Green Cities Fit for Life

Image by Jean-Dominique Billaud

Expert Panel

Applications are currently being accepted for persons wishing to become a member of the European Green Capital Expert Panel for the 2017 European Green Capital Award Cycle. The expert contract for the 2017 EGCA Evaluation will run from June 2014 until June 2015. Find out more

The members of the expert panel responsible for technical review of the applications of the European Green Capital Award for 2016 are listed below.

1. Local contribution to global climate change       

Expert: Mr. Javier González Vidal
Atmospheric pollution technical advisor. Regional Government of Valencia – D.G. Environmental Quality, Spain.

javier-gonzalezvidalF. Javier González Vidal is an Industrial Engineer by the Polytechnic University of Valencia. Throughout his professional career he has always focused on the promotion of environmental respect, both at the regional and international level.
For the last 13 years he has been working for the Regional Government of Valencia in the D.G. Environmental Quality, where the activities and responsibilities of the job have provided him with a wide view of the situation related to the intensive use of energy, climate change, polluting emissions and air quality.
The development and implementation of policies to fight air pollution and climate change have been one of his priorities, having used emissions inventories as a key tool to assess effectiveness. During this period some of the main tasks he has been involved in have been the development, implementation and monitoring of the policies included in the regional Climate Change Strategy and the implementation of the EU ETS, the management of the PRTR register, and the air quality network analysis and subsequent development of air quality actions plans.
He was a member of the Climate Change Committee of the European Commission as a representative of the regional governments of Spain in order to express their opinion during the negotiations of the European policies.
Since 2005, as a member of the Roster of Experts of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Javier contributes to the review of national communications and inventories, focusing in the energy chapter, according to the Kyoto Protocol commitments.
He has cooperated actively with D.G. Enlargement providing technical support to EU partner countries with regard to the approximation, application and enforcement of EU environmental legislation through the Technical Assistance and Information Exchange instrument.
During 2013 he has worked with the Ministry of Environment of Brazil, in the context of the sectorial dialogues between the EU and Brazil, on the Climate Change and Energy Efficiency Chapter.”


2. Local transport 

Expert: Dr. Henrik Gudmundsson
Senior Researcher, Department of Transport, Technical University of Denmark

henrikgudmundssonHenrik Gudmundsson has been a Senior Researcher in Sustainable Transport at the Technical University of Denmark since 2006. He is educated as an Environmental planner and has a PhD from Copenhagen Business School. His main area of research is sustainable transport governance and policy analysis, including the use of knowledge and indicators in the design, implementation and monitoring of transport plans. Henrik is the National Principle Contact Point (PCP) on transport indicators in Denmark for the European Environment Agency (EEA), and a member of the scientific advisory board for the Swedish Government’s Transport Analysis agency. Henrik is currently involved in fourmajor research projects on transport policy and planning. He is a member the Committees on ‘Performance Measurement’ and ‘Transportation and Sustainability’ of the US Transportation Research Board.
Before assuming his current position Henrik has been involved in State of the Environment Reporting for Denmark at the National Environmental Research Institute (1993- 2006) and prior to that he was a Head of Section in the Danish Environmental Protection Agency (1988-2003).

3. Green Urban areas Incorporating Sustainable land use  

Expert: Ms. Ir.Hedwig van Delden
Director Research Institute for Knowledge Systems (RIKS), Maastricht, The Netherlands  & Associate Professor, the University of Adelaide, Australia.

hedwigvandeldenHedwig van Delden is the General Director of the Research Institute for Knowledge Systems (RIKS) in Maastricht, the Netherlands. After graduating from the University of Twente as a Civil Engineer in Water Engineering and Management, she started working at RIKS as a Policy Analyst and in the following years gradually rose to the position of General Director. Over the years she has taken on many roles ranging from Researcher to Project Manager and Project Leader working on integrating models and modeling tools from a broad range of fields such as land use change, hydrology, economics and transport.
Her academic work focuses on issues relating to model integration on the conceptual level and process management in integrated modeling system implementations. In this capacity she has authored or co-authored a long list of peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters. Her most recent conference presentations were at the International Environmental Modelling and Software Societies Fifth Biennial Meeting in Ottawa, Canada and the International Conference on managing the Urban Rural interface in Copenhagen, Denmark.

4. Nature and biodiversity      

Expert: Dr. Jake Piper
Associate and Senior Research Fellow,  Faculty of Technology, Design and Environment, Oxford Brookes University, United Kingdom.

jakepiperJake Piper has worked as a researcher and lecturer at Oxford Brookes University for the past twelve years, following on from an earlier career in environmental consultancy. Her academic background includes forestry and land management, and environmental assessment.

In recent years she has contributed to and managed studies of policy development and spatial planning, frequently as related to biodiversity protection and enhancement in circumstances of climate change, as part of EU programmes (MACIS, BRANCH), and she has been a peer reviewer of the C-Change project which promotes community engagement and behaviour change as well as creating multi-functional spaces. She has also worked on studies preparing guidance for projects affecting Natura 2000 sites, and projects concerned with rural development.

Issues around biodiversity, water resources, flooding and sustainable drainage have been a particular interest – as demonstrated in her recent book Spatial Planning and Climate Change (with Elizabeth Wilson). Other project work has involved the economic and environmental assessment of many forms of development, including offshore wind, water resources, railway infrastructure, forestry and leisure.

5. Ambient Air Quality

Expert: Dr. Steen Solvang Jensen
Senior Scientist, Department of Environmental Science, Aarhus University, Denmark.

steensolvangSteen Solvang Jensen is Senior Scientist, PhD at the Department of Environmental Science, Aarhus University in Denmark.  He is a civil engineer with a specialization in planning with 22 years of experience within traffic planning and urban air quality assessment and management. He has worked as project manager within research, consultancy and administration, and has acted as an advisor for the Danish Environmental Protection Agency and international development agencies.  His main experience is within research and development of integrated modelling systems for air pollution and human exposures for application in decision-support systems in urban air quality management and in air pollution epidemiological studies.  These studies include mapping, impact assessment, scenario analysis, and policy options within emission, air quality, human exposures, health and external costs of air pollution as well as environmental impacts of renewable energy systems and technologies (hydrogen, biofuels, biomass).

6. Quality of the Acoustic Environment      

Dr. Diogo Alarcão
Specialist in Acoustic Engineering. Principal Researcher and Professor at Instituto Superior Técnico University of Lisbon, Portugal & the Polytechnic Institute of Lisbon, Portugal

diogoalarcaoDiogo Alarcão is a Physics Engineer with a PhD in Acoustics. He is Principal Researcher and a Professor in the scientific area of Acoustics at Instituto Superior Técnico, University of Lisbon, Portugal. He is a Chartered Acoustical Engineer, member of the board of the Portuguese Acoustical Society and member of the executive commission for the Specialization in Acoustic Engineering of Ordem dos Engenheiros.

He has been responsible for major projects in Environmental Acoustics and Noise Control, including Noise Mapping and Action Plans for large urban areas in various Portuguese cities and for many large transport infrastructures. He has also been responsible for various projects in the area of Room Acoustics and Virtual Acoustics including real time simulation and auralization of sound fields in enclosures.

7. Waste Production and management    

Mr. Larry O’Toole
Regional Director, Waste Energy and Environment Division,  RPS Group Ltd., Dublin, Ireland.larryotoole

RPS Group Ltd. He is a Chartered Civil Engineer with 26 years’ experience of civil and environmental engineering and waste strategy and planning in Ireland and in the UK.

He has been Project Manager for a broad range of waste and energy policy and infrastructural projects and is currently responsible for a team of engineers, scientists and waste planners providing services to both the public and private sectors in UK and Ireland. These include national strategic studies, policy reviews, regional waste plans, siting studies, feasibility, design and procurement of recycling, recovery and disposal facilities and renewable energy projects including wind energy, anaerobic digestion and biofuels.  Clients include the EPA, DELCG, numerous Local Authorities and semi-State bodies.

He is a Chartered Member of the Institution of Engineers of Ireland and a Registered Consulting Chartered Engineer with the Association of Consulting Engineers of Ireland.  He has presented widely on waste management including at the EU-Asia Solid Waste Management Conference, Malaysia in 2008 and on “Integrated Waste Management and Climate Change” at International Conference on Cities and Climate Change, New Delhi, India, Feb 2011.

8. Water consumption       

Expert: Mr. Shailendra Mudgal
Executive Director, BIO Intelligence Service (BIO) France

shailendramudgalShailendra Mudgal is a civil-environmental engineer/economist with more than 20 years of experience in environmental consulting and has a specific expertise in water management.

He has worked on a range of projects in India dealing with leak detection in water supply networks, river basin action plan, stormwater management, and water quality and quantity modeling.

During last 10 years, he has worked on water policy sector in France and Europe. He led several studies for the European Commission on impact of climate change on drinking water resources, water efficiency standards, and water performance of buildings and also contributed to studies on water issues for the European Parliament. He contributed to the UNEP Green Economy Report and also supported the EEA on two chapters dealing with social and technological megatrends of the European Environment State and Outlook Report (SOER) 2010 which are being updated for SOER 2015. Recently, he advised the UNFCCC on the methodology for evaluating the water saving devices in the context of the clean development mechanism.

9. Waste water treatment           

Expert: Dr. Ana Lončarić Božić
Associate Professor Faculty of Chemical Engineering and Technology, University of Zagreb, Croatia.

analoncaricAna Lončarić Božić is an associate professor involved in teaching and research in the field of Chemical and Environmental engineering. Ana holds a PhD in Chemical Engineering. Her research interests include advanced technologies for water and wastewater treatment, advanced oxidation technologies, photocatalysis, degradation of recalcitrant pollutants and contaminants of emerging concern and ecotoxicity. She participated in 5 national and international research projects with academia and industry in the field of advanced wastewater treatment. She is the author/co-author of more than 30 scientific papers published in peer-reviewed journals (cited over 500 times, h-index 12). Ana sits on 3 editorial boards and is a regular reviewer for more than 20 scientific journals. She is also an Environmental Management System Auditor. With a background in Chemical and Environmental Engineering and the expertise in the wastewater treatment and water management, Ana was involved as an evaluator for FP7-ENV-2012, FP7-ENV-2013 and NCBR-Core 2012 calls.

10. Eco-innovation and sustainable employment    

Expert: Dr. Stefan Ulrich Speck
Project manager environmental economics and policies at the Integrated Environmental Assessments Programme at the European Environment Agency. Copenhagen.

stefanspeckStefan Speck is an environmental economist with a PhD in economics. His main area of research is the application of market-based instruments for environmental policy, environmental fiscal reform, and green economy.

Prior to his current position, he was employed as a senior consultant at Kommunalkredit Public Consulting in Austria and as a senior project scientist at the National Environmental Research Institute/University of Aarhus in Denmark within the EU-funded project ‘Competitiveness effects of environmental tax reforms’ (COMETR). He also contributed to the research project ‘Resource Productivity, Environmental Tax Reform and Sustainable Growth in Europe’ funded by the Anglo-German Foundation.

He has implemented projects for a range of clients including the Danish Environmental Protection Agency (DEPA), European Commission (EC), Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, and the UK Department for International Development (DFID). He has carried out research projects in Africa and Asia, and has published widely on economic instruments and environmental financing and recently co-edited the book Environmental Tax Reform (ETR) A Policy for Green Growth (Oxford University Press, 2011).

11. Energy performance     

Expert: Prof. Dr. Manfred Fischedick
Vice President of the Wuppertal Institute and Professor at the Schumpeter School of Business and Economics, Wuppertal, Germany.

manfredfischedickManfred Fischedick is the Vice President of the Wuppertal Institute, an international well known think tank investigating transformation processes to a sustainable development. With particular reference to the areas of climate, energy, resources and mobility, the institute is looking for technical, infrastructure and social innovations supporting the transition to sustainable structures. Special focus is given on the transition process of the energy system and cities.

Manfred Fischedick is also leading the research group “Future Energy and Mobility Structures” of the Wuppertal Institute and is professor at the Schumpeter School of Business and Economics at the University of Wuppertal. He has been working for more than 20 years in the field of energy system analysis (including sustainable urban infrastructure analysis). He is adviser to the German government as well as the Bundesland of North Rhine-Westphalia, author of various publications and peer reviewed articles. Manfred Fischedick is coordinating lead author for the IPCC (responsible for the chapter industry in the upcoming 5th assessment report), member of several national and international scientific boards and advisory councils.

Manfred Fischedick has been intensively working in the context of sustainable urban infrastructures and energy efficient cities. His project experience comprises among others the development of long term concepts for the German cities of Munich and Düsseldorf and the Chinese city of Wuxi. For the Innovation City Ruhr Bottrop, which is kind of a real-term laboratory in the Ruhr Valley aiming for an emission reduction by 50% between 2010 and 2020 he is leading the scientific accompaniment process.

12. Integrated Environmental Management              

Mr. Jan Dictus
Founder of GOJA Consulting for Environment and Sustainable Development, Vienna, Austria

jandictusJan Dictus (nationality Dutch, living and working in Austria since 2000) is an expert on sustainable development of cities. He has provided services to a wide range of clients at international, European, regional and local levels on environmental and sustainable development issues.

He was involved in several EcoCity projects: For the City of Vienna Jan has led the development of the Environmental Vision of Vienna and is presently supporting the network Cities for a Nuclear Free Europe CNFE. Also for Vienna he was technical chair of the EUROCITIES Environment Forum.

As a UNIDO expert Jan has been involved in the organisation and reporting of conferences in Jordan and Bahrain on EcoCities in Middle-East and North Africa (MENA Region). Also for UNIDO and the Government of Japan he is presently setting up a network of Eco-Cities in South East Asia, introducing the instrument of Peer Review for Cities. Together with Astronaut Marcos Pontes Foundation and UNIDO he is preparing the development of an Eco-State in Roraima, Brazil. In the past Jan worked on Green Industry and the promotion of Eco-Business projects in e.g. India and Thailand, and on the development of a Green Award mechanism in Cambodia.

Jan is a member of the Expert Evaluation Panel for the European Green Capital Award since 2012, acted as Lead Expert for URBACT-II and is a member of the expert group for the “UNEP-JCEP Sustainable Urban Development and Liveable Garden Community – China Programme“ in China.