Jury members

Mirjam van Praag – Chairman of the jury – Professor of Entrepreneurship at University of Amsterdam and Copenhagen Business School

Prof Dr Mirjam van Praag is Maersk Mc-Kinney Møller Professor of Entrepreneurship at Copenhagen Business School, Department of Innovation and Organizational Economics.


Besides she holds an unpaid position as a Professor of Entrepreneurship and Organization in the Amsterdam Business School of the University of Amsterdam. She is also a Crown Member of the Socioeconomic Council (SER) of the Dutch government and board member of the Berlingske Media Group.

Van Praag’s research, that is widely published in international academic journals, studies Economics of Entrepreneurship (e.g., Human Capital, Teams, Entrepreneurship and the Household) often using (field or natural) experiments. Besides entrepreneurship, she is also an active researcher in the field of Personnel Economics (performance measurement and rewards) and Behavorial Economics. Mirjam is a research fellow of the CEPR, IZA, Tinbergen Institure, ACE and ACLE as well as a member of Academia Europaea.

In the past, Mirjam was employed as a consultant with The Boston Consulting Group, as a financial analyst with Procter & Gamble and as a research consultant with GFK Intomart. She has served as a non-executive member on various boards, both in the public and the private sector. Mirjam was the founding director of the Amsterdam Center for Entrepreneurship. Mirjam van Praag is an econometrician (MSc and Phd UvA) and she has a daughter (Sarah, 1998) and a son (Boaz, 1999).

Marja Zonnevylle – General Manager Gas Processing at Shell

Dr. Marja Zonnevylle has a BS in Chemistry from the University of Washington, and completed her MS and cum laude PhD in theoretical and physical chemistry from Cornell University (New York State) under the auspices of Nobel Laureate Prof. Dr. Roald Hoffmann.


She has been working for Shell since 1988, and is currently General Manager for Gas Processing, leading a team of experts to develop and apply a variety of technologies  to remove contaminants such as CO2 and H2S, from natural gas in projects around the world.

Previously, she was the Site Manager for the Shell Technology Centre Amsterdam, where 1300 Shell staff work to improve existing processes and products, and on technological innovations and solutions in the fields of petroleum, natural gas, chemicals and clean and affordable renewable energy alternatives. She has filled various technical, commercial and managerial positions, including in exploratory R&D, technical IT, hydroprocessing and light-ends conversion. She has broad international experience, has numerous patents and technical articles to her name, is an experienced speaker and currently holds several non-executive positions.

Mark van Vugt – Professor of Psychology at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and University of Oxford

Mark van Vugt (born 9 May 1967, Amsterdam) is a Netherlands evolutionary psychologist who holds a professorship in evolutionary psychology, work and organizational psychology at the VU University (Vrije Universiteit) Amsterdam. Van Vugt has affiliate positions at the University of Oxford, Institute for Cognitive and Evolutionary Anthropology (ICEA), and the University of Kent Centre for the Study of Group Processes.


Mark van Vugt studied psychology at the University of Groningen, followed by a PhD in applied social psychology at the University of Maastricht during which he worked on research into environmental sustainability and transportation as social dilemma and tragedy of the commons problems. After receiving his PhD in 1996, he was hired by the University of Southampton, UK, to work as a lecturer in psychology, followed by a professorship in 2004 at the University of Kent, UK.

Van Vugt is a Fellow of the British Royal Society for Arts and Commerce. He is also the first recipient of the Juda Groen award in the Netherlands for his contributions to evolution and human behavior.

Bram Schermers – PhD Candidate at NKI-AvL / University of Twente and winner of 2016


Bram Schermers received his master’s degree in Technical Medicine in 2014. He has been the key developer of the MaMaLoc technology in close co-operation between the Netherlands Cancer Institute and the University of Twente.

As a PhD Candidate he is now the key driver of the early technical and clinical feasibility research. Bram is interested in R&D, Business Development, Certification and Clinical Implementation.

In 2016 Bram won the Amsterdam Science & Innovation Award with his team for the MaMaLoc product and is currently working on further development and valorisation of the technology.

Yigal Pinto – AMC, professor department of Cardiology, co-founder of ACS Biomarker

Yigal is a full professor at the University of Amsterdam where he chairs the Experimental Cardiology and the Heart Failure Unit and is overall Scientific Director of the Heart Center of the Academic Medical Center in Amsterdam.


Yigal M. Pinto is the inventor of galectin-3 as a biomarker for heart failure which was succesfully patented worldwide (patentnumber:EP 2317324 A1). This biomarker was approved in 2010 by the FDA and subsequently introduced for routine clinical use.

Meanwhile the discovery work in his group was geared towards microRNAs as a novel class of cardiac biomarkers and his group was the first to report and patent circulating microRNAs as biomarkers for heart failure.

Janine Huizenga – Chair E-Culture Advisory Committee of the Creative Industries Fund Netherlands

Janine Huizenga was trained as an artist and photographer at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam. After many years as Creative Director of Amsterdam based Waag Society, Institute for Art, Science and Technology , she spent several years in the UK, designing and directing the Cultural Mapping project, a pioneering initiative aimed at empowering local communities within urban development programs, at the University of Central Lancashire. In 2009, Janine co-founded the Creative Cooperative. Within the Creative Cooperative, she works as a digital media designer, teacher, consultant and organizer of workshops and events around digital media design, design thinking and societal change.


In 2010, she co-founded the European Street Design Challenge, which has taken place annually in Paris and other major cities in Europe and the Middle East until the present day. Her recent work includes collaborative design workshops for the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in Georgia, Cairo and Alexandria in the context of the 2015 Millenium Development Goals. At present, she is designing a new interactive museum experience for the Amsterdam museums, and working with the UNDP in Egypt to develop a Design Thinking program to inspire innovative social entrepreneurship for the Arab region. In addition, she is developing design projects  in the e-Health sector with Waag Society and exploring “bio-hack” solutions as an innovative means to address self-care. Janine has wide experience in design education, working at universities and design academies throughout the Netherlands and China. Janine is currently chair of the E-Culture Advisory Committee of the Creative Industries Fund Netherlands.

Joris Tinbergen – director of Thauris

As a member of the Board at Thauris Joris Tinbergen is transforming the way companies and governments are managing the exchange of information between them. Sharing and exchanging information between organisations in a safe, structured, compliant, and efficient way is of great value to any business and requires an innovative and digital approach.

joris-tinbergenAs director at Google Benelux Joris was responsible for the market segment Technology. He helped large corporations like Philips, Samsung, TomTom and KPN make the shift to online.
Prior to that he helped Telfort build a position in mobile internet, both for consumer and business customers and launched the first mobile broadband products in the Netherlands.

Joris started his career at KPN, where he held various management positions, among others at KPN Belgium where he was a member of the launching team of KPN Orange (now BASE).

He is mentor at Startup Bootcamp and a member of the Advisory Board at Teylers Museum. Joris has a masters degree in Business Economics from Rijksuniversiteit Groningen.