Dr. Volker Then
Volker has been the first Chief Executive Officer and Member of the Executive Board, of Fondazione AIS – Advancing Impact and Sustainability, Bologna, created as a new foundation at the beginning of 2022. Before he had again served in an entrepreneurial role as the Founding Executive Director of the Centre for Social Investment, Heidelberg University, in 2006 and held that position until 2021. As a senior programme officer of the Bertelsmann Foundation he worked in different positions from 1994 to 2006, for the last seven years as Director Philanthropy and Foundations heading a new division of the Foundation working internationally on innovative and effective foundation governance and management.
From 2014 to 2016 Volker Then was member of the National Advisory Board for Germany of the G7 Social Impact Investment Task Force and consequently involved in setting up the German follow-up organization to the NAB, the “Federal Initiative Impact Investing”. Since 2021 he also served as Scientific Advisory Board member of the OECD Global Action on the “Social and Solidarity Economy”. During his career Volker has been a member of multiple boards in philanthropy and the Non-Profit-Sectors, both nationally and internationally, including the former EFC European Foundation centre (now Philea) 1999-2006 and the International Committee of the US Council on Foundations (1999-2006).
His strategic interests focus on impact measurement, social investment, impact investment, entrepreneurial and organizational strategy. Interdisciplinary work and relevant bridging between academia and practice are core to him.
Dr. Maurizio Petta
Maurizio Petta is CEO of MaIS Holding. He is a Board Member of various leading Italian companies belonging to the Isabella Seràgnoli family or in which the family has a stake. He is also engaged in many boards of not-for-profit organizations and foundations, promoting innovation for the social responsibility of entrepreneurs and their families.
He is also Chairman of the Isabella Seràgnoli family Foundation.
Maurizio Petta holds a PhD in Arts and a PhD in Theoretical Philosophy, both from the University of Bologna. He has attended post-graduate studies at leading international universities such as Columbia University, New York and at the London Business School.
Sara is one of the first professionals to recognize family offices as the most sophisticated segment of wealth management, and she has been described as “the Warren Buffet of the family office industry”. When hundreds of U.S. families became centi-millionaires through leveraged buyouts in the 1980s and 1990s, private family offices were created to manage family capital and to educate wealth owners.
Sara founded the Family Office Exchange (FOX) as a peer network for family office executives in 1989. Within 10 years, she could see that families needed help with family governance and managing financial transitions, in addition to their family offices. As a result, FOX evolved into an advisor to family enterprises, a platform for sharing family wealth best practices, and an industry advocate for the importance of private enterprise in a global economy.
Today, Sara provides input to the strategic direction for FOX and supports the development of new programs and services for family enterprises and wealth advisory firms in 25 countries. Sara is the co-author of Family Legacy and Leadership: Preserving True Family Wealth in Challenging Times. She serves on the executive education faculty of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business where she is an adjunct faculty member for their Private Wealth Management and Essentials of Wealth courses in the Executive Education program. She is on the founding board for the Foundation Advancing Impact and Sustainability in Bologna and the founding board for the Private Directors Association in Chicago.
C-level executive with 20+ years of experience in Technology, Health and Contents.
Strong leader with a proven track record in driving innovation in complex organizations.
Expert in technology innovation, digital transformation and how to drive business transformation and growth. From 2011 to 2015 Chief Operating Officer of Mywellness, 2016 to 2020 Digital Solutions Director of Technogym. From 2019 to 2021 Chairman of the Board of Exerp (Denmark).
Mario Calderini is a full Professor at Politecnico di Milano’s Graduate School of Management, where he teaches Management for Sustainability and Impact. In addition, he is the Director of Tiresia, the School of Management’s Research Centre for Impact Finance and Innovation. He was recently nominated in the Apolitical’s World’s 100 most influential academics in government list. He is the cabinet advisor to the Minister of Innovation Vittorio Colao. He served as senior advisor to several Ministers of University Research and Innovation and Government’s Sherpa for the G7 Italian Presidency 2017. His numerous publications in highly ranked international journals cover several topics in the field of innovation and impact finance. He has been a member of the G8 Task Force for Social Impact Investment. He has been part of the Government’s Advisory Group that drafted the new law on social entrepreneurship. He is the President of the Advisory Board for Research and Innovation Strategy of the Lombardy Region Government. He sits on the Advisory Board of Unicredit Group.
Sina Sauer is a Senior Associate at Fondazione AIS. She holds an M.Sc. in Economics from Heidelberg University, Germany, and started her career as a researcher at the CSI- Centre for Social Investment, Heidelberg University. In her recent projects at Fondazione AIS, she works with families to understand their values and how they are reflected in decision-making and contributes to the development of impact measurement tools to enable value-oriented investments.
Parallel to her work at AIS, Sina is pursuing a Ph.D. in Economics at Heidelberg University, supervised by Prof. Dr. Stefan Trautmann (Chair of Behavioural Finance and Contract Theory), focusing on Impact Investing and impact measurement.
Lawyer by training, Francesca has 10+ years of experience in project & relationship management within the University of Bologna’s research activities, also in terms of providing legal counselling and handling the negotiations with external grant funders, among them corporate partners. As Senior Manager Relationship Development, she supports Fondazione AIS in building and maintaining valued relationships with partners and family groups, as well as with their organizations and other private and institutional bodies.
Rebecca Cenzato is an MSc. Management Engineering graduate from Politecnico di Milano, with a focus on Sustainable Operations & Social Innovation. She is conducting academic research on change management in technology transfer offices and has experience in the social entrepreneurship sector as project leader and digital project manager. As Senior Associate at Fondazione AIS, she works as model designer and impact-measurement project developer.
Simone Bartalucci is an MSc. Management Engineering graduate from Politecnico di Milano, with a focus on Sustainability and Social Impact. He has conducted academic research on governance of data partnerships for social impact and has experience as a business consultant and project manager in a digital startup. As a Research Officer at AIS Foundation, he works as a model designer and impact measurement project developer.
Jose Valqui Pastor
Jose Valqui is collaborating with Fondazione AIS as a Junior Associate, working on projects in the field of impact measurement.
He holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Heidelberg University and started his work in the field of impact investing as a student research assistant at the CSI – Center for Social Investment, Heidelberg University. Parallel to his collaboration with Fondazione AIS, he is pursuing a Master in Sociology at Heidelberg University, with a focus on cultural and organisational sociology.
Sinem Ilseven is collaborating with Fondazione AIS as a Junior Associate, contributing to the work with families aiming for a better understanding of their values and thereby supporting them in making value-based decisions. In her studies, she has investigated various questions of sociological interest using diverse methods. She has worked as a research assistant in the chair of empirical macrosociology and as a tutor for statistics and research methods at Heidelberg University. Currently, she is continuing her bachelor’s programme in Sociology at Heidelberg University parallel to her collaboration with Fondazione AIS.
Federico Bartolomucci is a PhD candidate in Management Engineer at Politecnico di Milano where he previously obtained a MSc in Management Engineering. His research, conducted as part of the TIRESIA Research Centre, is focused on the applications of data and technologies to create social value. He has experience as project manager and analyst in projects related to social impact measurement, technology transfer towards the social economy and tech for good.
He is collaborating with Fondazione AIS as senior associate, managing different projects and institutional initiatives. His work focuses on translating Fondazione AIS’ rigorous methodological approach into data-intensive digital tools, that could be adopted by our partners.
Antonia Muhr is a Doctoral Student at the Institute for Nonprofit Management at WU University of Business and Economics, focusing on philanthropy and social innovation. Previously, Antonia gained practical experience in the German foundation sector in the field of evaluation and organizational development and worked as a research assistant at the Centre for Social Investment (CSI) on impact measurement and impact investing projects.
Antonia is collaborating with Fondazione AIS as a Senior Associate, working on impact measurement projects for financial and philanthropic investments.
Rahel Becker, former data scientist at SAP, now advisor on data politics at German Bundestag.
Data for good and Open Data enthusiast.
Sara (Mahdieh) Talkhabi
Sara is a dynamic software engineer at Fondazione AIS, armed with a master’s degree in computer science from the University of Tehran. Specializing in Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Natural Language Generation (NLG), she has focused her research on developing advanced chatbots and conversational assistants, leveraging her expertise in big data management. In her professional journey, Sara has shown exceptional skills in both backend and frontend development, gaining valuable experience in handling complex, data-intensive projects in a leading software company.