Presentation of the members of the jury

The representative of the field of "sustainable technologies"

Ana Vovk

Prof. Ana Vovk Korže, PhD

University of Maribor, Faculty of Arts, Professor

Ana Vovk Korže has professional competences in the areas of: acquisition and management of projects related to sustainable development, management of the International Centre for ecoremediation, system support to national and regional levels in implementation of sustainable approaches, research activities ecoremediation at international and national level, management of the office for environmental information at the Faculty of Arts of University of Maribor, management of field laboratory at the Faculty of Arts, teaching at the Faculty of Arts (in the areas of: water, soil, regional development, ecoremediation, climate change), technical assistance to local communities in revitalizing areas of cooperation with the young (start-up ) for self-employment, establishment of learning for intergenerational functioning and integration of traditional knowledge with cutting-edge innovative approaches and establish bioregions, sustainable eco-regions and regions of the internal development in Slovenia.

The representative of a supportive environment for entrepreneurship and innovation


Jure Verhovnik, MSc

Institute for Entrepreneurship Research, Project Director and Head of Venture Factory - a business incubator at the University of Maribor

Since 2002 he has been active in business and in the development and provision of support services and training in all areas of business. Activities include: business counseling, entrepreneurial training, project preparation, project management, management of multidisciplinary teams, development and production of products for education and business management and events management (organizing conferences e.g. PODIM, Start Up Slovenia, ...). In the period from 2006 to present day he has conducted over 100 lectures / workshops (about various business topics), which were attended by more than 1.600 participants from 760 companies and 1.500 students.

The representative of investors, business angels, venture capital

branko drobnak

Branko Drobnak

Entrepreneur, investor, business consultant

Branko Drobnak is without doubt one of the most experienced investors and one of the most recognized Slovenian entrepreneurs. He is an active business angel, and has been involved with more than 15 newly established undertakings (start-ups), which he led to success stories of the Slovenian and global markets with his years of experience, personal counseling and wide network of contacts. He is the initiator and co-founder of Business Angels of Slovenia club and CEED mentor. Last but not least, the Slovenian public has come to know him as an insightful commentator and investor in the successful television show “Dober posel” (Dragons’ Den).

The representative of the field of technology transfer or cluster management


Mario Fallast, MSc

Graz University of Technology, Research & Technology House, Technology Transfer Expert

Studied “Mechanical Engineering – Economics” at Graz University of Technology and Aalto University Helsinki. Since 2008 he is working at the “Research and Technology House” at Graz University of Technology, supporting more than 100 cooperative projects between Enterprises and University, gaining insights in processes, organizational structures and technological capabilities of enterprises as well as research institutions. He participated in judging panels, idea generation, strategy and technology roadmapping workshops for entrepreneurs, SMEs as well as large-scale enterprises. He was involved in the conceptual design and execution of the 24 hours product development-event “Innovationsmarathon” in the scope of “Innovationskongress 2012” and introduced the international, interdisciplinary student project “product innovation project” in Graz.
Mario Fallast is also co-founder of “smaXtec animal care sales GmbH”, a Graz-based high tech enterprise which started with a product idea in 2006 and has now ~10 employees. The product was introduced 2011 on the international market; until 2009 member of academic business incubator “Science Park Graz”; private investors; R&D, preseed and seed fundings.

The representative of the international project FORT

lubomir bilsky

Lubomir Bilsky

Slovak Centre of Scientific and Technical Information, R&D and technology transfer support

Lubomir Bilsky started his professional career in 2001 at the Business and Innovation Centre Bratislava, where he was responsible for international projects implementation. He was an active member of the Innovation Relay Centres (IRC) Network dealing with the support of transnational research and technological co-operation development. In 2008, he became the head of Innovation section within the Enterprise Europe Network Slovakia consortium, an EC initiative supporting business, innovation and research co-operation of research organisations and SMEs. At Slovak Centre of Scientific and Technological Information, he has been responsible for preparation and implementation of several national and international projects focused on support of scientific community in Slovakia, including active promotion of science and technology in society. He also co-ordinates activities related to building the national infrastructure for technology transfer support in Slovakia.

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