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WORTH Partnership Project

WORTH Community

WORTH is about creating a relevant community throughout Europe whose members share vision and values around design and innovation.

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WORTH Community (58)

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  • President at Ornamo Art and Design Finland

Hanna-Kaisa Alanen

President at Ornamo Art and Design Finland

Hanna-Kaisa is an experienced design professional, a graduate of the Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture in Helsinki (formerly University of Art and Design Helsinki, re-organized 2010) and has also studied at the Royal College of Art in London. She has over 20 years of experience in designing, a profound knowledge in a new product design and conceptual branding both in fashion and home segments in consumer goods industry.

Currently, Hanna-Kaisa conducts PhD studies in Cognitive Science at the Faculty of Information Technology, University of Jyväskylä. Her mission is to better understand the user experience (UX) in the fashion context as well as to bring design practices and academics closer to each other.

Hanna-Kaisa continues as a member of the Board of Ornamo Art and Design Finland and is setting up an interest group that brings together fashion and textile designers in particular, with the aim of providing inspirational and stimulating cross-border debates.

WORTH Community
  • Head of Innovation and Development at the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland

Louise Allen

Head of Innovation and Development at the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland

Louise Allen is the Head of Innovation and Development at the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland and from 2014 was the Head of International Programmes for Irish Design 2015.

Her experience ranges across design, enterprise, contemporary art and craft, education, curation and innovation. In her various roles she has led on the strategic development for
 the design and craft sector, forged relationships nationally and internationally and has delivered several EU funded programmes.

Louise co-curated Liminal-Irish Design at the threshold, the flagship exhibition for Irish Design 2015 that toured to design weeks in Milan, New York and Eindhoven and in 2016 and 2017 the Global Irish Design Challenge and Second Skin which explored links between fashion consumption and production.

In October 2016 Louise was elected President of the World Crafts Council Europe who represent 29 craft organisations from 20 EU countries.

Louise holds a joint honours degree in Fine Art Print and Art History from the National College of Art and Design and a post-graduate diploma in European Cultural Project Management.

WORTH Community
  • International Association of Universities and Colleges of Art, Design and Media

Cumulus Association

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International Association of Universities and Colleges of Art, Design and Media

Founded in 1990 and recognised by UNESCO since 2011, Cumulus is the only global association and network to serve art and design education and research. It is a forum for partnership and transfer of knowledge and best practices around the world. Cumulus consists currently of 286 members from 57 countries.

Founded by the University of Art and Design in Helsinki (UIAH) (currently Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture) and the Royal College of Art in London, in co-operation with Danmarks Designskole, Gerrit Rietvelt Academy, Universität Gesamthochschule Essen and Hochschule für Angewandte Kunst in Wien initiated Cumulus as a network in 1990. They all had a common desire to enhance the quality of education through co-operation, student and teacher exchange within the European Union Erasmus programme.

Cumulus aims at building and maintaining a dynamic and flexible academic forum which would bring together top-level educational institutions from all over the world. Cumulus collaborates not only with institutions and organisations from the field of art, design and media; the encouragement of co-operation with industry and business is important as well.

Following current trends and demands, Cumulus offers wider international context for discussion and developments in education and research of art, design and media.

  • Among the core tasks of Cumulus are the assistance to academic institutions of art, design and media in their development and in enhancing their contribution to society; promotion of a dialogue between Cumulus and international professional organisations such as World Design Organization (WDO), IFI, ico-D, BEDA and others; promotion of a dialogue between Cumulus and national and international academic institutions and associations; encouragement of co-operation between higher education networks in art, design and media and the development of effective networks; promotion of co-operation between academic institutions of higher education in art, design and media and the world of business; offers the Members of the Association the information about the educational, research and cultural policies of different countries and the EU; initiate joint projects such as competitions, exhibitions and awards to promote innovative work in art, design and media.  

To stimulate design actions, projects and research leading to a more sustainable society, Cumulus representatives signed the Kyoto Design Declaration in March 2008.

WORTH Community
  • Luxury leatherwork designer

Assaad Awad

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Luxury leatherwork designer

Assaad Awad is a multidisciplinary artist of Spanish and Lebanese origin. With 14 years of expertise in the advertising industry, Asaad made the remarkable step of leaving the bubble and now works in his workshops between Beirut and Madrid. 

His handcrafted leather and metal pieces have been worn by celebrities such as Thierry Mugler, Balenciaga, Madonna, Lady Gaga, and Teatro Real, as well as countless editorial appearances in Vogue.

Assaad’s work is known for being Artesian and Vanguardist, with a focus on the quality and execution of each piece. He designs luxury leatherworks, industrial, accessories, and jewellery.

“In a world of copy/paste, we need to go back to the Handcrafted”


WORTH Community
MentorsSteering Board Members
  • General Manager UNIC – Italian Tanneries CEO - LINEAPELLE

Fulvia Bacchi

General Manager UNIC – Italian Tanneries CEO - LINEAPELLE

Fulvia has been the General Director of UNIC since 2016 and the CEO of LINEAPELLE (International Exhibition) since July 2017. She is also the CEO of ICEC (Institute of Certification) and a member of the Italian Leather Research Institute's management board (Stazione Sperimentale Pelli di Napoli). Fulvia has worked in the UNIC Group (a Confindustria Association) since 1973 in the areas of corporate strategy, marketing, and international marketing, assisting Italian tanning companies in their international expansion and managing external and institutional relations. 

She founded LP Fashion Studio, an innovative showroom devoted to emerging trends in leather fashion, and it provides a unique dynamic resource for all designers and researchers in the leather sector, particularly those concerned with the industry's sustainability. Fulvia has established and supported the tanning business by advocating and carrying out programmes and projects to make the industry more advanced, concerned with the environment, health, and the ethical economy.

WORTH Community
Steering Board Members
  • CEO at Romanian Tech Startups Association (ROTSA), Business Mentor and Startup Adviser

Cristiana Bogateanu

CEO at Romanian Tech Startups Association (ROTSA), Business Mentor and Startup Adviser

Cristiana is a serial entrepreneur, business mentor to over 100 firms, and business adviser to three companies. Her current goal is to lead the Romanian Tech Startups Association (ROTSA), a nonprofit and nongovernmental organisation based in Cluj-Napoca, Romania that connects startups, communities, and other relevant stakeholders in the startup ecosystem.

She had eight businesses before becoming a mother. Zalmotek, an IoT product development firm, Academia inventeaza, a STEAM-focused educational programme, and, an open-source ecosystem management platform for IoT, were among them.

Cristiana has over ten years of experience in business development and entrepreneurship. She has also participated in a number of programmes over the years, including Seedcamp (Coaching), Challenge UP, and the Hub:raum digital incubator. With her work, she earned the New Europe 100: East Europe's Emerging Technology Stars - Financial Times in 2017, the National Competition - Global Startup Awards in 2016, and the Forbes 30 Under 30 in 2015.

WORTH Community
  • Transylvania Textile & Fashion cluster

Mirela Bogyó

Transylvania Textile & Fashion cluster

Mrs. Mirela Bogyo – holds a Bachelor’s degree in economics and business administration and a Master’s degree in business development management. She also holds a number of certificates from known institutions on cluster management, SME instruction, developing entrepreneurial culture, etc. She has been cluster manager from the establishment of the cluster and has successfully implemented an EU project for integrating small and medium enterprises into value chains and clusters.

A firm believer of internationalization, she lead the cluster to becoming a member of the Balkan Cluster Network, to be present on the Cluster Collaboration platform and has numerous cooperation protocols signed with different, international clusters.

She is highly motivated to mentor young designers, so this year she participated with two young designers at Global Sustainable Fashion Week and promoted the idea of sustainable and circular fashion. She believes that creativity is at the heart of education. Re-fashion starts in schools was organized two times, this year and in 2017 to put the idea into practice.

WORTH Community
  • Strategist on Demand Textile Concepts

Tirza Brems

Strategist on Demand Textile Concepts

As the (great-grand-)daughter and sister of well-known couture, street fashion, and accessory designers, Tirza studied fashion business in Amsterdam (now part of AMFI). She has been working as a product developer, buyer, and innovation manager for over two decades, and now as a strategist for major retail brands. She collaborates with designers, innovators, quality & material experts, and producers. Fashion, hosiery, bodywear, baby and children's clothes, and household textiles are the most common. But, as part of the Hema Design Contest, Tirza created the now-famous water cooker, Ketel Binkie

She believes that the more you understand the possibilities, the better your ideas and creations will be. More importantly, it becomes simpler to envision the industry's potential for transformation. Since 2013, her main focus has been on the automation and digitization of the supply chain and production, motivated by the need for sustainable and circular solutions, without losing sight of or sacrificing the power of material development, design, and craftsmanship.

Her greatest asset is her expertise of design, product development, materials, and how to combine them with the value chain and production possibilities.

WORTH Community
  • Fashion Tech and Sustainability Investment Expert

Giusy Cannone

Fashion Tech and Sustainability Investment Expert

Giusy is the CEO of Fashion Technology Accelerator, the international digital innovation centre for the fashion industry. She has ten years of expertise in investing and startup management. She was the Investment Manager of Italian Angels for Growth, a business angels network that invested 14 million euros. She formerly worked as an innovation expert at Intesa Sanpaolo bank, where she oversaw a programme that helps tech start-ups grow their businesses. She has also worked in the United States, first as a Researcher at the Kauffman Foundation and subsequently as the coordinator of the Mind the Bridge incubator programme in San Francisco. In addition, she has worked on consulting initiatives to help other countries build their entrepreneurial ecosystems.

She teaches at prominent Italian fashion schools including Istituto Marangoni and Domus Academy.

WORTH Community
  • CEO at CELEN CONSULTING, Coach, Mentor and Adviser of start- and scale-ups with focus on Go-To-Market Strategies, Sales Methodologies and the Psychology behind sales

Paul Celen

CEO at CELEN CONSULTING, Coach, Mentor and Adviser of start- and scale-ups with focus on Go-To-Market Strategies, Sales Methodologies and the Psychology behind sales

Paul Celen has been an entrepreneur for the past 21 years. He now works as an independent business consultant in Austria, specialising in coaching start-ups or scale-ups, interim management, and coaching other entrepreneurs for any occasion involving growth and business development.  

Celen holds a PhD in science from the State University of Ghent, an MBA from the University of Antwerp - affiliated with Boston University (USA), a Masters in Molecular Biology and Finance, and a number of other prestigious degrees from international universities.

Prior to starting his consultingancy career, Paul was the founder and CEO of Supplitel AG, the first independent ASP for Voice Portal applications (1999 -2001).

Prior to that, he was COO of Phillips Speech Processing, where he was in charge of all worldwide operational activities, including launching the company globally with an emphasis on the United States. He worked at ICLFujitsu as a Managing Director in and for 5 European countries, as well as business manager Retail for the East European countries, with an emphasis on turning around loss-making firms and expanding others. He was named the best turn-around manager ever at ICL-Fujitsu, developing a new GTM methodology and hence similar to start-up activities.

WORTH Community