Keynote speakers

Luis M. Bettencourt - Pritzker Director of the Mansueto Institute for Urban Innovation and a Professor of Ecology and Evolution

Luis M. Bettencourt is presenting on Tuesday 18th May. See program for details

Luis M. Bettencourt is currently the Pritzker Director of the Mansueto Institute for Urban Innovation at the University of Chicago and a Professor of Ecology and Evolution and the College. The Institute is dedicated to advancing urban scholarship and science at the intersection of classical urban theory and new data opportunities playing out globally.

In his own group, Bettencourt conducts interdisciplinary research on complex adaptive systems and leads several research efforts in the areas of the science of cities. These areas deal with the identification of cities’ systemic processes and properties as well as their local histories and contexts in identifying paths for a better quality of life for all, economic growth, and sustainable development. Towards this end, he works with international networks of researchers, local governments and NGOs in developed and developing cities to empirically understand and systematize urban knowledge and to create scientifically based solutions to many urban issues.

Bettencourt has published over 100 research papers in the urban sciences, epidemiology, computational neuroscience, information theory, theoretical and statistical physics and science of science and technology. His work is well known academically in the area of complex systems, especially of urbanism and innovation. It has been influential in developing new theory and new empirical perspectives on cities and urbanization worldwide and throughout history. His research is extensively covered in the media, including pieces in the New York Times, Boston Globe, Scientific American, Smithsonian, the New Scientist, Wired, Fortune and other leading publications in over a dozen countries.

Nancy Bocken - Professor of Sustainable Business

Nancy Bocken is presenting on Wednesday 19th May. See program for details

Nancy Bocken is Professor in Sustainable Business at Maastricht University, Maastricht Sustainability Institute (MSI). She is also visiting professor The International Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics (IIIEE) at Lund University, Sweden and Lappeenranta Lahti University of Technology (LUT), and Fellow at the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL).

Nancy's research evolves around the broad field of Sustainable Business Management and Practice. Within this, she is exploring the areas of sustainable business models, business experiments for sustainability, sustainable innovation, Circular Economy, scaling up sustainable business, and closing the 'idea-action' gap in sustainability, through development, testing and application of novel tools, methods and approaches. Her recently awarded European Research Council (ERC) grant CIRCULAR X, focuses on ‘experimenting with circular service business models’. 

Interwoven with her academic work, Nancy regularly advises various organisations and sustainability start-up initiatives. She is a co-founder of HOMIE, a company operating at the forefront of the circular economy by proposing, developing and testing new circular business models with consumers by offering pay-per-use home appliances in the Netherlands.

Before going into academia, Nancy held positions in the logistics, banking and consulting sectors. Originally from the Netherlands, she has also lived and worked in France, the UK, the USA and Sweden. Nancy holds a PhD in Engineering from the University of Cambridge.

Jari Niemelä, President of University of Helsinki, To be confirmed

Ilkka Niemelä, President of Aalto University, To be confirmed

Anne Toppinen, Director of HELSUS

Minna Halme, Director of Aalto Sustainability Hub