Keynote Speakers

Billie Giles-Corti

Professor, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia

Professor Billie Giles-Corti is a Distinguished Professor and a Vice  Chancellor’s Professorial Fellow at RMIT University and leads the Healthy Liveable Cities Lab in the Centre for Urban Research.  For over two decades, she and a multi-disciplinary research team have been studying the impact of the built environment on health and wellbeing. Between 2014 and 2020 she led an NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence in Healthy Liveable Communities; between 2017-2020 she was RMIT’s Urban Futures Enabling Capability Development Platform Director and between 2007-11 she was Foundation Director of UWA’s Centre for the Built Environment.  She is a Technical Advisor of the Victorian Office of the Government Architect’s Design Review Panel, a member of the Victorian Planning Authority’s Precinct Structure Plan Review Committee, a member of Melbourne Water’s Liveability Panel and an Honorary Fellow of both the Planning Institute of Australia and the Public Health Association. 

She has published over 400 articles, book chapters and reports, and by citations, has been ranked in the top 1% of researchers in her field globally.  She is Fulbright Scholar and in 2016, was awarded an NHMRC Elizabeth Blackburn Fellowship as the top ranked female NHMRC public health fellow. 

John Grove

Dr., Director, Quality Assurance of Norms and Standards, World Health Organization WHO, Switzerland

Dr John Grove became the first director of Quality Assurance for Norms & Standards (QNS) on July 1, 2019 at WHO, Headquarters in the new Science Division announced in March 2019. He is establishing and leading functions and assurance services for all WHO global norms and standards products, and oversees the WHO Press, and WHO Global Library and Digital Information Services. Prior, he was director of the Department of Information, Evidence and Research (IER), overseeing global health statistics, monitoring and evaluation, applied ethics, research coordination, and guidelines development. He joined WHO on 1 September 2017.

Before joining WHO, Dr. Grove was Deputy Director for Evidence and Policy in the MNCH team at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF). He was responsible for the investment portfolio on evidence and research and also worked within the organization to set strategy and guide related health analytics, in addition to being a representative on evidence and policy with the foundation’s external partners, including the UN system. He also served on the global health strategy team in the Office of the President and worked across HIV, TB, pneumonia, diarrhea, and immunization teams on strategy development and evaluation.

Prior to BMGF, Dr. Grove was with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for 8 years in team lead and section chief roles based in Tanzania (Dar es Salaam), Zambia (Lusaka), and Cote d’Ivoire (Abidjan) supervising disease surveillance, program monitoring and evaluation, health informatics, nurse, lab, and medical training programs, and as a lead US diplomat with host country governments on technical assistance and resource negotiation.

Past affiliations include director and analyst roles at the Public Health Institute (Berkeley, CA), the David and Lucile Packard Foundation (Los Altos, CA), the Futures Group International (Wash., DC) and consulting for the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health Services. He holds a PhD in health services research from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, a Masters in applied anthropology from the University of San Francisco, and a Bachelors’ in International Relations from Kent State University.

He has authored several peer reviewed articles, book chapters, and reviews.

Bridget McKenzie

Founding Director, Flow Associates & Climate Museum, U.K.

Bridget McKenzie

Bridget McKenzie is a researcher and creative curator in culture, learning and environment. After 14 years in roles such as Education Officer for Tate and Head of Learning at the British Library, she founded Flow Associates in 2006, who supported the evolution of Flow India. In 2019, McKenzie founded Climate Museum UK, an experimental museum which stirs and collects the emerging response to the Earth crisis. She is an advisor for Culture Unstained and co-founder of Culture Declares Emergency. She presents and publishes internationally on possibilities of Regenerative Culture.

Petri Tapio

Professor, Finland Futures Research Centre, University of Turku, Finland

Petri Tapio is Professor of Futures Research at Finland Futures Research Centre, University of Turku. His research interests include environmental policy strategies, scenarios and future images of transport, energy and agri-food sectors and a diversity of futures research methodology. He has published widely of these issues. Recently Prof. Tapio has led an interdisciplinary project called Healthy Lifestyles to Boost Sustainable Growth (STYLE). The STYLE project links together mobility and physical activity studies, and examines the role of urban fabrics, consumer’s motives and business opportunities in increasing physical activity without increased car use.

His other duties include being the responsible teacher of the major subject of Futures Studies, being active in the Doctoral Programme of Turku School of Economics and participation in the national Publication Forum Panel that ranks journals and publishers for the Ministry of Education and Culture.

Liisa Tyrväinen

Research Professor, Natural Research Institute Finland (Luke), Finland

Liisa Tyrväinen works as a Research Professor at the Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke) in Helsinki. She has long experience in interdisciplinary research work regarding amenity benefits of forests and other types nature areas. Her work has a strong focus on cultural ecosystem benefits, in particular outdoor recreation and nature-based tourism. A key theme of her research teams’ work has been to measure health and social benefits of forests and other nature areas. She has also led research linked to payments models for ecosystem services and has developed approaches to integrate amenity values of nature in land-use and environmental planning. Her research team currently investigates the demand, patterns and sustainability of outdoor recreation and nature-based tourism as well as potentials of real and virtual nature environments in promoting human health and well-being.

Tyrväinen has strong international networks and collaboration in Europe, Japan, China and the U.S., and has authored around 300 scientific publications. She is a member of editorial boards of Urban Forestry and Urban Greening and International Journal of Outdoor Recreation and Tourism journals.  She is also member of board of directors at Metsähallitus leading management and utilization of state-owned lands in Finland.

Tommi Vasankari

Professor, Director, UKK Institute for Health Promotion Research, Finland

Tommi Vasankari, Professor, MD, PhD, is a Director at the UKK Institute for Health Promotion Research and a part-time Professor of Military Medicine at Faculty of Medicine and Health Technology, Tampere University. Earlier he has served as a Professor of Health and Exercise at Medical School of Turku University. Prof. Vasankari has and has had many national and international positions of trust in the fields of physical activity and health. He was a chairman of the Steering Committee of the WHO HEPA Europe network at 2013-2017. Currently he is a President of the Finnish Diabetes Association. He has also served as an adviser for WHO Regional office for Europe to create the road map for health enhancing physical activity in Europe and as a member of HEPA Expert Group, Directorate-General for Education and Culture, European Commission. Nationally, Prof. Vasankari has served as an expert in several committees and advisor groups (e.g. member of HEPA advisory board nominated by the Ministry of Education and Culture; member of National Nutrition Council appointed by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry; chairman of the expert group for Finnish guidelines to reduce sedentary behavior nominated by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health.

In research, Professor Vasankari has focused on accelerometer-based measurement of physical activity, sedentary behavior and sleep in both population samples and interventions aiming to increase physical activity and reduce sedentary behavior. His research interest include also personalised eHealth. He has developed accelerometer – and smartphone – based interventions for different patient groups (like type 2 diabetics, cardiac patients, etc). He has published more than 260 international peer-review scientific articles.