Franziska Brantner

Member, German Bundestag

Franziska Brantner has been a Member of the German Bundestag since October 2013. She is the Spokeswoman on Children’s and Family policy, and the Chairwoman of the Subcommittee on Civilian Crisis Prevention, Conflict Management and Intergrated Action. Prior to this, she was a Member of the European Parliament for four years where she served a number of different roles, including as Spokesperson for foreign affairs of the Greens/EFA group, standing rapporteur for the Instrument for Stability, and as the Green’s chief negotiator for the establishment and review of the European External Action Service (EEAS). She holds a Doctorate from the University of Mannheim and a dual degree (M.A. and diplôme) from the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University in New York and Sciences Po in Paris.

Emilio Cassinello

Director General, Toledo International Centre for Peace

Emilio Cassinello is the Director General at the Toledo International Centre for Peace Law. He is also Vice-president of the Euroamerica Foundation; Founding Member and First Secretary General of the US-Spain Council; and acts as advisor and trustee to a number of organisation including the Picasso Museum Foundation in Malaga. He has been awarded the “Gran Cruz del Mérito Civil”. Cassinello joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1963 where he served in numerous functions: Deputy-Director for Africa, Director-General for International Organizations and Conferences, Director-General for Latin-American Affairs and Director of Planning Staff. He has had a number of Embassy postings, including Chargé d'Affaires in Addis Abeba and Dar es Salaam, Cultural Attaché in Mexico, Spanish Ambassador in Angola and Mexico, and Consul General in New York and Ambassador at large for North American Affairs. From 1985 to 1992, Emilio Cassinello was President of the Board of the EXPO'92, S.A. and Commissioner General of the Universal Exposition of Seville, 1992.

Chris Coulter

Head of the Dialogue and Peace Mediation Unit, Folke Bernadotte Academy

Chris Coulter is Head of the Dialogue and Peace Mediation Unit at the Folke Bernadotte Academy – the Swedish Government Agency for Peace, Security and Development. The Dialogue and Peace Mediation Unit is engaged in advisory services, support and trainings on dialogue and mediation to a number of conflict and post-conflict countries, for the UN, as well as to the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

Chris was previously special adviser on peace and security to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs in Sweden. She has worked as an international gender, peace and security expert for almost 20 years with assignments in more than a dozen countries. For example, she was a senior gender adviser to the Colombian government during the peace talks with FARC and also participated during the talks in Havana. Chris did her PhD at Uppsala University in 2006 and has published several articles, reports and the book Bush wives and girl soldiers (Cornell 2009) on the reintegration of female ex-combatants in Sierra Leone.

Marta Dassù

Senior Director of European Affairs, The Aspen Institute

Senior Director of European Affairs at The Aspen Institute and Editor-in-Chief of Aspen Institute Italia’s journal, Aspenia. She was Italy’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs from November 2011 to February 2014. She is also a member of the Board of Directors of Finmeccanica, Trevi Finanziaria and Fondazione eni Enrico Mattei. Executive President of Women for Expo and Vice President of The Center for American Studies in Rome. She sits on the Board of Directors of IAI (Istituto Affari Internazionali), as well as on the Board of the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London. She is member of the Advisory Council of the European Policy Centre in Brussels and a member of the scientific committee of the LUISS School of Government in Rome. She is a regular contributor to the Italian newspaper La Stampa. And is the author of various books and essays.

Ryszarda Formuszewicz

National Security Bureau, Warsaw

Ryszarda Formuszewicz worked as scientific associate at West-Institute of Poznań. She pursued her career at the Polish Institute for International Affairs (PISM) in Warsaw. Ryszarda also worked at the Bureau for National Security (BBN). Since January 2016, she is managing projects at Genshagen Foundation. Her expertise includes: foreign policy of the EU and Germany, German-Polish relations, Weimar Triangle, EU CSDP. She speaks Polish, German, and English.

Laurent Goetschel

Director, Swisspeace Foundation

Laurent Goetschel is director of swisspeace and a professor of political science at the Europe Institute of the University of Basel. He holds a PhD from the Graduate Institute of International Relations (IUHEI) at the University of Geneva (1993).

He worked as a journalist with the Swiss service of the Associated Press, conducted research with the IUHEI's Program for Strategic and International Security Studies (1990-1992) and with the Graduate Institute of Public Administration at the University of Lausanne (1992-1995), where he was also a lecturer (1994-1995). After having been a visiting scholar with the Center for European Studies at Harvard University (1995-1996), he joined swisspeace as a research analyst. He taught Swiss foreign policy at the Institute of Political Science of the University of Bern from 1997 to 2003, and directed a Swiss National Science Foundation's research program on Swiss foreign policy from 1997 to 2000. . From 2003 to 2004, he served as the political advisor to the Swiss Minister for Foreign Affairs Micheline Calmy-Rey. He is currently also president of the Swiss Commission for Research Partnerships with Developing Countries of the Swiss Academy of Sciences.

Tuija Talvitie

Executive Director, Crisis Management Initiative

Tuija Talvitie is Executive Director of the Crisis Management Initiative (CMI) where she leads the execution of CMI’s mission and the implementation of CMI's strategy. Tuija Talvitie has over twenty years’ experience in international leadership, social development and conflict resolution. She works on, inclusive multi-stakeholder approaches, innovation and ethical leadership. During her time CMI has more than quadrupled its turnover and staff, and continues to grow at a steady pace. Prior to joining CMI, Tuija Talvitie  was the Director of British Council Finland where she led the organisation’s transformation to a cooperative, project based actor and played an active role in the leadership team of North and Central Europe.

Peter Van Houtte

Former Member of Parliament, Belgium

Peter Van Houtte is an International Conflict Mediator, specialised in political conflicts. He is a former journalist and Member of Belgian Parliament with specific expertise in parliamentary empowerment. His area of activity is very broad, with a focus on Eastern and Southern Europe (extensive experience in the Balkans, through EU, OSCE and UN missions) and the Eastern Neighbourhood