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Mogens Blicher Bjerregård

Mogens Blicher Bjerregård is president of EFJ, Denmark. Freelance international and president of the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) since 2013. Educated journalist and now consultant on capacity building of media organisations and on media development for democracies through fellowship programmes for the EU. Dedicated on authors’ rights, board member of Copydan 2002-2016 and again from 2019. Member of Authors Rights Expert Group at the EFJ. Have for three decades been dedicated to press freedom and trade union work: 16 years as president of the Danish Union of Journalists 1999-2015; expert in authors’ rights; self-regulation and ethical standards including fighting hate and fakes for the Nordic Council of Ministers. Being in the founding process of the International Media Support, co-signing the MoU of the Council of Europe Safety Platform, board member of the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom. Representing Denmark at UNESCO IPDC from 2014.

Věra Jourová

Věra Jourová is currently Vice President of the European Commission for Values and Transparency and deals with democracy, rule of law, media pluralism and fight against disinformation. From 2014 to 2019, she served as EU Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality. In 2014, before arriving to the European Commission, Ms Jourová held the position of Minister for Regional Development in the Czech Republic. Before this, from 2006 to 2013, she worked in her own company as an international consultant on European Union funding and was also involved in consultancy activities in the Western Balkans relating to the European Union Accession. She holds a Degree in Law (Mgr.) and a master degree (Mgr.) in the Theory of Culture from the Charles University, Prague.

Ramona Strugariu 

Ramona Strugariu is a Member of the European Parliament elected in Romania in 2019, affiliated to the Renew Europe Group. She is a member of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home affairs and a substitute in the Committee on Budgetary Control, as well as a Vice-chair of the Delegation to the EU-Moldova Association Parliamentary Committee. As of 2019, Ms. Strugariu is one of the initiators and co-chairs of the Media Working Group in the European Parliament She studied Law at the University ‘Al. I. Cuza’ from Iași, Romania, where she also obtained her Master degree in European Law. After working as legal adviser and playing an active role in civil society organisations, she came to Brussels where she worked as an adviser in the European Parliament for several years.

Richard Burnley

Dr. Richard Burnley joined the EBU Legal Department in 2010 from the Office of Communications (OFCOM) in the UK, where he was Senior Legal Adviser. In 2012, he was appointed Head of Regulatory, in 2016 Director of Legal/General Counsel, and then in 2018 Director of Legal and Policy/General Counsel. He has also worked as a competition lawyer in a leading international law firm in Brussels and London, as well as in DG Competition, European Commission.

Burnley studied English law and German law at King’s College, London University, and holds an LLM from the Humboldt University of Berlin and a PhD in European law from the European University Institute in Florence.

Leon Willems

Leon Willems was appointed Director of Policy and Programmes of Free Press Unlimited in May 2011. He leads Free Press Unlimited jointly with Ruth Kronenburg, Director of Operations of the organisation. Under their leadership, Free Press Unlimited has grown from a Dutch based media development organisation into a broad based internationally renowned media development actor, working in over 40 countries of Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the MENA region, carrying out projects in cooperation with 150 partners on an annual basis. Mr. Willems expertise includes strategy development, policy implementation and innovation. Free Press Unlimited promotes collaborative journalism for social justice and social accountability, fostering cooperation between Civil Society actors, Journalism, and government actors.

Willems initiated the International Coalition of Civil Society Organisations for the Safety of Journalists, which serves as a consultative body for the UN Plan of Action for Journalist Safety and led the advocacy to improve the efforts to monitor, report and investigate threats to journalists as mandated to UNESCO. Free Press Unlimited has become a world leader in emergency support to journalists in danger and is currently carrying out a cold case investigation project into journalist murder, a Safer world for the Truth. Investigative journalism work includes the creation of Publeaks, Money Trail and investigating with Tempo.

Barbara Trionfi

Barbara Trionfi is Executive Director at IPI. She joined the organisation in 2000, as a press freedom adviser for the Asia-Pacific region, where she had previously studied and worked for over four years, carrying out research in the field of human rights and freedom of expression. Later, as press freedom manager, she oversaw IPI’s global press freedom monitoring and coordinated IPI’s global advocacy. With an academic background in international relations and human rights, Barbara has taught courses at Webster University, Vienna in Media Ethics, Media Literacy and Cultural Diversity and the Media.

Marc Gruyber

Marc Gruyber is currently based in Strasbourg; Marc is an independent media expert working for various organisations. In 2019 he drafted the report of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe on “Threats to media and journalists’ security in Europe” and in 2021 he the produced a research on “Building independent media to counter political interference” on behalf of the European Federation of Journalists. Before that, he worked at the secretariat of the International/European Federation of Journalists between 2001 and 2014, dealing with European media policies and media freedom issues in relation with the EU institutions, the Council of Europe and the member organisations of the EFJ across the continent, with a particular focus on Eastern Europe. He also worked as a freelance journalist in France in 2014-2015 and he regularly participates to election observation missions in Eastern Europe on behalf of international organisations

Václav Štětka

Václav Štětka is Senior Lecturer in Communication and Media Studies at, Loughborough University (UK), and Principal Investigator of “The Illiberal Turn” project. His research interests encompass political communication, the role of media in the rise of populism and polarization, and the relationship between media and democracy in Central and Eastern Europe. He is an active contributor to several international research projects and networks, including the Digital News Report (Oxford University), Media Pluralism Monitor (European University Institute in Florence), or the Network of European Political Communication Scholars (NEPOCS). Since 2019 he is member of the Committee for Editorial Independence of the Czech media house Economia.

Patrick Penninckx

Patrick Penninckx is Head of Information Society Department Council of Europe. Penninckx has spent the last 30 years of his career with the Council of Europe, contributing to the transformation processes of the Organisation and developing partnerships with international and national institutions.

Currently heading the Information Society Department under the Directorate General Human Rights and the Rule of Law, Patrick coordinates standard setting and cooperation activities in the fields of media, internet governance, data protection, cybercrime, and artificial intelligence. He is also responsible for projects related to public-private partnerships and cooperation with business partners.

His professional focus encompasses areas such as freedom of expression, safety of journalists, sound internet governance, international standards in the data protection, action against cybercrime and the impact of AI on human rights.

An outspoken public speaker promoting the Council of Europe values and achievements, he holds Political Science and Educational degrees from the University of Leuven.

Previously, Patrick oversaw Human Resources policy development, transforming the administrative management of personnel into a competency based human resource policy.

Anna Kireeva

Russian, based in Murmansk. Arctic environmental journalists. Co-author and editor of numerous reports devoted to nuclear and radiation safety, oil and gas issues, and other environmental topics. Freelance journalist for several European media houses. Lecturer and speaker about different aspects of Arctic life, environment, and journalism in the Russian part of the Barents region.

Since 2014 headed Barents Press Russia – a network of journalists in the Russian part of the Barents region. Barents Press International is a network of contacts between journalists from the Barents region of Russia, Norway, Finland, and Sweden. It’s a unique and success story of cooperation between journalists of the four countries, started in 1994. The main aim of this network is cooperation and establishing trust between journalists of the Barents region.

Gunta Sloga

Executive Director, Baltic Centre for Media Excellence. Gunta Sloga is an award-winning Latvian journalist and editor, who has received wide recognition for her reporting and investigations for the flagship Latvian daily newspaper “Diena” and other media outlets. As commissioning editor of Latvian Public Television, she oversaw development of high-quality factual entertainment, original drama and other content and directly contributed to strategy development for the public broadcaster. Gunta Sloga has also been active in journalism non-profits aimed at strengthening quality journalism and was in charge of the Media Programme at the Soros Foundation Latvia, which supported new media initiatives and professional dialogue. She has been a strong supporter of the freedom of speech and independent media in Latvia.

Currently, Gunta Sloga is the Executive Director of the Baltic Centre for Media Excellence – a regional resource centre for journalists and a hub of media literacy initiatives.

Elias Carayannis

Dr. Elias G. Carayannis is Full Professor of Science, Technology, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, as well as co-Founder and co-Director of the Global and Entrepreneurial Finance Research Institute (GEFRI) and Director of the European Union Research Center, (EURC) at the School of Business of the George Washington University in Washington, DC.
Dr. Carayannis’ teaching and research activities focus on the areas of strategic Government-University-Industry R&D partnerships, technology road-mapping, technology transfer and commercialization, international science and technology policy, technological entrepreneurship and regional economic development.

Gulnara Akhundova

Gulnara Akhundova is the Head of Department for Global Response at International Media Support (IMS) in Copenhagen. Across four continents IMS helps to strengthen professional journalism and ensure that media can operate in challenging circumstances.

Akhundova-led Global Response Department manages a portfolio of rapid response interventions; Eastern Europe, Latin America, global advocacy and safety, gender and media, documentary film and production. She brings a deep knowledge of the key technical issues, politics, applicable research and best practices pertaining to Eastern Europe issues, international human rights law, Council of Europe & UN Human Rights Council. Akhundova is a human rights defender with wide-ranging international advocacy expertise. Akhundova has reported on and advocated for scores of writers and journalists who have been censored, threatened, intimidated, unjustly prosecuted, imprisoned, attacked, blackmailed or murdered. She has contributed stories on violations of press freedom to a number of international media outlets, including Libération, The Independent, and Huffington Post.

Laurens Hauting

Laurens Hauting joined the ECPMF in September 2020 and leads the organisation’s advocacy activities, to raise awareness and provide direct responses to threats to media freedom that build on monitoring and analysis. Previously, Laurens worked in legal and programme coordination roles for civil society organisations in the United Kingdom and Switzerland on freedom of expression, counterterrorism, sexual orientation and gender identity, and judicial independence. He also interned in the European Parliament’s Human Rights Unit. Laurens holds degrees in history and in law from the Ghent University in Belgium and a postgraduate degree in EU law from Maastricht University in the Netherlands.

Leif Lønsmann

Leif Lønsmann is a journalist, editor, and former radio director at the National Danish Broadcasting Corporation. He has served as vice president of the EBU Radio Group and the World Digital Media Organization and has more than 30 years international experience as a lecturer and media advisor. Mr. Lonsmann is currently serving as a Member of Board at the Nordic Journalist Centre.

Krzysztof Bobinski

Krzysztof Bobinski, former Warsaw correspondent for the Financial Times in Warsaw from 1976 – 2000. Publisher of Unia & Polska, a magazine on Poland and the European Union from 1998 to 2004. Later co chair of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum (EAP). Currently on the board of the Society of Journalists (Warsaw) and deputy chair of the Council of Media Ethics in Poland.

Magdalena Adamowicz

Magdalena Adamowicz – Member of the European Parliament of the 9th term, doctor of law, solicitor, academic teacher.

Ms. Adamowicz graduated in law from the University of Gdańsk, and after completing her legal advisor apprenticeship, she obtained the professional title of solicitor. After defending her dissertation and obtaining a doctoral degree in legal sciences, she began working at the Faculty of Law and Administration of the University of Gdańsk, and as an academic teacher at the university’s Faculty of Maritime Law. She graduated two schools of foreign law: the School of English and European Law’s introduction to English and E.U. law organized by the University of Cambridge, as well as the School of German Law’s Deutsche Rechtsschule Danzig organized by Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität in Bonn. She specializes in maritime law, including maritime transport law and maritime insurance.

Ms. Adamowicz is a driving force behind the international coalition “Imagine There’s No Hate” (#ITNH), that she established following the tragic death of her husband Paweł Adamowicz, who was for more than two decades the mayor of the northern Polish city of Gdańsk and was stabbed while on stage at a charity event in January 2019 and died soon after.

In the European Parliament, she is a Chair of the Delegation for relations with South Africa and sits on the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee, Transport and Tourism Committee and the Legal Affairs Committee. She is also a member of the Delegation to the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly.

Wout van Wijk

Wout van Wijk is Executive Director at News Media Europe, representing over 2500 European news media brands in print and online, on radio and television. News Media Europe is committed to promoting the freedom of the press and the freedom to publish, and to championing the news brands vital to European democracy. Prior to this, Wout held the position of senior EU affairs manager at Huawei Technologies in their Brussels office, where he led their work on Cyber Security and Data Privacy Protection. Wout also worked with the European Commission on Trust and Security related policy and research. He started his career as a Government Affairs manager for the trade association of Europe’s direct marketing industry, FEDMA where he worked on data protection and privacy issues.

Wout holds an MScs in Communication Studies from the Twente University, The Netherlands and an MA in European Public Affairs from Maastricht University, The Netherlands.

Tine Johansen

Tine Johansen (1975) is President of the Danish Union of Journalists and board member of International Media Support. Educated from the Danish School of Journalism and has been working as a journalist at the daily tabloid Ekstra Bladet and the Danish broadcaster DR