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Profiles of Panellists, Speakers and Moderators

Project Updates


17 Oct 2017


Charles LANDRY
(UK)isan international authority on the use of imagination and creativity in urban change. He invented the concept of the Creative City in the late 1980s. This became a global movement and changed the way cities thought about their capabilities and resources. Charles facilitates complex urban change and visioning processes and undertakes tailored research often creating his own projects. These include the ‘creative city index’ in collaboration with Bilbao, the concept of ‘civic urbanity’ and the ‘creative bureaucracy’ jointly with the South Australian government. In 1978 he founded Comedia, a highly respected globally oriented consultancy working in creativity, culture and urban change. He has completed several assignments for a variety of public and private clients and given key note addresses and workshops in over 55 countries across the continents.

(Netherlands) is the Deputy Mayor of Eindhoven. Her portfolio includes culture, design, innovation, real estate and land development, public space (water, green spaces, light, including maintenance), cultural heritage, monuments and archaeology. She has co-initiated European innovation projects linked to design.

(India) is the Founder and former Executive Director of the India Foundation for the Arts, an independent philanthropic organisation supporting the arts in India. In an advisory capacity, he has served as the Co-Chair of Conference of Asian Foundations and Organisations; on the Advisory Council of the Asia Society India Centre; and on the India Advisory Committee of The Resource Alliance, among others. He has written on a range of subjects – including the arts and religion, corporate patronage, arts entrepreneurship, the role of foundations, intercultural dialogue, and arts philanthropy and the law. He has helped to design courses on the arts and management, served as faculty for training workshops in grant making, and used theatre methods to conduct creativity workshops. He has directed several theatre productions in different languages and locations, both in India and abroad, over the last 35 years. He studied philosophy at the Universities of Pune, Oxford and Cambridge, and taught at Elphinstone College, Mumbai, in the 1970s.

Ada WONG (China) is the Founder and Hon. Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Institute of Contemporary Culture and the Supervisor of HKICC Lee Shau Kee School of Creativity. A staunch advocate of creative education and cultural development, she founded the non-profit Hong Kong Institute of Contemporary Culture over 13 years ago. In the last two years, HKICC further launched two signature events – the Make a Difference (MaD) Platform ( and the Chinese Creative Industries Forum (CCIF) ( She was an elected Urban Councillor, District Councillor and Chairperson of Wan Chai District Council. She received her BA from Pomona College, California, USA and MEd from the University of Hong Kong. She is also an Honorary Fellow of Lingnan University and Hong Kong Institute of Education.


Tamara ABED
(Bangladesh) is part of the senior management team at BRAC. She heads two of the most profitable of BRAC’s social enterprises including Aarong; the largest retail chain of lifestyle store in Bangladesh, selling handicrafts made by its 65,000 rural artisans. She also heads BRAC Dairy, the second largest dairy operation in Bangladesh, which provides rural farmers with a value chain linkage to the market and protects them from price volatility. Tamara is also on the board of BRAC Bank, a publicly listed commercial bank with the largest SME portfolio in Bangladesh. She received her MBA in Finance from Columbia University and B.Sc. (Econ.) from the London School of Economics.

Amareswar GALLA
(Denmark) is founding Executive Director, International Institute for the Inclusive Museum. He is an alumnus of the prestigious Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi. In the past decade, he was the Professor and Director of Sustainable Heritage Development programmes, Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, at the Australian National University, Canberra and Australia’s first Professor of Museum Studies at the University of Queensland, Brisbane. Over the years, he has worked as the International Technical Adviser in South Africa and also at the National Museum of Ethnology, Leiden, on Museums and Cultural Diversity Promotion in the Netherlands. He is the Guest Curator of International Projects with the Vietnam National Department of Cultural Heritage, especially World Heritage Sites. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of three academic journals dealing with Sustainable Heritage Development: International Journal of the Inclusive Museum; International Journal on Intangible Heritage; International Journal on Environmental, Cultural, Economic and Social Sustainability.

(Finland) isProject Manager atDance Info Finland Dance Info Finland is charged with promoting the development of Finnish dance art and improving its status and operating conditions in society. In the course of this work it acts as a broad-based expert organisation whose activities include service and advisory work; reporting, publication and promotional activities; research, education and development projects; and advocacy.

Laurie NEALE
(Netherlands) has worked in the area of safeguarding Europe’s cultural heritage for the past 25 years. Trained as an architect at McGill University, she specialised in her Master’s Degree (Bartlett School of Architecture and Planning, UCL) on the study of the effects of our built environment on human behaviour and social interaction. During a decade at the secretariat of Europa Nostra, the Voice of Cultural Heritage in Europe, she was in turn responsible for managing the NGO’s Award scheme (the European Union Prize for Cultural Heritage/Europa Nostra Awards), communications and their Heritage in Danger programme. Now a member of Europa Nostra’s elected Council, she continues to advice on a number of its on-going ambitions and towards multiple stakeholders.

Phloeun PRIM
(Cambodia), CEO, Season of Cambodia, and Executive Director, Cambodian Living Arts, was born in Cambodia. He and his family immigrated to Canada when he was three years old. He returned to Cambodia in 1998 and joined a European Union program with 50 traditional Cambodian artisans. Phloeun helped to transform the program into a self-sustainable company called Artisans d’Angkor. Now employing over a 1,000 artisans and staff, Artisans d’Angkor distributes high-quality traditional handmade crafts throughout Cambodia and around the world. In 2010, pursuing his interest in social entrepreneurship, he was appointed as the first executive director of Cambodian Living Arts. His appointment followed five years serving on the Cambodian Living Arts Board. He is based in Phnom Penh.

Yolanda SMITS
(Netherlands/Belgium) of KEA is director of international business development with more than 20 years of experience in dealing with European affairs and international trade. She is specialised in copyright, trade and development issues affecting the cultural and creative industries.


Ragnar SIIL (Estonia)has been Undersecretary for Fine Arts at the Ministry of Culture in Estonia since 2011. Since 2005, he has been working at the Estonian Ministry of Culture as a Minister’s Adviser, Development Adviser and since 2007 until 2011 as the Head of the Development Department responsible for strategic planning and creative industries policy and for the creative economy agenda at a state level. His main interests are in the field of arts and cultural policies, cultural and creative industries, international and national cultural policies, cultural management, cultural districts and regeneration. In 2005, Ragnar graduated in political science from University of Tartu, specializing on international relations and public administration. Ragnar is a member of European Commission’s working group on creative industries and a chairman of the European Union’s working group for cultural and creative industries and a member of the Steering Group of Northern Dimension Partnership.

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