Alexandre Gaudêncio

Mayor of Ribeira Grande

Born in 1983 on the location of Ribeira Seca, Ribeira Grande, Alexandre Branco Gaudêncio is the Mayor of Ribeira Grande. He’s married and father of two.

He’s licentiate on Management and IT by the Economics and Management Department of the Azores University since 2005. In 2009, he obtained a Master’s on Management Sciences issued by the same university. Professionally, Alexandre Gaudêncio made his career on insurance and on banking.

He has been very active, since young, on community service and associations. He developed a lot of social activity near the Portuguese Boy Scout Association and also on several other local cultural, religious, sportif and social associations, taking part, also and most of the times, of their directive structures.

On politics, he started his militancy on Partido Social Democrata in 2001, by founding the youth structure of that political party in Ribeira Seca, his home town. Since then, he has performed so many roles, being the highest his assumption of the party’s Azorean regional structure leadership which happened between 2018 and 2020.

Alexandre Branco Gaudêncio is the Mayor of Ribeira Grande since 2013, which means he’s on his third consecutive and last term. He started his public service path by becoming the Secretary of Ribeira Seca Parish Council (2005 to 2009) and then as Municipal Councilor at Ribeira Grande’s Municipal Council.

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Carlos Melo


Carlos S. Melo is a Project Manager at NONAGON – São Miguel Science and Technology Park (Azores). He is graduated in Biology (minor in Geology) and master’s in Environmental Geology, both degrees granted by the University of the Azores. Presently he is finishing a PhD in Geology at the University of Lisbon. Carlos Melo has published more than 30 scientific papers in international peer-reviewed journals in his academic area of expertise and participated in national and international research projects.

Diogo Moura


Diogo Moura was born in Lisbon in 1981.

He has an honours degree in Applied Communication, Marketing, Public Relations and Advertising.

A Communications Consultant by profession, he has worked for the INATEL Foundation since 2013, where he started his career as Consultant to the Board of Directors in the areas of Culture, Communication and Marketing. He has been a Cultural Manager since 2015.

He began his involvement in local politics in 2001, upon his election to Encarnação parish council in Lisbon, and has been a member of the Lisbon Assembly since 2009 till 2021.

From 2002 to 2009, he provided consultancy to various areas of Lisbon municipality, including Public Spaces, Culture, Social Care, Sport and Traffic Management.

In recent years, he has appeared regularly in the media, writing and commenting on Lisbon’s various problems.

Actually is deputy mayor for Culture, Economy and Innovation, Public Spaces, Participatory Budget and Relationship with the Parish Councils of Lisbon City.

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Eduardo Baptista Correia, CEO do Taguspark.

Eduardo Baptista Correia

CEO Taguspark

Eduardo Baptista Correia is a dynamic and internationally experienced executive currently leading Taguspark as CEO since 2018, following his tenure as a board member from 2013 to 2018. His astute leadership is guided by his deep understanding of business, honed through years of teaching at ISCTE since 1993. In fact, he holds the unique distinction of being ISCTE’s first Erasmus student.

His educational credentials are impressive and diverse, including a PhD in Finance from the University of Strathclyde, an MBA from the University of Glasgow, and specialized training in Chaos and Conflict Management from the Harvard School of Government. This broad-based knowledge underpins his honours in Business.

Eduardo’s commitment to knowledge-sharing is evident in his substantial body of work as an author. He has written several books and hundreds of articles, illuminating various facets of finance and business.

Fluent in Portuguese, Spanish, French, and English, Eduardo is a true citizen of the world, deftly navigating cross-cultural contexts. His international experience, coupled with his expertise, makes him a highly sought-after leader and educator in the field of finance and business.

Joana Almeida


Maria Joana Coruche de Castro e Almeida was born in 1972, in Lisbon. She has been a Councillor at the Lisbon City Council since September 2021 and is responsible for Urbanism, Information Systems and Smart City, and Transparency and Corruption Prevention.

She graduated in Territorial Engineering from Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) in 1997, became a Master in Regional and Urban Planning in 2004, at Universidade Técnica de Lisboa, and became a Post-Graduate in Mediation and Alternative Means of Conflict Management and Resolution in 2011, at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa. She obtained her PhD in Territorial Engineering at IST in 2013, the subject of her PhD thesis being “The collaborative management of conflicts between tourism and territory: the case of the Troia-Melides Coast”.

Alongside her teaching activity, since 2001 at IST, Joana has participated in several research projects and provision of services in the following themes: 1) Spatial planning; 2) Regulation of urban taxes; 3) Urban planning; 4) Management and evaluation of real estate projects; 5) Urban and metropolitan governance; 6) Collaborative approaches to conflict management; 7) Tools for Public Participation; 8) Socio-urban and tourism monitoring; 8) Dynamics of transformation of historical neighbourhoods; 9) Regulation of local accommodation in Lisbon and other European cities.

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Miguel Pinto Luz

Vice-president - Municipality of Cascais

Miguel is the current Deputy Mayor of Cascais/Portugal (population 230,000).

Since 2005 he has held various public positions, both in central government as Secretary of State for Infrastructure, Transport and Communications during Portugal’s XX Constitutional Government, and in his hometown of Cascais.

Miguel is currently President of the Alfredo de Sousa Foundation, Vice-President of the Tourism Board of the Lisbon region, is also President of SEDES Lisbon and member of the Board of Directors of the Inclusive Community Forum.

Holds a MSc and a BSc in Electrical and Computer Engineering at Instituto Superior Técnico (University of Lisbon), continued his academic and research career at the same school, where he also taught in several undergraduate and graduate courses, currently teaching at the Nova School of Business and Economics.

Miguel also has an MBA from AESE / IESE Business School (University of Navarra) and is currently developing a PhD in Leadership at Rotterdam School of Management (Erasmus University). His research interests include public service motivation, servant leadership and public sector governance.

Miguel signs every week a rubric in a national radio station. He is frequently invited to comment on the main national media and national television networks.

He has been developing a new vision for the future of cities and with successful cases already implemented in Cascais

He is internationally recognized for this work, being invited as a keynote speaker around the world on the topic of Smart Cities and the future of democracy.

Theresa Kodritsch


Theresa is currently working as a Senior Consultant for Strategic Projects at the Mayor´s Department of the City of Leipzig, Germany (population 625.000). In this position, she is responsible, among other projects, for the supervision of the “Runder Tisch Gemeinwohl” (Round Table for the Public Good).

From 2018 to 2022, she served as assistant to the Deputy Mayor at the Department of Urban Development and Construction. There she was in charge of financial issues, human resources, mobility policies and building measures.

Before joining the City of Leipzig administration, Theresa worked at HHL Leipzig Graduate School of Management for eight years holding various positions like Manager International Relations and Manager Student Affairs, taking care of the international MBA batch.

Theresa holds both a Master´s Degree in Political Science and Public Administration from the University of Leipzig. She also studied at the University of Potsdam, Germany and spent one academic year at the Université de Lausanne, Switzerland.