Past Speakers

Andreas Kipar - Co-Founder, CEO & Creative Director, LAND - Landscape Architecture Nature Development

Andreas Kipar is a landscape architect and urban planner. Andreas Kipar is the founder and creative director of the international landscape architecture studio LAND (, with offices in Germany, Italy and Switzerland. He is the creator of Milan’s “Green Rays” model, which connects different areas of the city to encourage a new slow mobility from the centre to the periphery. This model, internationally recognised as a pioneering model of green urbanism, has also had subsequent applications in Essen, European Green Capital 2017, and the award-winning Smart City Rublyovo-Arkhangelskoye in Moscow. Andreas Kipar and his team were overseeing the landscaping for EXPO 2020 in Dubai

Alina Silaghi, Director ADLO, Local Development Agency Oradea

Alina Silaghi, Director ADLO, Local Development Agency Oradea 

Alina Silaghi is since 2017 she is General Director of the Local Development Agency Oradea SA and since 2018 she is also director of the Association Partnership for Education.

Her activities in the ADLO are:  Promoting Oradea as an investment destination, networking with bilateral chambers of commerce, investor associations, foreign and domestic investors, local and national press; Development strategy and integrated portfolio of projects of the company, planning their implementation.

Ioan Popa - Mayor of Reșița

Ioan Popa is the mayor of Resita since 2016. By profession he is an engineer. He is also a well-known entrepreneur. In 1994 he founded the pasta brand Monte Banato. His journey from entrepreneurship to public administration has brought with it several strategies that have impacted the development of Resita city in a positive way, including marketing and analysis to determine the strengths and weaknesses of the city.

Radu Mihaiu - Mayor of District 2

Radu Mihaiu graduated in Mathematics at the University of Bucharest and holds a degree in Computer Science. He has worked in the private sector in the IT field, according to his CV.

He was an advisor at the Ministry of European Funds in the Ciolos government, where he was in charge of evaluating IT projects and procedures, and then became secretary of state in the same ministry.

He continued his political career with the USR, and since 2018 he is the president of the USR District 2 organization.

Dipl. Ing. Thomas Madreiter – Director of Urban Planning City of Vienna

Thomas Madreiter is a urban planning Director since January 2013 and has been Head of the Competence Center for Higher Level Urban Planning, Smart City Strategy, Participation and Gender Planning in the City of Vienna’s Municipal Department.

He has been coordinating Smart City Vienna since 2010.

Arch. Reinhard Joecks – Partner FOSTER AND PARTNERS

Reinhard Joecks joined Foster + Partners in Germany in 1994, became a partner in 2005. During his time at the practice he has worked on cultural projects, masterplans and office headquarters in Europe and the Middle East including the Gerling Ring Karree in Cologne.

Recent work has included a masterplan for the city of Duisburg and the Black Sea Gardens eco-village in Bulgaria. He has most recently been involved with masterplans and mixed-use developments in Singapore, Tripoli, Baku and Casablanca.

Dr. Eng. Michael Horodniceanu – President of MTA Capital Construction

Michael Horodniceanu, Ph.D., P.E., is the President of MTA Capital Construction. He leads the largest transit infrastructure construction program in the United States, overseeing $20+ billion projects. Dr. Horodniceanu served as New York City’s Traffic Commissioner and he is a recognized expert in the field of transportation infrastructure, with over 35 years of leadership experience in the public and private sectors.

Stefan Reschke – Representative CEE ExpoReal Munich

Stefan Reschke has been active for more than 16 years in the trade fair industry, accumulating over time international experience as organizer of common stands within various fairs.

Prof. Arch. Stephan Braunfels – Director Stephan Braunfels Architekten BDA

Stephan Braunfels designed, as an advisor to the City of Dresden in 1991-1993, the master plan for the reconstruction of the historic city centre.

The first major competition he won was for Munich’s Pinakothek der Moderne in 1992 which opened in late 2002 and was considered one of the largest new museums in Germany. After the completion of the New Ulm Center in 2006 the office continuously expands its field of work with international projects. In addition to designs realized in Mexico, Italy, USA and Qatar the office is currently planning a new administrative building for the European Commission in Luxemburg as well as a cultural and conference centre in China.

Prof. Dr. Arch. Dorin Ștefan – Director at Dorin Ștefan Birou Arhitectură – D.S.B.A.

Dorin Stefan, doctor in architecture, runs his own Architecture practice D.S. Office of Architecture S.R.L. and is University Professor at the Ion Mincu University of Architecture and Urbanism.

He’s the founding member of the Society of Romanian Architects and since 2002 vice-president of the Order of Architects of Romania and Curator for Romania at the Venice Architecture Biennial. He was organizer and participant in various exhibitions but also won distinguished awards such as the Silver medal at the Interarch World Architecture Biennial, Sofia, Bulgaria, together with Arch. Emil Barbu Popescu, the Prize of the Order of Architects of Bucharest, the Romanian Academy Award for his entire activity and the Prize of the Romanian Union of Architects “Opera Omnia”.

Dr. Arch. Șerban Țigănaș – President Romanian Order of Architects

Șerban Țigănaș is an architect, urban planner, trainer and activist for architecture and building culture. He is a partner of the Dico and Țigănaș architecture and engineering office, associate of the planning office Planwerk and teaches at the Technical University of Cluj.

He is the winner of several awards for architecture, contests and finished works. Active in the field of profession politics in Romania and internationally, he frequently intervenes in the written and audio-visual press on issues related to construction and development. He is currently the president of the Order of Architects of Romania.

Ivo Gönner – Mayor of the City of Ulm (1992 - 2016), President of the Council of the Danube Cities and Regions, President of the Association of Local Public Utility Companies

Ivo Gönner was a City Councillor in Ulm from 1980 to 1991 and then worked as an independent lawyer in Ulm until 1992. From 1985 to 1991, he was leader of the SPD faction in Ulm’s City Council. On 01.12.1992, he was elected Lord Mayor of Ulm and began his first period in off­ice on 01.03.1993. He was re-elected Lord Mayor of UIm on 05.12.1999 and his second period in o­ffice began on 01.03.2000. From May 2001 to April 2005, he was Chairman of the Social Democratic Association for Municipal Policy (SGK e.V.).

Dr. Georg Pammer – General Manager Aspern City

Dr. Georg Pammer, General Manager of Aspern City Smart Research, provided us with an example of successful urban planning. We saw how the space of an old abandoned airport has been transformed into the greenest (50% of the surface is green spaces) and smartest district of Vienna, which has become a multifunctional city that offers living space, jobs, spaces of leisure as well as commercial spaces on 2.4 square km.

Dipl. Eng. Hans-Jürgen Best – City Director of the City of Essen and Divisional Management Board Planning

Dipl.-Ing. Hans-Jürgen Best, currently City Manager of the city of Essen and Member of the Divisional Management Board Planning, has a vast experience in urban and spatial planning, starting with his studies in Dortmund in 1975. Afterwards, he occupied leading positions in departments for spatial planning or building and urban planning in Oberhausen and Essen.

Dr. Marcel Heroiu – Senior Urban Development Specialist World Bank

Marcel Heroiu holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Babes-Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca, Romania and a PhD in regional development from Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, United States.

Key areas in which he has worked include: urban and regional development policies and competitiveness; management of EU operational programs; prioritizing projects; local and regional governance; sustainable development and climate change and the redevelopment of the outdated industrial areas. Marcel has contributed to or led projects in Romania, Poland, Turkey, USA, Serbia, Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, India, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Croatia.

Prof. Peter Zlonicky – Head of the Office of Urban Studies Munich; University Professor (em.) for Urban Planning and Design at the Technical University in Dortmund

Prof. Peter Zlonicky is a consultant to the Policy Board on National Urban Development Policy in Berlin since 2007 and to the National Foundation‚ Baukultur in Potsdam.

He is head of the Office of Urban Studies, Munich/Germany and guided main urban planning projects in Berlin and in Bonn (Parliamentary and Governmental Districts in both cities), city development in Dortmund, in Mannheim/Ludwigshafen, in Muenster and Weimar. He was consultant to cooperation projects in Brasil, Egypt, Gambia, Haiti, Syria, Maroc, Israel/Palestine, Libya, and Sibiu/Romania.

Arch. Dorothee Dubrau – Deputy Mayor, Responsible for Urban Development and Constructions City of Leipzig

Dorothee Dubrau is University Lecturer at Technical University of Darmstadt (TU Darmstadt) and a board member of the Urban Development Council in Berlin since 2007. She was a city planner and the spokesperson for BI Luisenstadt/Berlin Mitte until 1990. Ms. Dubrau was part of the District Councils for Urban Development of Berlin Mitte and Prenzlauer Berg, and, since 1997, the chairman of the pension fund board for the Chamber of Architects in Berlin. During the same year, she also joined the German Academy of Urban Development and Regional Planning.

She was a board member of the housing association Wohnungsbaugesellschaft Berlin-Mitte mbH and of Grün Berlin GmbH, a non-profit company involved in project development, building management, park and operations management, public relations and marketing.

Tilman Buchholz – Deputy Head of the Urban Development Department of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety

Tilman Buchholz is the Deputy Head of the Urban Development Division of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety. He has a vast experience in partnerships on urban development between the public and private sectors in Germany and dedicates a significant part of his activity to the European collaboration for the development of cities.

The vision he promotes is an integrated one and relies on the premise that a European city is compact, mixed and diverse. Moreover, the actors involved in the sustainable development of a region are not only the state, the counties or communes, but also the civil society, the economy and the academic environment. 

Prof. Jörn Walter – Chief Urban Planner of the City of Hamburg

Jörn Walter studied urban planning at the Dortmund University. At the beginning of the 90’s he was Head of the urban planning office in Dresden and since 1999 he has been chief planning officer of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg.

He used to be University Professor at the Technical Universities in Vienna and Dresden, at the University of Fine Arts of Hamburg and currently he’s teaching at the HafenCity University Hamburg. Prof. Walter is present in numerous committees in the field of urban development – for example in the Advisory Board of the Federal Foundation of Baukultur but also in the urban development committee of the Association of German Cities

Dr. Arnold Voss – Urbanist, Founder Office for the Art of Planning, Berlin

Arnold Voss studied town and country planning and education in Dortmund and Berlin.

Research and teaching work at the Technical University of Berlin, the Technical University of Aachen and Columbia University New York City in the fields of urban planning, urban development and architecture.

Doctorate in Political Science. Consultant, designer and independent expert to government, citizens’ action groups and private investors. Proprietor of the planning firm “Office for the Art of Planning – OfAP” based in Berlin.

Raluca Munteanu, Development Director Iulius

Raluca Munteanu joined the IULIUS Company in 2012, first as Marketing Specialist and then in 2013 was appointed as Business Development Manager. She has accumulated experience in the field of both marketing and retail, working in the shopping center industry over the last years. In her capacity as Business Development Manager she helped improve the management activity for the United Business Center office buildings. Her current role within the IULIUS Company is to facilitate the implementation of numerous group-wide strategic initiatives, as well as to identify new opportunities.

Arch. Ilinca Păun Constantinescu - Teaching Assistant ”Ion Mincu” University of Architecture and Urban Planning Bucharest

Ilinca Păun Constantinescu earned her PhD degree in architecture in 2013. She currently practices architecture at Ideogram Studio, teaches theory of architecture at “Ion Mincu” University of Architecture and Urbanism Bucharest, and leads cultural projects within the IDEILAGRAM Association. Together with her team from IDEILAGRAM, she edited Shrinking Cities in Romania. Orașe românești în declin (DOM publishers&MNAC Press 2019) and realized researches and exhibitions such as: Shrinking Cities in Romania (MNAC Bucharest, 2016), On Housing (Timco Halls Timișoara, 2018), Uranus Now (MNAC, 2019, initiated by Zeppelin). She is part of the team that will represent Romania at the Venice Architecture Biennale in 2020, with the project Fading Borders.

Ullrich Sierau - Lord Mayor, City of Dortmund

Ullrich Sierau is the Mayor of the City of Dortmund. After completing his degree in spatial planning at Dortmund and Oxford, he worked in the Ministry of Urban Development, Housing and Transportation of the Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia. In 1994 he became the director of the Dortmund-based Institute for Urban and Regional Development Research of North Rhine-Westphalia (ILS). From 1999–2007 he served as councilor and head of Dortmund’s Department for City Planning before being appointed planning officer for Urban Planning and Infrastructure in 2007. In 2009 Ullrich Sierau was elected as Lord Mayor of the City of Dortmund and was re-elected in 2014. Since his election, Mayor Sierau has put major emphasis on implementing sustainable urban development projects. As a result, Dortmund was awarded the title of Germany’s Most Sustainable City in 2014.

Dr. Emil Boc - Mayor, City of Cluj-Napoca

Dr. Emil Boc is the Mayor of Cluj-Napoca, the biggest city in Transylvania. After completing his Law, History and Philosohpy studies and his PhD in Political sciences and political philosophy at the ”Babeș-Bolyai” University in Cluj-Napoca, Mr. Boc began his professional life as a lawyer at Cluj County Bar Association and later as a lecturer at the Faculty of Political, Administration and Communicatio Sciences and at the Faculty of Law, ”Babeș-Bolyai” University. After entering politics, he held various offices before holding the office of Prime Minister of the Government of Romania between 2008-2012. He was first elected Mayor of Cluj-Napoca in 2004 and reelected in 2012. Mr. Boc is a Member of the European Commission of the Regions since April 2017 and Rapporteur on Brain Drain in the EU in the SEDEC Commission of the European Committee of the Regions since July 2019. Cluj-Napoca has seen great improvement under Dr. Boc’s administration and is currently shortlisted for the “European Capital of Innovation 2020” award.

Prof. Dr. Rolf Heyer, Bochum Perspektive 2022 and MARK 5107

With a study background of geography, history, philosophy and education, Prof. Dr. phil. Rolf Heyer, Member of German Academy for City Development and Regional Planning (DASL) was involved, while he was the CEO of the German State of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), in a large number of local city & site development projects but also in international projects with Poland, France, Scotland and China.

Between 2014 – 2019, Prof. Dr. phil. Rolf Heyer was the CEO of WirtschaftsEntwicklungsgesellschaft Bochum and Bochum Perspektive 2022 and carried on international projects in Kuba and China. Professor Heyer offers now consultancy services for project management and brownfield development

Arch. Mihai Danciu, Jiu Valley Integrated Territorial Development Association

Arch. Mihai Danciu, Jiu Valley Integrated Territorial Development Association

Mihai Danciu is an architect concerned with urban and community management.

He is a lecturer for urban planning subjects at the Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning in Timișoara, the Faculty of Political Sciences – specialization in Public Administration in Timișoara and the Faculty of Urban Planning and Architecture in Chișinau. He is involved in projects in Timișoara, Valea Jiului (West Development Region) and Chișinau. Its beliefs are: sustainable development based on a combination of bottom-up and top-down approaches.

Allen Coliban, Mayor of Brașov City

Allen Coliban has been the Mayor of Brasov since 27 September 2020 and was previously a senator in the Romanian Parliament from 2016-2020.

He graduated in Management at Transilvania University Brasov. He has 10 years of experience in the IT industry, eight years in business consulting and European funds, six years in organizational development and performance management. Since the beginning of his mandate, he has implemented an ambitious vision for the sustainable development of the city, focusing on alternative mobility, sustainable tourism, increasing the level of university education, attracting investors from the tech&IT area, as well as enhancing the historical, cultural and natural heritage that Brasov has.

Dr. Dragos Anastasiu, President Touring Europabus Romania
Tamina Lolev, Managing Partner nod makerspace
Tatian Diaconu, CEO Nhood

Tatian Diaconu graduated from the Nicolae Bălcescu Land Forces Academy in Sibiu. After a three-year career as an officer, he went to France, where he attended the University of Le Havre, graduating with a master’s degree in management of organizations. Tatian has also worked for Decathlon and Bricostore as expansion manager for the Romanian, Hungarian and Croatian markets.

Arch. Eugen Pănescu, Founding Partner Planwerk
Christian von Albrichsfeld, Country Head & GM Continental Romania
Hildegard Brandl, CEO UNITH2B