Experts and Panelists 2011


Robert Geyer, Lancaster University, UK 

Robert Geyer is Head of the Department of Politics, Philosophy, and Religion. He is professor of  Politics, Complexity and Public Policy. 

He has a background in European Union Politics and Policy, particularly social, health and labour policy. However, about 12 years ago he  started working with Complexity as a framework for understanding policy and the wider world in general. He is the author, co-author and editor many articles, books, and edited volumes pertaining to Complexity and its usefulness in comprehending European Integration, Education and Health Policy, as well as International Relations and Development Theory.     

He is co-author with Samir Rihani of the book Complexity and Public Policy: A New Approach to 21st Century Politics, Policy and Society. London: Routledge 2010

Professor Geyer is the Summer School's 2011 Resident Scholar

Vicotria Rudin, ACEPESA, Costa Rica

Victoria is the Director of the Central American Association for Economy, Health and Environment-ACEPESA. She has worked on issues related to solid waste management for 17 years and has coordinated national and regional projects on integrated solid waste management in Central America, working with municipalities, formal and informal enterprises and social organizations.

In the field of e-waste, from 2004 until 2009, she coordinated the Technical Committee for e-waste management, composed of public and private institutions that was responsible for the preparation of legislative proposals that led to the adoption of the regulation in the country. Currently she represents the NGOs in the Executive Committee for Integrated Management of Electronic Waste, the official organisation that manages electronic wastes in Costa Rica.

Rolf Widmer, EMPA, Switzerland

Rolf Widmer received his MSc in electrical engineering and his MBA for development co-operation from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich (ETH).  For several years he was with the Institute for Quantum Electronics at the ETH. He joined the Technology & Society Lab at EMPA in Switzerland in 2003, a research institution belonging to the ETH domain. He is currently involved in several e-waste projects and leads the labs activities in electric- or e-mobility and materials for renewable energy technologies. Before joining Empa he has mainly worked in the field of rural energy supply in developing countries based on renewable energies. He was leading technical cooperation projects in many countries and heading the R&D department on control systems at entec ag a Swiss company he co-founded. Rolf Widmer is the author of several publications and books in this field.

Ab Stevels, TU Delft, The Netherlands

Prof. Dr. Ab Stevels studied Chemical Engineering at the Technical University of Eindhoven and took a Ph. D. degree (cum laude) in Physics and Chemistry at Groningen University. His long experience in the electronics industry includes stints at Royal Philips Electronics in a manifold of capacities in research, business management and advisory. Since 1995, he has also been a professor in Environmental Design at Delft University of Technology. He was visiting professor in the Mechanical Engineering Department of Stanford University, the Faculty of Electrical Engineering of the TU Berlin, the Tsinghua University in Beijing, the School of Industrial Systems Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology (Atlanta) and the Industrial Ecology Program at NTN University in Trondheim, Norway. Ab Stevels has done trailblazing work in how to make Eco-design into day-to-day business really happen and has researched in detail the setting up of take-back and recycling systems for electronics. Ab is the author of some 175 journal articles and conference contributions.

Jaco Huisman, TU Delft/ UNU, Netherlands

Jaco Huisman received his Masters degree in Chemical Engineering at Eindhoven University of Technology in 1999. In 2003 he finished his Ph.D. at Delft University of Technology, Faculty of Design, Construction and Production, Design for Sustainability Program, with the thesis entitled: The QWERTY/EE concept, Quantifying recyclability and eco-efficiency for end-of-life treatment of consumer electronic products. After that he continued his work at Delft University of Technology as a Postdoc in commission of the Dutch Ministry of Environment, Philips Consumer Electronics – Environmental Competence Centre and NVMP (Dutch take-back system for electronic waste). Adjacent to this, he started his own consultancy company Huisman Recycling Research which provides expert consulting to OEM’s, national take-back systems, governments and recyclers on using eco-efficiency evaluations to improve operations, waste policies, system organization and products. At the moment he researching take-back system optimization of the Dutch NVMP system and coordinating the Recycling Task Force of the StEP Initiative.

Thorsten Brunzema, European Commission, Brussels

Thorsten Brunzema is the Policy Officer for the WEEE Directive at the European Commission.

He has studied industrial engineering and economics in Berlin, with a focus on regulatory approaches to environmental and energy issues. Mr. Brunzema was recruited to the European Commission in 2004. Before that, he has worked in the field of environment and infrastructure for the German Agency for Technical Cooperation (GIZ), including in Tunesia and Benin, and for the consulting firm The Boston Consulting Group

Frans Geysels, Belgian Federal Judicial Police, Belgium

Frans Geysels is the chair of the INTERPOL “Pollution Crime” working group. Since 2009, he has also been responsible for an initiative by the Belgian police focused on the police involvement in checks of international transport of waste. He has previously been invited by the United States Environmental Protection Agency to take part in the “Advanced Environmental Crimes Training Program”. Due to his experience in the multidisciplinary approach of environmental crime, he participated in a monitoring mission in Kazakhstan, on request of the UNEP (United Nations Environment Programme) and in collaboration with the CITES secretariat.

He is the author of several publications dealing with police maintenance of environment and also teaches environmental issues at the Belgian Federal Police School. He holds a Masters in Environmentology from the University of Antwerp.  He represents the Federal Police at various international forums dealing with topics related to environment (including INTERPOL, EUROPOL, EU, OECD, TFS…).

Oluronke Ajibke Soyombo, NESREA, Nigeria.
Mrs. Oluronke Ajibke Soyombo is the Director - Inspection and Enforcement Department: National Environmental Standard Regulation and Enforcement Agency (NESREA),the Nigerian government body responsible for regulating e-waste.Previously, some of the positions she has held have been as Deputy Director Pollution Control & Environmental Health Department; Federal Ministry of Environment, Abuja, Deputy Director Rotterdam Convention and Industrial Compliance Monitoring Division of Pollution Control Department; Federal Ministry of Environment, Abuja. She has been as a member of several committees both national and international on various issues ranging from hazardous chemicals, waste management to general environmental issues.

She holds a B.Sc. (Hon) Degree in Agricultural Biochemistry and Master of Public Health Degree (MPH) with specialization in Environmental Health/Toxicology from University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Matthew Wenban-Smith, OneWorldStandards, UK

Matthew Wenban-Smith is the Director and founder of OneWorldStandards Ltd, providing consultancy services to both established and emerging social and environmental standards programs since 2006.  Matthew has worked in the sector since 1994 when he was taken on to establish the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)’s accreditation programme, and his management and project experience now covers all the principle aspects of standards system implementation including standards development, certification, accreditation, product traceability, dispute resolution, product claims, labelling, finance and governance.

Matthew has served on the ISEAL Board of Directors and the Technical Advisory Board of the Marine Stewardship Council, and has delivered projects for clients including the Rainforest Alliance, the Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance (IRMA), the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Forum (HSAF), the Basel Action Network, International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) and many others.  Wenban-Smith was a founding Director of the Water Stewardship Initiative (WSI), drafted WSI's first international water stewardship standard in 2009, and has worked for the last three years on the establishment of the global Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS).

Antoinette van Schaik, MARAS, Netherlands

Dr. ir. Antoinette van Schaik runs her private company MARAS - Material Recycling and Sustainability since 2005. MARAS is a consultancy company, which provides technology based system solutions in the field of recycling and waste systems. MARAS provides knowledge and advice to OEM’s, recycling industry, NGO’s, etc. This work includes projects on recycling of electronic and electric (WEEE/E-waste) goods as well as projects with the car industry (VW, Daimler, GM, Ford, Volvo, Fiat, Porsche, Renault) on issues related to linking recycling to car design (CAD).

Antoinette van Schaik has worked as a researcher in the automotive recycling industry (1997) and as Post-doc researcher at Delft University of Technology from 2004 to June 2008. She has taught undergraduate and graduate courses in recycling, design for recycling and sustainability, also as part of the European Minerals Engineering Course (between Delft University of Technology, Helsinki University of Technology, Aachen University of Technology and Imperial College).

She received her M.Sc. in Mining and Petroleum Engineering (1997) and Ph.D. (2004) on ‘Theory of Recycling Systems – Applied to Car Recycling’ at the Delft University of Technology (Netherlands). She has over 65 journal and (refereed) conference proceeding publications, 2 Encyclopaedia Chapters and is co-author of the book ‘Metrics of Material and Metal Ecology’ (706p.) published by Elsevier (Amsterdam) in 2005. She serves as a referee for various international journals such as ‘Minerals Engineering’, ‘IChemE’, ‘Waste Management’, ‘Journal of Cleaner Production’ and ‘Journal of Industrial Ecology’.


Pia Tanskanen, Nokia, Finland

Pia Tanskanen graduated from Lappeenranta University of Technology (Finland) in 1992 with major in Chemical Engineering. She finished her post graduate studies at Helsinki University of Technology with Environmental Technology and Material Engineering and received her Licentiate in Technology degree in 1996. She has finished IBA-International Business Acumen studies in HELIA – Helsinki Business Polytechnic in 2007.

Pia joined Nokia in 1999. She has been working in international projects with wide range of areas from R&D to supplier management processes and in environmental communication and marketing. She is currently working in Nokia Corporate Relations & Responsibility team as Senior Sustainability Manager with main focus in development of consumer take back service world wide.

Jan-Willem Scheijgrond, Philips, Netherlands

Jan-Willem Scheijgrond is Senior Director Environment, Health and Safety in the Corporate Sustainability Office of Philips. Jan-Willem joined Philips in February 2009.  His responsibilities include risk and reputation management in the field of sustainability. Specifically, Jan-Willem is involved with the global implementation strategies for WEEE and ROHS, Health & Safety, and company-wide implementation of REACH and BOMcheck. He is also responsible for stakeholder relations, in particular in the area of supplier sustainability.

Before that, he headed up the Government Affairs EU office for Hewlett-Packard in Brussels. He joined Hewlett- Packard in April 2005 and managed relations with the EU institutions, with a focus on environment, intellectual property, competitiveness, and trade. Prior to joining HP, Jan-Willem was environmental manager at Epson in Amsterdam. Before Epson, Jan-Willem worked as environmental specialist at the BLC Leather Technology Centre in Northampton, UK. Jan-Willem started his career at the UN Environment Programme in Paris. He holds a masters degree in Environmental Technology from Wageningen University, the Netherlands.

Jonathan Perry, Dell, UK

Jonathan joined Dell in May 2005. He has been responsible for the promotion and support of Dell’s Asset Recovery Services programme and for the Implementation of the WEEE and Batteries directive for Dell in the UK and other EMEA countries. 

In his current role Jonathan monitors and supports developing e-waste legislation across EMEA and also supports projects in EMEA and globally relating to producer responsibility, data security, partner compliance and Dell’s commitment to take back and recycling.

Prior to joining Dell, Jonathan held several positions at Fujitsu General and was instrumental in implementing new after sales support and end of life strategies for visual and cooling products.

Marina Burke, HP, UK

Marina Burke has been a member of the HP Environment team since 2006 working on EMEA wide projects on topics such as energy efficiency and e-waste recycling. Her current role focuses on e-waste recycling initiatives in African countries.
Marina is currently writing up her thesis for an Engineering Doctorate in Environmental Technology from the University of Surrey.

Ruediger Kuehr, UNU, Germany (Moderator)

Ruediger Kuehr has managed and directed the UNU Zero Emissions Forum’s activities in Europe since 1999. In addition he functions as the Executive Secretary of the “Alliance for Global Eco-Structuring (AGES)” under UNEP’s Cleaner Production Network and is co-founder, international coordinator and executive secretary of the “Solving the E-Waste Problem (StEP)” Initiative, in which he also co-coordinates the Task Forces “Policy” and “Recycling”. He is a first editor of the study “Computers and the Environment” published in late 2003, which is a multidisciplinary “systems analysis” of the impacts and management of the computer life cycle, including production, use, re-use, and recycling, which has received wide attention around the world. He edited several books and authored several dozens of pre-reviewed articles on e.g. Zero Emissions, environmental technology transfer, strategic sustainable development, and industrial clustering. Ruediger Kuehr has directed various Zero Emissions pilot projects with research and industry in e.g. Indonesia and Austria. In addition Ruediger contributed to the success of UNU’s Zero Emissions work through his research on WEEE policies, social impacts and reuse markets.

A political scientists by education with MA studies in Muenster (Germany), and PhD studies in Osnabrueck (Germany) and Tokyo (Japan) he served as Senior R & D Specialist with The Natural Step (Sweden) and freelance policy-consultant to various national governments, international organisations and companies. He was a visiting fellow to the Free University of Berlin (Germany) and the Hitotsubashi University (Japan) and a Research Associate to the Japan Research Centre of the University of Osnabrueck (Germany).