Director General Petri Peltonen (born 1962) is Head of the Enterprise and Innovation Department at the Ministry of Employment and the Economy. In this capacity he is responsible for Finland’s national enterprise, industrial and innovation policies under the leadership of the minister of economic affairs Mr Jan Vapaavuori.
In his role as director general, Petri Peltonen oversees the operations of State of Finland’s key business, innovation and export promotion organisations: Finnish funding agency for innovation (Tekes), technical research centre of Finland (VTT), SME financing and export credit company (Finnvera), Finnish industry investment company (Tesi), export, tourism and FDI promotion organisation (Finpro) as well as the geological survey of Finland (GTK).
Within his duties, Petri Peltonen takes part in several national and European policy functions such as the Research and Innovation Council of Finland, the board of the Finnish innovation fund (Sitra), the European Research Area Committee (ERAC) and the board of the Nordic Investment Bank. He is also acts as the European Commission’s SME Envoy for Finland.
Prior to taking his current position in 2008, Petri Peltonen headed the Technology Department at the Ministry of Trade and Industry. From 1996 to 2006, he worked at Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation (Tekes), most recently as Executive Director and member of the management team. From 1987 until 1996, he held several technology development positions at the European Space Agency (ESA) in the Netherlands and in electronics industry in Finland.
Petri Peltonen has M.Sc.(1987) and Lic.Tech. (1990) degrees from Tampere University of Technology. He is an invited member of the Finnish Academy of Technical Sciences (2009).
President & CEO, prof. Erkki KM Leppävuori (VTT)
Professor Erkki KM Leppävuori (born in 1951) was appointed President & CEO of VTT
Technical Research Centre of Finland in 1999.
He was previously professor, Research Director and Chief Executive of the ResearchInstitute VTT Building Technology at VTT from 1994 to 1999. Prior to his positions at VTT he has worked as Director of Marketing and Technology of the Building Products and Engineering Division of the Rautaruukki Group (a Finnish Steel Company): Senior Vice President of the Group's Building Products Division from 1991 to 1994; and Vice President, Marketing of Steel Construction, Rautaruukki Oy from 1989 to 1991. Earlier he has had different positions at VTT, at Tekes – the Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation and at Helsinki University of Technology (now Aalto University).
Professor Leppävuori is a board member of several governmental and business organizations including the Research and Innovation Council of Finland chaired by the Prime Minister.
Professor Leppävuori is a board member of the Global Research Alliance. He has been the President of the European Association of Research and Technology Organizations EARTO and the Chair of the Executive Committee of the European Energy Research Alliance. He has been involved in different High Level Groups nominated by the European Commission to contribute to European RTD policy. He is also a member of the Academy of Technical Sciences.
He holds a Master's Degree (1974) and a Licentiate Degree (1977) from the Helsinki University of Technology as well as the nomination as Doctor of Technology h.c. (2008).
Jukka Mäkelä graduated from the Technical University of Helsinki in 1992. Mäkelä has been the Mayor of Espoo since the beginning of 2011. He has been involved in the local politics of Espoo as a City Counsellor since 1997, as Chair of the City Board years 2005–2008, and as Chair of the City Council 2009–2010.
EVP, Prof. Kari Larjava (VTT)
Kari Larjava is Executive Vice President, Solutions for Natural Resources and Environment at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd. Larjava has over 30 years research experience in the fields Energy and Environment technologies and Process control. He is Doctor of Environmental Technology from Aalto University (1993) He is Chairman of VTT International’s Board and has been a member of a number of Company Boards since 2000. Larjava has been the President of ENERO (European Network of Environmental Research Organisations) from 2009 to 2011. He is also a member of Executive Committee of EERA (European Energy Research Alliance)since 2014 and member of board of the Finnish Foundation for Technology Promotion since 2012.
Director, Technology and R&D, Mr Jussi Mäntyniemi (Valmet)
Mr. Jussi Mäntyniemi works as Director, Technology and R&D in Valmet. During his 27 years’ career in Valmet and its predecessors he has gained deep knowledge in chemical recovery and energy related technologies. He is currently responsible for R&D management globally for Pulp and Energy Business Line in Valmet. Mr. Mäntyniemi holds a Master of Science degree in Engineering
CTO, Dr Heli Antila (Fortum)
Dr Heli Antila, Chief Technology Officer, Fortum Oyj since June, 2012.
Heli received her Dr in Control Engineering from Tampere University of Technology, Finland in 1997. She has been working in energy sector management consulting for 15 years.
In Fortum her main tasks are to capture and develop technology enabled business opportunities for Fortum. The framework for these new business opportunities is defined in Fortum's vision of Solar economy. Thus the future technologies we are interested are all carbon-free and mostly renewables, e.g. bioeconomy, wave and solar power as well as flexible energy systems and advanced customer solutions.
The Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM) has nominated Heli Antila as ambassador for clean energy.
SVP, Technology, Mr Lars Peter Lindfors (Neste Oil)
Lars Peter Lindfors (Senior Vice President, Technology) joined Neste Oil in 2007. He is responsible for Research & Development, ICT, Procurement, Investment management and Business Processes. Previously he served as Senior Vice President, Technology and Strategy (2009–2012) and as Vice President for the company's Research and Development unit (2007–2009). Lars Peter Lindfors was Executive Vice President, Renewal, Technology and Development at the Perstorp Group (2001–2007). Prior to that he held several managerial positions at Neste (1989–2001) ,both within the Oil & Gas and the Chemicals division. In 2013 Lars Peter Lindfors received the ‘Energy Initiative of the Year Award’ (by Tekniikka&Talous) and in 2014 he was recognized with the ‘ 2014 CTO of the Year award’ (by the Technology Academy Finland, SITRA and Spinverse).
VP, Research, Dr Niklas von Weymarn (Metsä Fibre)
Niklas von Weymarn has a doctoral degree in bioprocess engineering from Aalto University. He has also studied economics and innovation strategies. His job career begun in 1999, when he took on the position of Research Scientist at Cultor Technology Center (Cultor is today a part of DuPont). He has since held the positions of Project Manager, Team Leader, Program Manager and Technology Manager at Aalto University, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and FIBIC Ltd. He is currently Vice-President, Research at Metsä Fibre Ltd. During the last year he has been in charge of coordinating all new products and partnerships related to Metsä Fibre's Äänekoski bioproduct mill project, as well as working to set up the Bio-based Industries PPP in Brussels.
CTO, Dr Heidi Fagerholm (Kemira)
Heidi Fagerholm has graduated from Åbo Akademi University in 1994 with a Ph.D. in chemical engineering. Prior to joining Kemira, she has worked for companies like Top Analytica, Ciba Specialty Chemicals and Ahlstrom in various positions within product development and business management.
Since January 2011 Heidi has been the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of Kemira Oyj and responsible for developing Kemiras Research & Development operations in Espoo Finland, Atlanta Georgia U.S.A. and Shanghai China. She is also a board member of Tekes and was recently appointed to the board of Academy of Finland.
Former VP Open Innovation, Mr Robert Kirschbaum (DSM)
Mr. Robert Kirschbaum (63) graduated from the Technical University of Delft (The Netherlands) as a Chemical Engineer in 1977. His career with DSM consists of more than 30 years fostering various innovations (fibers like Dyneema, specialty films and Engineering plastics like Stanyl) up to full commercialization.
From 1997, Rob was in charge of the DSM New Business Development Corporation.
In this Corporate "Incubator" several early phase commercial activities and new ventures were combined to grow into sustainable businesses. In 2006 the NBD Corporation was integrated into the DSM Innovation Center. Untill 2009 he fullfilled the role of Vice President Innovation, focussing on the DSM cluster of Performance Materials and subsequenlty he was assigned as VP Open Innovation of DSM. Since 2015, he acts as advisor to the Chief Technology Officer.
In May 2010 he received the prestigious Giulio Natta Award and he enjoys a visiting lectureship on Corporate Venturing and Entrepreneurship at the ESADE (Barcelona) and the Erasmus University/RSM (Rotterdam).
Professor Tomas Kåberger (Chalmers, JREF)
Tomas Kåberger is professor at Chalmers University of Technology and Zhejiang University. He spends 25% of his time in Japan as Chairman of Japan Renewable Energy Foundation.
He has held leading positions in energy companies working with wind, solar and bioenergy. Currently he serves on the board of Industrifonden, Cleanergy AB, The Swedish Wind Power Technology Center while also chairing the European Biofuel Technology Platform.
He is a former Director General of the Swedish Energy Agency, and has served as vice chairman of the council of the International Renewable Energy Agency in Abu Dhabi.
EVP, Strategic Research, CTO, Prof. Anne-Christine Ritschkoff (VTT)
Prof. Ritschkoff (Executive Vice President, Strategic Research, CTO) obtained her PhD in Biosciences at the University of Helsinki, Finland in 1996. She has been at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd since 1987 in various research and research management positions. She has more 100 scientific publications. Prof. Ritschkoff holds currently the position of Executive Vice President, Strategic Research, CTO. In this role she is in charge of VTT`s research function, and steers technology strategy, EU activities and research partnerships. Prof. Ritschkoff has significantly influenced on VTT´s research activities on the areas of natural resources, environmental and clean technologies and bioeconomy.
Senior Principal Scientist, Mr Yrjö Solantausta (VTT)
Yrjö Solantausta is a Senior Principal Scientist at VTT. He has a PhD from Aston University, UK. He has been developing alternative liquid fuels for more than 35 years. Much of his effort lately has involved fast pyrolysis of biomass.
CEO, Ms Christine Hagström-Näsi (FIBIC)
Christine Hagström-Näsi is the CEO of the Finnish Bioeconomy Cluster FIBIC Ltd, which is one of the six Strategic Centres (SHOKs) in Finland. The role of FIBIC is to strengthen the links between different bioeconomy related industries and to catalyze research and innovation cooperation.
Prior to joining FIBIC in 2007, Christine Hagström-Näsi worked at Tekes, the Finnish Funding Agency for Technologyand Innovationas a Director for the Forest and Chemical Industries Section. Before joining Tekes she has been working with research, development and innovation activities both in the forest and in the chemicals industries. She holds a Licentiate of Technology degree from Helsinki University of Technology, with wood chemistry as her major subject. She has an extensive experience in innovation policy issues and project funding, Her international experience range from operational project coordination tasks to strategic board positions.
Dr. Tech, Prof. Jukka Seppälä (Aalto University)
Jukka Seppälä, Dr. Tech, is Professor of Polymer technology and Head of the Department of Biotechnology and Chemical Technology at Aalto University. He gained his experience in the industry at Neste Corporation during 1979 – 1986. He acted as the Director of the Bio- and Nanopolymers Research Group in the Finnish Academy Center of Excellence for the years 2001 - 2007. He has more than 340 scientific articles and the same number of other types of scientific publications. He is one of the inventors in 48 patent families. He became a member of the Finnish Academy of Sciences and Letters in the year 2005 and Member of Finnish Academy of Technology 2010. Currently he is Academy Professor for the years 2011 – 2015.