Discover the speakers of the Policy Conference

16 October 2023

Discover the speakers! FoodSHIFT 2030 Policy Conference

Check out the speakers from the Final Policy Conference and consult the agenda to know more here.


Policy Conference Agenda and Booklet



Luke Schafer – FS2030 Co Coordinator & Food System Researcher, University of Copenhagen 

Luke brings holistic thinking, strategic foresight, exceptional inter-personal skills, leadership experiences and academic rigor to his work supporting the transformation of food systems. With a dynamic and tactful approach, Luke has demonstrated an exceptional ability to spearhead the co-creation and execution of intricate, multi-disciplinary, multi-actor networks while prioritizing the diverse needs of stakeholders—a crucial factor in overseeing the operationalisation of Food System Living Labs. 

Eduardo Cuoco – Director IFOAM Organics Europe / Head of Secretariat TPOrganics 

Eduardo is involved in the establishment and management of the European Technology Platform “TP Organics” (as Head of the Secretariat). He is currently participating in different expert groups such as the Agriculture Knowledge and Innovation Systems (AKIS-SCAR) and the Euro-Mediterranean Expert Group (EMEG) and he is member of the board of the “International Technological Innovation Platform for Organic” and member of the Scientific committee of Fondazione Campagna Amica. He has been involved in organic farming since 1998 and collaborated with organizations and public institutions working for the development of agri-food policies.  

Dr. Karen Fabbri – Deputy Head of Unit Bioeconomy and Food Systems, Healthy Planet Directorate, DG Research and Innovation – European Commission, Brussels  

Karen has over two decades of work experience at the European Commission, where over the years she has held various positions focussing on the interface between science and policy in areas such as food systems and nutrition, environment and sustainable development, disaster risk reduction, integrated coastal management, and responsible research and innovation. Karen currently leads the Food 2030 work at the Directorate General for Research and Innovation, where she is Deputy Head of Unit of Bioeconomy and Food Systems. There she is responsible for the development of EU research and innovation policy for sustainable healthy and inclusive food systems. 

Silke BeirensVice-Mayor City of Oostende 

Staff Member International Entrepreneurship, West Flanders Development Agency (2009-2018)
Owner ‘De Lunchbar’, a small restaurant in Oostende starring vegetables (2014-2016)
Coordinator different programs on cooperative farming, Nyabimata, Rwanda (2007-2009)
Staff Member International cooperation, City of Oostende (2005-2007) 

Christian B. Henriksen – FS2030 Coordinator & Associate Professor, University of Copenhagen 

Christian is the FoodSHIFT2030 project coordinator and leads the Climate and Food Security Group at the University of Copenhagen, which, provides him with a key strategic role in guiding the process of transforming the European food system toward a low carbon circular future, including a shift to less meat and more plant-based diets. Christian actively works on innovative solutions to achieve this by applying scenario analysis, environmental indicators, GHG accounting and decision support systems to increase food value chain efficiencies. 

Dirk Wascher – FS2030 Innovation Manager, SUSMETRO 

Dirk holds academic degrees in landscape planning from (Germany and USA).  As director of SUSMETRO ( he is Innovation Manager for the FoodSHIFT2030 project. In this position he worked closely with the living labs and became familiar with the regional opportunities and challenges when driving the transition of the regional food system towards more plant-based and sustainable food. He also leads the establishment of a Community of Practice for the FEAST project in close coordination with the Food2030 Project Collaboration Network initiated by the CLEVERFOOD project. Mr. Wascher has worked for the European Commission (EEA-Task Force) as well as for Wageningen UR on agri-environmental and food related research. Mr. Wascher has taught landscape architecture at the University of Michigan, Wageningen University and Dayton University. 

Silvia Schmidt (she/her): Debate Moderator, Policy Manager, IFOAM Organics Europe

Silvia Schmidt is Policy Manager at IFOAM Organics Europe, the European association for organic food and farming. Her expertise lies in agri-food policies, with a focus on topics related to sustainable food systems, sustainability labelling, green public procurement, and organic processors and retailers. Previously she worked as a consultant at DG SANTE (European Commission) and for the European association of consumer cooperatives, Euro Coop. She is Italian-German and holds a BSc in health and nutrition, and a MSc from Wageningen University in food safety.


Panel discussion 1: Governing food system transformation

Alexandra Nikolakopoulou – European Commission, DG sante, head of unit farm to fork Strategy 

Alexandra Nikolakopoulou has steered and coordinated work leading to the adoption of the EU’s Farm to Fork Strategy in 2020. Under her leadership, the Unit coordinates the implementation of the Farm to Fork Strategy and oversees some of its main initiatives, such as the general framework for sustainable food systems, the Code of Conduct on sustainable food practices, the monitoring of the strategy and actions related to the reduction of food waste. Throughout her career in DG SANTE, she has been dealing with issues relating to food labelling and general food law, biotechnology, health claims, food supplements and foods for specific groups.  

Ana Moragues Fau, (She/Her) – Senior Ramón y Cajal researcher and director of the Food Action and Research Observatory (FARO), University of Barcelona 

Ana has worked for two decades on achieving fairer and more sustainable food systems, developing her case studies in Europe and Latin America. Her research has contributed to expanding the field of critical food studies. She carries out her transdisciplinary research under principles of participatory action research, co-producing knowledge with public institutions and social entities. In recent years, her work has focused on analysing the role of cities in the transformation of the food system, supporting different cities to rethink their socio-ecological impact and create a liveable future for all. She is the lead editor of the Routledge Handbook on Urban Food Governance and is also part of the team drafting the report on urban and peri-urban food systems of the High Level Panel of Experts of the Committee on World Food Security.

Beatrice Walthall, (She/Her) – FS2030 Governing the Transition Leader, human geographer, sociologist, activist researcher, ZALF 

Beatrice is a human geographer, sociologist, and co-founder of the Berlin Food Policy Council. While researching food system dynamics for 10 years, she has followed and integrated many perspectives, including systems thinking, placed-based and civic-driven approaches, food sovereignty, agroecology and storytelling. Beatrice is currently working at the Leibniz Centre for Agricultural Landscape Research (ZALF) in the H2020 project FoodSHIFT2030. Within FoodSHIFT2030, she leads the work package on “Governing the Transition” and facilitates the FoodSHIFT Accelerator Lab in Berlin.  

Malgorzata Bartyna-Zielinska, (She/her) – FS2030 Wroclaw FAL Host, Head of the Climate and Environment Division, Wroclaw Municipality 

Malgorzata is an urban planner and has extensive experience in creating planning and policy documents. She is involved in process of creating Wroclaw Food Policy. Wroclaw city is a part of FoodSHIFT2030 project  –  Host in Wroclaw LAB. Within FoodSHIFT2030 project Malgorzata’s  team is responsible for creating vegetable gardens at schools and kindergartens and promoting community gardens in the city. 

Panel discussion 2: Citizen-driven food system transformation

Danielle Wilde – Sustainable Food Transitions, University of Southern Denmark 

Professor in Design for Regenerative Futures, Umeå University, SE; Work Package Lead and local coordinator, FUSILLI: ;  specialised in participatory research through design; food living labs; embodied, multispecies and sensory ethnographies. 


Maarten Crivits, (He/him) – FS2030 Citizen Empowerment IP Leader, Post Doc Researcher, ILVO 

Maarten has been working on the citizen empowerment track of the Foodshift project. He has investigated the different conditions that allow for a transformation towards active citizenship in food systems. Here, the role of addressing food governance structures as they emerge in different regions is of crucial importance.

Maud Bausier – FS2030 Barcelona FAL Innovator, Co-founder of Domingo Club 

Maud Bausier is?a Belgian designer based in Barcelona,?Spain. Her?journey has been fuelled by a passion for circularity, digital fabrication, and meaningful design. She co-founded?Domingo Club as a dedication to impactful solutions. Her expertise is in?mycelium growth, open hardware and fermented food. 

Raluca Barbu – FS2030 Brasov FAL Leader, Co-founder and administrator of Highclere Consulting.  

Raluca Barbu has over 15 years of of experience in rural development policy-making and related activities in Romania and at EU level with a particular focus upon policy measures for small-scale farming, local food systems and short food supply chains. Raluca is co-ordinating the Romanian ‘Living Lab’ in AgriLink – co-creation and multi-stakeholder approach for direct marketing and the Brasov ‘Accelerator Lab’ in FoodSHIFT2030. 

Sally Bourdon (she/they) – FS2030 Barcelona FAL secretary, researcher Fab Lab Barcelona
Sally is a critical action researcher at Fab Lab Barcelona at the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia where she participates in the Food Tech 3.0 FoodSHIFT2030 accelerator lab, serves as Global Activities Lead for the Distributed Design Platform, and is a faculty member of the Master on Design for Emergent Futures. She uses her  interdisciplinary background, rooted in transecofeminism, to support the creation of a just present based on citizen-centered societies that produce locally and connect globally.

Panel discussion 3: Organic vs. plant-based, dichotomy or harmony?

Elena Walden (she/her): Senior Policy Manager at Good Food Institute Europe

Elena Walden is a Senior Policy Manager at GFI Europe. Based in Brussels, she engages with EU policymakers to advance sustainable proteins like plant-based and cultivated meat to create a better European food system. Her background includes political and NGO roles in London, Paris and Brussels, and experience in both the UK and European Parliaments.

Kurt Sannen – Organic Livestock Farmer in Diest 

Kurt Sannen is a senior researcher at the Flemish Institute for Nature and Forest Research. He focuses on scientific research into nature-based solutions in agriculture. His organic farm ‘Bolhuis’ based in Diest, Belgium, counts cattle of local breed (Kempisch Roodbont), sheep and goat, that play an important role in the management of several nature reserves. Kurt was successively chairman of Bioforum Vlaanderen vzw, the umbrella organization for organic agriculture in Flanders and chairman of the farmers group of IFOAM Organics Europe.  

Line R. Nielsen Changing Food 

Line has more than 12 years of experience in various public institutions, such as the City of Copenhagen, Copenhagen House of Foods and the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries of Denmark. She has designed and gathered partners for EU-projects and large national projects in Denmark. She has a profound believe in using public kitchens as a driver towards a sustainable food system and has led the development and implementation of a new concept of school food in Copenhagen. 

Picture  by Liv M. Kastrup/Madland. 

Panel discussion 4: City-regions and Living Labs, for long-term food system transformation

Anja De Cunto: Head of food, Eurocities

Anja Katalin De Cunto is head of the food team at Eurocities, the network of major European cities. Since 2013 she has worked on European projects and initiatives that support cities in developing successful strategies and policies and replicating them across Europe, particularly on climate and food policy.
She represents cities’ interests in developing the EU proposals for a legislative framework for sustainable food systems, part of the Farm to Fork strategy, which includes more strategic use of public procurement for food system transformation and acknowledging the role of food environments.

Dr Daniela Lüth – Policy Officer and the European Commission, DG RTD, Unit Bioeconomy & Food Systems 

Daniela has extensive experience in consumer insights and market research with 10 years of experience in the private sector, focusing on the food sector and grocery retail. She is now working on food system transformation, especially in an urban context with place-based solutions and integrated citizen science, and responsible for the foreseen Horizon Europe Partnership on Sustainable Food Systems for People, Planet and Climate. 

Henk Renting – Lecturer & Researcher Urban Food Systems, Aeres University of Applied Sciences Almere NE 

Henk Renting is connected as researcher and lecturer to AERES University of Applied Sciences in Almere, the Netherlands. He has a background in food studies and was involved in international research projects on topics like sustainable food systems, regional development, short food supply chains, and inclusive food governance. He previously worked as consultant for the RUAF Foundation, a.o. in an international project with FAO on City Region Food Systems for developing integrative food governance approaches in 8 cities across the world. He also was member of the technical team that developed the Milan Urban Food Policy Pact and acted as programme manager in the Dutch City Deal network Food on the Urban Agenda. He is currently involved in the EU project European Forum on Urban Agriculture (EFUA), looking into the contribution of urban agriculture to city region food systems and policies for enhancing this. 


Kathy Belpaeme – FS2030 Ostend FAL Leader, Food Policy Officer, City of Oostende 

Kathy Belpaeme started working at the city of Ostend (Belgium) as project coordinator for the Horizon 2020 project FoodSHIFT 2030 in February 2020. Kathy is fascinated by all aspects of sustainable food and agriculture and has been involved in local fruit and vegetable farming for over 20 years. In addition to her own vegetable garden, she started the ‘Biopluktuin’ in Ostend 12 years ago, a csa (community supported agriculture), where two organic farmers now grow vegetables for 300 people.  


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