Hans P.M. Adriaansens (1946) is professor (em) of social sciences at Utrecht University, The Netherlands, and Dean Emeritus at Roosevelt Academy in Middelburg, an international honors college of Utrecht University, which he both founded In 1997 he founded University College Utrecht (UCU), which he led as dean until 2003. In 2003 he founded Roosevelt Academy Middelburg, a second honors college of Utrecht University, officially opened by Queen Beatrix in 2004. He is co-founder of Ecolas (European Colleges of Liberal Arts and Sciences). Besides his academic activities he has filled numerous administrative and supervisory positions. He served as member of the Board of Trustees of the Hogeschool Utrecht, the Hogeschool Zeeland and was member of various ministerial committees on the organization of higher education. He currently serves as President of the Sirius Organization for Excellence in Dutch Higher Education and is chairman and/or member of various audit- and review committees of the Dutch/Flemish Accreditation Organization (NVAO). He is in the Board of Advisors of two new university colleges in China (Chongqing and Taigu); he is chairman of the Board of Advisors of University College Tilburg and member of the Panopticon Board that oversees the founding of University College Haarlem.
Megha Harish is a final year student on the BA Liberal Arts program at King’s College London. She is majoring in politics, with a dissertation on Civic Education in India, and minoring in history, with a focus on colonial history, diasporic movement and identity. In October 2014, she helped organise the Future of Liberal Arts Conference at King’s and put together the student panel discussion that opened the session. In November 2015, along with Ian Tidbury, she co-convened the Winchester-King’s Student Liberal Arts Conference, the first of its kind in the UK. She has been Student Representative for her Liberal Arts cohort from 2013-16 and President of the King’s Liberal Arts Society 2015-16. She intends to pursue a masters degree in Modern South Asian Studies, with research on the history of education and interdisciplinarity in the subcontinent. Megha is also a member of the Barbican Young Poets and Burn After Reading poetry and spoken word collectives in London.
Markus Kressler, born on the 2nd of February, 1990, is the Managing Partner and Co-Founder of Kiron Open Higher Education, an e-learning educational platform for refugees. He is responsible for the departments of Internationalisation, Student Services, Technology and Marketing. Prior to his work at Kiron, Markus built up the first digital German volunteer-platform called Alltagshelden.org. This project has served as an example for many established digital platforms in the social area. Markus Kressler’s studies of psychology were shaped by his passion for societal and economic challenges. Additionally, he worked as a strategic consultant for the Business Management Consultancy Prof. Homburg & Partner GmbH. As part of his studies, he spent some time at the University of California where he focused on the topic of Social Entrepreneurship. During his time there, he began a project for young homeless people in San Diego. Afterwards, Markus Kressler completed a Master of Social and Business Communications at the Universität der Künste, and Organizational and Business Psychology at the Freie Universität Berlin. Apart from studying and working, Markus Kressler is constantly engaged as a youth trainer for competitive sports as well as in civil society institutions like the „Unternehmeriniative“ or the working group for migration of the Friedrich-Naumann- Foundation for Freedom. Through his work in the psychiatric research, and on the Nature article „Stress and the City“ he first came in contact with psychosocial counselling for refugees. This inspired and led him to the idea of Kiron.
Jürgen Kaube is one of the four publishers of the “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung”, the most influential newspaper in the German speaking world, as well as of the “Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung”. He is accountable for the editorial cultural department of both newspapers. Having studied philosophy, German philology, history of arts and economics Kaube started his career in journalism in 1992. In 2012 he was awarded “Scientific Journalist of the Year” by the Medium Magazin for his superior discussions of social political subjects. He has published several books on sociology, educational policies, scholarly debates and about Max Weber. In 2014 his book “Max Weber – Ein Leben zwischen den Epochen” was nominated for the Prize of the Leipziger Buchmesse. In 2015 he received the “Ludwig-Börne-Preis”.
Volker Balli (PhD) is Academic Director of the “Studium Individuale” Leuphana University Lueneburg, an innovative undergraduate programme that aims to offer a contemporary liberal education. His work focuses on enabling and supporting responsible curricular choice, designing and implementing academically challenging curriculum that centres around contemporary question and problems, and fostering a culture of intensive and engage learning. He is also in charge of connecting the program to the emerging transnational landscape of initiatives in the tradition of a liberal education. The academic parcours of Volker Balli has been distinctly European and interdisciplinary: he took his first degree in European Studies (1st class honours) at the LSE, Kings College London and Science Po Paris, followed by an M.A. in European Political Studies at the College of Europe in Brugge. His PhD in Social and Political Sciences at the European University Institute (EUI) was followed by post-doctoral research positions at the University of Trento and Bremen. In 2012, he took on a position at University College Freiburg as its founding lecturer and coordinator for the track “governance”. To relate educational innovation to wider social change, practically and conceptually, is his central concern since then.