Speakers 20.5.2020


Jürgen Bauhus is Professor of Silviculture at the Faculty of Environment and Natural Resources at Freiburg University, Germany, since 2003. From 1996 to 2003 he worked at the Australian National University. His research focusses on dynamics and management of structure and composition of forests, the ecological function of biodiversity, carbon and nutrient cycles, as well as the adaptation of forests to global change. He published several books and more than 200 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters. For many years he has also been involved in policy advice, currently as chairperson of the Scientific Advisory Board on Forest Policy at the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture. For his scientific accomplishments he received the IUFRO scientific achievement award in 2014.

Lauri Hetemäki is the Assistant Director at the European Forest Institute (EFI), and is responsible for managing the institute’s science-policy work. He is also Adjunct Professor at the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry, University of Helsinki. He has a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Helsinki. He is the author of 200 scientific and popular publications. Previously Hetemäki worked as a part-time Professor in Forest Sector Foresight at the University of Eastern Finland; Head of Programme at EFI, and as a Senior Researcher at the Finnish Forest Research Institute. He is a Fellow of the Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry.

Fanny-Pomme Langue has a background in EU policies and agricultural law. Currently, she is Secretary-General of the Confederation of European Forest Owners (CEPF) which is the umbrella organisation of national forest owner organisations in Europe. She joined CEPF in early 2018 and prior to that she worked 5 years as Policy Director in a European association representing the EU bioenergy sector (Bioenergy Europe). From 2009 to 2012 she worked in the European Commission in DG Energy as Policy Officer and from 2006 to 2009 she was Deputy Director of French Forest Cooperatives Association – Les Coopératives Forestières (UCFF).

Gert-Jan Nabuurs is Professor of European forest resources at Wageningen University and senior researcher at Wageningen Environmental Research, WUR. His background is in European scale forest resource analyses, and management under climate change. His work has both scientific aspects as well as large outreach to the forest sector. He started the work with the EFISCEN model, the European forest resource, forest management and carbon balance model. Applications are in wood availability, effects of forest management, climate change impacts and CO2 sequestration. Further he is Coordinating Lead Author of the Agriculture and Forestry chapter in the IPCC 6AR, starting 2019.

Markus Natri is Brand Strategy Lead and partner of Valve Group – a leading business-to-business marketing agency headquartered in Helsinki.  Markus has over 25 years’ track record as brand strategist, copywriter and creative lead in international industrial branding and marketing communications with special expertise in the forest industry. His distinctions as creative planner and copywriter include Grand Prix for Best International Campaign planned in Finland , The  Best PR Campaign of the Year, Gold Effie for Best international B2B Campaign,  Gold Award for best innovative marketing campaign, etc. Before joining Valve Group Markus held several executive positions including over 8 years as CEO and Chairman of leading business-to-business agency Konsepti Group.              

Marc Palahí is the Director of the European Forest Institute and responsible for leading the organisation towards an acknowledged pan-European science-policy platform. Previously he led EFI’s policy support activities and during this time was instrumental in launching ThinkForest, a European high-level science forum on the future of forests. He has also worked as Head of EFI’s Mediterranean Facility, EFIMED. He has a PhD in forestry and economics and an MSc in forestry engineering.

Janez Potočnik is the current ThinkForest president. He is also Co-Chair of the International Resource Panel hosted by UNEP, Chairman of the Forum for the Future of Agriculture and RISE Foundation and a Member of the European Policy Centre's Advisory Council. After a successful career in Slovenia as a researcher at the Institute of Economic Research, Director of the Institute of Macroeconomic Analysis and Development, he was appointed Head of Negotiating Team for the Accession of Slovenia to the EU (1998). He was also Director of Government Office for European Affairs (2000), Minister Councillor at the Office of the Prime Minister (2001) and Minister responsible for European Affairs (2002). In 2004 he joined the European Commission, first as shadow Commissioner for Enlargement, then as Commissioner responsible for Science and Research, and from 2010-2014 as Commissioner for Environment.

Stefan Sundman is Vice President for public affairs and media relations at UPM-Kymmene Corporation, the global company that delivers renewable and responsible solutions. He has a master’s degree in wood technology from Helsinki University of Technology. His professional career of 20 years has focused on forest based sector opportunities and societal policy developments, especially within EU.  He joined UPM in 2011 and before that he was working in different specialist and manager positions within Finnish Forest Industries Federation (FFIF). He is a strong believer in renewable, biobased solutions which can offer a way to combat climate change in a world beyond fossils.

Anne Toppinen has worked since 2008 as Professor of forest economics and business at University of Helsinki. She is also a part-time leader of multidisciplinary sustainability science community (HELSUS) at her University. Her expertise focuses on corporate sustainability in bio-based and circular businesses, as well as related market analysis and development of sustainable business models. She has also studied different policy questions in the natural resource context and is interested in how to accelerate transformative changes toward sustainability.  Anne is one of the leading forest economists in Europe, with over 160 scientific peer reviewed publications. She has supervised 14 doctoral theses and about 100 master’s theses.

Chantal van Ham is EU Programme Manager Nature Based Solutions at IUCN - International Union for Conservation. Chantal is responsible for IUCNs European activities related to Nature-based Solutions. She develops and coordinates projects for biodiversity and ecosystems services conservation, restoration and valuation that help policy-makers, cities, local and regional governments and business find nature-based solutions, by mobilising IUCN knowledge and best practices. She represents IUCN in networks and fora at the European and global level to raise awareness of the value of nature to improve quality of life, climate change resilience as well as economic prosperity. Before joining IUCN, Chantal worked as Finance Specialist with PricewaterhouseCoopers in the Netherlands. She has a degree in International Business and an MSc in Forest and Nature Conservation Policy. Chantal is passionate about nature and perceives the exchange with people from different professional and cultural backgrounds as an enriching and inspiring starting point for sustainable change.