Meet the grand jury

Meet our Grand Jury! The jury’s task is to select the best teams and ideas from among the Helsinki Challenge semifinalist teams that will advance to the final of the accelerator program in 2017. The finalists will be announced 19.6. 




Tuija Talvitie is CMI’s Executive Director. Talvitie has over twenty years’ experience in international leadership, social development and more recently in conflict resolution. She emphasises multi-stakeholder, inclusive approaches, innovation and ethical leadership. Prior to joining CMI, Talvitie was the Director of British Council Finland where she led the organisation’s transformation to a cooperative, project based actor and played an active role in the leadership team of North and Central Europe. Talvitie sits on the boards of various international and Finnish think tanks and NGOs.


Victoria Betancourt is the Founder of Coneybeare Cleantech, recruiting and consulting firm specializing in connecting companies with the talent they need to accelerate growth in the clean technology, renewable energy and sustainability related sectors. Betancourt has also created a unique sustainability demonstration project in Colombia, South America, which holds workshops on permaculture and sustainable architecture, and is a demonstration site for innovative renewable energy technologies. Victoria is a member of Vistage, a CEO roundtable, a past executive board director for the Santa Ana Chamber of Commerce, a member of the US Green Building Council, and Cleantech-OC.

Frank Geels is Professor of System Innovation and Sustainability at the University of Manchester, institutionally located in the Manchester Business School. Geels is a world-leading scholar on sustainability transitions and socio-technical innovation. Drawing on his research experience, he has advised the OECD, European Commission, International Panel on Climate Change, Carbon Trust, and European Environment Agency, about system innovation and sustainability transitions.

Saara Hassinen is the Managing Director of Healthtech Finland which is the industry association for health technology companies in Finland. Before Healthtech Finland as the Managing Director of SalWe, she led the building of Strategic Centre in the field of health and well-being as well as networks, research programs and industry–academia collaboration.

Andreas Kaju is a strategic consultant and a Partner at Meta Advisory Group. Meta Advisory Group is a part of Fipra network, a global network of senior, strategic advisers specializing in public policy and regulatory issues. Kaju began his career working in the Estonian Chamber of Commerce & Industry, one of the largest business organisations in Estonia. Later Andreas served as an adviser to the Prime Minister, head of a parliamentary group’s team of advisers and as a policy adviser to the Minister of Defence.

Anneli Pauli works in the European Commission's Directorate-General Climate Action as the Advisor hors classe (Innovation and Competitiveness) and has worked as the Deputy Director General both in the Commission’s Directorate-General for Research and Innovation as well as in Commission's Joint Research Centre, Vice President for research at the Academy of Finland, Director of Heureka, the Finnish Science Centre Foundation and as the President of the Lappeenranta University of Technology. Pauli hopes that Finnish universities would seek solutions to global problems with an interdisciplinary approach.

Paul Quinlan is a Clean Tech Manager with ScottMadden, a management consulting firm serving the energy industry. He assists clean energy and utility clients with market research, strategic planning, business planning, and due diligence evaluations. Prior to ScottMadden, Paul was the managing director of the North Carolina Sustainable Energy Association, a nonprofit organization focused on renewable energy and energy efficiency policy issues.