Speakers

Themis Christophidou

Themis Christophidou is the Director-General for Education, Youth, Sport and Culture of the European Commission, since March 2018. She is a civil engineer with 35 years of experience in private and public sector management. After having worked in the private sector for 15 years, she joined the European Commission in 2001. During the last 20 years she has held various positions, including in the Direcotrate-General for Regional and Urban Policy, as Head of Cabinet of the Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries and as Head of Cabinet of the Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management. Themis Christophidou is an alumna of the civil engineering faculty of the Metsovio Polytechnic University of Athens. Born in Famagusta, Cyprus, she is trilingual, fluent in Greek, French, English.

Kyriacos Kokkinos

Kyriacos Kokkinos is the Deputy Minister to the President for Research, Innovation and Digital Policy, since March 1st 2020. He previously served as the Chief Scientist for Research & Innovation of the Republic of Cyprus, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Research & Innovation Foundation and Member of the National Board of Research & Innovation.
He is a distinguished professional with 30 years of experience in Executive Management, Technology and Business Consulting, served at senior Executive roles in global corporations such as IBM Europe (Executive Director & Partner) and PwC. He also served at the Board of Directors of many Organisations, including Invest Cyprus (Cyprus Investment Promotion Agency – CIPA), the Cyprus Tourism Organisation (CTO), the Cyprus Port Authority (CPA), and the Board of Trustees of the Cyprus Institute. He is the recipient of numerous awards and recognitions for professional excellence, including the ‘Business Leader of the Year Award’ 2016, by Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and the ‘Quality Leader Award 2015’ by Cyprus Quality Association. His Academic qualifications include Executive MBA in Strategic Management from Henley Management College (UK) and MSc & BSc in Electrical Engineering from New Jersey Institute of Technology (USA).

Georgios Zisimos

Georgios Zisimos is a member of the management team at the European Training Foundation (ETF) in Turin, Italy. He is responsible for the framework of support for education and training policies in non-EU countries. In 2010-2014 he served as an Adviser for Education, Culture, Youth, Multilingualism and Sport issues at the European Commission. During the period of 2008-2010, he was a member of the scientific committee for the formulation of the new Curricula of Cyprus. During the same period he participated in the sessions of the Primary and Secondary Council of Greece. In 2005-2008 he served as the Secretary General of OELMEK. He has taught in public schools in Cyprus and the United Kingdom.

Dr Panagiotis Kosmas

Dr Panagiotis Kosmas is the Head of Education at the CARDET research organisation and a part-time lecturer in Distance Education in the School of Education, University of Nicosia and at the Cyprus University of Technology. Dr Kosmas holds a PhD in Educational Technology from the Cyprus Interaction Lab of the Cyprus University of Technology, an M.Ed in Pedagogical Sciences (Universita Degli Studi Roma III – Italy), a MA in New Technologies in Learning and Communication (Cyprus University of Technology) and a BA in Classical Studies (National University of Athens – Greece). His research interests include teaching methodologies mediated by technology, child-computer interaction, language teaching and learning, and the integration of emerging technologies in all levels of education. Dr Kosmas has been collaborating with the Pedagogical Institute of Cyprus, offering training to teachers of all levels in the context of their professional development on issues related to digital skills, language teaching and the use of technology in the classroom. He has extensive experience in managing European funded projects and has published papers in international journals and conferences.

Dr Athena Michaelidou

Dr Athena Michaelidou is the Director of the Cyprus Pedagogical Institute of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sport and Youth. She is a graduate of the Cyprus Pedagogical Academy, holds a Master’s degree (MED) from the University of Manchester and a PhD from the University of London, Institute of Education. She has been an in service teacher trainer and a researcher, as member of staff at the Cyprus Pedagogical Institute for several years. She has been the Head of the Research and Evaluation Department of the Institute, and also of the Centre for Educational Research and Evaluation. She is the coordinator of several research and European projects carried out by the Ministry and she is a member of expert working groups at the E.U. Her research interests combine the teachers’ role in research efforts and the action research within the school, in the effort to promote teachers’ professional development and learning. Dr Michaelidou has actively participated in the initiation of major initiatives in the Cyprus educational system, and also carries out main research projects, in an effort to upgrade the quality of education for all.

Dr Efi A. Nisiforou

Dr Efi A. Nisiforou is a Lecturer in Distance Education, at the Department of Education, at the University of Nicosia. Dr. Nisiforou holds a Ph.D. in Educational Technology from the Cyprus University of Technology, an MEd in Education by the University of Manchester, a PGCert in Technology Enhanced Learning by the University of Wales, and a BEd in Educational Sciences by the University of Athens. Her research interests include implications of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) and Educational Neuroscience for the design and development of online environments and the integration of emerging technologies in all levels of education. She has published papers in international conferences and in refereed journals and has received EU research funding. Dr. Nisiforou also serves as an External Evaluator in various research projects in the EU and beyond.