Nicola McGrane

CEO, Conference Partners International, Ireland

Nicola established Conference Partners International (CPI) in Ireland in 1998 and the business has since expanded its reach to the UK and Central Europe. With a strong emphasis on partnering with leading researchers and innovators, CPI has bid for and delivered over 500 International meetings. Over the past 19 years, CPI’s portfolio of expertise has grown to encompass Core PCO and Association Management Services. Renowned for her ability to identify opportunities, Nicola’s creative thinking and strategic advice has been sought at the highest level by numerous Associations, Corporations and Industry bodies. Nicola is wholly committed to developing the business tourism industry in Ireland, the UK and abroad. She is a founding member of The Association of Irish Professional Conference Organisers (AIPCO) and was a passionate council member for the International Association of Professional Conference Organisers (IAPCO) for 5 years. Nicola gives generously of her expertise and hands on skills for the benefit of others and loves to share this experience with rising stars of the global meetings industry.

Mathias Posch

IAPCO President
President, International Conference Services, Canada

Mathias Posch is Chairman and President of International Conference Services (ICS). With its Headquarters in Vancouver, Canada and branch offices in Toronto, Denver, London, Vienna & Barcelona (Singapore and Tokyo opening in 2019), the company manages conferences around the globe – in 38 countries on 6 continents thus far. Mathias is President of IAPCO and as such leads the organisation’s expansion and outreach programme. He is a respected industry expert and has been invited to speak at numerous international and national conferences around the globe. Further he also serves on a number of Advisory Boards and consults international scientific and medical associations on their global strategy.

Ori Lahav

IAPCO Vice President
VP Client & Operations, Kenes Group, Israel

Ori Lahav joined Kenes in 2013 as AVP Marketing, bringing more than 15 years of marketing experience to the management team. Ori’s expertise includes implementing marketing strategies, ATL/BTL and leading digital campaigns in online/social media channels. He began his career in the communications industry, where he held marketing positions at Internet, voice and mobile telecom providers. This was followed by a senior role in the automotive sector with a start-up that raised US$ 900M to manufacture electric cars. After 4 years in the company, Ori moved to managing the Client Accounts & Operations unit. In the beginning of 2017, Ori also became an IAPCO Council Member (IAPCO – the International Association of Professional Congress Organisers). Ori holds a BA in Statistics from the University of Haifa and an MBA from the University of Derby, UK.

Guest Speakers

Josje Spierings

Project Leader at Centre for Innovation – Leiden University

Josje is head of the secretariat of the International Data Responsibility Group (IRDG) where she aims to advance the agenda of responsible data use for vulnerable and crisis affected populations. Her expertise are Project management, Responsible data and Open data. She is looking for people that are critical of the status quo, think consciously and ask a lot of questions – especially around data collection and use.

Jelmer van Ast

Founder and CEO of Conference Compass

Jelmer van Ast is the CEO & Founder of Conference Compass, a pioneer in mobile event apps since 2009. Conference Compass provides clients like ESC, CIRSE and UEG with high-end event apps for association conferences. Jelmer holds a PhD in artificial intelligence and regularly presents at conferences.

Michiel Middendorf

General Manager World Forum

Michiel Middendorf has over 35 years’ experience in the International Hospitality Industry having worked for Marriott Hotels, TGI Friday’s and Hard Rock Café in the USA, Spain and The Netherlands. Michiel is currently General Manager of World Forum The Hague. His most memorable event is the Nuclear Security Summit in 2014 hosting 58 heads of state including president Obama and 3000 delegates and journalists. His favorite subjects to share are “servant leadership” and “event security”.

Michiel leads the Security Task Force of the International Association of Congress Centers (AIPC) and is an active member of the Economic Board of the City of The Hague and President of the Partners in Tourism association of the City of The Hague.

Pieter Jansen

CEO at Cybersprint