Board of Trustees

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Carl Bildt (ECFR co-chair)

Former Prime Minister and Former Foreign Minister of Sweden

Carl Bildt has served as both Prime Minister (1991-1994) and Foreign Minister (2006-2014) of Sweden. During the first period his government initiated major liberal economic reforms, as well as negotiated and signed membership agreement with the European Union. The reform period in the early and mid-1990s is generally seen as having pave the way for the successful growth decades that followed. Subsequently he served in international functions with the EU and UN, primarily related to the conflicts in the Balkans. He was co-chairman of the Dayton peace talks on Bosnia and became the first High Representative to the country. Later, he was the Special Envoy of UN Secretary General Kofi Annan to the region. Returning as Foreign Minister of Sweden in 2006, he come to be seen as one of the most prominent and vocal of European foreign ministers during those years.

Lykke Friis (ECFR co-chair)

Director of the Danish Think Tank Europa

Lykke Friis, PhD, is director of the Danish “Think Tank Europa” focusing on European Affairs. She is former Prorector for Education at the University of Copenhagen, and former Minister of Climate and Energy and also Minister for Gender Equality. She has published extensively on matters of the EU, European politics and Germany. Lykke Friis has held close to twenty honorary offices, including Member of the EU Reflection group appointed by the European Council. She presently serves as chairman of the board of House of Energy and is President for the Danish Cancer Society. Moreover, she is on the board of the Rockwool Foundation and Team Danmark.

Norbert Röttgen (ECFR co-chair)

Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Bundestag

Dr Norbert Röttgen is the chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Bundestag. Dr Röttgen served as the German Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety from October 2009 to May 2012. He has been a member of the Bundestag since 1994. During this time he has held a number of key functions within the Christian Democratic Party (CDU) and the German federal government. In 2009, he published "Deutschlands beste Jahre kommen noch". Dr Röttgen holds a PhD in Law from Bonn University.

Franziska Brantner

Franziska Brantner

Member of the German Bundestag for Alliance 90/The Greens

Franziska Brantner, PhD, is the spokesperson for European Policy and parliamentary whip for the parliamentary group of Bündnis90/Die Grünen. She is a member of the Committee on the Affairs of the European Union and deputy member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs. From 2013-2017, Dr Brantner was the Spokeswoman on Child and Family Policy for Alliance 90/The Greens. Between 2009-2013, she was a member of the European Parliament.

Ian Clarkson

Founder of Celerant Consulting

Ian Clarkson founded Celerant Consulting in 1987 and sold it in 2012 to Hitachi of Japan. When Celerant was sold it was one of the 10 largest operational consultancies in the world with a global footprint, 600 full-time employees and more than $140m of revenue. He is currently working on the education agenda in the UK combining strategy and practicality through the Chairmanship of Bright Field Consulting and participation as a director of 2 large Academy schools.

Marta Dassù

Marta Dassù

Senior Advisor for European Affairs at The Aspen Institute

Marta Dassù was Italy’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs from November 2011 to February 2014. She sits on the Board of Directors of IAI (Istituto Affari Internazionali), as well as on the Board of the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London. She is member of the Advisory Council of the European Policy Centre in Brussels and a member of the scientific committee of the LUISS School of Government in Rome. She is a regular contributor to the Italian newspaper La Stampa.

Teresa Gouveia

Teresa Gouveia

Former Foreign Minister of Portugal

Teresa Gouveia has held multiple government positions in Portugal, serving as Secretary of State for Culture (1985-90), Secretary of State for Environment (1991-93), Minister for Environment (1993-95) and Minister for Foreign Affairs (2003-04). In addition to her various positions in secretariats and ministries, she was a member of the Portuguese Parliament for the Social Democratic Party (PSD) from 1987 to 2004. In parallel to her political career, she has always been active in the cultural sphere. She was trustee of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation (2004-2019), President of the Serralves Foundation (2000-03) and member of its Executive Board since 1997. Similarly, she was Governor and member of the Executive Committee of the European Cultural Foundation (1990-2002), President of the Council for Cultural Cooperation of the Council of Europe (1985-87) and member of the Consultative Council of the University of Lisbon (2007-08).

Sylvie Kauffmann

Editorial Director, leader writer and columnist, Le Monde

Sylvie Kauffmann is editorial director, leader writer and columnist at Le Monde, writing a weekly column on global affairs. She is also a contributing writer at the International New York Times. She was Editor in Chief of Le Monde from 2010-11 including during the Wikileaks collaboration with El País, The Guardian and the New York Times. She has worked at Le Monde since 1988 and has reported from the US, Eastern Europe and Asia, where she covered, among others, the collapse of the Soviet empire as well as the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks.

Ivan Krastev

Chairman of the Centre for Liberal Strategies

Ivan Krastev is the chairman of the Centre for Liberal Strategies, Sofia, and permanent fellow at the IWM Institute of Human Sciences in Vienna. He is a founding board member of the European Council on Foreign Relations.  He is an associate editor of Europe's World and a member of the editorial boards of the Journal of Democracy and journal Transit – Europäische Revue.  His latest books in English are The Anti-American Century , co-editors with Alan McPherson, (CEU Press, 2007) and Shifting Obsessions: Three Essays on the Politics of Anticorruption (CEU Press, 2004). He is a co-author with Steven Holmes of a forthcoming book on Russian politics.

Andrzej Olechowski

Former Minister of Foreign Affairs and Former Minister of Finance of Poland

Dr. Andrzej Olechowski is Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Bank Handlowy, a Director of Euronet and a Member of the Supervisory Board of P4. A former Minister of Foreign Affairs (1993-95) and Minister of Finance (1992), he was a candidate in Presidential elections (2000 and 2010) and a founder of the Civic Platform. Educated at the Central School of Planning and Statistics (Ph.D., 1979), he is a professor at Vistula University and the author of a number of publications on international trade and foreign policy.

Marietje Schaake

International Director of Policy at Stanford’s Cyber Policy Center; International Policy Fellow at Stanford University’s Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence; President of the CyberPeace Institute

Before taking on her current roles Marietje served as a Member of the European Parliament. While a MEP, she led the ALDE team on the International Trade Committee and served as her party’s spokesperson on transatlantic and digital trade. As Chair of the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Budget Working Group she oversaw billions of Euro's in foreign policy spending. Moreover, she served on the delegations to the US, Iran and Arab Peninsular and as Chief Observer of the Election Mission in Kenya. She is regular contributor for the Dutch NRC newspaper’s economic section and has contributed to several journals. Besides, she is connected to several civic initiatives as a Board Member or Advisor.

Javier Solana

Former EU High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy & Secretary-General of the Council of the EU; former Secretary General of NATO

Javier Solana is president of ESADE Center for Global Economy and Geopolitics (Barcelona-Madrid). He is also distinguished senior fellow in Foreign Policy at Brookings Institution, Fisher Family Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School, chairman of the Aspen Institute España, honorary president of the Centre for Human Dialogue (Geneva), member of the board of the International Crisis Group, the European Council on Foreign Relations, and Human Rights Watch, as well as senior visiting professor at the London School of Economics, where he was awarded an Honorary Degree in December 2010.

Alexander Stubb

Former Prime Minister, Finance Minister and Foreign Minister of Finland

Alexander Stubb served as Prime Minister, Finance Minister, Foreign Minister, Trade and Europe Minister of Finland between 2008 and 2016. His background is in academia and civil service, with a focus on EU affairs. He was a Member of the European Parliament from 2004-2008, a Member of Parliament from 2011 to 2017 and Chairman of the National Coalition Party from 2014 to 2016. He held the position of Vice-President of the European Investment Bank from 2017-2020.

He is also the non-executive Chairman of the Board of Crisis Management Initiative (CMI), founded by Nobel Peace laureate, President Martti Ahtisaari. Mr Stubb holds a PhD from the London School of Economics, has published 18 books and is a self-professed sports fanatic.

Helle Thorning-Schmidt

Former Prime Minister of Denmark

Formerly the Prime Minister of Denmark, Helle Thorning-Schmidt led a coalition government from 2011 until 2015. She was member of Parliament and the Leader of the Social Democratic Party for 10 years. She was a member of the European Parliament from 1999 to 2004, and previously worked as an international adviser to the Confederation of Trade Unions. Throughout her career she has tackled significant national and global issues, specifically with regards to children’s rights. In 2015 she was appointed to the Education Financing Commission led by Gordon Brown and from 2016 to 2019 Helle Thorning-Schmidt was CEO of Save the Children, overseeing humanitarian and development programmes that directly reach 55 million children in around 120 countries every year.

Emeriti Chairs

Martti Ahtisaari (ECFR Emeritus Chair)

Chairman of the Board and Founder, Crisis Management Initiative; Former President of Finland

Martti Ahtisaari was elected President of Finland in 1994. Upon leaving office in 2000, he founded the Crisis Management Initiative. A UN diplomat and mediator, Martti Ahtisaari is noted for his international peace work in Namibia, Indonesia, Iraq, Central Asia, Kosovo and Northern Ireland, among other areas. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in October 2008, "for his important efforts to resolve international conflicts”.

Emma Bonino (ECFR Emeritus Chair)

Former Foreign Minister and Former Minister for International Trade and European Affairs of Italy

Emma Bonino is a former Italian Foreign Minister. She also served as Vice President of the Senate (2008-13) and as Minister for International Trade and European Affairs (2006-08). She was a member of the Italian or European Parliament continuously since 1976, except when serving as European Commissioner for humanitarian aid, fisheries, and consumer policy (1995-99). A former Chief Observer of the EU electoral missions in Ecuador and Afghanistan, she was nominated ‘European Personality of the Year’ in 1996. During her career, she has conducted several international human rights campaigns, among the most successful – on the legalisation of abortion, the ‘Stop FGM’ campaign to ban Female Genital Mutilation, and for the establishment of the International Criminal Court.

Joschka Fischer (ECFR Emeritus Chair)

Former Foreign Minister and Vice-Chancellor of Germany

Joschka Fischer is a German politician of the Alliance '90/The Greens. He served as Foreign Minister and as Vice-Chancellor of Germany in the cabinet of Gerhard Schröder from 1998 to 2005. He was a senior fellow at the Liechtenstein Institute on Self-Determination and visiting professor at Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. Since 2008, Fischer has been Senior Strategic Counsel at Albright Stonebridge Group.

Mabel van Oranje (ECFR Emeritus Chair)

Chair of Girls Not Brides – The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage

A global advocate on peace and justice issues for almost two decades, Mabel van Oranje is Chair of Girls Not Brides – The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage. In 1993 Mabel founded the European Action Council for Peace in the Balkans and was its CEO until 1997. She also co-founded the Dutch foundation War Child in 1995 and served on its board until 1999. In 1997, she joined the Open Society Institute in Brussels as Executive Director, becoming OSI’s International Advocacy Director in 2003. From 2008 until 2012, she was the first CEO of The Elders. Mabel holds masters degrees in Economics and Political Science (cum laude) from the University of Amsterdam. She helped found the global NGO coalition Publish What You Pay and was actively engaged in global efforts that led to the establishment of the International Criminal Court in 2002.


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  • Mark Leonard


    Mark Leonard is co-founder and Director of ECFR. He is author of two best-selling books - 'Why Europe will run the 21st Century' and 'What does China think', which have been published in over 20 languages. Mark has spent time in Washington and Beijing and was honoured as a 'Young Global Leader' of the World Economic Forum. He writes a regular syndicated column on global issues for Reuters and his essays appear regularly in publications including The Financial Times, Foreign Affairs, Le Monde, The New Statesman, The New York Times, Süddeutsche Zeitung, El Paí­s, Gazeta Wyborcza, and the Washington Post.

  • Alba Lamberti

    Deputy Director

    Alba Chiara Lamberti is the Deputy Director of the European Council on Foreign Relations. She joined ECFR in March 2007 as Advocacy and Partnerships Manager, before becoming the Head of Advocacy. Previously she spent four years at the Brussels office of the International Crisis Group as EU & NATO Advocacy Manager where she was responsible for the organisation's institutional relations in Brussels. She was responsible for service contracts on professional training and consultancy in EU affairs with the European Commission and national administrations of candidate countries. After Bruges, Alba worked for five months in the Group of Policy Advisers of the (then) European Commission President Romano Prodi.

  • Vessela Tcherneva

    Deputy Director

    Vessela Tcherneva is ECFR’s deputy director and head of the ECFR Sofia Office. From 2010 to 2013 she was the spokesperson for the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and a member of the political cabinet of Foreign Minister Nickolay Mladenov. Previously, Tcherneva was secretary of the International Commission on the Balkans, chaired by former Italian Prime Minister Giuliano Amato and former German President Richard von Weizsäcker; the supervising editor of the Foreign Policy Bulgaria magazine; and political officer at the Bulgarian Embassy in Washington, DC.