Collection of Speaker of the last Event
Research Fellow at Centre for Technology and Society (CTS), TU Berlin
Michael Abraham, Germany
Panel Sessions Chair
Michael Abraham studied City and Regional Planning at the Technische Universität (TU) Berlin. Supported by a DAAD scholarship, he also spent one year studying architecture, geography and management at Montana State University, USA. Since 2007 he is working as a research fellow at Technische Universität Berlin. Ever since he worked in several European and international projects aiming at promoting sustainable urban mobility. Within this research field he is currently focusing on the process and impact evaluation of transportation measures. His general research interest is oriented towards the testing and assessment of sustainable urban transportation projects and complex strategies as well as towards the identification of transferability criteria of success factors and the corresponding knowledge exchange on an international level. Additionally, he dedicates his activities to general and specific questions related to the conception, implementation, analysis and evaluation of Smart City concepts.
Director of Center for Innovation in Cities (CIC)
Esteve Almirall, Spain
Esteve Almirall serves as Associate Professor in Esade Business School where his research focuses on Innovation, particularly on Open Innovation and Data Science. His work has been referenced in HBR and he is a frequent speaker in conferences around Innovation, Big Data and Data Science, Smart Cities, Living Labs and Open Data/Gov. His background is a mix of Management Science (PhD,MRes,MBA) and Computer Science /A.I. (MSc, MRes). Esteve is also highly involved in European Projects and EU organizations having coordinated and participated in many EU projects on Innovation and Smart Cities. He is passionate about how we can use IT to redefine governance and reinvent citizenship in the XXI century transforming cities from service providers to ecosystem orchestrators and therefore fostering growth and promoting entrepreneurship.
CDO TRANSPOLIS, Lyon
Stéphane Barbier, France
Stéphane is currently CDO – Chief Development Officer - of TRANSPOLIS - a smart city lab - in charge of marketing, communication, business development and the fundraising activity. Prior to that, he was deputy CEO of STUDIOSANTE a fast-growing healthcare company specialized in home healthcare services. He ran the strategic development and the global operations.
Stéphane has had a varied and exciting career. He has been Senior Director of Business Development at INVESTINLYON and General Secretary of the WORLD TRADE CENTER LYON. In his involvement in international business development, Stéphane led many strategic operations :
- he advised innovative startups and Fortune 500 companies start their business in France with a focus on the healthcare and cleantech sectors,
- he helped bringing talents to Lyon to make it one of the most attractive cities in Europe for the creative class,
- he worked closely with the finance industry - PE and Sovereign Wealth Funds from the GCC countries - to support strategic urban projects.
Stéphane started his career as Marketing Director for OTIO France, a French high-tech startup for which he set promotional and marketing actions to launch several new products and holds a Master's degree in Marketing Management from the University of Lyon and has received training in Strategic Management from EML the Lyon Business School.
As General Secretary of the WORLD TRADE CENTER LYON, member of the World Trade Centers Association in NYC, Stéphane turned a non-profit association into a profitable private company with a major real estate project. Prior to that, Stéphane ran INNOVEXPERT to boost the consulting activity for SMEs and tech companies. Stéphane co-founded PARTNERS Consulting in 1996. During 7 years as CEO, he focused on strategy and business development with international clients. At this time, Stéphane was convinced that the humanities should be better combined with technology to face new innovation challenges.
He is also a Board member of HARA (Health Angels Rhône-Alpes), the regional network of healthcare business angels.
Vice President of New Mobility at Keolis
Chris Barker, USA
Chris Barker is Vice President of New Mobility at Keolis helping to introduce new transportation options to cities and communities across North America. Keolis is a global transportation company that provides heavy rail, light-rail, bus, autonomous shuttles, car share, bike share, and sky tram service to 26 countries moving 3 billion people a year.
Chris is 20-year veteran of the transportation and technology industry. He founded transportation technology firm CBC where he has worked with transportation and technology companies, cities and governments around the world to advocate the role of technology in advancing new forms of mobility. Last year, Chris was an advisor and judge on the USDOT Smart City Challenge project and has continued to advance smart city/transportation development projects across the globe. His CBC team has also developed and deployed self-driving car simulators for State DOTs/DMVs, universities, museums and other public facilities.
Prior to running his own company, Chris has held senior business development, communications and marketing roles for multiple Fortune 50 companies. He served as the Global Director of Communications for Honeywell Aerospace, Head of Public Sector Communications and Marketing at Cisco and Senior Executive Communications Manager for the Office of the President at Boeing. He’s also held VP/SVP of business development and marketing for Text 100 Communications and Waggener Edstrom Worldwide.
Chris is a national Board Member for the Association for Commuter Transportation. He’s also been a Connected Car/Future of Mobility keynote/panel speaker at CES (Las Vegas), SXSW (Austin), RSA (San Francisco), CE Week (New York), A-Bace (Shanghai) and IAA (Frankfurt).
Managing Partner & Co-Founder ParkenPropertyPartner, Consultant Smart Parking & Mobility, Hannover
Frank Beckmann, Germany
Frank Beckmann was CFO and CEO with Q-Park, a leading carpark operator, from 2005-2015. In January 2015 he became international consultant smart parking & mobility as well advisor for investment companies within the parking sector. In August 2017 he started as managing partner & co founder ParkenPropertyPartner providing all parking expertises as one-stop shop to real estate companies.
Previously he worked for over 12 years as CFO in various companies including three years in Asia. Frank Beckmann regularly publishes newsletters on Linkedin about future developments of parking and mobility. He is member of the advisory board of the Medici Institute in India.
Coordinator of Bike Trails Implantation-2ndPhase- Barcelona City
Oscar Chamat, Spain
Oscar Chamat is a bilingual Colombian Civil Engineer and current Coordinator of Bike Trails Implantation-2ndPhase- Barcelona City. In his professional career Oscar has worked in multistakeholder urban projects with social workers, telecommunications engineers, artists and researchers in the field of creativity, among many profiles.
He also has worked on projects of different scales (small municipalities in Colombia, European projects, for the city council of Barcelona or for the Spanish state ...) as well as for companies of sectors that by their activity have an important impact in the territory. At the same time, and more markedly in recent years, Oscar has focused on knowledge transfer and generation of business opportunities between Europe and Latin America in the field of cities, innovation and technology - specifically in the field of smart cities and smart buildings.
As a complement to these projects, he currently is a guest teacher in a specialization in the field of urban innovation and citizen participation. Finally, he also created an online knowledge platform in the field of urbanism for Spanish-speaking cities.
Manuela Garcia Gil
Technical Director, Secretary of Government and Cabinet Management Medellin's town hall
Manuela Garcia Gil
Manuela Garcia Gil is a lawyer and political, specialist in commercial law and civil and insurance responsibility, Magister in commercial law at the Pontificia Bolivarian University. In her professional experience of more than 6 years, she has held various positions in the private sector in front of advisory responsibilities to companies in the productive sector.
Currently, she is the technical director of the Ministry of Government and Management of the Cabinet of the Medellin City Hall. In this position she is in charge of advising in the formulation and execution of plans, programs and projects related to the processes that are direct competition of the office of the mayor and of the Secretary of Government in order to contribute to a decision making assertive and aimed at meeting the objectives, policies and strategies.
Business Architect, Serial Entrepreneur, Member of the Board of FIWARE Foundation, Co-Founder of Smart Cities Lab
Olaf-Gerd Gemein, Germany
Olaf-Gerd Gemein is a passionate Serial Entrepreneur and Strategic Leader, having demonstrated an acumen for building businesses from the ground up while consistently injecting new ideas and leveraging technology to keep driving success. With 30+ years of experience within diverse markets in Europe, Asia, North South America and Canada, Olaf-Gerd Gemein has successfully supported 100+ projects from 13 countries in the ICT sector. Currently he is co-founding the Smart Cities Living Lab initiative globally.
He is a member of the Board of Directors of the FIWARE Foundation and head of Mission Support Domain Committee Smart Cities of the FIWARE Community. Holding a Bachelor's degree, Olaf-Gerd Gemein has extensive experience in StartUp Coaching, Incubation and Acceleration, Business Modeling, Design Thinking, Agile development and Innovation frameworks, Startup - and Innovation Cluster financing, as well as in understanding, supporting and organizing Smart Cities as enabler for wealth and economic prosperity.
Elbchaussee 28, D- 22765 Hamburg, Germany
Holtenauerstrasse 325, D-24106 Kiel, Germany
fiware.in, fi-ppp.eu, fiware.org
+49 (431) 220 26 47 - office
+49 (176) - 540 50 471 - mobile
Smart City Projects Manager, Buenos Aires
Santiago Tomás Granda
Santiago Tomás Granda is an Argentinian Systems Engineer and current manager of Smart city projects. In his professional career, Santiago has worked for multinationals companies in technical areas before entering in the public management two years ago.
Currently he works in the ministry of modernisation offering technological solutions to other areas of Buenos Aires’ government such as ministry of transportation, secretary of citizens attention and ministry of education.
Fraunhofer Institute for Open Communication Systems FOKUS
Thomas Günther, Germany
Thomas Günther, Network and Solutions Engineer, obtained his Diploma in Electrical Engineering at Beuth University of Applied Sciences Berlin. Since then, he is leading the team responsible for the IT infrastructure of NGNI. He has more than 8 years of experience as infrastructure and systems architect specializing in virtualization and cloud computing. Currently, he is focusing on operation and interconnection of cloud infrastructures.
In the past, he operated and deployed several NGN testbeds which allowed telco network operators as well as universities to develop standard-based services and Web applications. At the moment he is working in several European research projects which cover design, federation and operation of multi-site cloud-based facilities to support applications, services and systems for the Future Internet community. Apart from that, he provides general guidelines for the IPv6 transition of network infrastructures, services and applications.
Journalist, Author, Urban Historian
Jan Gympel, Germany
Keynote Lecturer, "History of Mobility in Berlin"
Jan Gympel, born in 1966 and grown up in West Berlin started working as a journalist in 1983, first for the alternative Kreuzberg monthly “Südost-Express”, in 1987 as a professional freelancer for daily newspapers like “die tageszeitung (taz)”, “Der Tagesspiegel”, “Frankfurter Allgemeine” and “Die Welt”, magazines like “Zitty” and technical periodicals like “Bauwelt” (about architecture) and “Signal” (about traffic, primarily in Berlin). In 1994 he was awarded the Deutscher Preis für Denkmalschutz (German Award for the conservation of monuments and historic buildings) for an eight part article series on Berlin railway architecture and its conservation, published in “Der Tagesspiegel”. Gympel’s main focus is on traffic and Berlin history, architecture and its conservation, film and television. He is the founder of the project Berlin-Film-Katalog and curates film programmes at Brotfabrikkino and at Zeughauskino. Since 1990 he has published numerous articles in books and about twenty books, some of them about traffic in Berlin. Gympel lives in Berlin.
OASC Secretariat Director, Brussels
Seppo Haataja, Finland
Seppo Haataja became Director of the OASC secretariat in Brussels of the Open & Agile Smart Cities (OASC) initiative in 2015.
With leadership positions in hi-tech, economic development, research collaboration and product development at Nokia, VTT (Technical Research Centre of Finland) and the City of Tampere, Seppo brings 28 years of unique experience and knowledge to the secretariat, joining both a technology and city background with an economic policy, research and business profile. Seppo Haataja was strongly involved in establishing the Wi-Fi standard for wireless networking, which we now all take for granted. He comes from a role of heading the economic development program “Open Tampere” at the City of Tampere.
VP, Global Business Development, Segway Inc.
Tony Ho, China
Tony is leading Segway’s effort in developing mid to long term growth opportunities, and building strategic partnership with key players in the mobility ecosystem, including municipalities, infrastructure providers, automotive and tourism industries.
Tony was a serial entrepreneur and an advisor to a number of early stage technology companies. He was formerly board member and Chief Operating Officer for Fangjia.com, a home valuation website based on big data and vertical search technology. Prior to that he was VP of Product and Director of Business Development for Myvu/MicroOptical, as well as other roles in technology early stage companies. Tony also worked for Procter & Gamble as a Manager in a variety of functions. Tony attended Harvard Business School where he earned his MBA, the University of Toronto, where he earned a M.Sc. Degree in Mechanical Engineering, and the University of Manitoba where he earned a B.Sc. Degree in Mechanical & Industrial Engineering.
Director of Agora Verkehrswende
Christian Hochfeld, Germany
From 1996 to 2004, Dipl.-Ing. Christian Hochfeld worked on environmental and climate protection in traffic as a research assistant at the Oeko-Institut, a research institute for applied ecology. He was a member of the management team of Oeko-Institut from 2004 to 2010. Christian Hochfeld then worked as a programme director for sustainable traffic in China at Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) a leading provider of international cooperation services for sustainable development. He has been the Managing Director of Agora Verkehrswende, an initiative of Stiftung Mercator and the European Climate Foundation, since February 2016. Christian Hochfeld has been a member of the International Advisory Committee of the China Association for Electric Vehicles (China EV 100) since 2015.
Director, Transportation Growth Initiative, Abuja (Nigeria)
Emmanuel John, Nigeria
Engr. Emmanuel Johnis the Director of Administration and Strategy of Transportation Growth Initiative (TGI), a non-governmental organization composed of private transport companies, government ministries & agencies relating to transportation, research institutes, universities, civil society and individuals with interest in transportation. TGI’s primary objective is transportation research, human resource development and networking of stakeholders in the transportation sector. Prior to this, he worked with Federal Road Safety Corps, the government lead agency on Road Safety in Nigeria for 20 years as a transport and road safety expert before his secondment to TGI. He is also presently the Series Director of the TGI’s annual International Transportation Conference which is its platform for human resource development and network African transportation experts, decision makers and practitioners with their counterparts from other parts of the world.
Associate Consultant at LuxMobility, Luxembourg
Dr. Martin Kracheel, Luxembourg
Martin Kracheel - ICT, Behaviour Change and mobility specialist, - is Associate Consultant at LuxMobility, a privately owned mobility consultancy company specialized in Mobility and Mobility Management, including Human Behaviour, Public Transport, ITS and Traffic Management, Traffic Planning, Traffic Safety, Traffic Modelling, including Traffic Simulation (macro and micro modelling) and Cycling and Policy Studies.
For over 7 years Martin has been involved in planning, design, implementation, operation and evaluation of a wide number of projects like, among the others: Driver profiling and detection systems, Driver safety and distraction studies, Driving simulation studies, Gamified Behavioural Change Approaches supported by ICT, Ride sharing proposals, Workplace interaction studies for Space Systems, Novel ICT based Integration approaches etc. As local project coordinator, Martin has participated in European funded projects and he is currently responsible for the implementation of the “TRACE” in Luxembourg. Martin is author of several scientific papers and book chapters, he is invited speaker in workshops and conferences and besides his activities in the field of mobility also an integration expert for the Luxembourgish Ministry of Welcome and Integration. His expertise and experience in the fields of respectively mobility management, implementation of large project that combine ICT, Serious Gaming, MaaS concepts and user analytics on the basis of mobile application usage data are growing every day.
Founder of SOMOS New City
UMD Co-host & Smart City Expert
Economist, MBA Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez, Founder of SOMOS NEW CITY. Ex Director of the department Future Cities at Fraunhofer Chile Research. Project leader and coordinator in the field of Smart City since 2012, e.g. launch of Smart Grid (intelligent electric network) by Chilectra in Huechuraba (2012-2013), development of two central offices for Smart Building (intelligent edification), and Smart Santiago (2014-2015). Certification: Theory and Tools of the Harvard Negotiation Project – CMI International.
Transportation Planning Section Manager, PBOT, Portland
Mauricio Leclerc, USA
Mauricio Leclerc has been a transportation planner with the City of Portland, Oregon, USA for over 10 years.
He manages the Area and Project Planning Section of Transportation Planning at the Portland Bureau of Transportation.
Mauricio has worked on multiple efforts over the years, ranging from long range planning for Portland’s Central City and planning transformative multimodal projects for Portland’s vibrant commercial corridors.
He has led planning and environmental studies for major capital projects such as the Sellwood Bridge and Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail and a number of land use, development, transportation, parking and streetscape plans.
Born and raised in Santiago, Chile, Mauricio has a Master of Urban and Regional Planning degree from Portland State University.
Dewan Masud Karim
Senior Transportation Planner at City of Toronto
Dewan Masud Karim, Canada
Dewan spent more than eighteen years of his career in mobility planning and creative engineering projects in both Japan and Canada. Using good engineering skills and holistic view on transportation planning, he focuses on “people-focus” transportation practices, which is shaping our quality-of-life as a genuine indicator of livable society. Based on factual knowledge and evidence, his transportation professional practice seek better integration to the needs of sustainable mobility users, innovative mobility modes and new smart technologies, sustainable safety and smart growth objectives. He worked in both private and public sectors. Awarded at MIT Media Lab Disrupting Mobility summit as “best planning system” and ITE Project of Year in 2015, recently he developed a new innovative mobility ecosystem master planning concept combining equitable use of public space, innovative technologies, real-time travel pattern, vision zero safety, and evidence based scientific approach of rebuilding and redesigning city’s mobility systems for people instead of cars. A few cornerstones of his career include converting “motor city” to Bicycle-friendly Oshawa“, pioneering the concept of multi-modal transportation plans and policies, multimodal station planning and redesign strategies, research experience on safe and compact street design, safe neighborhood street layout, and decongestion plan to remove elevated freeway by replacing with high-quality transit and active transportation facilities to improve quality-of-life for urban residents.
Dewan graduated from the University of Tokyo with Master of Applied Science in Transportation Planning and specialized in traffic safety from Ryerson University. He joined North York District's Transportation Planning Section as a senior Transportation Planner at City of Toronto in 2013. Besides his professional work, he shares his experience through public presentations, professional publications and teaching sustainable transportation planning and traffic engineering course.
Address: 5100 Yonge Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M2N 5V7,
Office Tel: 416-395-7076;
Head of Division, Energy and Mobility, Berlin Partner for Business and Technology
Thomas Meißner studied Mechanical Engineering at the Berlin University of Technology (TU Berlin).
His current professional position is Head of Division Energy | Mobility at Berlin Partner for Business and Technology. In this context he is also Cluster Manager for Transport | Mobility | Logistics Berlin-Brandenburg and Deputy Head of Berlin Agency for Electromobility eMO.
Besides his expert tasks, Thomas Meißner is responsible for the coordination of cluster development activities inside Berlin Partner and in close collaboration with the Berlin Senate.
In the past, he was responsible for the management of national and international RTD projects e.g. on road vehicle safety, new vehicle concepts, innovative power-train concepts, railway technology. transport telematics as well as interdisciplinary strategies for future urban areas.
Amongst other fields, Thomas’ expertise covers urban mobility, electromobility, transportation projects, transport telematics, rail systems technology, automotive engineering. He is also experience in the management of EU RTD projects.
Secretary of Transportation Buenos Aires
Juanjo Mendez, Argentina
Juanjo Mendez is Buenos Aires’ Secretary of Transportation. With previous experience as an entrepreneur, he began working in the public sector in 2010 as chief of staff of Transit and Transportation. As part of the team that implemented the “9 de Julio” BRT and the “Sustainable Mobility Plan”, he received the “Transport Achievement Award 2017” and the “Sustainable Transport Award 2014” . The plan’s main objectives include incentivizing the use of public transportation, promoting healthy mobility ways and reducing road accidents through the development of infrastructure, technology and education. In representation of the City, Juanjo is a director at the Metropolitan Transportation Agency. It’s main mission is developing public policies with the national and provincial governments in order to enhance the mobility in the Buenos Aires Metropolitan Area.
PCH Innovations GmbH - Mechanical Engineer, Industrial Sociologist, Engineering Psychologist
Dr. Michael Mischke, Germany
Dr. Michael Mischke is originally a boy scout and translated these skills and his enthusiasm into studies of Mechanical Engineering, Industrial Sociology and Engineering Psychology. He wrote his PhD in a contract for AUDI AG on handwriting recognition and multimodal interfaces for cars.
After setting up an internal service agency for HMI in the Volkswagen Group Research and altogether 10 years of industrial experience he left the corporate world to become a Berlin based Strategist and Storyteller for Human Machine Interaction, focusing on ecogood economy, digital networks, online collaboration, urbanization and mobility.
As a founding member of the WECHANGE e.G. he supports NGOs and social innovation startups from Berlin and all over eastern Europe with trainings and coaching in digital collaboration, storytelling, and networking. The digital platform WECHANGE.de provides tools for digital networking and collaboration to more than 10.000 volunteers. As a freelance UX Strategy consultant Michael worked for BMW, Volkswagen of America (ERL}, the Institute for Participatory Design in Oldenburg and the sinnwerkstatt Medienagentur GmbH, he holds numerous patents on interaction patterns and has broad experience in Service Design, participatory design processes and leadership development.
Michael joined PCH INNOVATIONS in 2015, leading long term projects and focusing on urbanization, innovation facilitation and strategy development for mayor brands. Michael Mischke is voluntarily engaged in the following groups: Junge Osteuropa Experten, Bund der Pfadfinderinnen und Pfadfinder, German Usability Professionals Association e.V.
CEO, FIBERIN - Freies Institut für Bedürfniserforschung und Internetanwendung
Gunther Neidlein, Germany
Gunther Neidlein is passionate about sustainable development in urban and rural regions. As CEO of FIBERIN (Freies Institut für Bedürfniserforschung und Internetanwendung), he's developing holistic concepts and projects out of his visions. These visions are based on his broad industry experience in energy and mobility sectors at the Bosch Group, the Rösch Consult and current trends.
According to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the "Energy Transition" is driving the current trend in "Mobility Transition" with the goal of significant decarbonization and improvement of general quality of life. For that purpose, laws are adopted or currently in adoption worldwide, to get the Resilient Smart City movement (RSCs) developing in a timely fashion.
Based on this, Mr. Neidlein and FIBERIN developed and operated technical and business prototypes for BOSS&W (Business Opportunities with Solar Systems & Wind) in cooperation with educational institutions and social clubs for the African market. A motivator here was the increasing number of refugees, especially since 2015. Additionally, FIBERIN is developing concepts and projects for innovative mobility & energy solutions for international urban applications in Prishtina, Lagos and Berlin.
Mr. Neidlein and FIBERIN is official representative of the SHMAAP - Association to Support Vocational Education and Training of the Republic Kosova.
Coordinator of Urban Mobility of the City of Santiago de Chile
Miguel Olivares, Chile
Miguel Olivares is an Industrial Civil Engineer and Execution Engineer in Transportation and Traffic. He has a Master's in Traffic, Road Safety and Mobility, with 19 years experience in the public sector. Currently, he is he Urban Mobility Coordinator at the Municipality of Santiago-Chile, where he develops and draws up the Comprehensive Mobility Plan of Santiago district, managing several mobility projects for a more sustainable transportation including walking, bicycles and public transportation. Some of his main achievements are: the construction of a cycle path network in Santiago; the remodeling of roads for public transport corridors (Plan Center); the implementation of a network for public bicycle stations and the design of pedestrian walks. In addition, Mr. Olivares is involved in road education policies for schools, and electromobility projects aimed to increase the fleet of municipal vehicles, as well as taxis and public transportation vehicles. Due to this work, the Municipality of Santiago obtained a national award (Forum Santiago 2041), two international awards (Gobernarte, category Road Safety in Action awarded by the Inter-American Development Bank and Sustainable Transport Award 2017 granted by ITDP); and a citizen recognition (For outstanding contribution to cycling mobility in the Commune of Santiago awarded by the Furious Cyclists Movement), which has meant a national and international reputation.
San Diego State University
Rene Peralta, USA
Rene is a Lecturer in the Art and Design program at San Diego State University. He is co-author, with the anthropologist Fiamma Montezemolo and writer Heriberto Yepez, of the book Here is Tijuana, Black Dog Publishing, London 2006. From 2012-2014 was the Director of the Master of Science in Architecture with emphasis on Landscape + Urbanism at Woodbury University School of Architecture in San Diego, CA.
In 2015, his work on PREVI in Lima, Peru along with his graduate students from Woodbury University was part of the exhibit; Latin America in Construction: Architecture 1955-1980 at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Currently, he forms part of Hyperloop West one of the 11 U.S. semifinalist teams developing a Hyperloop transportation route from Los Angeles, California to Ensenada, Mexico. Rene is the curator for the San Diego / Tijuana pavilion at the 2017 Seoul Architecture and Urbanism Biennale.
Fraunhofer IAO, Stuttgart
Dr. Natalie Pfau-Weller
Natalie Pfau-Weller is a research associate at the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering and manages the innovation network Morgenstadt: city insights. 11 different Fraunhofer institutes, 15 international and national cities with different population number as well as 24 companies covering various sectors from automobile to certification are in the innovation network »Morgenstadt: City Insights« to shape and implement jointly the future of the sustainable, liveable and adaptable city of tomorrow. Her research focuses on urban governance and sustainable urban development.
Natalie majored in German Studies and Hispanism and holds a PhD in Political Science. Her doctoral thesis is entitled "Do the EU measures contribute to making German cities more sustainable?“. She works with companies as well as with cities, gives lectures, prepares studies and organizes the network meetings of the Morgenstadt Innovation Network in major European cities. Being a councillor in her hometown, she understands the procedures within a German city very well.
Dr. Natalie Pfau-Weller
Competence Team Urban Governance Innovation
Phone: +49 711 970 2196
Mobile: +49 176 60994644
General Manager, Regional Transport Commission of Southern Nevada
Tina Quigley, USA
As general manager of the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada, Tina Quigley knows what it means to think big. In a city of 2.1 million residents and 42 million annual visitors, Quigley is at the forefront of visionary thinking and planning for the future. She recognizes that an enhanced multi-modal and technologically advanced transportation infrastructure will help ensure that Southern Nevada can continue to attract tourists, residents and new business. She has embraced and pushed for sweeping technological advances; she has advocated for future planning; and she has built critical partnerships to well position the region for ongoing and sustained economic vibrancy. With more than 25 years of experience in air and ground transportation management and a licensed pilot herself, Quigley leads the only agency nationwide that is solely responsible for a region’s public transit system, traffic management, roadway design, construction funding and transportation planning.
Head of Business Development at MotionTag
Fabien Sauthier, Germany
Fabien has been a key team member since MotionTag’s very beginning. Motivated by MotionTag’s vision of improving commuters’ day-to-day life with new technologies, Fabien brings his analytical skills gained through experience in the banking industry and his Master in Finance at the University of St. Gallen. As a head of business development at MotionTag, a crucial part of his mission is to meet and collaborate with tomorrow’s smart city stakeholders.
Head of Technical Management and Head of Innovation Management at Volkswagen Immobilien
Phillip Schmitz, Germany
Phillip Schmitz studied architecture at the Technical University Braunschweig and with Prof. Jan Gehl at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Kopenhagen, Department Urban Design.
He worked for several architecture offices in Hamburg and Braunschweig with a focus on housing, for Baumschlager-Eberle in Austria and for McKinsey&Company as a consultant.
As office manager Phillip Schmitz worked for Architekten Vahjen+Partner, specialists for retail property in prime business locations.
Phillip Schmitz is head of technical management and head of innovation management at Volkswagen Immobilien. He is responsible for the errection of 500 new flats on top of the existing 9000 units Volkswagen Immobilien holds in Wolfsburg. With his team he developes the new district „Steimker Gärten“ with more than 1250 flats in Wolfsburg.
As a living lab for smart mobility it becomes an important part of the initiative #WolfsburgDigital, which the city of Wolfsburg and Volkswagen announced in December 2016.
Thomas Schubert, Austria
Thomas Schubert is responsible for export markets at LEITNER ropeways facing increasing demand on urban projects. Urban ropeways provide social integration, overcome obstacles and create added value for tourism. References of the Group also produce relief on highly congested cities in an economical and sustainable manner. For cities in developing countries ropeways are an immediate solution provider, for Western municipalities ropeways represent a state of the art transport-solution with incomparably high availability.
Thomas graduated in Civil Engineering and Business Administration (New Venture Creation), has built up and restructured several subsidiaries in the construction industry while living more than 10 years overseas. His focus has been on market placement and sales of heavy equipment for infrastructure-projects, that are in particular subject to economic cycles of the public sector.
CEO CAPSULA, Smart Mobility @TAU, Tel Aviv University
Ariel Sella, Israel
Ariel Sella is the Managing Director of Capsula, a unique University Institute which promotes innovation in Smart Mobility through grants to researchers and accelerator residencies to entrepreneurs. Capsula has so far dispensed more than 10 research grants and graduated 15 startups. The Summer ‘16 cohort includes startups from Israel and abroad developing autonomous vehicle sensors, automotive cybersecurity, shared economy, machine learning for smart city, freight forwarding exchange, autonomous delivery and city cycling apps.
Prior to Capsula Ariel was an advisor, in the areas of smart energy, smart mobility and entrepreneurship to venture funds, firms, startups and universities. His assignments included Foundation Capital in the area of Electronic Design Automation, defence contractor RAFAEL in the area of microgrids; Indegy in cybersecurity for critical infrastructure; Phinergy in grid energy storage; Meteo-Logic in energy trading; BrightSource in spinout entrepreneurship; Bar Ilan University in research innovation. As a pro bono mentor to early stage entrepreneurs, Ariel worked with companies in a diverse range of domains including solar energy, energy storage, energy retailing, fleet cybersecurity and more.
Before then Ariel and his family lived for nearly a decade in Silicon Valley where he was CEO of venture funded companies in the semiconductor and supply chain domains. In the preceding decade, living in Israel, Ariel co-founded two startups which were subsequently acquired, and was a founding partner of Formula Ventures, an early stage fund managing more than $150 million, with exits such as Radlan and Phonetic Systems to his name.
From the late 1970s to the early 1990s Ariel worked in the semiconductor and Electronic Design Automation fields starting as a chip designer at Intel and concluding as the founder of new division at EDA leader Cadence Design Systems.
Ariel spent his early years in Israel, Ghana, Japan and the Philippines and received a B.A. in Computer Science from the University of California at Berkeley. He is married to Sofia, an architect and Technion lecturer with whom he has three children - Tamar who is pursuing a PhD in ethnomusicology at Harvard, Yehonatan who is pursuing a PhD in mathematics at UCLA and Evyatar, a musically oriented high school student in Israel.
Program Manager Data City Berlin at numa, Berlin
Maximilian Thess, Germany
Maximilian Thess has been involved in projects around sustainable cities since 2011. A physicist by training he is interested in how data and technology are enabling progress toward more sustainable and resilient urban systems. Currently he is building DataCity at NUMA Berlin – an innovation program that brings together the entrepreneurial drive of startups with the experience and resources of established companies to initiate innovative, data-driven smart city applications in Berlin. Maximilian studied in Berlin, Shanghai, Chennai and Lyon and interned with GIZ in Beijing and Accenture Sustainability Services in Berlin.
Head of traffic management department in the Saint-Petersburg Transport Infrastructure Development Committee, Saint Petersburg
Evgenii Vorobev, Russia
Evgenii Vorobev graduated with excellent marks from the Saint-Petersburg State Architectural-Constructional University with a specialization in “Traffic management” and started his career in the State establishment “Saint-Petersburg traffic management direction”. Since 2008 Mr. Vorobev has been working in the Saint-Petersburg Transport Infrastructure Development Committee and in 2013 he has become a head of traffic management department in the Committee.
The main responsibilities of the Committee are:
- Realization of the state policy in the field of traffic management in Saint-Petersburg,
- Control and coordination of the Saint-Petersburg State establishment “Saint-Petersburg traffic management direction”,
Traffic management within Saint-Petersburg urban infrastructure; mobility schemes’ development, dedicated to the traffic safety, enlargement of the road capacities and environmental improvement in Saint-Petersburg, using the tools of reconstruction, modernization, traffic objects’ renovation, including technical units for traffic and logistics.
Head, Smart City Vienna Agency
Mag. Dominic Weiss, Austria
Dominic Weiss received his Master Degree in Political Science and European Studies from the University of Vienna, Austria. From 2006 on Dominic worked for the City of Vienna, the Vienna Business Agency at the European department in Vienna and Brussels, responsible for EU-funding and strategy. In his function as an EU expert he was involved in numerous transnational programs dealing with IT-solutions, environmental technologies and energy efficient sources.
Since 2013 Dominic Weiss is leading the Smart City Vienna Agency of the City of Vienna which is based at TINA Vienna GmbH, a strategic orientated department owned 100% by the City of Vienna. In this position he is in particular responsible for the coordination and management of the entire Smart City Agenda of the City of Vienna. Previously he was therefore extensively involved in developing the smart city strategy of the city of Vienna. His main area of interest is the research and development of multidisciplinary urban systems, where social inclusion, active stakeholder management, technology and creativity play an important role in shaping our cities of today and tomorrow.
Since 2015 Dominic is as well an authorized Officer of TINA Vienna and further more responsible for the Smart ICT Strategy of the City of Vienna.
Director, Centre for Technology and Society, TU Berlin
Gabriele Wendorf, Germany
Panel Sessions Chair
Gabriele Wendorf is the scientific director for the Centre for Technology and Society (ZTG) at the Technische Universität Berlin (TU Berlin). She was previously a Vice President of TU Berlin and visiting professor at the Chair of Designing, Architecture and Urban Development in Global Relations. Her background is a rich mix of economics, applied science and urban development.
In addition to her long academic career, Wendorf cofounded and served as CEO of the Association for Applied Programming (Gesellschaft für anwendungsorientierte Programmierung GAP mbH)
She studied Industrial Engineering and Management, specializing in Civil Engineering a TU Berlin.
Founder & CEO DroneMasters GmbH, Berlin
Frank Wernecke, Germany
Frank Wernecke is founder and CEO of DroneMasters GmbH, a Berlin based incubator for drone related startups and automated aerial mobility. With DRONEMASTERS, he has created one of the largest networks consisting of experts from business, science and public sectors, who are actively shaping the development and the use of drones, beyond traditional industrial and sectoral boundaries.
He is invested in several companies, organized the first major drone race in Germany with around 100,000 visitors at CeBIT and invented the Dronathon, a drone marathon for industrial drones. In September 2017 he hosted the first conference on air taxis, manned drones and flying cars in Europe.
His main concern is the acceleration of change. For more than 20 years he has been working at the crossroads of digitization, sustainability and communications. At the age of 26, he founded his first company.
Today, he also runs the business of laf.li, a digital agency and jkcampaign, a Berlin based campaigning company. He is founder of the bettermap foundation, a non-profit foundation to localize Points of Social Impact, member of the research group Ethical-Ecological Rating at the Goethe University Frankfurt am Main, partner of the steering committee of TEDxBerlin and founding partner of the entrepreneur network katapult: NOW.
He lives in Berlin, is married to a lawyer, is the father of three children and likes to run marathons.
CEO of LAT Funkanlagen-Service GmbH
Larissa Zeichhardt, Germany
Larissa Zeichhardt is the CEO of LAT Funkanlagen-Service GmbH, the video surveillance and network entity of the LAT group. The German SME provides mobility related services, including (cable)construction for railroad tracks and passenger safety systems for public transport. An engineer by degree, with strong media skills and a deep understanding of the digital, Zeichhardt first build a career in packaging before joining the transport sector.
She is a board member of cable construction association (Gütegemeinschaft Leitungstiefbau), Vice President German Women's Railway Association (Allianz pro Schiene), IEEE, Women in Digital and VdU Member and initiated the InnoTrans Ladies Lunch. Her hobbies? Autonomous flying objects (motodrone.org), Augmented reality and her two kids.