Portugal members


Liliana Ribeiro is Executive Director of IRIS – Regional Incubator of Social Innovation, a project promoted by the Institute of the European Investment Bank and PortusPark, with the co-financing of Portugal Social Innovation, which aims to support the development of entrepreneurship and social innovation initiatives contribute to the growth of the territory.

She has a degree in Psychology and advanced training in Social Entrepreneurship. She has more than a decade of experience in community intervention in non-governmental organisations.


Rui Pedroto, was born in 1960, graduated at the University of Coimbra Law School in 1984.

Concluded a program in Business Management in 1999 (AESE – Associação de Estudos Superiores de Empresa – Escola de Direção e Negócios), a program in Cooperation for Development in 2006 (INA – Instituto Nacional de Administração) and also programs on government performance and strategy applied to business.

Begun his professional career as a lawyer and teacher.

For the past 30 years worked as a human resources manager, communication and corporate social responsibility manager in a major Portuguese company, and as regional manager of the state run Institute for Social Security.

He is the CEO of Manuel António da Mota Foundation and member of the board of several NGOs, working both on social and educational fields.


Katja Tschimmel, German by birth and Portuguese by choice, is consultant and executive trainer, researcher and lecturer, coach and conference speaker.

Having a Ph.D in Design and a Masters in Applied Creativity, Katja researches in the fields of Creative Thinking, Design Thinking, Creative Processes and Innovation for more than 20 years. She presents her work in national and international conferences, having been keynote speaker in numerous international conferences. She publishes regularly in the area of creativity and design, and is the author of the “Evolution 6” Innovation & Design Thinking Model, which is licensed by Creative Commons, CC by-SA since 2015. Katja believes that raising awareness about the factors which incentives creativity, contributes to more efficiency in innovation processes. 

Katja is the managing owner of MINDSHAKE, a Consultancy in Creative Thinking and Design. With the “Evolution 6” Model she coaches creative processes of start-ups and in innovation departments of several companies. As a trainer and facilitator, Katja has a lot of experience in the conception and realisation of workshops about Creativity and Innovation, Creative Processes in Organisations, (Service) Design Thinking, Creative Thinking Tools and Group Dynamics.

Currently Katja is Guest Professor at Porto Business School (Portugal) and at Laurea University (Helsinki, Finland). For 15 years she was Professor at ESAD, College of Arts and Design in Matosinhos (Portugal), where she was coordinating between 2014 and 2017 the research project D-THINK – Design Thinking Applied in Education and Training, Erasmus+ Program, KA2 – Cooperation and Innovation for Good Practices. At ESAD she also coordinated the first Post Graduation Course in Design Thinking in Portugal. By invitation she teaches in several other educational institutions in Portugal and abroad. Katja supervises many Masters and Ph.D dissertations and participates in numerous academic juries. She is a member of several international scientific committees for peer reviews


Liliana Simões is Founder and Coordinator of Microninho – Social Incubator, since 2011.

She holds a degree in Sociology from the Faculty of Economics of the University of Coimbra and a Master’s Degree in Social Intervention, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship from the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences and the Faculty of Economics of the University of Coimbra

Prior to the founding of Microninho, between 2003 and 2009 she was Technician and Coordinator of projects of social inclusion – Integrar Association, between 2009 and 2011 was at Inovinter – Office for Employment and Entrepreneurship Support, in 2011 she was a trainer at Konkrets and in 2015 for a short period was Mentor of Social Projects at the University of Aveiro.  Currently, in addition to the coordination of Microninho, she is also a Social Entrepreneur, Sociologist and President of ADSCCL – Associação de Desenvolvimento Social e Cultural dos Cinco Lugares, since 2009, where Microninho is part of, and since 2016 Professor at the Professional School of Lousã.