In addition to regular lectures there will be scheduled lectures given by renowned international entrepreneurs, opinion leaders, policy makers and social entrepreneurs that will provide to the “tech” course an added “human” and “social” element to the program.

Miriam Lueck Avery

Miriam Lueck Avery METHOD | Foresighting

Program Co-Director, Health Horizons, Global Food Outlook

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.

Matteo Vignoli

Matteo Vignoli METHOD | Foresighting and design thinking

Director of the Food Innovation Program Researcher at Faculty of Engineering in UNIMORE University of Modena and Reggio Emilia
Stefania Benvenuti

Stefania Benvenuti EATING | Redefining convenience

Professor in the Department of Life Sciences, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia
Claude Fischler

Claude Fischler Eating

Research Director of the National Research Agency of France in and head of the Interdisciplinary Institute of Contemporary Anthropology (IIAC).

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

Daniela Barile EATING

Associate Director of International Programs - Food for health Institute at UC Davis - Professor, Food Science & Technology at UC Davis

Dr. 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

Matthew Lange EATING

Associate Director, Knowledge Engineering at UC Davis and UC Davis Medical Center

Matthew is well versed in biological and health sciences as well as cutting edge information technologies, he guides teams toward the design, build, placement and utilization of knowledge environs that enable end users to make new and insightful discoveries. Discoveries made through next-generation knowledge tools facilitate the creation of novel foods, products, medicines, and lifestyle regimens: personalizable for health and delight; aggregatable for population and market analyses. Matthew has published, presented, and consulted internationally on strategies and conceptual models for enterprise and industrial-scale knowledge infrastructures that leverage semantic integration of data and information. The ag, food, diet, and health knowledge continuum is where is finds most joy.

Caleb Harper

Caleb Harper PRODUCTION | Reorganizing intensification

Senior Scientist and founder of MIT CityFARM

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.

Luigi Rovati


Professor at the Centro interdipartimentale Softech-ICT, at UNIMORE

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)

Andrea Grassi


Associate Professor at the Engineering Faculty of the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia - Italy

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


Professor, Distinguished Faculty, and AAEA Fellow - Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics at Michigan State University.

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.

Michael Bourlakis

Michael Bourlakis DISTRIBUTION

member of the Academic Committee of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport

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.

Andrea Pulvirenti


Professor, Department of Life Sciences at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia

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


Professor at Cornell University Creative Machines Lab; Founder & Chief Technology Officer, SERAPH ROBOTICS

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.

Elisa Martinelli


Researcher at Dipartimento di Economia 'Marco Biagi'
Kirthi Kalyanam

Kirthi Kalyanam SHOPPING

Professor in the Leavey School of Business Marketing Department, Director of the E-Commerce Initiative, the Retail Management Institute

Dr. 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,, Indian School of Business, Siemens, Wipro (India), Thai Management Association & Trimble Navigation. He has co-produced the Internet Retailing Bootcamps with and has served as an advisor to the State of Retailing Online (SORO) research study. Dr. Kalyanam advises early stage startups on capturing & 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.

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