2020 Speaker

Ben Joakim

Ben is a social entrepreneur with over 15 years experience of working in international development. He is the Founder & CEO of Disberse, a new type of financial institution built for the aid industry, enabling organisations to move and manage funds across the globe, more transparently and efficiently, for the greatest impact.

Ben was formerly a Global Advisor at SNV Netherlands Development Organisation, leading a $30 million project portfolio, primarily across sub- Saharan Africa, whilst developing global strategy. He has also led UK charitable trusts and foundations, and invested in a number of early stage social enterprises, both in the UK and internationally. He sits on the advisory board for Fintech Wales.

Ben is a Cardiff University and UWC Alumnus.

2020 Speaker

Gina Rippon

Gina Rippon’s research involves state-of-the-art brain
imaging techniques to investigate how the brain interacts
with its world, and what happens when this process goes
wrong. She is an outspoken critic of the misuse of
neuroscience research to misrepresent our understanding of
the brain and, most particularly, to prop up outdated gender
stereotypes. In her new book The Gendered Brain, she
challenges the idea that there are male and female brains,
and offers a 21st century model for better understanding of
how brains get to be different.

2020 Speaker

Cathy Hawley

Cathy Hawley is a practicing architect known for her work in housing, urban form and strategic sustainable development. She was a founding Partner at Riches Hawley Mikhail Architects who were four times Housing Design Award Winners and BD housing architect of the Year 2009. Their Clay Field project won an RIBA Award and was mid-listed for the Stirling Prize. Goldsmith Street, a social housing development in Norwich, delivered by Mikhail Riches, was awarded the 2019 Stirling Prize.

Cathy works in collaboration with practices including Citizens Design Bureau and muf architecture/art, as well as with Local Authorities, on projects for sustainable rural and urban infrastructure and housing.

2020 Speaker

Jon Alexander

Jon Alexander is co-founder of the New Citizenship Project, a strategy and innovation company on a mission to support the shift in the dominant story of the individual in society from Consumer to Citizen, whose client list includes The Guardian, the European Central Bank and the European Journalism Centre. Jon is a Fellow of the Young Foundation and the Royal Society of Arts, and a member of the OECD’s Future of Democracy Network. Having begun his career with a decade in the advertising industry at agencies including BBDO and Fallon, he is a proud former winner of Brand Republic’s Big Idea of the Year Award, for creating the concept of MyFarm in 2011: handing over decision making on a real working farm to the public by online vote and debate as a way of engaging people with sustainable food production. He holds three Masters degrees in disciplines spanning humanities and business; has won several essay awards including the inaugural Ashridge EABIS Sustainable Innovation Award, and the Young Foundation’s Beyond Meritocracy Prize; and was a major contributor to the recent bestseller New Power (shortlisted for Financial Times Book of the Year 2018, by Jeremy Heimans and Henry Timms). Along the way, Jon has also represented Great Britain in two different sports.

2020 Speaker

Juha Kaakinen

An experienced and passionate developer of innovative housing solutions to homeless people and social housing. Juha Kaakinen is Chief Executive of Y-Foundation, the biggest Finnish NGO providing housing for homeless people and social housing with a housing stock of 17 000 flats. Before, he has worked in public administration of the City of Helsinki and as a CEO of Social Development Ltd, a company devoted to developing social and health services for cities and municipalities. He has also worked as a programme leader of a national programme to end long-term homelessness, and as a researcher and a consultant. He is internationally known as an advocate of Housing First policy.

2020 Speaker

Kate Ardern

Kate attended Manchester High School and read Medicine at Manchester University.  She was awarded the RCGP Professor Patrick Byrne Prize for General Practice. Kate has an MSc in Epidemiology and Health and Membership of the Faculty of Public Health. She was awarded Fellowship of the Faculty of Public Health 2006.  Kate is an Honorary Professorship at Salford University where she is a co-researcher on the NIHR funded evaluation of Greater Manchester’s innovative Communities in Charge of Alcohol programme. Kate is also a Visiting Professor at Chester University.   Kate is Lead Director of Public Health for the Greater Manchester Combined Authority for Health Protection and Emergency Planning & Response, in addition to her substantive post as Director of Public Health for Wigan where she is also Chief Emergency Planning Officer and the Council’s chief commissioner for Leisure Services. 

She is currently lead DPH for the Greater Manchester Health and Social Care  Partnership for alcohol and substance misuse harm reduction and health protection transformation, including the development of a multi-agency antimicrobial resistance programme for the conurbation and has led the Greater Manchester health protection sector-led improvement work on which she was asked to attend and give evidence to the House of Commons Health Select Committee as part of their inquiry into public health functions in England post 2013. Kate co-chairs the Greater Local Health Resilience Partnership and is a member of the Greater Manchester Resilience Forum. She is a member of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Longevity strategic advisory board and the Chief Medical Officer’s advisory roundtable. Kate is a regular contributor to the Kings Fund senior leadership programmes and has been asked to contribute to NHS Scotland’s Leadership Cubed programme and the reforms of the Scottish Public Health system.

2020 Speaker

Morten Kabell

Morten Kabell is an urbanist, former politician and advocate for bikes, green transport and life-sized cities. All his adult life, he has been politically active, locally to improve the city of Copenhagen and move towards a mobility model less dependent on cars; and internationally to spread the knowledge about sustainable and resilient cities.

Kabell was member of the City Council of Copenhagen for 20 years from 1998 to 2017. During the last term, he served as Mayor for Technical and Environmental Affairs, thus political responsible for urban planning, environment and climate, utilities, and smart city solutions.

During Kabell’s term as mayor, Copenhagen set new records in cycling as a mainstream mode of transport with 62% of Copenhageners and 43% of all commuting being done on two wheels.

Kabell left politics at the elections of 2017 and joined in 2018 Copenhagenize Design Co., where he was CEO until the beginning of 2020. Kabell is also Member of the Board of Advisors for the Ross Center for Sustainable Cities at the World Research Institute. He has previously been board member of companies like Greater Copenhagen Utilities and Copenhagen City and Port Corp. In May 2019 he accepted a position as board member of Bycyklen, the city bike share programme in Copenhagen.

Kabell has from February 1st been co-CEO of the European Cyclists’ Federation.

Morten Kabell is born and raised in Copenhagen, but is currently living in Brussels. He is an avid reader of science fiction and alternative history.

2020 Speaker

Neil Sartorio

Neil is a strong believer that we live in a world that is sub-optimal compared to art of the possible. He has a lifelong passion regarding the power of public services to deliver real life-enhancing outcomes. Working through the years in Government, Consultancy & the Third Sector he has led thinking and then implementation of reimagined local public services. Central to this belief is that taking a citizen-centric approach can develop stronger and safer communities for all.

Outside of his partnership at a global consultancy, this passion has led him to get directly involved in three social enterprises that focus on building aspiration and opportunity in some of the most vulnerable parts of our country. The latest venture is In-House Records, an award-winning record label run by prisoners that Neil is co-owner and director. This initiative has led to delivering reduced violence in the prisons it operates, a zero re-offending rate and the ability to turn intervention into prevention through its work with the London Gang Exit programme.

2020 Speaker

Jazz Austin

Jazz Austin is the Project Manager of the Giving Nature a Home in Cardiff project. This is a partnership project between RSPB Cymru, Buglife Cymru and Cardiff Council, which aims to connect children, families and communities with nature and empower them to act to help wildlife. 

After completing an Architecture BA with Cambridge University, Jazz has since completed an MSc in Conservation Science and Policy with Exeter University, where her research focused on the effect of non-native plants on pollinator networks.

Jazz has led two ‘Art and Conservation’ themed expeditions with Sail Britain around the Scottish Hebrides and regularly shares her hiking adventures through watercolour sketches.

2017 Speaker

Pete Burnap

Pete Burnap discusses the work they do in their lab to analyse hate speech online. He shares with us some of their surprising findings, and how we can work together to make the internet safer for everyone.

Pete is a Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) at Cardiff University and Social Computing research priority area lead in the School of Computer Science & Informatics’ Complex Systems research group. He has developed a reputation for data-driven, innovative, and interdisciplinary research that broadly contributes to the growing field of Data Science, working closely with the Cardiff School of Social Sciences and School of Engineering.

Pete is an applied computer scientist with a principal focus on data and computational methods to improve understanding, operations and decision making outside of academia, while contributing to the academic fields of Social Computing, Web Science and Cybersecurity. These three fields are integrated within his research through the analysis and understanding of Web-enabled human and software behaviour, with a particular interest in emerging and future risks posed to civil society, business (economies) and governments. He achieves this using computational methods such as machine learning and statistical data modelling, and interaction and behaviour mining, opinion mining and sentiment analysis to derive key features of interest.

Pete’s research outcomes are organised and disseminated via the Social Data Science Lab, within which he is a director and the computational lead.