Eric Schmidt

Eric Schmidt
Executive Chairman of Alphabet Inc.

Eric Schmidt is the executive chairman of Alphabet Inc. He is responsible for the external matters of all of the holding company's businesses, including Google Inc., advising their CEOs and leadership on business and policy issues.

Eric joined Google in 2001 and helped grow the company from a Silicon Valley startup to a global leader in technology. He served as Google’s Chief Executive Officer from 2001-2011, and as chairman from 2011-2015. Prior to Google, Eric held leadership roles at Novell and Sun Microsystems, Inc. He holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Princeton University as well as a master’s degree and Ph.D. in computer science from the University of California, Berkeley. He is a member of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. Eric is Chairman of the Department of Defense’s Innovation Board and was awarded the Medal for Distinguished Public Service by Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter.

He is the co-author of The New Digital Age and How Google Works, and serves on the boards of the Mayo Clinic and the Broad Institute. He’s a Gulfstream pilot, and his philanthropic efforts through The Schmidt Family Foundation focus on climate change, including support of ocean and marine life studies at sea, as well as education, specifically cutting-edge research and technology in the natural sciences and engineering.  

Jacques van den broek

Jacques van den Broek
CEO and chairman of the Executive Board of Randstad Holding nv

Jacques van den Broek has been appointed CEO and chairman of the Executive Board of Randstad Holding nv in March 2014. He is responsible for operations in Germany, Australia, New Zealand, China, Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia, as well as for Business Concept Development, HR, IT, Marketing & Communications, Public Affairs and Randstad Sourceright.

Jacques graduated in law at Tilburg University and briefly held a management position at Vendex International before joining Randstad as a branch manager in 1988. Over the years he has held various management positions at Randstad, including Regional Director in the Netherlands and Marketing Director Europe. In 2001 he became CEO of newmonday.com and in 2002 he was appointed Managing Director of Capac Inhouse Services (now called Randstad Inhouse Services). At the time he was also responsible for Randstad Denmark and Switzerland.

Jacques van den Broek joined the Executive Board in January 2004. Since then Jacques has been responsible for the significant boost of our global accounts which yield approximately 25% of Group revenue. He led the integration of major operations after the Vedior merger, including the one in France.

Jacques van den Broek is married and has two sons. He enjoys playing sports - soccer, running, golf - as well as art, and he collects original comic books.


Pim van der Feltz
Director Google Netherlands

Before joining Google (May 2008), Van der Feltz worked for T-Mobile Netherlands/Ben for nine years, the final four of them as the board member responsible for marketing and formerly as Product Development Manager and Carrier Relations Manager.

Van der Feltz has some 25 years’ professional experience, including nine in mobile telecommunications and prior to that, consultancy for Shell in a variety of positions. Van der Feltz studied general economics at the University of Groningen. 

Catelijne Muller

Catelijne Muller
Member EESC and Rapporteur Artificial Intelligence

Catelijne is a member of the European Economic and Social Committee and Rapporteur on AI. In the recent report on AI and Society, the Economic and Social Committee has identified 11 areas where AI raises societal concerns, ranging from ethics, safety, transparency, privacy and standards to labour, education, access, laws and regulations, governance, democracy, but also warfare and super intelligence. This requires a human in command approach, where we decide if, when and how AI is used in our society.

Aart de Geus

Aart Jan de Geus
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Bertelsmann Stiftung, Germany

Aart Jan De Geus, born 1955, studied law at Erasmus University in Rotterdam. After his graduation (master of laws), he completed a postgraduate course in labor law at the University of Nijmegen.

From 1980, De Geus worked for the Christelijk Nationaal Vakverbond (CNV), a trade union federation in the Netherlands. He became its vice chairman in 1993 with responsibility for social security, pensions, health and employment. In this capacity, he was appointed a member of the Social and Economic Council of the Netherlands (“Sociaal-Economische Raad”).

In 1998, he became a partner in the consulting firm Boer & Croon in Amsterdam.

From 2002 to 2007, De Geus served as Minister of Social Affairs and Employment in the Balkenende administrations.

From 2007, as deputy secretary general of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), De Geus was responsible for employment, labor and social affairs (including health, pensions and migration), education as well as entrepreneurship and governance. He coordinated the horizontal project Making Reform Happen, and was also in charge of the OECD’s activities on gender and diversity issues.

Since September 2011, De Geus has been a member of the Bertelsmann Stiftung Executive Board. Since August 5th, 2012 he serves as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Bertelsmann Stiftung. He is responsible for the program areas Europe, employment and globalization.

Farid Tabarki

Farid Tabarki  
Founding director of Studio Zeitgeist

Farid Tabarki is the founding director of Studio Zeitgeist and a sought-after keynote speaker, debate moderator and event host. He has been researching the (European) zeitgeist since 2000. Farid publishes a weekly column in Het Financieele Dagblad. This year his widely acclaimed first book ‘The end of the middle - What a society of extremes means to people, businesses and government’ was published in English. Recently, Studio Zeitgeist has published the whitepaper The Transformation Playground, Reinventing Business Principles. It presents in-depth analyses of the seven organising principles, which the Studio believes are the most important ones for businesses to put in practice.

Farid received the Trendwatcher of the Year Award for 2012-2013, and since 2013 he became the youngest person on the list of the 200 most influential people in the Netherlands according to Dutch daily morning newspaper de Volkskrant. He presented the parliamentary election edition of MTV Coolpolitics and the television program Dare to Think, from Socrates to Sartre. Farid sits on various supervisory boards and committees, among others of the Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds. In 2015 he was a member of Platform Onderwijs 2032: commissioned by the Dutch government, the platform presented a vision on Dutch education policy moving towards the year 2032. Last but not least, Farid is a true world traveller: he plans to visit all the countries of the world. The counter currently stands at 143.

Johanna Hirscher

Johanna Hirscher  
Partner at McKinsey & Company

Johanna Hirscher is a Partner at McKinsey & Company in the Amsterdam Office. She focuses on digital and IT transformations in the European public sector, in particular in the Netherlands and Germany. Johanna has a passion for helping public sector agencies use digital and IT to better service citizens and companies. Within McKinsey Amsterdam, she is leading the Future of Work initiative.

Before joining McKinsey, Johanna worked for the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria in Geneva on negotiations with public sector donors. By origin German, Johanna has lived in France, Switzerland, China, Germany, and the U.S.. 

Stef van Grieken

Stef van Grieken
Product Manager - X

Stef van Grieken is a Product Manager at X, working to move early stage projects out of the lab and into the real world. Before joining X he worked on Google products such as Elections, Crisis response, Maps and Android. Previously Stef co-founded and ran Open State Foundation a nonprofit dedicated to government transparency and accountability.

He was awarded with the ‘Time Magazine Top Website 2012’ the ‘European Public Sector Award’ as well as a mention on the ‘Nerd 101: most interesting technologists, inventors and tinkerers of the Netherlands’. Stef received a master's degree in Industrial Engineering from the University of Groningen.

Thomas Soby

Thomas Søby
Chief Economist, President’s Department, Danish Metalworkers’ Union

Thomas Søby is 47 years old. He holds a master in Economics from University of Copenhagen. He is the Chief Economist at the Danish Metalworkers’ Union. He focuses on macroeconomics, economic growth, employment, taxes, industrial development, infrastructure, collective bargaining, and issues regarding free trade and globalization. Automation, robotics, AI and IT transformation is also topics on his palette. Within the Union, he is a part of the Presidents Department.

Before joining Danish Metalworkers’ Union, Thomas worked for The Danish Agriculture and Food Council also as a Chief Economist. Before that Thomas was CEO in Institute for Business Cycle Analysis in Copenhagen. As a young graduate Thomas held positions as Head of Section in the ministry of the Interior and as economic analyst at Visit Denmark.  


Clarissa Shen
VP, International; Managing Director Udacity, Asia

Clarissa is an optimist about technology’s impact on education, having co-founded a K-12 start-up and led digital change at Apollo Group. As an executive, she managed a digital marketing team ranked in the top 10 US marketing leaders by Google, led an internationally-renowned touring contemporary dance company, and advised Fortune 500 and government clients throughout Greater China, Asia, and Europe as a management consultant with Deloitte Monitor Group. She joined Udacity as the first business hire and built the company's early Marketing, Business Development, and Strategic Sales functions. As Vice President, International, she now leads all of Udacity international markets and launched the company's operations in India, China, Brazil, Europe, and Middle East. Clarissa graduated magna cum laude with a BA in English and Environmental Studies from Williams College, and holds an MBA from Harvard Business School.


Iarla Flynn
Director of Public Policy and Government Affairs, Google

Iarla Flynn is the Director of Public Policy and Government Affairs for Google in Northern Europe. Prior to joining Google in 2007 he spent 12 years in senior government and industry roles including in Ireland’s telecommunications sector, where he was a leading advocate for the benefits of competition and digitisation. Flynn holds a master’s degree in economics from Trinity College Dublin.


Mirjam Bink
Founder of ONL

Mirjam Bink is the founder of ONL voor Ondernemers (Entrepreneurial Netherlands), entrepreneur and board member. In 2013 she founded, together with Hans Biesheuvel, ONL voor Ondernemers: an association, by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs, with the aim to improve the entrepreneurial climate in The Netherlands. ONL is fully dedicated to operate as "the voice" of entrepreneurs as builds bridges between entrepreneurs and the government and other policy makers.

Mirjam has been an entrepreneur since 2002. Her thesis about the possibility of searching and contacting candidates on the internet led to the start of her award winning company I-recruiting. For more than 15 years now, she and her team of online recruiters help small and big organizations in the Netherlands to find the right candidates on the internet.

Next to her entrepreneurship, Mirjam has always been involved in improving the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the Netherlands. For example, she mentored Dutch Women Entrepreneurs for the European Commission and was a regional board member for organizations like MKB-Nederland, Social Economic Council and the Chamber of Commerce.


Steven Schuurman
ElasticSearch / FutureNL

Steven is the co-founder and former CEO of Elastic, the company behind what is probably the most popular enterprise open source search & analytics platform in the world; The Elastic Stack, which was downloaded over 100,000,000 times in the last 4 years. Founded in 2012, the company has emerged as one of the most successful cloud enterprise software companies in the industry. Over the past 4 years, the company has built a customer base in over 60 countries, has staff in 35 countries and operating subsidiaries all over the world.

Prior to founding Elastic, Steven built 2 other companies: SpringSource and Orange11. The former was acquired by VMware in 2009 and the latter was acquired by Trifork in 2012.

Last year, Steven co-founded Stichting FutureNL (www.futurenl.org), a non-profit that brings digital skill development into the Dutch Primary school system. Steven currently serves as Chairman of Stichting FutureNL.


Elmar Zwart
Primary School Director

Elmar Zwart is the director of a primary school in Eemnes since 2016. He started as a teacher, became ICT coordinator in 2002 and technique coordinator in 2002. Previously, he studied history and worked in secondary education as a history teacher for two years.

Elmar Zwart focuses on the question how a computer can support and strengthen children in their education. Four years ago, he started with teaching programming in his school. The value of learning how to program lies in combining and applying “programming rules” to the current and future reality. It is highly important that children know about sequences, variables, algorithms and functions, because they are applicable to other learning and processing strategies that are being taught in core courses. As the director of the school, Elmar Zwart is currently aiming to include programming in the learning goals and to integrate it in the curriculum of the school.

He finds it amazing to see when children discover how functional and multi-employable programming is in their daily lives.

Brechtje de Leij

Brechtje de Leij

Brechtje de Leij has over 15 years of experience in digital. With her own company B-Digitized she helps companies with the digitization of their business, with a special focus on mobile. She has been responsible for the mobile strategy of eCommerce company Greetz and news website NU.nl and worked on the digital portfolio of Jumbo, ABN AMRO, eBay and KLM.

She is known to the public as ‘lady geek’, since she’s always experimenting with the latest technology and gadgets. Brechtje’s mobile knowledge has recently been published in her book ‘Mobiele Eenheid’.