Dr. Newton Howard’s career spans academia, the U.S. military, and the private sector. As a prolific scientist and inventor, he has developed technology such as Siri, Wi-Fi hot spots, Skype, Google Earth, and Google Translate. Dr. Howard is a Professor of Biochemistry at Georgetown University, Computational Neuroscience and Neurosurgery at the University of Oxford and the former Director of the Synthetic Intelligence Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Dr. Howard holds advanced degrees in Mathematics (Oxford), Cognitive Informatics (Sorbonne), Neurosurgery (Oxford), and a Doctorate of Medical Sciences (Sorbonne). He has made significant contributions to the fields of neuroscience, linguistics, and national defense, including the Physics of Cognition, Intention Awareness, Mood State Indicators, the Functional Code Unit, and most recently, the Brain Code.

Dr. Newton Howard is the founder of ni2o, Inc., which is developing a novel, artificial-intelligence driven brain-computer interface to treat neurological disorders and improve cognitive performance. He also founded and sits on the board of two nonprofits: the Howard Brain Sciences Foundation, which funds innovative research initiatives to improve our understanding of the human brain; and C4ADS, which is dedicated to providing data-driven analysis and evidence-based reporting on global conflict and transnational security issues.


Eva-Maria Kirschsieper joined Facebook in 2011 as the first public policy manager in Germany and since then continuously built Facebook’s policy team for the DACH-region. Since 2014, she has been Head of the DACH policy team and today acts as Director of Public Policy.

In that role, she is responsible for the positioning of the company at the interface of politics, science and civil society. In addition to the management of the policy team Eva-Maria is particularly committed to driving Facebook’s sustainability policy agenda and has added significant impetus in that field. Among others, she is a member of the Leaders for Climate Action, a platform bringing together the world’s leading digital entrepreneurs dedicated to climate affairs.

Prior to joining Facebook, Eva-Maria Kirschsieper worked at the German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DIHK) as Head of the Telecommunications, New Services, Information Society, Postal Services Unit. From 2007 to 2009, she has been Head of Office to a Member of the European Parliament, following an engagement in the German Bundestag from 2003 to 2007 where she focused on European affairs. Eva-Maria Kirschsieper studied Political Science at the Universities of Regensburg and Erlangen-Nuremberg, the Universitá degli Studi di Padova and the Free University of Berlin.


Josef Penninger, MD was formerly a lead researcher at the Amgen Research Institute in Toronto. Since 2002 Josef Penninger was the founding and scientific director of the newly established Institute of Molecular Biotechnology (IMBA) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna, Austria. In 2018 he accepted the appointment as Director of the Life Sciences Institute (LSI) at the University of British Columbia (UBC) in Canada.

As a trained immunologist, Dr. Penninger’s research has had a huge impact in many disease areas, and in some cases opened entirely new fields of research. With particular relevance to the current pandemic, Dr. Penninger, has played a singular role at essentially all stages of Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) research, from its discovery to a rapid fundamental understanding of COVID-19 pathology and, translation of an ACE2 based drug to a highly promising, rational treatment for COVID-19.

Josef Penninger’s major awards include the Descartes Prize, the Wittgenstein Prize of the Austrian Federal Government, the Ernst Jung Prize for medical excellence, an AAAS Award, the Innovator Award from Era of Hope/U.S. Department of Defense and a second ERC Advanced grant.


Josef Aschbacher is the ESA Director of Earth Observation Programmes and Head of ESRIN, ESA’s centre for Earth Observation, located in Frascati (near Rome), Italy.

Born in Austria, he studied at the University of Innsbruck, graduating with a Master’s and a Doctoral Degree in Natural Sciences. He became a Research Scientist at the university’s Institute of Meteorology and Geophysics, 1985–89.

Josef Aschbacher began his career in ESA in 1990 as a Young Graduate at ESRIN. From 1991 to 1993 he was seconded as ESA Representative to Southeast Asia to the Asian Institute of Technology in Bangkok, Thailand. From 1994 to 2001 he worked at the European Commission Joint Research Centre in Ispra, Italy, where he was, in his last post, the Scientific Assistant to the Director of the Space Applications Institute. He returned to ESA Headquarters, in Paris, in 2001 as Programme Coordinator, where he was primarily responsible for advancing Copernicus activities within ESA. In 2006, he became Head of the Copernicus Space Office, where he led all activities for Copernicus within the Agency and with external partners, in particular the European Commission. In 2014, he was promoted to Head of Programme Planning and Coordination at ESRIN, where he was responsible for planning ESA’s Earth Observation programs and for formulating and implementing programmatic and strategic decisions across the Directorate. He took up duty as Director of Earth Observation Programmes on 1 July 2016.


Kome is Vice President - COO of Global Markets Operations Engineering at Goldman Sachs. Prior to her current role, Kome led the technology risk regulatory governance program, focused on cybersecurity policy.

Kome has assumed a number of executive management and strategy roles, working as Chief Of Staff for European Technology at Goldman Sachs and Chief Of Staff for Global Operations at J.P. Morgan in London. Kome is a motivated, values-driven executive leader with a recognized international track record of delivering results working with C-Suite executives in identifying new business opportunities and creating solutions to achieve objectives in competitive, global environments. Kome graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in International Business, Finance and Economics from the University of Manchester.

Kome is an advisory board member of The L8Bloomers. Kome’s passion lies in mentoring young black and ethnically diverse professionals in Fintech.


Alexander Wrabetz is Director General of the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation ORF since 2007.

After completing his law studies and obtaining his doctor’s degree in law in 1983, Wrabetz continued with his court internship. He then worked at the Erste Bank from 1984 to 1987. In 1987, he went on to become Assistant to the Board of Directors at the Österreichische Industrieverwaltungs-AG (ÖIAG), was Managing Director of Voest Alpine Intertrading GmbH in Linz from 1992, and subsequently Member of the Board of VAMED in Vienna, also part of the ÖIAG Group, from 1995 to 1998. He served as member of the Supervisory Board in several companies of ÖIAG and, as of 1995, he was appointed member of the ORF Board of Trustees. From 1998 to 2006 Wrabetz was Commercial Director of the ORF.


Joanne Thurlow is Head of IT for Siemens Energy, Industrial Application Solutions business unit – a global engineering organization spanning 45 countries and 6 vertical markets. Her mandate is to ensure the operational, tactical, and strategic IT environment needed to meet daily demands while moving forward with newer technologies.

With a career that has spanned multiple roles, organizations, and countries starting in her home country of Canada, UK, Norway and currently Germany, Joanne has experienced many challenges and rewards on route. This diverse experience with people, roles, cultures, and teams offset with constant change in organizations, society and technology bring a highly dynamic approach to facing today’s challenges in business.

While the technologies have changed and evolved along the way, one thing has remained constant – success depends on the individuals, the teams and then technology. Even the smallest of teams can achieve enormous results in a rapidly changing world through technology, methodology, and a healthy amount of resourcefulness and inspiration. This can be foundational to securing a sustainable future for all.


Alexander Biach studied business administration at the Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration and received his Ph.D. in 2000 with a dissertation in the field of capital markets.

From 1999 he worked at the Austrian Economic Chamber, among other things as office manager of Deputy Secretary-General Reinhold Mitterlehner as well as head of the online editorial department and communications manager for the reform of the chamber.

From 2003 to 2007 he worked at the Ministry of Transport as head of cabinet of State Secretary Helmut Kukacka with a focus on ÖBB (Austrian Federal Railways) reform. During this time, Alexander Biach was also a member of the supervisory board of Schienen-Control GmbH and since 2006 he has been a member of the board of Raab-Ödenburg-Ebenfurter Eisenbahn AG. From 2007 to 2016 he was director of the Viennese Economic Association.

In 2011 his activity in social insurance started. Until 2016 as chairman of the social insurance institution of the Viennese commercial economy, then as deputy chairman of the Main Association of Austrian Social Security Institution and from 2017 to 2019 as chairman of the board of the Main Association of Austrian Social Insurance Institutions.

Currently, Alexander Biach is the Business Location Advocate of Vienna and deputy director of the Vienna Chamber of Commerce.


Daisy Zhu currently serves as VP of Wireless Marketing at Huawei Technologies Co.

She leads the company’s marketing strategy and operations, program development and execution, new product launches, and regional business development across Huawei Wireless products and solutions.

Previously, Ms. Zhu worked as 5G Chief Marketing Officer at Huawei and was responsible for 5G standardization, solution design, and market promotion between 2014 and 2019.

Daisy Zhu has worked in the telecommunications industry for over 18 years, with extensive experience and has a deep understanding of the industry.


In his current role as Vice President of Talent Solutions EMEA, Jon is responsible for the strategic direction of LinkedIn EMEA’s Talent Solutions business and works with staffing and recruitment firms to help them find the talent they need to succeed.

Prior to joining LinkedIn in 2016, Jon was Vice President of Sales at Oracle Managed Cloud Services where he was responsible for leading the sales organization across EMEA. Prior to this, he worked in consulting and sales roles in technology businesses such as Cap Gemini, Misys and OpenText.


At the heart of Katrin Suder's career is the understanding of technologies and their impact on companies, societies and individuals.

In 2000 she received her doctorate in theoretical physics. Afterwards, she worked for McKinsey & Company from 2000 to 2014 with a focus on the telecommunications, IT and public sector. From 2014 to 2018, Suder was the Permanent State Secretary for Planning, Armaments, IT & Cyber at the German Federal Ministry of Defence.

She took over the chairmanship of the Digital Council of the German Federal Government in 2018. Since 2019, she has served as Senior Advisor to EQT and MacroAdvisoryPartners and acts as a supervisory board member.


Leonore Gewessler is the Federal Minister for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology.

In her prior position, she worked from 2014 on as Political Director of Global 2000 – Friends of the Earth Austria back in Austria. In addition to her professional activities, she was also a member of the board of Friends of the Earth Europe. Leonore Gewessler holds a Bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Vienna.


Markus Müller was born in Klagenfurt in 1967 and in 1993 he graduated “sub auspiciis" at the Medical Faculty of the University of Vienna. He then underwent training in departments of emergency medicine, oncology, endocrinology, infectious diseases and chemotherapy, clinical pharmacology, and angiology in Austria, Sweden, and the USA and gained a doctorate in clinical pharmacology (1998) and internal medicine (2001).

In 2004 he qualified as a professor and became Principal of the University Department of Clinical Pharmacology of MedUni Vienna at Vienna General Hospital. He earned an international reputation through his work on developing clinical microdialysis and his expertise in the clinical development of innovative drugs and vaccines. Amongst other things, he was heavily involved in the clinical development of several vaccines against influenza H5N1, influenza H1N1, borreliosis/Lyme disease, and Alzheimer's disease, to name but a few.

In 2014 he was appointed Chairman of the Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) of the WHO Ebola vaccination program (VEBCON). Markus Müller has published more than 200 original papers in the field of internal medicine and clinical pharmacology and has won several prizes; for example the Tanabe Award of the American College of Clinical Pharmacology (ACCP) in recognition of his innovative approaches to clinical pharmacology studies. Until 2011 he was Vice-Rector for Research and since 2015 he is the current Rector of MedUni Vienna.


Dr. Andreas Bierwirth, born 1971, has been CEO of Magenta Telekom (formerly T-Mobile Austria) since September 1, 2012.

Bierwirth is a member of the Supervisory Board of the sister company Telekom Deutschland and was previously Chairman of the Supervisory Board of T-Mobile Poland from 2015 to 2016. After training as a banker, Andreas Bierwirth studied business administration at the University of Münster and received his doctorate (Dr. rer. pol.) from the Institute of Marketing. As Deputy Managing Director of Eurowings, he developed the repositioning and rebranding of the Lufthansa subsidiary Germanwings from 2002, which he headed from 2004. After two years as Vice President Marketing of Deutsche Lufthansa, he was appointed Chief Commercial Officer of Austrian Airlines in 2008 and Chief Financial Officer from 2009 to 2012. Bierwirth is a trained professional pilot and Non-Executive Board Member of EasyJet, London.


Emerald is a world-renowned Privacy and Data ethics expert, award-winning entrepreneur, speaker and lecturer.


She currently leads the EMEA privacy team at Logitech after her success as the CEO and founder of Eurocomply. Forbes named her one of 100 female founders to watch. She speaks regularly at events such as TEDx, WomeninTech and Dublin Tech Summit. In addition to her work in privacy, she is a fierce advocate for female entrepreneurship and equality. She is a faculty member at the Law Society of Ireland and serves on the external advisory board of University College Cork School of Law.


Jolawn is the Chief International Officer at Headspace based out of the company’s UK office where she leads operations including sales, marketing and partnerships around the world (excluding the US and Canada).

Prior to Headspace she led Emerging Markets and Global Expansion for Intuit, where she was responsible for business in over 150 countries outside of the US. She joined Headspace as a product leader in 2020 with eighteen years of engineering, marketing, and innovation experience from the consumer packaged goods industry.

Jolawn previously worked at PepsiCo, where she led the potato chip innovation business on the $3.5B Lay’s brand, launching customer favorites including Lay’s Poppables, Habanero, and Lightly Salted flavors. Her role focused on driving global share and profit growth through crafting a 3-year innovation strategy. Before her time at PepsiCo, Jolawn shoveled Cheerios and stirred Progresso soup for General Mills. She worked as a project engineer, managing small to medium capital projects driving innovation and productivity.

A native of Minneapolis, MN, Jolawn attended Spelman College and Georgia Tech where she graduated from a dual-degree program with BS degrees in Physics and Electrical Engineering. Jolawn attended NYU Stern’s School of Business, where she graduated with an MBA with a Marketing concentration in 2009.


Prof. Dr. Jochen Maas has been Managing Director Research & Development at Sanofi-Aventis Deutschland GmbH since October 2010. He also heads the German R&D Hub, one of three integrated research and development centers worldwide, and is a member of the global management team. In addition to his work in industry, Jochen Maas holds lectures on pharmacokinetics and drug delivery systems as a professor at the Technical University of Central Hesse.

Jochen Maas is a biologist and veterinarian. He began his industrial career in research in the pharmaceutical division of Hoechst AG in Frankfurt as head of the animal pharmacokinetics laboratory. After his function as a group leader and assistant to the executive board, he became head of the Drug Metabolism & Pharmacokinetics department in Frankfurt, followed by similar areas of responsibility for the successor company Aventis in Paris and throughout Europe. At the same time, he was responsible for the entire development department in Germany before finally taking on responsibility for both research and development in Germany as managing director.


Carolina Aguilar is co-founder and CEO of INBRAIN Neuroelectronics, a bioelectronics startup using graphene to develop the most intelligent interface in neuroelectronic therapies to treat brain related disorders.

Carolina studied Neurosciences in US and after several business degrees she worked in Medtronic for more than 13 years as Business Director in Deep Brain Stimulation and lately as Global Business Director of the first Medtronic's Value Based Healthcare (VBHC) provider model, helping winning the VBHC European Prize in 2018 upon which the model was featured in a Harvard Business School Case. Combining materials sience innovation, AI driven-signal processing theory and VBHC principles the company aims to decode brain signals into sustainable medical solutions to treat and empower millions of patients around the world.


Jochen Borenich is a member of managing board at Kapsch BusinessCom.

As a leading ICT-partner in digitalization, the company operates as a consultant, system supplier and service provider. Kapsch BusinessCom supports companies and institutions in taking their performance to a next level and developing new business models. Kapsch is a partner for keeping abreast of rapidly evolving digital technologies thanks to its expertise in handling large quantities of data and all matters of IT-security, in addition to the valuable experience gained from successful implementation of various use cases across numerous industries.


In her role at Crate.io, Eva Schönleitner brings a special focus on expanding the direct and indirect sales areas to position Crate.io as the preferred provider of real-time database solutions for IIoT customers and users globally.

Eva studied chemistry and mathematics at the Kepler University in Linz and holds an MBA from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. She spent 20 years in the U.S. in sales, marketing, and product management roles within the high-tech sector. Eva gained additional international experience in Central and Eastern Europe in senior management positions and has been building global digital partnerships at ABB since 2017 as part of the company's digital strategy.


After studying business administration at the Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration and the Rotterdam School of Management, Alexander Schönegger gained professional experience in numerous international positions. From 2005 to 2018, he worked for Nespresso in Europe and Asia, most recently as President and Representative Director at Nespresso in Tokyo, Japan. Since May 2020, Alexander Schönegger joined Philip Morris Austria in the position of the Managing Director.


In 2006 Alexander Windbichler finished the HTL Mössingerstraße in Klagenfurt. Halfway between the written and the oral exams he founded Anexia on the foundation of his diploma project as a one-man business.

In 2007 the company has been transformed to the ANEXIA Internetdiensleistungs GmbH. Since the foundation in 2006 Alexander Windbichler is the sole CEO of the Anexia group, which also includes a German and an US American subsidiary as well as the internet provider Telematica and the mass hoster netcup. 2018 Anexia has been awarded the Austrian coat of arms.


Dkfm. Wolfgang Kaps is the General Manager for the Specialty Care Business Unit Rare Diseases, Oncology, Immunology, Multiple Sclerosis. Kaps has many years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry.

In 2003 he joined the Sanofi Group and initially held several positions with growing management responsibility in Germany and Austria. Since March 1 2019 he has taken on the role of Sanofi Austria's General Manager and represents one of the leading pharmaceutical companies in Austria with around 150 employees and a broad portfolio of prescription-only products, vaccines, and OTC products for self-medication. Wolfgang Kaps is Vice President of Forum of Pharma Industry (FOPI) / Trade Organisation of R&D Pharma industry and Member of the Board at Pharmig (Association of the Austrian Pharmaceutical Industry).


Nora Blum is CEO and co-founder of Selfapy, which offers online therapy for people with mental illness. She studied psychology at the University of Cambridge and gained clinical practice during her work in various psychiatric and psychotherapeutic practices, before working for the company builder Rocket Internet. With Selfapy, she is pursuing her goal of helping people with the support of digitization.


Kristina Knezevic is Country Manager XING Austria

Since April 2019 Kristina Knezevic is the Country Manager for XING in Austria and has many years of strategic and operational experience in marketing and sales. She embodies the principle of 'New Work', which XING stands for, and drives the vision of a better working life internally and externally.

XING is the leading social network for professional contacts in German-speaking countries and accompanies its members through the paradigm shift in the world of work. In an environment of skills shortages, digitization, and change of values, XING supports its 16 million members in harmonizing work and life as harmoniously as possible.


Matthias Moosbrugger is member of the management of Rhomberg Bau in Bregenz, Austria. As Chief Digital Officer (CDO) he is responsible for the areas of Marketing and Communication, Strategy, Digitalization, Sustainability and Innovation as well as the processes and systems summarized in the internal management system (IMS).

Moosbrugger worked in after-sales marketing at BMW AG, as assistant to the management board at Russmedia and as marketing and communications manager at Volksbank Vorarlberg before joining the Rhomberg Group in 2013. Moosbrugger holds a Master's degree in International Economics and Management from the University of Applied Science Kufstein, a Bachelor of Business Administration from the Helsinki Business Polytechnic in Finland, and an MBA degree in "New Business Development In Digital Economy" from the Johannes Kepler University in Linz.


Marko Berković is passionate about the power of software, how it is improving lives and reshaping businesses. At GitHub, Marko is Regional Director South EMEA, helping large businesses drive innovation through better software, leveraging the power of open-source software development.

Before joining GitHub, Marko held sales and management roles at leading technology companies, including DELL EMC and Alfresco Software. Marko holds a Master’s Degree in Management Studies from the University of Aberdeen. He has fifteen years of experience in the IT industry and lives in Vienna.


Andreas Kunze is the CEO and Co-Founder of KONUX. He studied Information Systems at TUM and Stanford University. In 2016, Andreas was the youngest CEO to be on the “40 under 40 entrepreneurs"-list by Capital Magazine. In early 2017, he got selected among Forbes' “Top 30 under 30 - Europe” and 2018 selected in the MIT Technology Review list of "Top Innovators under 35 Germany" and became part of the „European Young Leader“ (EYL40) Program as well as a "European Digital Leaders" and the youngest "Global AI Council Member" of the World Economic Forum.

His AI company KONUX transforms railway operations for a sustainable future. KONUX has raised +$50 million with leading Silicon Valley investors such as NEA and Andy Bechtolsheim. The company won the national mobility award "Deutscher Mobilitätspreis", the German digital award "The Spark" in 2016, and the CoX Award for AI in the category "Best Innovation in IoT" in 2018. KONUX was selected by the World Economic Forum (WEF) as one of the world’s 30 most innovative start-ups and scale-ups worldwide.



Dejan Jovicevic is a visionary digital entrepreneur, start-up enthusiast and media manager. He is founder and CEO of der brutkasten, Austria's multimedia platform for startups, the digital economy and innovation.

Jovicevic started his career as a lawyer in a global law firm. His career took him further into the media industry, where he worked in various management positions, most recently as head of HR & Law in the "Presse" / WirtschaftsBlatt Media Group (Styria Media Group). At the same time he was co-responsible for the group-wide "Innovation Incubator" in the Styria Media Group.

As an intrapreneur he founded der brutkasten in autumn 2014 and successfully established it as the first start-up medium in Austria. In 2017 the management buyout followed. With this step, Dejan became an entrepreneneur himself and develeoped der brutkasten from a plain medium to an innovation platform with a multitude of services.

Since then, he has successfully pursued a multi-channel strategy, offering his community video formats, podcasts, social media and events in addition to print and online magazines. Currently der brutkasten focuses strongly on its job platform with a focus on start-ups, smart brands & the innovative industry.

Dejan Jovicevic also teaches Media Innovation and is Vice Chairman of the 3rd Senate of the Austrian Press Council.


Barbara Stöttinger is the Dean of the WU Executive Academy and the Academic Director of the Professional MBA Marketing & Sales. She holds a doctoral degree from WU Vienna.

In 2003, she earned her post-doctoral qualification in international marketing. Before joining the Institute for International Marketing Management, Barbara Stöttinger worked in the marketing department of an international consumer goods manufacturer (consumer electronics) and as a consultant.

As part of her research, she has spent considerable amounts of time in the USA and in Canada. Moreover, she has lectured on marketing and international marketing in Europe, Asia and North America for many years and has won several teaching awards.


Damita Pressl is a news anchor, journalist and event host based in Vienna, Austria.


She hosts her own discussion show as well as a news show and has shared a stage - or a studio - with various personalities, from chancellors and the Austrian president to well-known academics and prima ballerinas. Damita holds Masters degrees in Psychology from UCL and in Journalism from FH Wien. She is fluent in English, French and German as well as proficient in Spanish and Romanian. In 2019, she was chosen as a "30 under 30" journalist by the Austrian magazine "Der Journalist".


Siegfried Meryn is the Founder & CEO of CAPE 10 House of the Future and Social innovation, Founder of Health.DigitalCity.Wien, Founder of the Austrian Broadcasting Company ORF Health Advisory Board and Member of the National Bioethics Commission of the Chancellor of Austria.


Martin runs editorial at Austria’s second-largest news website „derStandard.at“ and the broadsheet newspaper „Der Standard“ in Vienna.

Before, Martin has been deputy editor-in-chief at the German news site „ZEIT Online“ in Berlin, where he ran editorial product, engagement (social media, SEO, community), interactive storytelling, investigative reporting, and data science. Before, Martin has been an investigative editor at Germany’s weekly paper „Die Zeit“, and a politics editor and Page Two editor at „Süddeutsche Zeitung“ in Munich. Martin is a neuroscientist and did the Knight Journalism Fellowship at Stanford University in 2014.



Follow Us