A Most Distinguished Jury

The 15 participants are selected by a distinguished Jury composed of business entrepreneurs, decision-makers, experts in rural economics and equality defenders.

They look for well-rounded candidates with a demonstrable track record in driving forward new ideas and seizing opportunities in their rural communities. The Jury is interested in applicants’ future plans and ambitions, as well as in their curiosity to better understand the potential of technology in driving equality and opportunity in their area.

Caroline Ramade

Founder & CEO, 50inTech

Maria da Graça Carvalho

Member of the European Parliament

Diego Canga Fano

Principal Advisor, European Commission DG Agriculture & Rural Development

Kim Poldner

Professor of Circular Business, The Hague University of Applied Sciences

Barbara Rambousek

Director for Gender and Economic Inclusion, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)

John Edwards

Secretary General, EURASHE

Alessandra Moretti

Member of the European Parliament

Radka Vladyková

Executive Director, Union of Towns and Municipalities of the Czech Republic

Aikaterini Liakopoulou

Business Coach for Deep-tech Startups backed by the EU Commission

Carmen Delgado Viñas

Professor, Department of Geography, Urban and Territorial Planning, University of Cantabria (Spain)

Ladeja Godina Košir

Founder and Executive Director of Circular Change & Co-chair of ECESP

Manolis Kefalogiannis

Member of the European Parliament

Bianka Siwińska

CEO, Perspektywy Education Foundation

Laura Nurski

Research Fellow, Bruegel

Bridget Cosgrave

Managing Director, Every European Digital (t/a ADIMO srl), SINCH ab Non-Executive Director,  SOPRA STERIA GROUP, EU Public Affairs Advisor

Soulla Louca

Professor, Head of Digital Innovation Department, School of Business, University of Nicosia

Aashna Puri

Senior Manager, Strategy & Sustainability, CyrusOne

Charlotte Nørlund-Matthiessen

Policy Adviser in the Cabinet of the EU Commissioner for Transport Adina Vālean, European Commission

Ruth A. Richardson

General Board member and Policy Advisor on Climate Change (INLW), Gender Equality and Advisor & Co-chair, Climate justice working group, W7 (G7)

‪Aleksandra Przegalińska

Vice-Rector and Associate Professor, Kozminski University Poland

Tsvetelina Penkova

Member of the European Parliament

Sara Bianchi

Coordinator of the SSPA Network (Sparsely Populated Areas of Southern Europe)

Josef Bernard

Head of Department, Local and regional studies, Institute of Sociology, Czech Academy of Sciences

Amelia Santos

Co-founder and CEO, Innuos

Diana Lenzi

RBS Professor, President of CEJA, the European council of young farmers; farmer and manager, family winery Fattoria di Petroio

Sven Kallen

Founder & Secretary, Life Terra

Luisa Baldini

Co-Founder, Composure Media; former Royal Correspondent, BBC

Paweł Chmieliński

Professor and Head of the Department of European Integration, Institute of Rural and Agricultural Development, Polish Academy of Sciences (IRWiR PAN)

Lenny Van Erp-van der Kooij

Senior Lecturer animal welfare and animal behaviour and Professor (UAS) Precision Livestock Farming, HAS University, the Netherlands

Lisa Varga

Founder, The Digital Collective; Director, Strategic Operations at UpSkill Digital

Nuria Salán

President, Catalan Society of Technology; Professor, UPC-Terrassa

Branwen Miles

Senior Policy Advisor, Copa-Cogeca

Annamaria Castrignanò

Professor, Department of Engineering and Geology (InGeo), UNICH

Sabina Ciofu

Associate Director – International, techUK

Fiona Whelan

Chief Marketing Officer, Director of Education and Skills, Abodoo

Claudia de Castro Caldeirinha

Senior Leadership Advisor, Redscope 

Daan Groot

Professor of Business Models for Regenerative Agriculture, HAS University of Applied Sciences, The Netherlands

Sonsoles Sánchez-Reyes

Professor, Department of English Philology, University of Salamanca; EU of Education and Tourism of Ávila

Marco Arca

CEO & Co-Founder, Siendas Academy

Cristina Almeida

Co-Founder & President, Women4Cyber Portugal

Emma Brown

Director of Public Affairs, Croplife Europe

David Rodríguez Guillén

Policy advisor at the European Parliament

Marilena Labianca

Researcher in Economic Geography Coord. Resp. ERASMUS Department of Economics University of Foggia, Italy

Cristina Andersson

Business management consultant, non-fiction writer, influencer entrepreneur, Develor Productions