Rebecca Chesney is a Research Director with IFTF's Food Futures Lab. She researches
topics ranging from the future of global food security to augmentation of human senses,
leads partnerships and collaborations across the food system, and is a frequent public
speaker to audiences around the world. She has been featured in Wired UK's future of food
issue, IBM's think Leaders series, The Financial Times, and Canadian Grocer Magazine,
and she is a member of the Google Food Lab. Rebecca is particularly interested in exploring
how people use food to reinvent the ways in which we live, work, and connect with one
Before joining IFTF in 2013, Rebecca was a financial management policy analyst with World
Bank and a research assistant for the European Union's FoodRisC Project at the University
College Dublin. She was one of ten accountancy graduates selected from across the United
States for the Financial Accounting Standards Board's 2007 postgraduate technical program,
and that same year was awarded Texas A&M University's Earl Rudder Memorial
Outstanding Student among 11,000 graduates.
Culturally curious, Rebecca has lived and worked across the globe, from China to Palestine
to Lesotho. She is an award-winning food and travel photographer and a Certified Public
Accountant. Rebecca holds a BBA in Accounting and MS in Finance from Texas A&M
University and an MA in the Anthropology of Food from SOAS, University of London.
Peter Klosse comes from a family with a lot of interest in gastronomy. His parents were the
founders of Restaurant De Echoput in Hoog Soeren. In 1967 the restaurant already had one
Michelin star and in total the restaurant had a Michelin star for 36 years. Klosse's father was
one of the founders of the Alliance Gastronomique. His son Karel now has the organizational
strings in his hands.
Peter Klosse is mainly in his career looking for the roots of gastronomy. It led to the
establishment of the Academy of Gastronomy and the writing of more than fifteen books.
The focus is on the Taste Style concept on which he obtained his PhD in 2004 from the
University of Maastricht at the Faculty of Health Sciences. Peter Klosse has since been
known as a 'taste professor'. He has also been a lecturer since 2011, first in Leeuwarden
and now in Maastricht at the Hotel Management School.
Mark Post is a Dutch pharmacologist, professor of vascular physiology at Maastricht
University and professor of angiogenesis in tissue engineering at the Technical University
In 2008 he was the first in the world to present a proof of concept for “cultured meat”.
In August 2013, the first cell-cultured hamburger was cooked and tasted live on air in
London, England. Professor Mark Post created the burger at the University of Maastricht.
However, the majority of the muscle strands were grown in media with fetal bovine serum. In
early 2015, New Harvest provided Mark’s lab with $50,000 to conduct additional research
towards a completely animal-free system for growing cultured meat.
Post joined the KNAW Interuniversity Cardiology Institute of the Netherlands before being
appointed full-time Assistant Professor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA
in 1996. Five years later, he moved with his lab to Dartmouth Medical School, Hanover, NH,
and was appointed Associate Professor of Medicine and of Physiology.
In July 2002, Post returned to the Netherlands as a Professor of Vascular Physiology at
Maastricht University and Professor of Angiogenesis in Tissue Engineering at the Technical
University Eindhoven. Since January 2004 he has been Chair of Physiology and Vice Dean
of Biomedical Technology at Maastricht University. In 2016 he was selected to join the
SingularityU The Netherlands faculty due to his pioneering work in cultured meat and the
sustainability of food production.
Matteo Vignoli is professor in Economics and Management Engineering at the University of
Modena and Reggio Emilia in the Faculty of Engineering II (Reggio Emilia campus) and has
been a member of the Department of Science and Methods Engineering in Reggio Emilia
Since 2008. From 2010 to 2011, he was Visiting Scholar at Stanford University.
Prof. Vignoli is the only Italian member of the Design Thinking Education Network, an
international network of universities coordinated by Stanford University with over 40 years
experience in applying Design Thinking to innovation.
Currently, he is involved in building the future through research, training and business
practice all centered around the application of Design Thinking and in recent years has been
using the world renowned Reggio Approach in university courses as well as in master
program in business education.
He teaches in several master programs and business schools, has published over 20
publications and has worked with many national and international companies on innovation
Co-founder with her husband Andrea Magelli of You Can Group "Innovation and Entrepreneurship for Growth", an entrepreneurial ecosystem that since 2004 has been fueling the creation of new startups mainly in the food and tech sectors as well as supporting business partners in innovation processes. Her recent philanthropic projects, Future Food Institute and the co-working space COB, focus on future scenarios of food and social innovation. She is a professor of entrepreneurship, and has been active since 2010 in Unindustria Bologna as President of “Tradeshow Marketing and Communications section” in the Tertiary Sector. In 2012, Sara was honored with the Marisa Bellisario Award for Young Entrepreneurs as well as the Chamber of Commerce of Bologna Young Entrepreneurs Award. She has been a member of the delegation of the Young Entrepreneurs of Confindustria G20 YEA SUMMIT since 2013, and since 2014 she is member of the Advisory Board of the CLab funded by the Fondazione Banca del Monte e Cassa di Risparmio Faenza and YouthStartup.com. Her most recent international initiative through the Future Food Institute is the Food Innovation Program. This unique and global initiative, in partnership with Prof. Matteo Vignoli and the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia as well as the Institute for the Future in Palo Alto, aims to inspire and shape a new generation of entrepreneurs and innovators in the food chain.
Prof. Diego Maria Macrì
Francesco is an Architect and is the founder of FabLab in Reggio Emilia. He received his architecture degree from the Politecnico di Milano and Escuela Tecnica Superior de Arquitectura in Barcelona. After an experience working in Paris at the Studio of Mario Cucinella Architects and in Bologna at StudioIosa Ghini, Francesco established BBStudio Architecture and Design in 2001 in Reggio Emilia. Francesco’s professional and personal interests in the areas of Smart Cities and Smart Communities culminated his personal inspiration of project, production and social Innovation to establish FabLab in Reggio Emilia in 2012, powered by Reggio Emilia Innovation, within Spazio Gerra. FabLab is a small scale laboratory space that uses a series of open source computer-controlled machines for new forms of creativity for industry and artistry. Francesco also teaches industrial design within the Department of Mechatronics Engineering and Management at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia.
Prof. Diego Maria Macri is a professor at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia in the Faculty of Engineering in Reggio Emilia. He is also the coordinator of the undergraduate program in Engineering and Industrial Management and master program in Engineering Management as well as a member of the Politecnico di Torino Evaluation Committee. In addition, Prof. Macri is in charge of the area of management control for the Master in Business Studies at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia and teaches management control systems. He is the author of numerous books and national and international publications. He has collaborated in various interventions of organizational redesign and re-engineering of processes and design of control systems for major national and multinational organizations and non-profits.
Marina Gorbis is a futurist, social scientist and executive director to the Institute for the Future (IFTF), a Silicon Valley non-profit research and consulting organization. Marina has brought a futures perspective to hundreds of organizations in business, education, government, and philanthropy to improve innovation capacity, develop strategies, and design new products and services. She is the author of 'The Nature of the Future: Dispatches from the Socialstructed World' which focuses on how social production is changing the face of major industries. She has also blogged and written for BoingBoing.net, FastCompany, Harvard Business Review, and major media outlets. A native of Odessa, Ukraine, Marina also calls Silicon Valley, Europe, India, and Kazakhstan home and is particularly well suited to see things from a global viewpoint. She has keynoted various high profile international events such as the World Economic Forum, The Next Web Conference, NEXT Berlin, the World Business Forum, the National Association of Broadcasters annual convention, and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges annual conference. She holds a BA in psychology and a master’s of public policy from UC Berkeley.
Nicoletta Cavazza teaches Social Psychology and Psychology of Persuasion at the University of Modena-Reggio Emilia. Prof. Cavazza graduated in Political Science in 1987, obtained a Masters in Advanced Studies in 1991 at the Laboratory of Experimental Social Psychology at the Université Blaise Pascal, Clermont Ferrand and obtained her PhD in Social Psychology in 1995 at the University of Bologna. She is currently Associate Professor in the field of Social Psychology within the Faculty of Communication Sciences and Economics at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia. Prof. Cavazza teachings include interview and questionnaire techniques and the Psychology of Persuasion. Her research interests include processes of change in attitudes; ambivalence aptitude; psychological factors in explaining political behavior; psychosocial aspects of non pathological eating behaviors. She is the author of numerous publications and has been the managing editor of the journal Psicologia Sociale since 2005
Prof. Fischler’s main area of research focuses on the comparative, social science perspective on food and nutrition, their role and determinants in societies and cultures. Specifically, his work covers the structure and function of cuisines, taste and preferences, body image and their evolution and change over time and space. Subsequently, he has also ventured in the topic of perception of risk, “scares” and crises, on comparative approaches of attitudes toward food and health across cultures; reception and perception of sensitive technologies (including novel foods); and the assessment and measurement of well-being and quality of life in a comparative perspective. on the interface between the biological and social behaviors and practices in eating; the social, symbolic and aesthetic functions of food; risk perception and food crises; the issue of obesity and body image; food behavior disorders (TCA); the uses of new technologies as well as the markers and measures pertaining to quality of life. His current research focuses on a commensality – eating together- its forms and functions, roles in culture and society, its politics as well as its possible impact on public health. The anthropology of commensality ties into the general issue of sharing food at the local and global levels. He has published numerous article an chapters on these issues as well as several books, including L’Homnivore, Du Vin, Manger. Prof. Fischler serves on many Committees and Boards such as the French Agency for Food Safety and the European Food Safety Authority.
Daniela Barile’s research program focuses on bovine milk functional glycomics. Her particular research interests are in combining an understanding of the chemical and biological properties of food components with analytics and engineering to characterize, bioseparate and biointegrate bioactive compounds in foods.
In connection with this aim, her research spans three distinct but intersecting topics: i) analytical discovery of complex carbohydrates by microchip-based Mass Spectrometry, ii) development of efficient separation systems to isolate the identified carbohydrates in foods and food by-products, and iii) elucidation of the specific interaction of the carbohydrates with the human body and demonstrate the health benefits.
In addition to her work in the lab, she will access the food-grade pilot-scale filtration equipment in the Milk Process Research Lab (MPRL) to generate new carbohydrate fractions for functional studies to support the translation of these molecules as selective prebiotics. Research in the laboratory also embraces the characterization of glycosylated bioactive components in industrial by-products to enhance commodity agriculture, food processing and develop unique functional ingredients.
Matthew Lange’s research program is helping to define and shape a new scientific discipline
known as Food Informatics, while simultaneously enabling the engineering of a computable
infrastructure for the burgeoning Internet of Food (IoF). Part Semantic Web (SemWeb), part
Internet of Things (IoT), the IoF is the global, evolving knowledge base of food that exists as
ontologies and linked object data (LOD) stores. These IoF infrastructure components allow
anyone on the Internet to contribute what they know about food and also find answers to
their questions. As the IoF matures, terminologies used to store information in, and query
from, these repositories must be harmonized using standardized, structured vocabularies.
These terminologies, known as ontologies, enable interoperability between internet devices
as well as query by people via natural language text. In addition to enabling computational
interoperability and query--standardization of ontology terms and their axiomatic
relationships facilitates artificial intelligence via reasoning and deep learning. In connection
with engineering infrastructure for the Internet of Food, Dr. Lange’s research focuses on
these key areas:
● Building multi-ontology frameworks for combining knowledge stores across the
environment⇔agriculture⇔food⇔diet⇔health knowledge spectrum and value chain
● Working with subject matter experts to create ontologies as “formal, explicit
specifications of a shared conceptualization” within each of the above food
● Developing new methods to make ontology creation, curation, and acknowledgement
easier and less technical
● Engineering of query, artificial intelligence, and software components across local
and global IoF data stores and ontologies--for semantically enabled sensors,
robotics, and knowledge applications related to food, sustainability, and health.
Caleb Harper is the founder of the CityFARM research group within the City Science Initiative at the MIT Media Lab. His current work at the lab is focused in the areas of building integrated and control environment agriculture, actuated sensing, control automation and data-driven resource and energy optimization in urban farming. In addition to his role at MIT, Caleb has been a consultant to international development agencies including the DDA, IDB, and USAID on high-density low-income urban housing projects and has worked professionally on international projects in the high tech space, including data centers, healthcare and fab facilities. Caleb holds a Masters from MIT and Bachelors from Washington University in St. Louis and Baylor University and is deeply committed to the future of urban food and housing research at MIT.
Dr. Luigi Rovati received his Electronic Engineering degree in 1989 and PhD in electronic engineering and computer science in 1994 both at the University of Pavia, Italy. From 1995-2001 he was a researcher and Assistant Professor at the Department of Electronics for the Automation at the University of Brescia. He joined the Department of Information Engineering at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, in 2001, where he presently is Associate Professor of Electronic Instrumentation and Measurement Science. His research activities have been towards the study and the development of low noise, highperformance, innovative instrumentations. Currently his research activity is related to the design of innovative biomedical instrumentation mainly oriented to ophthalmic diagnostic systems. Prof. Rovati has over 30 papers published in international journals, 57 presentations at international conferences with published acts, 5 book chapters and 6 industrial patents. Prof. Rovati was involved in various research projects carried out between academic and industrial partners. He is involved in a direct cooperation between the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia and the National Center For Microgravity Research, NASA-JGRC (Cleveland, USA). Moreover, he is an external consultant for the evaluation of funding proposals on research projects for I.N.T.A.S (International Association for the promotion of cooperation with scientists from the independent states of the former Soviet Union)
Prof. Grassi teaches courses in Mechanical Plants, and Advanced Design and Management of Manufacturing Systems. He was vice director of the Doctorate School in Industrial Innovation Engineering at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia from 2011-2013. His research activity is mainly aimed at solving problems inherent to manufacturing systems in their various aspects (production, logistics), development of heuristic algorithms for the solution of combinatorial problems, the development of stochastic analytical models for performance assessment, the development of methodologies to assess safety in manufacturing systems, the design of plant facilities, the development of analytical models for logistics and for maintenance management, the optimization of production processes in food industry, the development of analytical and simulative models for automated production line design. Results of his research activity have been published in international journals and in national and international conferences. He is responsible of research projects funded by companies located in Emilia Romagna region, and cooperates in research projects funded by multinational companies. He is a member of the Direction Board of the "Associazione Italiana Docenti di Impiantistica" (AIDI).
Thomas Reardon is Professor, MSU Distinguished Faculty, and AAEA Fellow - Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics AT. He was also competitively selected as a prestigious 1000 Talents Program Scholar (with association with Renmin University of China 2012-2014), and a Distinguished Faculty at MSU in 2009, and an Academic Program Fellow at the FAO Latin American Regional Office in 1999. From 1986-1991, he was a Research Fellow at International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in Washington DC. He was a Rockefeller Foundation Post-Doctoral Fellow attached to IFPRI, based in Burkina Faso from 1984 to 1986. Prof. Reardon is co-Principal Investigator (co-PI) of the new Food Security Policy project funded by USAID and led by MSU. He received his Ph.D. from University of California at Berkeley, and Masters from Columbia University and the University of Nice, France. He has extensive research experience on food industry transformation, in particular the “supermarket revolution,” as well as the “Quiet Revolution in value chains in developing countries” featuring the modernization of small farms and transformation of the retail, wholesaling, processing, and cold storage sectors. He has studied transformation in the value chains of rice, horticulture, dairy, and fish in Asia and Latin America for the past 15 years. Prior to his work on food value chain transformation, he worked 5 years in Latin America and 13 years in Africa, focusing on three themes: sustainable intensification of small farmer agriculture, rural nonfarm employment and livelihoods, and the growth of grain markets for and consumption of imported rice and wheat in urban areas. In the 1990s, for the USAID MSU Food Security Project, he led a multi-year multi-country research project in Eastern and West Africa focused on agricultural productivity of farm households. Tom is distinguished in lists of economists globally (listed in “Who’s Who in Economics,” listed by REPEC in the top 2.5% of economists of 42,000 registered globally, and listed among the top few among agricultural economists globally in Google Scholar. He received the “Distinguished Faculty Award” from MSU in 2009. He was the first agricultural economist invited to the World Economic Forum in Davos in 2009. Finally, his 2012 Book “The Quiet Revolution in Asian food staple value chains” has been downloaded 20,000 times (from IFPRI and Asian Development Bank websites) 2012-2014.
is a logistics and supply chain management expert with particular interest in food and retail supply chains. In recognition of that expertise, Michael has been a member of the Academic Committee of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (Logistics Research Network). He is also the joint Editor-in-Chief of a leading logistics journal (International Journal of Logistics: Research and Applications) and he is on the Editorial Board of six other journals. In addition, Michael's work in the field of food supply chain management is highly regarded at an international level and, subsequently, he became a member of the European Technology Platform (Food for Life, European Commission). This is a leading industry-led, public/private partnership supported by the European Commission aiming to unite various stakeholders (food industry, academics, policy makers, etc), to strengthen the European innovation process, to improve knowledge transfer and to stimulate European competitiveness across the food supply chain. Michael's work in retail supply chain management has been recognised internationally too and, in 2013, he became a Member of an Expert Panel for the European Commission (DG Research and Innovation) working with leading retailers and other academics on "Retail Innovation". His recent research interests lie in e-business and supply chain management, sustainability and supply chain management and the marketing and supply chain management interface. In 2014, Michael became a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport.
Prof. Pulvirenti graduated in Science and Food Technology at the Faculty of Agriculture of the University of Catania. In March 2001 he received his PhD in Food Biotechnology. From 16 November 2000, the tenure of the School of Agriculture, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia first as a technician and graduate from January 18, 2005 as a researcher in the field AGR / 16 (Microbiology Agriculture) and since 2006, has been associate professor at the same venue. Since 2004 he has been teaching Food Microbiology and Techniques in Microbiology and Quality Management in the Department of Life Sciences(formerly Agriculture) at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia. From May to August 1997, he attended the Institute of Genetics of microorganisms University of Florence where he worked on RAPD-PCR of strains of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. From 1999-2000, he was stationed at the Laboratory of Molecular Genetics INRA in Paris, where he worked on all the techniques of genotypic identification of yeasts (PCR, RFLP analysis Mitochondrial DNA, ribosomal DNA). In October 2005 became associate professor at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia. He was the coordinator of a research unit PRIN (2007/2009) entitled: Study of segregation of characters phenotype for genetic improvement of strains of yeast in wine. Research lines: phenotypic and genotypic study of microorganisms in food interest. Food security; application of natural antimicrobials for containment of the development of pathogens in food, early recognition fungal contamination. Since 2010 he is Director of the Graduate School in Science, Technology and Biotechnology Agro-Food at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia.
Jeffrey Lipton is co-founder and CTO of Seraph Robotics. Jeff's accomplishments in 3D Printing have gained him the respect of the industry and academic 3D printing community. Widely published for his cutting edge research in new printing markets, Jeff brings a wealth of technical knowledge and creativity to Seraph Robotics. His papers include research on food and biological printing, as well as Extensible Digital Fabrication Language (XDFL). Jeff is currently a PhD candidate in the Creative Machines Lab of Prof. Hod Lipson at Cornell University.
Kirthi Kalyanam is a professor in the Leavey School of Business Marketing Department, Director of the E-Commerce Initiative, the Retail Management Institute, and Internet Retailing within the Retail Management Institute as well as within the Retail Studies Program at Santa Clara University.
Dr. Kalyanam was a visiting Professor at the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University and teaches in the Stanford MMP executive program. He also served as Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of SpinCircuit Inc, a provider of supply chain integration services to the electronics industry.
He received his Ph.D. in business administration from the Krannert School of Management, Purdue University. Dr. Kalyanam's areas of expertise include Internet Marketing, Customer Centric Retailing, Multi-Channel Marketing and Database Marketing. He has various published works that have been featured in top journals including Harvard Business Review,Marketing Science, The Journal of Marketing Research, Marketing Letters, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, Journal of Retailing and Journal of Interactive Marketing.
Dr. Kalyanam is a dynamic speaker and leads executive seminars on Internet Marketing, The Wal*Mart Effect in Retailing and Multi-Channel Marketing. He has trained executives in over 10 countries on Internet and Multi channel marketing and retailing. His clients have included ABN-AMRO (Netherlands), ABP (Netherlands), Acuson, Army and Air force Exchange Service (AAFES), The American Video Duplicators Association, Cisco Systems, CSM (Netherlands), Daehan Oil Corporation (S. Korea), Enabler (Portugal) Gap, Hewlett Packard, Infotech (Mexico), IBM, Overstock.com, Indian School of Business, Siemens, Wipro (India), Thai Management Association &amp;amp; Trimble Navigation. He has co-produced the Internet Retailing Bootcamps with Shop.org and has served as an advisor to the State of Retailing Online (SORO) research study.
Dr. Kalyanam advises early stage startups on capturing &amp;amp; winning emerging markets.
He has advised or consulted for Comscore Networks, Propel Corporation, Xambala, Kiwi Networks, Symphoniq Corp, and Boorah. He serves as a board advisor and consultant to the Commander of AAFES, a $9B retailer ranking #36 in the Top 100 Retailers.
As an anthropologist, Miriam has an overarching interest in how individual and collective choices make the future. Her passion as a forecaster is envisioning futures that inspire people to navigate complex transitions, make resilient communities, and create circumstances in which we all can thrive. She began interning with IFTF in 2003, joined the research staff full time in 2007, and served as a research director working primarily with the Health Horizons, Global Food Outlook, and Ten-Year Forecast programs before becoming co-director of the Health Horizons and Global Food Outlook programs in 2012. As co-director of the Health Horizons and Global Food Outlook programs, Miriam identifies and evaluates emerging trends and innovations in health and well-being, health care, food, nutrition, and sustainability. She presents forecasts in strategic roadmaps, conferences, panel discussions, and keynote presentations. She also designs group processes that facilitate anticipating the future and making strategic decisions in the present. Her areas of research interest include well-being futures, food futures, human futures, retail and retail alternatives, and participatory foresight and youth leadership. She holds a BA in anthropology from UCBerkeley.