criteria for biomass in supply chains, and developing training materials to facilitate use of solid biomass.

    Jarno has a master in molecular sciences after graduation at Wageningen University in 2000.

  • Serge de Gheldere

    CEO and Climate Ambassador for Al Gore Futureproofed

    Serge de Gheldere is the ceo and co-founder of Futureproofed. Futureproofed works with leading, visionary corporations — such as ING, Colruyt, DEME, Recticel, Nike, Smappee, Ecover, GE Lighting, Tesla — who recognise the benefits of moving to a low-carbon, sustainable economy. Futureproofed also works with local governments who start building smart, sustainable cities such as Leuven, Antwerpen, Bruges, St.Niklaas, Dendermonde, Vilvoorde, Mechelen.

    In 2006, Serge was part of a select group of individuals personally trained by Al Gore to become a global warming “ambassador”. Since then Serge has given many hundreds of lectures on climate change, oil decline and the opportunity of a low-carbon future to a wide variety of audiences: from ministers and governments, to schools and boards, at organisations such as IBM, 3M, Belfius, HP, Picanol, Solvay MBA, Electrolux, Sony, at the CSR summit in Dubai, CWF11, and many others.
    Serge has also taught guest lectures at Yale University, Stanford University and Tsinghua University in Beijing.

    In addition, Serge leads the Klimaatzaak in Belgium, a non-profit that started legal action against the federal and regional governments of Belgium. The second European country to do so, after the Netherlands. The klimaatzaak consist of a team of diverse people from different backgrounds including a number of Flemish personalities such as Tom Lenaerts, Francesca Vanthielen, Stijn Meuris, Koen Van Mechelen en Nic Balthazar. The Klimaatzaak’s demand is that Belgium would reduce 40% by 2020, with a minimum of 25% with respect to 1990. On June 24th, 2015, courageous judges ordered the Dutch government to step up their game to protect their citizens from the dangerous impacts of climate change. 

    Serge de Gheldere trained as an electro-mechanical engineer in Groep T Engineering School, Leuven (B) with a focus on materials technology and product design, and as a master in polymer and composites engineering at the KU Leuven (B). He wrote his masters' thesis on light, efficient thermoplastic composite structures in Professor Beukers' lab of advanced structures and materials at the faculty of Aeronautical Engineering of TU Delft (NL).

    Serge then worked as a product development engineer for Baxter R&D Europe for 7 years. There he worked in a global team designing and developing the industry's first system to eliminate blood-borne pathogens in platelets. He also spent 15 months on a project assignment in Chicago and received several awards including a Baxter outstanding technical achievement award and two patents

    Personally, Serge tries to walk the talk in an hands-on way, finding out what’s ready for primetime and what’s not, such as having accrued more than 165.000 100% electric km’s since 2000, and turning a 1930 house into a low-energy house. Serge’s a enthusiastic dad of three, kiter, biker and snowboarder. 

    Serge regularly shares his personal and professional experiences and insights through various channels: in lectures, on twitter (@sergedg), on national radio & TV and in the written press.

  • Sandra de Mey

    Commercial Manager Port of Ghent

    Sandra De Mey graduated in 1991 as a bachelor in Communications Management with specialties in PR and advertising.

    She has been working with Ghent Port Company since 1992, where she started her career as a PR assistant at the PR department. Not much later, she was appointed head of PR until in 2004 she opted for a new challenge as dry bulk manager and subsequently as account manager for the port area. Today, as commercial manager she specializes in the biobased economy, the agribulk sector and liquid products.


    "As a child, I grew up around the port zone. I also continued living in the area. It still fascinates me day after day. To help my port clients boost their businesses and find new investments for them are my daily targets. Know-how, years of experience and people management are some of my useful skills. Addressing people in Portuguese, German, English or even Arabic is not an effort to me.

    Our port offers so many opportunities: the new sealock, the Seine-Scheldt connection, the investment possibilities etc. These are our assets that we have to make known every day, worldwide.

    Consequently, I am happy to cooperate in the next phase of this maritime story."

  • Richard Delahay

    Consultant Sustainability Consult

    Richard manages communications campaigns for Sustainability Consult’s bioeconomy and sustainability clients.  Set up in 2008, Sustainability Consult is based in Brussels, Belgium and works globally with organisations to build their visibility and credibility.  It is also a communications and dissemination partner on EU-funded research projects, such as BIOSKOH and RESYNTEX.   

    Previously, Richard has worked for research projects on biomass, recycling and renewable energy scenarios (for the UK and Europe).  His diverse experience covers media, environment and grass roots campaigns.

    Outside of Sustainability Consult, Richard works closely with the European food surplus community to help tackle food waste.

  • Dr Stephane Delalande

    Deputy Scientific Director – Materials Expert PSA Group (Peugeot, Citroën and DS Automobiles)

    Stephane Delalande has a Ph.D. in Materials Science from the University Pierre et Marie Curie in Paris. As the Deputy of the Scientific Director, he is in charge of all scientific programs and partnerships with universities and institutional research centers. In addition, he is responsible for the development of PSA Group’s scientific collaborations in the United States and a materials expert for PSA Group.

    Stephane Delalande has worked on projects concerning the introduction of lightweight materials in cars—aluminum, magnesium, composites and biomaterials. This included study of the surface treatment, rules of conception, and joining techniques for these materials. He was the leader of the Material Expert Group of all European Car manufacturers with relationships to European Council.

    Stephane Delalande is currently a visiting associate at the California Institute of Technology.

  • Dirk den Ouden

    Global Technology Scouting Director Stora Enso

    Dirk den Ouden is the Global Technology Scouting Director for the Stora Enso Biomaterials division.  Based in the Innovation Centre for biomaterials in Stockholm, Dirk is looking for new products and processes which will benefit Stora Enso in its transition to a renewable materials company.  Before joining Stora Enso, Dirk was working in the bio-based industry as a new business developer for Avantium and Photanol and was previously an investment banker for Fortis (now ABN AMRO) and Kempen&Co. Dirk is a biomedical engineer by training. 

  • Prof. Ludo Diels

    Department of Research and Innovation University of Antwerp

    Prof. Ludo Diels, Dr. in chemistry & biotechnology, works  at the University of Antwerp, and is research manager Sustainable Chemistry for the Flemish Institute for Technological Research (VITO) in Mol, Belgium. 

    During 15 year he managed the Environment and Process Technology Business Unit and is now responsible for the transition toward sustainable chemistry and clean technology.   He is responsible for  the organisation of collaboration with the academic and industrial World and for co-financing projects. He coordinated and is involved in many international research projects. Ludo Diels is strongly involved in the set up of a biobased economy in Flanders. He is also responsible for the collaboration between VITO and India and he is managing the creation of a road map and Strategic Research Agenda for R&D on biomass and biowaste between India and Europe. He is a founding father of the Shared Research Centre on Bioaromatics (BIORIZON) between the Netherlands and Flanders. He is also founder of the BIG-C trilateral alliance between Flanders, the Netherlands and NordRhein Westfalia (Germany), focusing on a border denying collaboration for the chemical industry with focus on waste gases and biomass as renewable resources .

    Process intensification and the partial replacement of fossil based resources by biomass-based and renewable resource form the basis for the Sustainable Chemistry  Development.  The integration of waste (including also waste gases as CO2 and H2) and wastewater management and technologies are key in the development of a sustainable World. In this way he also was on the basis of the ANDICOS™ concept, a combined waste and wastewater treatment system leading to reduced energy consumption in water treatment and production.

    He is the chairman of the working group FEED in the Energy and Resources  PPP-SPIRE  between 8 industrial sectors and the European Commission) and member of the SPIRE-BBI working group.  

  • Dr Sofie Dobbelaere

    Managing Director Flanders Biobased Valley

    Sofie Dobbelaere, PhD graduated as a Bio-engineer from Ghent University in 1992 and obtained a PhD in Applied Biological Sciences at the Catholic University of Leuven in 2002. She has been doing research in the field of plant biotechnology and applied microbiology. Through several national and international projects she gained expertise in the field of biofuels, biorefineries and the biobased economy. Since 2009 she is active as technological advisor for the biobased economy, advising companies who want to switch from fossil-based to biobased production. Since 2012 she is also Managing Director of Flanders Biobased Valley, a non-profit organization supporting the development of sustainable biobased activities in the region of Flanders, Belgium. In addition she is active in the Bioeconomy Pilot of the Vanguard Initiative where she coordinates the case on (waste) gas conversion into chemicals.

  • Tom Domen

    Global Head of Long Term Innovation ecover / method

    Tom Domen graduated in 1996 with a Master in Industrial Design. In 2007, he completed a Masters in Sustainable Development at the University of Brussels. With his MA in Sustainable Technology for Eastern Africa, he received the yearly Award for Innovative Technology from the Chamber of Engineers.

    He started working for Philips in packaging innovation after which he worked for 5 years as a marketing and communication specialist at Panasonic.

    Tom has been working for Ecover/Method for 10 years, where he is responsible for the long term innovation strategy and sustainability for the different categories of Ecover/Method products (laundry, cleaning, dishwashing, home care and personal care). Getting inspiration out of biomimicry and system thinking, he has been laying out an ambitious roadmap for the company to inspire transformative change towards a restorative business model. Tom is also a member of the board of Kringwinkel, a Belgian organisation that gives a second life to what otherwise would be waste.

  • Joanna Dupont Inglis

    Director, Industrial Biotechnology EuropaBio

    Joanna Dupont Inglis has been Director, Industrial Biotechnology at EuropaBio since April 2011, prior to which she was repsonsible for communications EuropaBio.

    Before joining EuropaBio in 2009, Joanna had over a decade of Brussels-based experience in Public Affairs and Strategic Communications and has an academic background in Environmental Science.  She spent the majority of her career in consultancy in the energy, environment, health and development sectors advising a broad range of Fortune 500 companies, industry associations and NGOs and has also worked for the European Commission’s Directorate General for the Environment. 

  • C.R. (Nelo) Emerencia

    Coordinator Programming, Bio-based Industries Consortium

    C.R. (Nelo) Emerencia studied Chemical Engineering at the Delft University of Technology (The Netherlands). In 1973 he returned to Aruba, his native island, where he worked at the Esso refinery and progressed to Marketing Manager. In 1985 Nelo was transferred to the chemicals business unit of ExxonMobil in Rotterdam and later in Brussels and held positions in economics and planning, marketing and public affairs.

    In 1998 Nelo was seconded to PlasticsEurope in Brussels, where he worked as Communications Director for three years. Back to ExxonMobil, he was the Public Affairs Manager for ExxonMobil Chemical in The Netherlands for 5 years. Thereafter he was seconded to VNCI (Dutch Chemical Industry Association), and held the positions of Education & Innovation Manager and Secretary of the Dutch Chemistry Board through June 2014, increasingly occupying himself with bio-based economy activities.

    Nelo retired in 2014 and as an independent consultant he has assumed his current position as coordinator programming Bio-based Industries Consortium since 1 April 2015.

  • Prof. Dr. André P.C. Faaij

    Distinguished Professor Energy System Analysis University of Groningen and Energy Academy Europe

    André P.C. Faaij (1969) is appointed as Academic Director Energy Academy Europe and Distinguished Professor Energy System Analysis at Groningen University (as by 1st of April 2014). In this position, he works with many stakeholders on energy transitions from regional to international level. The Energy Academy Europe is set-up as a centre of excellence on Energy Research, Education and Entrepreneurship and is as such a cross-cutting strategy priority for the University of Groningen and its’ partners, including some 400 scientists from natural to social science.

    Prior to this position he was Professor and scientific director of the Copernicus Institute of Utrecht University (130 scientists).

    His research covers, amongst others, bio-based economy, carbon capture and storage, intermittent energy sources, alternative transport fuels, energy system studies and modeling, impacts and sustainability of energy systems, technological learning and innovation in energy systems, GHG balances & accounting, energy and research policies.

    He is a member of a variety of expert groups in bio-energy and energy policy, research and strategic planning. He works as an advisor for governments, the EC, IEA, the UN system, GEF, OECD, WEF, WEC, the energy sector & industry, strategic consultancy, NGO’s, etc. He is an advisor to various UN energy activities (including UNIDO, UNEP, FAO). He contributed to various IPCC reports, the World and Global Energy Assessment and IEA’s World Energy Outlook, covering energy systems, bio-energy, waste management and energy supplies. Furthermore he was appointed Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum and June 2015, he received The Linneborn Prize; established in 1994 for outstanding  contributions to the development of energy from biomass.

    He is a much asked reviewer for a wide variety of journals, scientific (including the European Commission, ERC National Science Foundation and the Royal Academy) and government bodies. He published over 600 titles in scientific journals, reports, books and proceedings, qualifies as ‘highly cited researcher’ (top 1% of research field) by criteria of Thomson Reuters ISI Web of Science, (co-) organized a range of international workshops and conferences and is frequently lecturing across the globe.

  • Dr James Field

    CEO and Founder LabGenius

    James is founder and CEO of LabGenius a gene synthesis company specialising in the manufacture of synthetic DNA libraries. In 2014, James completed his PhD studies at Imperial College London where his research was focused on re-engineering protein nanocages for biotechnological applications. Prior to his PhD, James completed a BSc in Biology with Microbiology (1st Class) and an MRes in Systems and Synthetic Biology (Distinction), at Imperial College London. James is an active member of the synthetic biology community having participated in the iGEM competition both as an undergraduate (2009) and an advisor (2011). In 2015, James was selected as a fellow in the prestigious Synthetic Biology Leaders Excellence Accelerator Program (LEAP).

  • Dr Ian Fotheringham

    Managing Director Ingenza

    Ian Fotheringham received a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from the University of Glasgow, UK in 1986. He joined the NutraSweet division of Monsanto in Chicago, USA, constructing microbes to produce the Aspartame® sweetener. From 1993 he continued developing large scale bioprocesses with NSC Technologies and Great Lakes Fine Chemicals. In 2003 he co-founded Ingenza, an Edinburgh, UK, based Industrial Biotechnology SME with a unique range of proprietary enabling technologies. Now a leader in microbial strain improvement, synthetic biology, fermentation and bioprocess development, Ingenza works with industrial partners worldwide to commercialise state of the art biomanufacturing processes. Ian has published 35 papers and articles and holds 8 current patents..

  • Paul Gilding

    Independent Corporate Advisor and Author (“The Great Disruption”) Former Executive Director, Greenpeace International

    Paul is an author, corporate advisor and advocate for a sustainable economy. He has worked with the Boards and executives of many leading global companies including Unilever, BHP Billiton, DSM, Ford and DuPont and is a widely recognised global authority on the economic and business implications of sustainability and climate change. He is a Fellow at the University of Cambridge’s Institute for Sustainability Leadership and a member of the Global Core Faculty of the Prince of Wales’s Business and Sustainability Programme.

    Over 40 years on these issues he has served as CEO of a range of NGOs and companies including as Executive Director of Greenpeace International and two companies he owned, Ecos Corporation and Easy Being Green.  His book “The Great Disruption” has been widely acclaimed, including by Tom Friedman in the New York Times who wrote “Ignore Gilding at your peril”. Paul’s blog, the Cockatoo Chronicles can be found at www.paulgilding.com and Twitter @paulgilding.  

  • Professor Dame Anne Glover CBE FRSE

    Vice Principal for External Affairs, Dean for Europe University of Aberdeen

    Anne has a BSc in Biochemistry from Edinburgh and a PhD in Molecular Microbiology from Cambridge, UK. She has pursued a career in scientific research at Aberdeen University and her research has been varied including studying how proteins are directed to the correct location within our cells, the diversity and function of the microbial population in soil, the development of biological sensors (biosensors) to detect environmental pollution and more recently, how we respond to stress at the molecular level. This current area of research has particular relevance to how we age (our cells are under stress in Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease) and also how we respond to artificial stresses such as chemotherapy. She has also commercialised some of her biosensor technology into a successful company which diagnoses environmental pollution and provides solutions for its clean-up.

    In 2008 she was made a Woman of Outstanding Achievement in Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) and has worked hard to raise the profile of women in SET and to ensure that not only are women are recruited into careers in SET but that they are supported to remain in the profession during their careers.  Anne has promoted the communication of science and has appeared on BBC and international television and many global radio programmes. In 2009, she was awarded a CBE by the Queen in recognition of her services to environmental sciences.


    Anne was the first Chief Scientific Adviser to the President of the European Commission (2012-2015). Prior to that, she was the first Chief Scientific Adviser for Scotland (2006-2011). In both positions Anne transformed the way science, engineering and technology were used and discussed within government and developed strategic initiatives to bridge the gap between science and policy. She has also been a very effective and well respected ambassador for European science. She is currently Vice Principal for External Affairs and Dean for Europe at the University of Aberdeen.  Amongst other external activities, she Chairs the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland and is a Trustee of the African Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF) and Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences International (CABI).

    Professor Glover became a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) for services to Science in the UK and Europe in the 2015 Queen’s Birthday Honours List and was elected to the Royal Society in April 2016.

  • Ludwig Goris

    Investment Manager Capricorn Venture Partners

    Ludwig Goris obtained a Master in Chemistry from Ghent University and completed his PhD in Physics at Hasselt University in 2006. Ludwig has obtained an Executive Master’s degree in Corporate Finance from Vlerick Business School. After successive post-doctoral positions at Stanford and Hasselt University, he became Investment Associate with the Cleantech Investment Practice of Capricorn Venture Partners. In 2013 he took on the role Investment Manager. In that capacity, he follows up the portfolio of the Capricorn Cleantech Fund through various board director and observer roles and is responsible for Capricorn’s future Cleantech investment strategy. He has a particular interest in agricultural, resource and chemical technologies, including advanced digitization to increase performance, efficiency and yield. His application fields of interest are specialty chemicals, food, feed and advanced materials. 

  • Dr Florian Graichen

    Science Leader – Biobased Polymers and Chemicals Scion

    Since March 2015 Dr Florian Graichen is Science Leader at Scion (the New Zealand Forest Research Institute) – specifically in the area of Biobased Polymers and Chemicals.  He is responsible for bringing Scion’s Biopolymer and Chemicals disciplines together and to develop commercial solutions for Scion’s manufacturing and bioproducts clients. Scion is targeting bioproducts with new functionalities such as lighter weight, heat and water resistance, durability, toughness and flame retardancy. By building on features designed by nature, we aim to develop products that deliver performance additions beyond the sustainability and renewability claims; products that will meet the demands of the global market place. Before joining Scion, Dr Graichen worked as commercial manager for the Chemistry unit of VITO (Flemish independent research and technology organisation) and as Senior Scientist and Commercial Manager for various manufacturing units within CSIRO (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation – Australia).

  • Dr Edward Green

    Chief Executive CHAIN Biotechnology Ltd.

    Edward is a microbiologist with a PhD in Biochemical Engineering from the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology. He has pioneered technical improvements in microbial strain improvement and fermentation process development for industrial biotechnology applications over the past 20 years contributing to numerous scientific publications and patents. Edward is also an entrepreneur having founded and built Green Biologics from scratch into a world leader for sustainable n-butanol production. He has also recently founded CHAIN Biotech, a new Company, focused on the development and commercialisation of microbial technology for high value products. Edward participates in the IB Leadership Forum, the advisory board for Chemistry Innovation and several NIBB management boards; C1NET and LBNET. Edward also sits on the BBSRC Bioenergy Review Panel. 

  • Dr Mark Gronnow

    Process Development Unit Manager Biorenewables Development Centre

    Mark is currently manager of the Process Development Unit at the Biorenewables Development Centre (BDC).  The centre has been set up to bridge the gap between industry and academia by supporting SMEs, promoting the bioeconomy and demonstrating new technologies.  Within the BDC Mark and his team are responsible for the process equipment, supporting new users in developing their application on the wide range of equipment whilst coordinating the best technical and academic support. 

    He completed his first degree and PhD in Chemistry at the University of York.  Between 2005 and 2010, he was technical manager for YorkTest Laboratories an SME in-vitro diagnostic laboratory.  In 2010, he re-joined the Green Chemistry Centre of Excellence as a technical manager responsible for delivery of the Carbon Trust Pyrolysis Challenge project.  This role evolved into technical operations manager for the GCCE, managing multiple projects and industrial engagements before moving to the BDC.      

  • Dr Andy Hall-Ponsele

    Director and Lead Scientist Biotangents Limited

    Andy Hall-Ponsele co-founded Biotangents with fellow Director and Lead Scientist Lina Gasiunaite in 2015. He invented the Leapfrog Assembly™ technology upon which the company was founded and led the successful application for funding from Scottish Enterprise to apply it to the biosynthesis of squalene and ambrein in bacteria. He is part of a team that has secured and fulfilled multiple commercial contracts to perform DNA manipulation work for industrial and academic customers.

    Andy has been involved in Synthetic Biology since 2008 when, as a student, he worked under Professor Chris French and led the University of Edinburgh team to a gold medal at the iGEM competition in Boston, Massachusetts. He went on to obtain his doctorate from the University of Oxford, where, supervised by Professors Lee Sweetlove and George Ratcliffe, he used metabolic engineering approaches in tobacco cells to provide new insights into the control of metabolic flux in primary metabolism and highlighted the importance of the wider metabolic context when attempting to increase yields of a specific metabolite. Following that spell in Oxford, Andy returned to Edinburgh to work as a Senior Scientist at Genabler. While at Genabler, Andy helped to deliver collaborative projects as varied as synthetic promoter design and complex polysaccharide biosynthesis with local and multinational partners.

  • Linda Hanna

    Managing Director, Strategy & Sectors Scottish Enterprise

    Linda Hanna oversees Scottish Enterprise’s planning and prioritisation in response to both the Government’s Economic Strategy and industry leadership groups, which help to determine delivery plans to support the growth of sectors where Scotland enjoys competitive advantages within the global marketplace. These include: Energy, Financial Services, Food & Drink, Life and Chemical Sciences, ICT, Tourism and Textiles as well as other growth sectors in Scotland.

    Linda is responsible for Scottish Enterprise’s economics and evaluation functions which gather evidence to inform our understanding of key opportunities and issues facing the Scottish economy, with a particular focus on global competitiveness and internationalisation.

    With over 20 years’ economic development experience, Linda has been part of the Scottish Enterprise team since 1991. Her previous roles have included leading the SE approach to support growth businesses in Scotland, identifying how to help businesses achieve and accelerate sustainable growth and sector-specific work such as aerospace and food and drink.

    Linda works closely with some of Scotland’s key partners in public sector agencies, as well as through her board membership of Investors in People in Scotland.

  • Dr Philipp Hasler

    Investment Director - Energy and Advanced Materials Emerald Technology Ventures AG

    Philipp Hasler is an Investment Director with Emerald Technology Ventures in our Zurich office and focuses on emerging energy technologies and advanced materials. Fields of expertise include cellulosic biomass conversion, electrochemical materials for energy storage devices, fuel cells and urban mining.

    In his tenure at Emerald, Philipp is or has been serving as Board Director of several Emerald portfolio companies: Schmack Biogas (turnkey biogas plants; prior to its IPO), Fluxxion (Silicon wafer based microfiltration process for liquid purification), Senscient (open patch laser diode instruments for toxic and flammable gas detection), O-Flexx Technologies (thin film thermoelectric devices for heat recovery and energy harvesting) and Metgen (industrial enzymes for lignocellulosic biomass processing).

    Prior to joining Emerald in 2001, Philipp held a senior project manager position for nine years at Verenum, a R&D and consultancy company specialized in process engineering and biomass conversion. Before, he gained five years experience as a senior researcher in electrochemistry and fuel cell technology at the ETH Zurich.

    Philipp holds a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich and a Bachelor Degree in Business Administration and is fluent in German and English.

  • Matti Heikkilä

    CTO MetGen Oy

    Matti Has an MBA and a biotechnology engineering degree. He has more than a decade of experience in industrial biotechnology, starting with Genencor/DuPont. During his career he has had various international leadership roles and organizational development responsibilities. In this role he has developed MetGen’s manufacturing technologies as well as the organization to gain capacity to serve large industrial markets.

    Additionally to CTO position Matti is currently holding positions as New Business Development Director as well as Marketing Director. He is also the Legal Entity Appointed Representative (LEAR) towards European Commission and is responsible for 6 currently ongoing H2020 projects. 

  • Dr Sarah Hickingbottom

    Oleo & Bio Based Chemicals LMC International

    Sarah has been at the forefront of the global commercialisation of bio-based chemicals & biofuels for over a decade as well as the mature oleochemical and glycerine marketplace. She advises dozens of organisations & companies along the bio-based value chain as to how they might optimise their position to meet - and exceed - their business objectives. Topics include agricultural feedstocks, technology, end-user applications, sustainability, market research, opportunity identification, due diligence, economic modelling, costs and price forecasting. Sarah has a Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and a bachelor’s degree from Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine which included spending a year studying at the Institut für Organische Chemie in Hannover, Germany

  • Dr Lieve Hoflack

    Project Manager Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant

    Lieve Hoflack, PhD. is project manager at Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant. She holds a PhD in biotechnology (Ghent University, 1998) and has been working as a researcher in academia (University of TX Health Science Center (TX, US), Ghent University (Belgium)), as well as in biotech SMEs (Plant Genetic Systems, Dyax, Vivactis). Later she moved to subsidy advice and project management. She worked as a consultant in MintEurope and 4 years ago she joined Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant.

  • Dr Paul Hudman

    Business Development Manager IBioIC

    Paul is a biologist who has always loved the variety the discipline allows him. From spending time as an undergraduate student surveying coral reefs in the Caribbean to his postgraduate studies in bacterial fermentation he’s always been fascinated by what biological systems can achieve and adapt to. After completing his doctoral research in the Department of Biochemical Engineering, University College, London, Paul moved into the pharmaceutical industry initially working for the drug development company Covance Inc. in the UK, US, Europe and China. In 2013 Paul moved North to manage the Molecular Biology group at BioReliance (then a Sigma-Aldrich company) focusing on operational excellence in vaccine and biologic drug safety and release testing. Paul joined the Innovation Centre not long after its launch as Business Development Manager and has been working to develop commercial strategy, engage companies and forge new relationships ever since. The variety of these interactions and technologies at the nexus of biology, chemistry, engineering and environmental sciences is what keeps him excited about what is developing in this field and the potential it has globally.

  • Ian Hudson

    Former Board Member EuropaBio

    From 2006 to 2016, Mr. Hudson served as President of DuPont Europe, Middle East & Africa. Prior to that role, he held a number of business management roles in DuPont having joined the firm in 1998 from ICI when DuPont purchased ICI’s Polyester Films business. Mr. Hudson was Business Director Europe for that business and on joining DuPont, he was appointed Regional Director Europe for the combined business.  After spending 5 years in Wilmington, Delaware, as Global Business Director Sorona®/Bio PDO in DuPont’s Bio-based Materials Business, he relocated to Geneva, Switzerland in 2004 when he was named Regional Director – DuPont Advanced Fiber Systems and DuPont Nonwovens.

    Mr. Hudson’s career with ICI spanned 18 years, during which time he held a number of commercial and business management roles, including assignments in France and in the United States, as well as extensive travel in Asia.

    Mr. Hudson has served as a member of the Executive Committee and Board of CEFIC (European Chemical Industry Association), the board of EuropaBio (European Association of Bio industries), and as a member of the Foundation Board of the International Institute for Management Development (IMD).

    Mr. Hudson earned his MA degree at Oxford University, where he studied French and German.

    • Switzerland
  • Sheila Hughes

    Sales and Marketing Manager Wilson Bio-Chemical

    Sheila has worked closely with the research and development team on the production of homogenous biogenic material from MSW using autoclaving techniques focusing on the conversion of these materials into solid and liquid bio fuels and high value platform chemicals.

  • Johan Jacobs

    Founder & Fly-Master Millibeter

    Working for ten years as a Belgian diplomat in the Congo, at the EU and in Morocco, Johan Jacobs personally witnessed the major global challenges: continuing growth of the world population, its need for resources and food, and the expanding waste streams it produces.

    Unhindered by his Master degrees in International Politics and in General Economics, he founded the cleantech-startup Millibeter in 2012. He started breeding the Black Soldier Fly in his home lab, to investigate its potential as a waste-treatment agent and as a sustainable source of raw materials like protein, lipids and chitin.

    In 2014, the company – now a team of 8 colleagues - moved into its pilot R&D-facility to conduct its research, in collaboration with research institutions and companies in the framework of three government supported R&D-projects (total budget: 2.1 million euro).

    Millibeter will soon bioconvert 40 tons of waste into 3 tons of locally produced, bio-waste-based resources per day. Let’s make the future fly!

  • Richard A. Johnson

    CEO Global Helix LLC

    Rick Johnson focuses on integrating policy, law and international strategy with science, engineering, Big Data, and biomedicine to drive research, innovation, and value creation.  His current interests include: (1) synthetic biology, engineering biology, and the industrialization of biology; (2) neuroscience research, data, and innovative collaborations: (3) university-industry business models;  (4) entrepreneurial ecosystems; and (5) international S&T policy and innovation networks.

    Rick is the CEO and founder of Global Helix LLC, a thought leadership and strategy firm for innovating policy and creating new strategic paths.  After 30 years, Johnson retired as Senior Partner at Arnold & Porter LLP in Washington, D.C., where he represented many of the leading American research universities, government agencies, and forward-looking companies and industry coalitions about enabling basic research, international collaborations, public-private partnerships, research and innovation issues, and innovative organizational and business models.

    Johnson is a member of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) Board on Life Sciences and the NAS Synthetic Biology Forum.  He recently was appointed to the national committee created by President Obama and the NAS that is examining the Future of Biotechnology and regulatory frameworks.  He is a member of several other NAS initiatives and National Research Council committees: (i) synthetic biology and the industrialization of biology; (ii) engineering and biosystems design; (iii) research systems in an era of convergence; (iv) international innovation initiatives for growth; and (v) safeguarding the bioeconomy.   He previously served as NAS Co-Chair of the Six Academies initiative with China (CAS), the UK (Royal Society), and the United States.

    He also serves as the Chairman of the OECD/BIAC Technology & Innovation Committee, and is a member of the OECD Global Advisory Council for Science, Technology, and Innovation.  In addition, Rick is the Chairman of Brown’s Biology & Medicine Council and is a member of the boards for UC-Berkeley SynBerc and the Engineering Biology Research Consortium, the Stanford BioFab and BioBricks Foundation, MIT research committees, the international Innovation Knowledge Centre at Imperial College (London), and the iGEM Foundation for global education.   For many years, Rick served on the MIT Corporation Committee, and numerous task forces related to emerging technologies and innovation in the United States and internationally.

    In addition to receiving his Juris Doctor degree from the Yale Law School where he was Editor of the Yale Law Journal, he received his graduate degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he was a National Science Foundation National Fellow and MIT distinguished young scholar, and his undergraduate degree with highest honors from Brown University.

  • Christian Kemp-Griffin

    Chief Executive Officer CelluComp

    Christian was one of the early investors in CelluComp. In 2011, he became Chief Executive Officer and executive director. Christian came to CelluComp with extensive operational business experience in the clothing/textile industry and a strong knowledge in brand-building, sustainability and social enterprise. Prior to CelluComp, Christian was Chief Executive Officer for EDUN, a company owned by Bono (of U2). 49% of the company was eventually sold to LVMH. Prior to EDUN, Christian was Managing Director at Devanlay/Lacoste for product development and communication worldwide, a position he held for 5 years. Previously, Christian was European Licensing Director for Disney Consumer Products and Director of European purchasing for Polo Ralph Lauren. In addition to his work-related activities, Christian sits on the board of 2 charities.  He is also the originator of the White Gold for Life program to help Senegal develop its cotton and textile industry. Christian is a graduate of Princeton University in USA and resides in France with his wife and 5 children.

  • Roger Kilburn

    CEO IBioIC

    Roger is CEO of IBioIC. The Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre (IBioIC) is an industrial, academic partnership aimed at accelerating the commercialisation of Industrial Biotechnology in Scotland. Based on a membership system IBioIC supports and funds research and education programmes aimed at creating a £1 billion industry in biotechnology by 2025.

    Roger has over twenty five years experience working for in the Chemical and Pharmaceutical industries in roles covering global business leadership, general management, consultancy, marketing, sales, trading, manufacturing, projects and engineering. He also enjoys being a guest lecturer at Heriot Watt University and providing business leadership to the directors of a local charity.

  • Thomas Kläusli

    Chief Marketing Officer AVA BIOCHEM

    Thomas Kläusli has many years of international management experience in the finance, consulting and technology sectors. He worked for companies like ABB, diAx, Sunrise and Orange Communication before he became Chief Marketing Officer at AVA-CO2 in 2010 and AVA Biochem in 2012. Since 2010 he is Board Member of the Germany HTC Association. Mr. Kläusli holds a B.Sc. from City University and an MBA from McCombs School of Business.

  • Waldemar Kutt

    Head of Unit "Bio-based Products and Processing", DG Research and Innovation European Commission

    Waldemar obtained his ph.d. from the Technical University in Aachen (RWTH) in 1988 in solid state physics and semiconductor technology. He has worked for several years as technology and innovation consultant, with a focus on patent licensing deals and financing of start-ups.

    In 1997 he joined the Research Directorate General of the European Commission. He has coordinated activities and polices related to innovation, SME, IPR, finance, technology transfer and bioregions as part of the EU Life Sciences and Biotechnology Strategy.

    He coordinated European Technology Platform activities and has been involved in the setting up of the Plant Biotechnology and the Industrial Biotechnology Platforms. He has strongly contributed to the development of the FP7 thematic programme for "Food, agriculture, fishery and biotechnology" and a strategy for a European knowledge-based bio-economy (KBBE), as well as the related lead market initiative on bio-based products.

    From May 2008 to November 2014 he held various in the Cabinets of Research Commissioners Potočnik and Geoghegan-Quinn. His main responsibility has been the adoption of the €80billion new Framework Programme for Research and Innovation, Horizon 2020.

    Since November 2014 he is Head of Unit of "Bio-based Products and Processing" in DG Research and Innovation.

  • Jim Laird

    CEO 3f bio Ltd

    3f bio is developing novel and patented zero-waste technology for large-scale integrated production of Food, Fuel and Feed.  3f bio technology transforms the production economics for the meat-free food product mycoprotein through integrated production within existing large-scale biorefineries. This produces high quality, sustainable, healthy protein alongside bio-ethanol and animal feed (DDGS).  The 3f bio management team combines experience in food, fermentation, large scale projects, and technology development.

    As CEO, Jim Laird has 25 years’ experience in the food industry in roles spanning operations, commercial general management and corporate development, including running the Quorn™ brand internationally.  This combines a track record of delivering profitable growth in large corporates including Unilever, Pepsico and Premier Foods, with more recent experience in creating value and increased shareholder returns in small cap listed companies working as Commercial Director for OptiBiotix Health plc.  From his experience with Quorn, Jim has detailed knowledge of the global meatfree market, the economics of supply and the competitor technologies and is passionate about the transformative opportunity to enable mycoprotein to become a high quality protein solution for global populations.

    The wider 3f bio board consists of the Craig Johnson and David Ritchie, who are the co-founders of the Business and bring wide experience in collaborative and large scale projects with a background in ICI, Zeneca, BASF, Syngenta and CMAC (University of Strathcyde), combined with a vision to develop sustainable protein using innovative technology; and David Robertson who as Chairman has proven experience in technology development primarily with BP.

    The business is registered in Scotland and is progressing its development activities based in the IBioIC facilities at the University of Strathclyde.

  • Paolo Lascola

    EU Public Affairs Novamont SPA

    Paolo La Scola joined Novamont in 2014 and deals with EU Public Affairs, focusing on environmental legislation, R&D regulatory framework and Corporate Communication. He is member of the main European groups and panels regarding Bioeconomy.

    Before joining Novamont he worked as a consultant for a private firm, based in Rome, specialized in Public Affairs, Regulatory Affairs and Strategic Communication and he worked mainly for the plastic sector. He holds a degree in Political Science and a Master degree in Parliament and Public Policies.

  • Esa Laurinsilta

    Director, Strategic Partnerships UPM – Kymmene Corporation

    Esa Laurinsilta is Director, Strategic Partnerships at UPM Technology function. Prior to this assignment Esa headed UPM Biofibrils Program (nano and microfibrillated celluloses) within UPM New Businesses and Development . Esa holds M.Sc (Chem. Eng) degree from Helsinki University of Technology and EMBA degree from Helsinki School of Economics.

    Esa has a strong international business-to-business, innovation development and technology commercialization experience within a wide range of life sciences industries including industrial enzymes, fine chemicals, functional dairy technology and biobased nanomaterials.

    Esa’s present focus is on bioeconomy and circular economy development and partnerships.

    Prior to joining UPM in 2011 he held various positions at Valio Ltd., Kemira Ltd., Genencor International Inc., Planmeca Ltd., and Biocon Ltd. His career includes foreign assignments in USA and Ireland.

  • Dr Yin Li

    Deputy Director-General Tianjin Institute of Industrial Biotechnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences (TIB, CAS)

    Dr. Yin Li received his PhD degree in Fermentation Engineering at Jiangnan University in China in 2000. He then worked in the Netherlands and Ireland as a postdoctoral researcher. In 2006 he was appointed as Principle Investigator and Professor by the Institute of Microbiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences (IM, CAS), under the support of Hundred Talents Program of CAS. He was appointed as visiting professor at Cornell University in 2013. In 2015 he was appointed as the Deputy Director-General of Tianjin Institute of Industrial Biotechnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences (TIB, CAS).


      Dr. Li is interested in molecular physiology and metabolic engineering that enable the sustainable and efficient production of bio-based chemicals. He and his colleagues have filed over 30 Chinese patents and published more than 110 papers in peer-review international journals, which mainly include PNAS, Current Opinion in Biotechnology, Trends in Biotechnology, Trends in Microbiology, Scientific Reports, Metabolic Engineering, Biotechnology for Biofuels, Biotechnology & Bioengineering, and Applied & Environmental Microbiology, with over 2600 citations, and an H index of 30.


      Dr. Li is the Co-PI of China's first synthetic biology major project "Syncell" funded by the National Basic Research Program of China (973 program), and he the PI of "Genome Engineering" major project funded by National High Technology Program of China (863 program). His group remains active collaboration with multinational enterprises including Shell in UK, DSM in the Netherlands, and Nestlé in Switzerland, and a dozen of domestic enterprises.


      Dr. Li was selected as Young Affiliate of TWAS (The World Academy of Sciences for the advancement of science in developing countries) in 2010. He was awarded the TWAS Regional Prize for Building Scientific Institutions in 2012. Presently, he is serving as Director of CAS-TWAS Centre of Excellence for Biotechnology; Deputy Director of Industrial Biotechnology Division of Chinese Society of Biotechnology; Vice President of Beijing Society of Microbiology. He is also serving as editor, research editor, or member of the editorial board of several international academic journals including Microbiology, Microbial Cell Factories, Biotechnology Journal, Industrial Biotechnology, and Food Bioscience.


      Dr. Li has been invited as plenary or keynote speaker by OCED Industrial Biotechnology Workshop, European Congress of Applied Biotechnology, Metabolic Engineering Summit, Metabolic Engineering Conference, Annual Conference of Microbiology Society (UK) etc.

  • Dr Marco Lucisano

    Vice President, Director Papermaking & Packaging Innventia

    Marco Lucisano is Director for Papermaking and Packaging at Innventia, a Swedish research institute working with innovations based on forest raw materials.  Marco has M.Sc. degrees in Chemical Engineering from both Politecnico di Milano and KTH – The Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm and a Ph.D. in Pulp and Paper Chemistry and Technology from KTH.

    Marco has been part of the core team behind all three Innventia Global Outlooks, a series of foresight initiatives describing how trends and drivers in business and society intersect with scientific and technical developments in areas relevant for the forest-based sector.

  • David Mackie

    Director Marine Bipolymers

    A highly experienced executive and entrepreneur who co-founded Marine Biopolymers (MBL) at the end of 2009, and who became an unexpected expert in seaweed and components as a result; has been instrumental in developing the company’s seaweed bio-refining concept. Previously held senior commercial, marketing and technical positions in the Speciality Chemicals and Pulp & Paper Industries, and currently sits as a Commercial Advisory Board member of IBioIC.

  • Dr Jonathan Male

    Director Department of Energy, Bioenergy Technologies Office

    Dr Jonathan Male is the Director for the Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) in the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). In this role, he leads the Office’s work to lower costs, reduce technical risk, and accelerate deployment of bioenergy and renewable chemicals technologies. He oversees research and development across the entire supply chain—from sustainable biomass growth and collection to biomass conversion technologies that include biochemical, catalytic, and thermochemical pathways to produce economically viable biofuels and bioproducts. The office’s portfolio of demonstration activities involving public-private partnerships helps BETO staff to evaluate risks and enable industrial entities to move technologies to commercial scale in the emerging bioenergy industry.

    Before joining the U.S. Department of Energy, he was the laboratory relationship manager for biomass at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. There he was responsible for business development and enabling high-quality and timely projects aligned to BETO’s needs. Previously, he worked at the GE Global Research Center in Niskayuna, New York, and developed programs in heterogeneous and homogeneous catalysts. In total, he has more than 17 years of research experience in catalysts, inorganic materials, high throughput experimentation, greenhouse gas emissions reduction technologies, production of chemicals, and biofuels.

    He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Applied Chemistry from the University of Greenwich, England, and his Ph.D. in Organometallic Chemistry at Simon Fraser University in Canada.

  • Ignacio Martin

    European R&D Manager and Coordinator of the Project "European Sustainable Chemicals Support Service" CIRCE

    Ignacio Martin has been a European R&D Manager of CIRCE (Research Centre for Energy Resources and Consumption) since 2011 developing R&D projects in the field of energy and environment.

    He developed a career as a Chemist, starting at the University of Autonoma in Madrid, where he was awarded with a Degree in Inorganic Chemistry in 2000. Prior to finishing  his studies, he joined the multinational corporation L´Oreal to support the deployment of an process intensification project, aimed at increasing the production rates within the largest facilities of this company in Spain. After this industrial experience, he came back to the basic research studies by moving to France. He researched at the National Research Council (CNRS in its French abbreviation) in the area of Organometallics in the Chemical Coordination Laboratory (Laboratoire de Chimie de Coordination in its French name). Later, and once he returned to Spain, he focused on the management of innovation and the evaluation of R&D projects in the field of energy and intensive industries, working for a research centre in the field of construction materials and at the Spanish Technology Agency of the Ministry of Innovation (9 years) working as Project Manager evaluating R&D projects at national and international level. Furthermore, he has worked with the International Agency as Operating Agent and has been evaluator of collaborative national and international R&D projects.

    He is currently Member of the Board of the Sustainable Process Industry through Resource and Energy Efficiency (SPIRE), Public-Private Partnership (PPP) launched as part of the Horizon2020 framework programme. Lastly, since its creation as founder member, he is coordinating one of the pillars of the Joint Programme of the Energy Efficiency in Industrial Processes of the European Energy Research Alliance (EERA).

  • Philippe Mengal

    Executive Director Bio-based Industries Joint Undertaking

    Philippe Mengal trained as an engineer in Chemistry and Bio-industry at Gembloux Agro-bio Tech Université and later on in Strategic Innovation Management at INSEAD.

    During his 25 years of professional experience, he has spearheaded major strategic and managerial achievements, being CEO, Managing Director, R&D Director and Senior Consultant in food ingredient, engineering and life sciences industries. Throughout his professional career, he has also been a Consultant in innovation management, IP valorisation, European projects, spin off creation and development, business development and project management.

    As a Board Member of Valbiom, Vice-President of Indeego, CEO & Global Business Development of GreenWatt, Board Member of Wagralim, CEO & Co-owner of Viaka, Group Applied R&D Director of Puratos Group, CEO & founder of Hitex and Marketing & R&D Manager of Separex & Archimex he is an experienced professional in the bio-based field.

    Philip Mengal is currently the Executive Director for the Bio-based Industries Joint Undertaking which operates under Horizon 2020, and is driven by the Vision and Strategic Innovation. As Executive Director, he is the chief executive responsible for the day-to-day management of BBI in accordance with the decisions of the Governing Board.

  • Alex Michine

    CEO MetGen

    Alex Michine is the CEO of MetGen, a Finnish SME which  is empowering industries to get most out of biomass through enzymatic solutions. MetGen designs and produces various industrial enzymes tailored to harsh industrial conditions. Before founding MetGen Alex was CEO of Metkinen Chemistry and Metkinen.

    Alex has a broad range of expertise in biotechnology, cleantech and pulp & paper sectors

    • Finland
  • Frank Millar

    Founder Member BioPilots UK

    Frank is the Operations Director at the Centre for Process Innovation, where his responsibilities include the future development of the Industrial Biotechnology business unit.

    Frank is one of the original industry team members that created BioPilots UK, a new collaboration of the five established biorefining open access centres. The centres work together with a broad stakeholder group to increase the UK’s industrial biotechnology capabilities, through access to flexible pilot-scale process development services and biotechnology facilities. BioPilotsUK is particularly targeted towards new partnerships to develop UK bio-based value chains.

    Frank has spent the majority of his career in the Process Industries within organisations that deliver capital programmes for customers with complex industrial processes.  He has an MEng in Chemical Engineering from Imperial College and an MSc in Project Management from UMIST.

  • Ward Mosmuller

    Director EU Affairs DSM

    Ward Mosmuller joined DSM in 2009. Currently he is director EU affairs and supports and advises Royal DSM’s Business Groups on regional EU affairs and the Managing Board/Executive Committee. on strategic issues that impact DSM’s license to operate in the EU. He represents DSM in EU associations Cefic, EuropaBio and BIC, of which he is one of the founding fathers. He engages in societal, governmental & legislation related debates and is responsible for stakeholders management.

    Ward studied Molecular Sciences at Wageningen University and obtained his PhD-degree in 1993 in Bioorganic Chemistry. He joined the Dutch Technology Agency Senter where he held several positions, starting as coordinator of a national innovation program and taking his leave as manager of the national innovation development loan scheme, a € 600 million public loan facility for innovative businesses. In this period he obtained his MBA-degree. In 2001 Ward joined PricewaterhouseCoopers and was one of the key members of the Life Sciences team of PwC NL. At the end of 2002 he became managing director of BioPartner, supporting universities in improving their capabilities in entrepreneurship and supporting and setting-up a range of spin-offs in life sciences.

    In 2005 Ward started his own company with a focus on innovation and technology transfer. He was one of the founders of Health Valley, a regional broker between science and business. In 2006 he was cofounder of the Technology Transfer Office of VU University & Medical Centre and was appointed managing director (on a part-time basis); in this role he was (co)founder of several spin-off companies.

  • Tuomas Mustonen

    Co-Founder and CEO Paptic Ltd

    Mr. Tuomas Mustonen (MBA, M.Sc. Paper physics) is Co-Founder and CEO of Paptic Ltd, a renewable materials start-up focusing on replacement of plastics in carrier bag and packaging applications.

    Prior to Paptic, Mr Mustonen has worked as Vice President, Sales at VTT  Technical Research Centre of Finland, and has an industry background from the packaging industry in several roles ranging from business development to technical marketing.

    He is specialized in commercialization of new biobased material technologies with special focus on packaging applications. Mr. Mustonen has a MBA degree from the Aalto University and Master of Science degree in Paper Physics from the University of Jyväskylä. 

  • Michael-Jean Nettersheim

    Investment Manager BASF VC

    Michael Nettersheim joined BASF Venture Capital in August 2011. Prior to joining BASF Michael served as a Senior Investment Manager at Europe’s largest seed fund HGTF (Germany). He started his career at MediGene AG, , a publicly listed biotech company in Germany, where he held the position as a Director Corporate Finance and Investor Relations. He is a Director of Renmatix Inc. (USA) and SLIPS Technologies Inc. (USA). Former Board assignments include NanoH2O (USA) and DataLase (UK).

    Michael was awarded a doctorate in Biochemistry from the University of Bonn. He holds an MBA from the Kellogg-WHU Executive MBA Program and is also a Certified Biotech Analyst for the German Association of Financial Analysis and Asset Management (DVFA).

  • David Newman

    Managing Director Bio-based and Biodegradable Industries Association (BBIA)

    In 2008 David was elected to the ISWA Board and in 2010 was elected Vice President. Since September 2012 he has been the President of ISWA and 2015 the Managing Director of BBIA.  For ISWA he is specifically focusing his attention on bringing financial resources to help developing nations invest in waste infrastructure and underlining how governance issues dictate investment policies in these nations.  In developed countries ISWA promotes the concepts of the circular and bioeconomies.

    For BBIA he works to create an environment in the UK that promotes the use of bio-based and biodegradable materials, whether they are related to industrial biotechnologies or, as in the case of bioplastics, mainly for use in packaging. 

    BBIA aims to create an industrial biotechnology hub for in the UK through influencing public policies and public/private investments in favour of the sector.

  • John Nicholas

    Founder and Commercial Director Nova Pangaea Technologies Limited

    Born in Sydney and educated at Sydney Grammar School, Canberra Grammar School and the Australian National University, John has over 30 years of experience in the private and public sectors in Australia as a founder of several businesses, in management consultancy and policy roles within government, and consulting to government agencies.

    In 2002 he moved to the United Kingdom in an entrepreneurial role to found Biofuels Corporation plc, undertaking the world’s first biofuels Initial Public Offering, on the Alternative Investment Market of the London Stock Exchange, and establishing the then world’s largest biodiesel plant on Teesside, United Kingdom. After examining the potential of biofuels projects in Eastern Europe, Ukraine and Ireland, he then co-founded Nova Pangaea Technologies Limited (NPT) in order to ‘solve the sugar problem’ by extracting C-5 and C-6 sugars from lignocellusic biomass at a cost and scale that will enable the production of competitive cellulosic ethanol and downstream processes for renewable polymers.

    NPT’s RefnovaTM technology now has patent protection in 72 countries. Ongoing pilot plant operation has led to the establishment of a commercial demonstration plant, now under detailed design, at NPT’s site at Wilton International, Teesside.

    In addition to four grandchildren, John’s extra-curricular interests include yacht racing, anything to do with horses and a current commercial pilot licence. He is married to Elaine and has been for four decades.

  • Dan Noakes

    Business Manager CPI

    Dan is a Business Manager for the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI), Northeast of England supporting development in UK Industrial Biotechnology and is now developing waste bio-refinery at CPI. Dan has a waste management consultancy and process engineering background. He was part of the Management Team for build and operation of a 320 K tonne pa residual municipal solid waste to high value products autoclave facility in the UK and Engineering Team for commissioning and operation of a pilot scale MSW to cellulosic sugars facility in the US.

    • United Kingdom
  • Dr Gerard J. Ostheimer

    Global Lead for Sustainable Bioenergy Sustainable Energy for All

    Dr Ostheimer serves as the Global Lead for the SE4ALL Sustainable Bioenergy High Impact Opportunity. Working with diverse partners he promotes the development and deployment of sustainable bioenergy solutions to help achieve SE4All’s goals of increasing energy access and doubling the use of renewable energy.

  • Dr Neil Parry

    Research Programme Director – Biotechnology Science Leader Unilever Research and Development, UK

    Neil obtained his first degree in Biology at Portsmouth University in 1993. In his final year he majored in enzymology and this sparked the interest here and shaped his resulting career. Neil completed his PhD in Industrial Biotechnology in 96 involving every aspect of the protein engineering cycle and this provided the opportunity to work in a number of EU labs and industry groups as part of the consortium.

    In Unilever Neil worked on enzymes and protein technology for the chemical businesses and the antibody company Unipath. He held project leader posts in Biorecognition and Life Sciences divisions and was part of teams making key inventions in exploitation of protein domains in industrial applications. Following sale of Unipath, he had a role in Life Sciences as science leader biotechnology with a focus on intervention technologies for a range of HPC categories and a wider range of bio based materials. Also during this time he jointly established a spin out company with Unilever Ventures for applications of biomolecules in the pharmaceutical and agrochemical industry.

    In 2005 / 06 Neil moved to the Unilever Port Sunlight R&D lab to lead the Biotechnology expertise and science area with closer business and open innovation partner interactions and support the categories in advancing new technologies. His current teams comprise of both scientists located internally and externally with collaborators.

    In 2012, Neil took on the additional R&D programme director role leading Biotechnology & Biosourcing.  This has the strong bias in the discovery for new biotechnologies and green chemistries for opportunities in Unilever’s portfolio.

     Neil is an inventor on 30+ patents and holds posts on external advisory boards in Industrial Biotechnology (European Union etc).

  • Cyrille Pauthenier

    CEO & CSO Abolis Biotechnologies

    Cyrille Pauthenier is a young researcher and entrepreneur in Synthetic Biology. He graduated from "École Normale Supérieure" in Paris in both fundamental chemistry and biology with a focus on biomolecules modelling and engineering. In 2011 he specialized in Synthetic Biology participating and advising team in the iGEM competition. He got his PhD in metabolic engineering methodology with a focus on retrieval of produced compounds at an industry viable scale.


    Cyrille co-founded the Abolis Biotechnologies company in 2014, with the aim of bringing state-of-the-art methodologies in metabolic engineering for the development of new micro-organism capable of producing chemical molecules using fermentation of renewable resources. The companies actively develops a bio-retrosynthesis software that is capable of finding biosynthesis route based on extrapolation from known literature for any given molecule and to identify the enzymes that could perform these reactions. Then, a robotic software assemble these genes at high throughput and prototype strains are characterized using mass spectrometry.


    The company is currently developing a lot of different technology from pathway prototyping to optimized industrial strain construction in house and scale-up expertise with partners in order to cover the entire value chain. Abolis aims at offering to the industry by 2018 a complete service in which, for any arbitrary molecule, we find a metabolic route, demonstrate its functionality and bring the project from the idea to the industrial scale.

  • Antoine Peeters

    Head of Partnerships & External Relations

    Antoine Peeters is Head of Partnerships and External Relations at IAR - The French Bioeconomy Cluster. He joined the cluster in September 2015 to define and implement IAR's strategy for partnerships as well as to represent IAR and its members in France and in Europe. Prior to joining IAR, Antoine worked several years for EuropaBio, the European Association of Bioindustries, as public affairs and UE projects manager as well as for a public affairs and communication consultancy. Antoine has an academic background in Political Sciences from the Louvain-la-Neuve University, Belgium, the Pantheon-Sorbonne University and a Master degree in European Affairs from the ISMaPP school, France.

    IAR is the French cluster dedicated to the Bioeconomy. It brings together more than 340 stakeholders from farmer cooperatives, research organisations and universities to VCs, start-up, SMEs and large industries (including end-users) around a common goal: the optimal valorisation of renewable resources into bio-based chemicals, biomaterials, advanced biofuels and biogas as well as ingredients for food and feed.

  • Babette Pettersen

    Chief Business Development Officer Capricorn Venture Partners

    Babette is Chief Business Development Officer at Capricorn Venture Partners. Capricorn is an independent European manager of venture capital and equity funds, investing in innovative European companies with technology as the competitive advantage. Capricorn is currently raising it’s 6th venture capital fund, the Capricorn Sustainable Chemistry Fund (CSCF), a technology-focused venture fund for next generation feedstocks, chemicals and materials, which will focus on innovative companies with novel or bio-chemical technology.

    Before joining Capricorn, Babette was the Chief Commercial Officer for BioAmber Inc., a market leader in bio-based succinic acid and a pioneer in renewable chemicals. Prior to BioAmber, Babette led new business development for Performance Materials at Royal DSM, before which she held Marketing & New Business Development roles in different industry groups for over 20 years at Dow Corning. Babette started her career in the Healthcare Industry with Baxter Travenol.

    Babette has a BSc in Biology from Wellesley College, USA and an MBA from INSEAD, France.  She is an advisor to the Agenda to Mainstream Green Chemistry with the Green Chemistry and Commerce Council (GC3), and a member of Club L, Women’s Professional network, Women on Board, and 20-first, dedicated to exploring the economic power and potential of a more gender-balanced business world.

    • Belgium
  • Dr Carol Phillips

    Chief Executive Officer NCIMB Ltd

    Carol is currently the Chief Executive Officer of NCIMB Ltd. NCIMB Ltd is a specialist microbiology and chemical services company which holds the largest collection of bacteria with industrial or environmental applications in the UK. Before moving to the commercial sector Carol spent five years in the academic sector (Heriot Watt University, NAFC Marine Centre) supporting academic organisations to identify commercial opportunities from research activities and secure funding. Prior to this she carried out microbial ecology research on nitrifying bacteria at the University of Aberdeen and Michigan State University. Her PhD on the effects of Atlantic salmon farming on bacterial processes in marine sediments was carried at the Dunstaffnage Marine Laboratory (now SAMS) and University of Dundee. She has a BSc in Biochemistry from Glasgow University, a PhD from Dundee University and an MBA from the Edinburgh Business School, Heriot Watt University. She is a member of the Society for Applied Microbiology Finance Subcommittee and also sits on the Audit Committee for the Scottish Association of Marine Science and is a past member of the SAMS Board and Council and Non-Executive Director of SRSL Ltd.

  • Dr Chris Reeve

    Technical Development Manager CPI

    Chris began his career in 1979 as a Quality Control technician at Wellcome Diagnostics, a business unit of the Wellcome Foundation, where he was responsible for performing final product release testing of a range of clinical diagnostic test kits. In 1982 he transferred to Wellcome Biotechnology where, as an R&D scientist, he worked in the Interferon development group for one year. Having completed an ONC and HNC in Analytical Biochemistry whilst employed by the Wellcome Foundation, he left the company to study full time at The University of Wales, Aberystwyth from where he graduated with a BSc in Biochemistry. Chris remained at the university for a further 3 years completing his PhD on the study of bacterial hydroxylases. He then moved to the Chemistry Department at the University of Warwick as a Posdoctoral Research Assistant where he undertook collaborative research with Pfizer Limited on the application of enzymes in the resolution of chiral 1,4-dihydropyridines. Chris then joined ICI Biological Products in 1992 as a Senior Research Scientist in the Biocatalysis Group developing large scale processes  for the manufacture of pharmaceutical intermediates. He played a key role in the development of biological processes used in the production of a range of pharmaceutical products including Abacavir, Trusopt, Crestor and Saxagliptin.  He remained in this role until 2011 during which time, following demergers and business sales, the group transitioned through Zeneca Limited, Avecia Pharmaceuticals and finally Piramal Healthcare. Chris is currently Technical Development Manager at the Centre for Process Innovation where he supports the technical transfer of processes from customers into its pilot and demonstration scale facilities and scopes and manages the delivery of commercial and public private funded projects.

  • Dr Timothy G. Rials

    Professor and Director, Center for Renewable Carbon University of Tennessee

    Tim Rials is Professor (Dept. of Forestry, Wildlife, and Fisheries) and Director of the Center for Renewable Carbon in The University of Tennessee, Institute of Agriculture.  Dr. Rials is a graduate of Mississippi State University, and earned his M.S. and Ph.D. in wood science from Virginia Tech.  He joined the university following 13 years with the U.S. Forest Service, Southern Research Station in Pineville, Louisiana, after two years on the faculty of the University of California–Berkeley.  Tim’s research career has focused on the efficient and effective utilization of renewable resources in advanced composite materials, including development of high throughput analytical methods for characterizing wood.  As director of the Center for Renewable Carbon, he facilitates UTIA’s research and development program on the use of forest and agricultural biomass for alternative liquid fuels, industrial chemicals, and advanced materials.  The CRC is home to the Southeastern Regional Sun Grant Center that supports an expansive research portfolio in biomass and bioenergy throughout the region.  He also leads a regional team of research and outreach specialists in the Southeastern Partnership for Integrated Biomass Supply Systems, a competitively awarded grant from USDA’s AFRI program.  Dr. Rials was recently recognized for his contributions in the area of renewable carbon science with the 2011 AgResearch Impact Award. He is a fellow in the International Academy of Wood Science, and an active member of the American Chemical Society’s Cellulose and Renewable Materials Division.

  • Gudbrand Rødsrud

    Technology Director Business Development Borregaard AS

    Gudbrand Rødsrud is a polymer chemist from the University of Oslo by education, and also holds an MBA in international marketing from the Norwegian School of Business Administration.  Rødsrud joined Borregaard in 1995 as R&D Director for Borregaards lignin operations and has been leading product development and technical customer service for the worlds leading  lignin business for 11 years.  He has also had a 2 years expatriate position for Borregaard in South Africa and have since 2006 worked in Business Development as a Technology Director.   Rødsrud has been involved in a range of projects within biorefinery as part of Borregaard's new strategies.  Borregaard is claimed to be one of the most advanced biorefineries in operation today and looking into expanding its biorefinery concepts both on feedstock and the palette of products to produce.  His focus areas now is on developing valuable product streams from all main components of the biomass, and integration of new biorefinery concepts with a selection of existing industries all over the world. He is a co-inventor of the BALI pretreatment and separation process.  He is also working on projects to convert pentoses to performance chemicals, sugars to single cell proteins, lignins to aromatics and on specialty sugars.  

  • Stephen Roe

    Chief Executive Officer Advanced Microwave Technologies Ltd

    Stephen joined AMT in January 2014 having spent the previous five years as an interim CEO turning round technology-based manufacturing businesses. His career spans 42 years in manufacturing industry, 32 as a senior manager, director or CEO. AMT has world-leading technology that heats flowing liquids very precisely from laboratory to industrial-scale. There are powerful applications in food and drink creating exceptional shelf-life products. Microwaves have the property of killing bacteria and lysing cells highly effectively. These properties take us into new, growth markets such as anaerobic digestion pre-treatment: where microwave pre-treatment markedly reduces retention time and generates more total biogas, waste stabilization and other applications where killing bacteria without product damage is important.

  • Dr Alan W. Rudie

    Supervisory Research Chemist US Forest Service Forest Products Laboratory

    Dr. Rudie received a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1973 from Wartburg College with majors in both Chemistry and Mathematics and a Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry in 1978 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  In 1978, Dr. Rudie took a job with International Paper Company at the Corporate Research Center in Sterling Forest, NY where he worked on development projects in both kraft and mechanical pulping and bleaching.  In 1989 he accepted an appointment as Associate Professors at the Institute of Paper Science and Technology in Atlanta, Georgia where he focused on research in mechanical pulping and trace metals management in pulp mill bleach plants. While at IPST, Dr. Rudie served as the Faculty Chair from 1998 to 2002 and chaired the Reaccreditation Self-Study Committee from 1999 to 2002.  Dr. Rudie took his current position as Project Leader of the Fiber and Chemical Sciences Work Unit at the Forest Products Laboratory in 2003.  Current research interests are on cellulose hydrolysis, cellulose nano-materials, and trace metal management.  Among other task areas, Dr. Rudie oversees the operation of the Cellulose nanomaterials pilot plant at the Forest Products Laboratory.  Dr. Rudie has served as advisor to 12 masters students and 6 doctoral students and has over 70 career publications. Dr. Rudie is a TAPPI Fellow,  received the TAPPI Pulping and Bleaching Committee David Wetherhorn Award in 2003 and 2006 and the Pulp Manufacturing Division High Impact Paper Awards in 2004 and 2007. 

  • Christophe Rupp-Dahlem

    Head of Global Public Affairs Roquette

    In 1990 Christophe Rupp-Dahlem joined Roquette at its global headquarter in Lestrem, Northern France. At Roquette he has held a number of positions within the Business activities. He was notably in charge of the BU Chemicals and Fermentation worldwide. In 2006, as Programs Vice President, he managed the innovative programs related to the plant-based chemistry like the open-innovation consortium for bio based building blocks BioHub®.

    His current role is to lead the Public Affairs activities for the Roquette group worldwide.

    He is in parallel member of the sustainable development committee and member of the Leadership Team.

    In 2008, Christophe Rupp-Dahlem was appointed by the European Commission DG Enterprise as an expert in the ad-hoc advisory group created for the implementation of the Lead Market Initiative for Bio-Based Products. He was as well the French representative in the Bio economy Panel during 3 years.

    Between May 2008 and June 2016, Christophe Rupp-Dahlem was President of the Plant Based Chemistry Association. The ACDV regroups 50 industrial actors along the value chain of the Plant Based Chemistry in France (www.chimieduvegetal.com). He is now Honorary President of the ACDV.

    Christophe Rupp-Dahlem is board member of the competitiveness cluster IAR, the French Bioeconomy Cluster (www.iar-pole.com )

  • Ged Russell

    Technical Director Vireol Bio-industries plc

    Ged was one of the two founders of Vireol in 2005 and is currently Technical Director.

    Ged completed his postgrad/professional qualifications working on major civils for Esso’s ethylene plant in Scotland and on a wide range of local government projects in England. He worked within ICI for 15 years and was involved in complex projects across a range of businesses and sites. He has also worked with a number of ICI’s specialty chemical businesses on investment and new product implementation throughout Europe and the US.

    Ged’s involvement in renewables started in 2003 when he worked closely with a newly floated biodiesel business in the UK to manage the construction of their plant within a fixed timetable. Following the creation of Vireol in 2005, he has led the development of a number of projects including a 1G wheat-based ethanol plant in the UK, the acquisition of a US ethanol plant, the repurposing of a redundant ethanol plant and is currently working on an advanced biorefinery development in Europe, an EfW plant in England and a technical centre to support innovative biorefinery concepts. He also provides support and consultancy to businesses and academic institutions in the renewable sector.

    In addition to his professional interests, Ged has done voluntary work with environmental and social development NGO’s in the UK and is a keen birder. 

  • Georgios Savoglidis

    Co-founder & CEO Embion Technologies SA

    Georgios Savoglidis was born in Athens, Greece in 1980. He graduated with a degree in Chemical Engineering from University of Patras in Greece, before receiving his PhD in Biochemical Process Optimization at the same department. He then moved to Switzerland and the EPF Lausanne, where he worked in the field of systems biology. He has more than 10 years of experience in the bio-renewables area, working in bioenergy and biomass valorization projects as well as metabolic models for studying and engineering cellular metabolism. In 2016, he founded Embion Technologies at the Innovation Park of the EPF Lausanne, where he currently serves as the CEO. 

  • Dr Willem Sederel

    Board Member Biobased Delta

    Willem Sederel is a chemical engineer and polymer scientist from the University of Technology Twente In Enschede the Netherlands. Before he started his industrial career he did a post doc on biomedical materials at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio.

    After retiring from his 36 year career in Industry Willem joined the Biobased Delta in 2013 as director and chairman of the Biobased Delta Foundation. This is a triple helix organisation in the South Western part of the Netherlands that aims to accelerate the development of the Biobased Economy under the imperative “Agro meets Chemistry”. He is the founding father of the Green Chemistry Campus in Bergen op Zoom.

    Since the beginning of 2015 Willem is the chairman of the Biorenewables Business Platform that advises the Ministry of Economic Affairs in the Netherlands.

    Prior to joining the Biobased Delta Willem worked for Shell Research in Amsterdam, General Electric in Bergen op Zoom and Schenectady (NY) holding senior Global Technology and Marketing Management positions. His last position before retiring was Global Innovation Leader for SABIC Innovative Plastics.

  • Kathryn Sheridan

    CEO and Founder Sustainability Consult

    Set up in 2008, Sustainability Consult is based in Brussels, Belgium and works globally with organisations to build their visibility and credibility.

    Former environment and energy journalist Kathryn writes, lectures and moderates extensively on sustainability and the bioeconomy, including at major industry conferences and EU policy events.

    An advocate for responsible business and credible communications, Kathryn was the first Ambassador for 1% for the Planet in Europe. She is committed to building community and capacity around sustainability and environmental issues.

    Recently, Kathryn has moderated on biomaterials, renewable chemistry financing, biofuels policy, animal welfare, renewable energy and fossil fuel subsidies.

    Kathryn speaks English, French and German. She is a keen whole foods blogger and member of a local community farm.

  • Mark Simmers

    Chief Executive Officer Celtic Renewables Ltd.

    Mark is an entrepreneur and commercialisation specialist with over 20 years of international experience in sales, marketing and business development. In 2011 Mark graduated from the highly prestigious Saltire Foundation Global Entrepreneurial Fellowship Programme, which included a fast-track MBA programme at Babson College, Boston USA. Mark helped to co-found Celtic Renewables in late 2011, and has been the company’s CEO since its inception leading the rapid growth of the company, which has seen its technology proven at pilot commercial scale and the development of the company first industrial scale plant to be operational in 2017. Mark has won numerous investment pitching and business presentation awards on behalf of Celtic Renewables, and has built a strong and dynamic team at the company. Celtic Renewables is widely regarded as one of the most innovative new renewables companies in the UK.  In a relatively short existence it has generated an exceptional global profile and awareness for sustainable biofuel innovation, and in 2015 the company was named European Biotech SME of the year and Emerging Scottish Business of the Year.

    Mark graduated from Bristol University in Economics and Accounting and started out his career with the International Management Group in London working with a team commercialising and managing the global golf assets of IMG. Mark founded and managed his own events and promotions company in Scotland from 2001-07.

    Mark is married with three children, and is a keen sportsman in his spare time.

  • Dr Mark Stalmans

    Global Product Stewardship & Sustainability Procter & Gamble

    Dr. Mark Stalmans obtained a Ph.D. in Colloidal and Interphase Chemistry in 1986 (Leuven University, Belgium). He joined Procter & Gamble in 1987 and has managed global and regional safety, regulatory, lifecycle analysis and sustainability programs for household and professional product categories.

    Since 2013, he is manager Global Product Stewardship & Sustainability for the Global Fabric & Home Care Business Unit where he coordinates P&G’s internal and stakeholder programmes around sustainability and innovation. He is an active member of the A.I.S.E. and CEFIC industry association networks and supports safety and sustainability initiatives such as A.I.S.E. Charter for Sustainable Cleaning, www.cleanright.eu, ‘I prefer 30°’ (www.iprefer30.eu) and the CEFIC Sustainability Programme Council.

  • Ashima Sukhdev

    Government & Cities Programme Lead Ellen MacArthur Foundation

    Ashima leads the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Government & Cities Programme, which focuses on supporting public bodies – at the national, regional, and city level – in setting the right enabling conditions for the transition to a circular economy, initiating regional innovation initiatives and circular demonstrator projects, and strengthening the local SME community.

    Ashima’s previous work at the Foundation has included work across the Business and Insights & Analysis Team, a secondment to the World Economic Forum’s circular economy initiative, and managing the report “Growth Within: a circular economy vision for a competitive Europe”.

    Prior to joining the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, Ashima worked with the Strategy & Operations group of Deloitte Consulting in New York, focused on the Pharmaceutical and Health Insurance industries. 

  • Sean Sutcliffe

    Chief Exectuive Green Biologics Ltd

    Sean Sutcliffe has served as Chief Executive of Green Biologics since April 2008, contributing to the company extensive commercial and operational experience across the energy and renewables sector. Prior to joining Green Biologics he was from 2005 Chief Executive of Biofuels Corporation, a UK based biodiesel producer, and from 2007 Chairman of Tidal Generation Limited, a developer of tidal stream devices. Previously Sean worked for BG Group Plc. for 14 years in a variety of roles spanning operations, business development and strategy, most recently as Executive Vice President with responsibility for Corporate Development and New Businesses. Sean is a Chartered Mechanical Engineer with an Engineering degree from Cambridge University. He is a Non-Executive Director of You Broadband, an Indian ISP and an advisory board member of The Rainbow Seed Fund, a UK government funded early stage venture capital fund.

    • United Kingdom
  • Dr David Tompkins

    Bioresources Development Manager Aqua Enviro

    David is an environmental scientist with a background in digestate and compost market development, food safety, soil science and horticulture.  He currently leads a small team at Aqua Enviro focused on biowaste/bioresource process optimization and output valorization with materials ranging from livestock slurry to compost, digestate and biomass ashes, whether derived from source-segregated or mixed inputs.  David’s current portfolio of projects includes: developing guidance for digestate and compost use; assessing the suitability of biodiesel processing residues for biotreatment; assessing the safety of recycled materials in the food chain; process optimization and digestate quality support for merchant AD facilities.

  • Puneet Trehan

    Material & Innovation Development Leader IKEA

    Puneet Trehan has a Masters in Mechanical Engineering majoring in Metallurgy/Material Science with an MBA in Finance & Operations.

    Mr Trehan has been with IKEA for 17 years, mainly working in supply chain management and business strategy. His main focus over the last 10 years has been in building value chains with strategic partners. One of the areas where IKEA made a significant shift in this time was in building value chain partnerships in sustainability-led business and that is exactly what we are focussing on when it comes to the biobased polymers area.

  • David Turley

    Company Executive and Lead Consultant Biobased Feedstocks NNFCC

    David has had a long career, both in research and as an analyst, focussing on the development and use of crops for non-food applications and the wider exploitation of other biomass resources. He has worked closely with successive governments to support the development of government strategies and policies in the sector and to help drive development of the biofuel and bioenergy sectors. He provides advice to project developers and development agencies on biomass resources and the potential opportunities for market development.

    • United Kingdom
  • Mark Turner

    Head of Agritech, Bio Economy and Chemicals Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

    Mark is an experienced civil servant having worked for BIS and its predecessor the DTI for more than twenty years. Mark heads up the Chemicals Unit in the Advanced Manufacturing Services Directorate of BIS and also leads the team supporting the Oil and Gas supply chain across the UK.

    Before taking this post Mark spent a number of years working in small business enterprise policy on business support and on access to finance measures for small businesses.  

    Mark joined the Civil service in 1989 and spent two years with the MoD before transferring to the then DTI to work on collaborative R&D programmes and manufacturing change programmes. Throughout his career as a civil servant mark has been a champion of manufacturing and he believes strongly in the need to rebalance the economy and for the UK to grow its manufacturing base.

    Mark began his working life as sponsored undergraduate engineer at Rolls Royce where he spent ten years including five working as a gas turbine engine designer. He graduated in mechanical engineering, is a Chartered Engineer, and has a masters degree in Business Management from Warwick University.

  • José-Lorenzo Vallés

    Head of Unit D2 – Advanced Manufacturing Systems and Biotechnology, DG RTD European Commission

    Mr Vallés graduated in Physics and Chemistry. He holds a Ph. D. in Physics from the University of Barcelona (Spain), and has conducted postdoctoral research in Computational Physics during four years at Courant Institute of New York University and the University of Minnesota (USA). He is an Associate Professor of Condensed Matter Physics at the University of Barcelona (at present under special leave).

    Since joining the European Commission in 1991, he first worked at the Institute for Advanced Materials (the Netherlands), then as S&T Counsellor at the EC Delegation in China, and finally moved in 1999 to DG Research and Innovation in Brussels, where he has been Head of the Materials Unit, Head of the New Forms of Production Unit, and is currently Head of the Advanced Manufacturing Systems and Biotechnologies Unit.

  • Marcel van Berkel

    Chief Commercial Officer GF Biochemicals

    Marcel van Berkel, holds Master´s degree from the Dutch University of Utrecht in Chemistry and Business Administration. Marcel has more than 25 years of international experience as a business professional, at companies such as DSM and Solvay. In 2014, he became Chief Commercial Officer at GFBiochemicals in 2014 to “bring levulinic acid to the market”. 

  • Arno van de Kant

    Business Development Manager Bioprocess Pilot Facility B.V.

    Working in the Industrial Biotechnology field more then 25 years, Arno is an experienced business development director, now working for the Bioprocess pilot facility in Delft. He worked for several companies in marketing, sales and business development functions, including New Brunswick Scientific, Akzo Nobel, NIZO food research, bioMerieux, and TNO. He also worked as CEO of ARKI and MicroDish, a startup company, discovering and detecting novel organisms. He was also active in several European networks, including as a member of the industrial biotech council of EuropaBio and the Key Enabling Technology working group of the European Union for Industrial Biotechnology. Arno is now dedicated to helping companies to scale up their processes from biomass to products in the open access pilot facilities in Delft.

  • Dr Hans van der Pol

    Senior Director - Biobased Innovations Corbion

    Dr van der Pol earned a bachelor of science degree in Physical Organic Chemistry from the University at Utrecht in 1986 and was awarded a PhD in Physical Organic Chemistry at the same University in 1990 and has obtained a business degree at Nyenrode Business University later on. He has worked with Akzo Nobel in high performance fibers, with Eastman Chemicals in specialty plastics and with Corbion Purac. Mr. van der Pol has been at the forefront of many new initiatives and has been active over the years in diverse roles such as product development, product management, global marketing and new business development. Dr. van der Pol has a keen interest in combining strategic, business and innovation perspectives into developing new business growth platforms for the biobased economy. Examples of successful innovative developments under his leadership are biobased solvent applications in the  micro-electronics and agrochemicals industry, new high-value fermentation based  monomers for PLA, high-heat PLA and succinic acid and new chemical building blocks and applications for a variety of biobased chemicals.

  • Dr Karolien Vanbroekhoven

    Programme Manager Bioprocessing VITO

    Dr Karolien Vanbroekhoven is Programme Manager in the Unit of Sustainable Chemistry Technologies within the Flemish institute for technological research (VITO) since 2009. VITO is a leading European independent research and consultancy centre in the areas of cleantech and sustainable development, elaborating solutions for the large societal challenges of today, including the evolution towards a biobased economy. VITO has 750 highly-qualified employees who work on international projects all around the world. VITO’s headquarters are located in Mol, Belgium. Dr Vanbroekhoven has been at the forefront of a number of new collaborative initiatives like Biorizon and has been active over the years in diverse roles such as research programme management, bioprocess technology development and new business development in field of biobased economy.

  • Brecht Vanlerberghe

    Chief R&D Officer Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant

    As Chief R&D Officer, Brecht coaches & supervises the consortia projects at the Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant. He holds Masters degrees in applied bio engineering sciences and industrial management. Before he was responsible for product & process innovation in several international companies (AVEVE, Campina, FrieslandCampina, TEREOS) , first generation biorefineries based on milk or cereals, tubers, beet.

  • Dr David Venables

    CEO Synpromics Ltd

    Dr David Venables is CEO of Synpromics Ltd, a synthetic biology company developing promoters to enable controlled gene expression in support of gene and cell therapy applications and has recently completed two successful fund raising rounds of £2.25M in total, and secured total deal terms with leading gene therapy companies in excess of £100M. He has previously has served as VP – CMC for NightstaRx, an ophthalmology focused gene therapy company. Having performed the CMC due diligence on behalf of Syncona Partners leading up to the investment by Syncona he then established the development and manufacturing strategy and partnerships required to take through to licensure; CEO of Anatara Therapeutics (a life sciences company he managed through private fund raising and IPO in Australia); CEO of Ark Therapeutics with responsibility for leading the company through a transition to a viral contract development and manufacturing service model and ultimately a sale of the business assets, and Managing Director of BioMelior Services Ltd, providing management and consultancy services to the biopharmaceutical industry and investment funds in the areas of bioprocess CMC, CMO/CRO services and business & product development strategy within the vaccine, gene therapy and cell therapy sectors. Previously at Intercell, he was responsible for building Intercell’s manufacturing capabilities in Europe and the USA. As Site Head for vaccine manufacturing operations in the UK he was responsible for the European and US licensure, pre-approval inspection and commercial supply of Ixiaro®, a Japanese Encephalitis vaccine, followed as Chief Operating Officer of Intercell USA Inc. based in Maryland, USA.

  • Dr Dirk Verdoes

    CTO SoliQz B.V.

    Dirk Verdoes (1962) has a MSc in Chemistry from Leiden University and a PhD in Industrial Crystallization from the Delft University of Technology. After his PhD, Dirk worked for 24 years at the TNO, the Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research, in several research, business development and managerial functions. In his last position at TNO he was the CTO of the chemicals team of the department for Process and Instrument Development. On national and European level. Dirk was involved in the writing and implementation of Technology Roadmaps and the coordination of collaborative research and demonstration projects. He is (co-)author of about 30 scientific papers and 10 international patents.

    In his career Dirk focused on the development and implementation of innovative processes and process equipment in the chemical industry. His fields of interest are Process Intensification, White Biotechnology and Separation Technology. His personal passion is in piloting and demonstration of novel technologies in industry.

    Since 2014, Dirk was seconded as Chief Technology Officer at SoliQz, a Dutch SME responsible for further commercialization of the Hydraulic Wash Column developed by TNO. On January 1st, 2016, accepted a position as full time CTO at SoliQz. Since 2015, SoliQz is part of the USA-based Armstrong Chemtec group, which has over 50 years of experience in designing and building of process equipment for the chemicals industry and owns a proprietary continuous crystallization process. This technology is now combined with the SoliQz Hydraulic Wash Column, a versatile solid-liquid separation technology for high purity chemicals. As CTO Dirk is amongst others responsible for the development of novel cost- and energy-efficient process concepts for the separation and ultra-purification of bio-based chemicals, which deploy the excellent selectivity and low energy consumption of crystallization and the high throughput and superior washing efficiency of the SoliQz Hydraulic Wash Column. 

  • Michael Wamsler

    Manager Future Base Materials Tetra Pak

    Michael Wamsler is currently working as Manager, Future Based Materials at Tetra Pak. He has worked for Tetra Pak since 2003 and among his previous experience within Tetra Pak are Manager positions for Coating & Lamination, Advanced Film and Barrier Solutions and Packaging Material Development.

    Michael is M. Sc. in Chemical Engineering from Lund Institute of Technology, Sweden, with approximately one year additional studies in Business Administration and Law. Previous to Tetra Pak, Michael has experience from international energy efficiency and environment work from 12 years experience as Head of Engineering, Energy Conservation and Environment at ÅF-Energikonsult AB. He also has experience from medical and chemical industry.

  • Paul Wheelhouse MSP

    Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy Scottish Government

    Born in Belfast in 1970, Paul was raised in Edinburgh, attending Stewart's Melville College. He has an honours degree in Economics from the University of Aberdeen and an MBA from University of Edinburgh. He has lived in Berwickshire since 2000.

    Paul is a professional economist and, since 1992, had specialised in higher and further education markets, policy evaluation and economic appraisal and impact assessment of capital projects.

    Paul previously held a number of roles in the Scottish Parliament and is SNP MSP for South Scotland. Prior to taking his Ministerial position Paul was a member of cross-party groups on Epilepsy, Rural Policy, Armed forces Veterans, Funerals and Bereavement, Boating and Marine Tourism and deputy convener of Sport.

    He has previously held posts in the Scottish Government as Minister for Environment and Climate Change and Minister for Community Safety & Legal Affairs. In May 2016 he was appointed Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy.

  • Dr John Williams

    Senior Partner S’Investec LLC

    John is a Senior Partner and Board member of S’Investec LLC, a private investment company specialising in Clean Tech, Biotech and Renewables. He is responsible for identifying and valorising all proposals prior to consideration for investment.

    John is also a Board Member of Aquapak Polymers a specialist polymer producer in Birmingham, a  Non-Executive Director of Floreon Transform Packaging, a Hull based SME producing bioplastics, as well as a Board member and Technical Director of the Bio-Based & Biodegradable Industries Association

    John was for over 7 years Head of Materials at the UK’s National Centre for Biorenewable Technologies, before joining S’Investec in 2013. Previously he had spent over 15 years in senior technical roles in the polymer industry.

    John holds a degree in Chemistry and doctorate in polymer chemistry and is a member of the Royal Society of Chemistry, Institute of Directors, and European Chemical Society.

  • Professor Dr Oskar Zelder

    VP Fermentation Products Research BASF SE

    Oskar Zelder sudied biology at the Philipps-University in Marburg and graduated with a PhD thesis on enzymes in the anaerobic metabolism of amino acids. In 1995 he started as a research scientist in the biotechnology department of BASF in Ludwigshafen where he worked on the optimization of fermentative production processes of vitamins and amino acids with fungi and bacteria. Since 2003 he heading an interdisciplinary research group with focus on the development of new fermentation processes for amino acids and enzymes. Over the years he and his team participated in the development of several new products and processes. Furthermore, they established new research areas at BASF like the fermentative production of monomeric building blocks and secondary metabolites as actives for crop protection. Since more than 15 years Oskar Zelder is teaching at the biology faculty of the Philipps-University in Marburg and was appointed Adjunct Professor in 2008. Currently, Oskar Zelder ist the president oft the German Society of General and Applied Microbiology (VAAM).