Keynote speakers

Prof. Mariano Gago

prof-gago-portraitFormer Minister of Portugal, in charge of Science and Technology, Information Society and Higher Education.

Professor José Mariano Gago is an experimental high energy physicist and a Professor of Physics at the Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) in Lisbon, Portugal. He graduated as an electrical engineer from the Technical University of Lisbon and obtained a PhD in Physics from the École Polytechnique in Paris. He worked for many years as a researcher at the European Organisation for Nuclear Physics (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland and in Portugal’s Laboratory for Particle Physics (LIP), which he chaired. Prof. Gago is a member of the CERN Council. He chaired the High Level Group on Human Resources for Science and Technology in Europe.

As Minister of Science and Technology (S&T) from 1995 to 2002, Prof. Gago was responsible for science and technology and for information society policies. He launched the Ciencia Viva movement to promote S&T culture and S&T in society. During the Portuguese EU presidency (2000) he prepared, along with the European Commission, the Lisbon Strategy for the European Research Area and for the Information Society in Europe. In 1998 he also launched the Eureka-Asia Initiative in Macao. During the 2007 Portuguese EU Presidency he promoted the adoption of a strategy for the future of S&T in Europe and for the modernisation of universities in the EU.

Ewald Breunesse

Ewald-Breunesse-portraitManager Energy Transitions, Shell Nederland, Member of the Board of Directors at Shell Nederland Pensioenfonds Stichting.

Born in 1955, Ewald has a PhD in economics from the Free University Amsterdam. He joined Shell in 1983 where he has held positions in market research, scenario planning, pension funds, electricity and currently energy transitions.



Amber S. Gell

Amber-Gell-portrait Rocket Scientist & Spacecraft Systems Engineer, Lockheed Martin – NASA, Orion Program.

Amber S. Gell currently works for Lockheed Martin in Houston, Texas. She has always been extremely interested in space and exploration, especially human spaceflight, which is her ultimate goal. Ms Gell is currently part of the team designing and building the Orion Spacecraft, the Multipurpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV), NASA’s new spacecraft for Deep Space Exploration.

Ms Gell splits her time between “Rocket Science,” numerous Education Outreach efforts, Microgravity Research, lifelong learning, and fitness activities. She is an alumna of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Florida, where she received a Bachelor of Science degree in Aerospace Engineering and a second Bachelor of Science degree in Aerospace Studies, with minors in Human Factors Engineering, Psychology, and Advanced Mathematics. Ms Gell has also received a Master of Science degree in Human Performance, a Master of Engineering degree in Space Systems Engineering, a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree, specialising in International Business, and a Master of Science degree in Finance.