x = independently organized TED event

Theme: What if?

This event occurred on
February 22, 2018
Mannheim, Baden-Württemberg

Founded in 2017, TEDxMannheim is one of the Rhine-Neckar regions official TEDx experience. We aim to put the extended Mannheim community onto a new type of global activity map that is being watched, shared, and talked about by the world’s top thought leaders. With many of our Talks published on, YouTube, and other websites, TEDxMannheim will trigger innovation in all corners of the globe beyond our conference date.

Waldhofstraße 2, 68169 Mannheim
Mannheim, Baden-Württemberg, 67169
Event type:
Standard (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Alexandr Misko

Alexandr Misko has quickly risen through the ranks to become one of the world’s best fingerstyle guitarists. At the young age of 20, when most of his peers just start college, Alexandr is already pursuing a successful career as a musician. His YouTube channel already has more than 15 million views.In January 2018 the video-cover of “Careless Whisper” from his second album was viewed more than 50 million times within a month on Facebook.

Anke Huber

Anke Huber is a retired professional tennis player. In 1991, she became the youngest quarter-finalist in the history of the Australian Open at age 16 after having received the Most Impressive Newcomer award of the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) in 1990. At the peak of her career she was the world’s number 4 in 1996. In total, she played 23 tournament finals winning 12 events. She also represented Germany at the Olympic Games in Barcelona (1992) and Atlanta (1996) and was part of Germany’s Fed Cup winning team in 1992. Anke Huber retired from professional Tennis in 2001 at age 27. Outside the court, Huber served on the WTA Tour’s players’ council and was a spokesperson for the WTA Tour’s FIRST SERVE school initiative. After the end of her professional career, Anke Huber started serving as co-tournament directress for the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix tournament in the city of Filderstadt, Germany and a mother to two children.

Franz Baumann

Franz Baumann spent most of his professional life as a United Nations official. His last assignment was Special Adviser on Environment and Peace Operations with the rank of Assistant Secretary-General. He left the United Nations at the end of 2015 and joined New York University in 2017 as a visiting research professor. He is a Senior Fellow and a member of the Board of Trustees of the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin. Franz started his career at the European Parliament in Luxembourg in 1976 before transferring to the European Commission in Brussels and eventually joining Siemens in Munich. In 1980, he started his career with the United Nations and, during more than three decades, served in four cities on three continents in a variety of functions. In 2009, he was appointed as Assistant Secretary-General for General Assembly and Conference Management at Headquarters in New York. His doctorate in Political Science (African Studies) was obtained from Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada.

Götz Werner

Prof. Götz W. Werner is founder and member of the supervisory board of dm. Before he joined the supervisory board, Prof. Werner ran the company for 35 years. In addition, he led the Cross-faculty institute for Entrepreneurship at Karlsruhe Institut für Technologie (KIT). Werner is president of the EHI Retail Institute (EHI) and founder of the “Unternimm die Zukunft” initiative, which advocates for an unconditional basic income. He uses his public standing as one of Germany’s most successful entrepreneurs to voice concerns about social inequality and to advocate for social innovation and a more equitable society.

Gregor Stöckler

Gregor Stöckler is Managing Partner and CEO of one of the most innovative solutions provider for holistic data management. Supporting SAP clients to make the most of their data, his company has been a global SAP partner for nearly 20 years. Stöckler himself started his professional career at as a Consultant & Project Manager at SAP in 1997. Before he left the company after twelve successful years, he was Director SME Go-to-Market EMEA. He received an Executive Masters from the University of Oxford’s Said Business School and subsequently moved back to his native Heidelberg to join Datavard in 2011.

Katja Konschak

Katja Konschak is a triathlon and ironman runner, who started her 1st triathlon in 1997. In 1998 she was 10th at the european junior championships and was also an active swimmer from 1984 to 1994. But she reached the peak of her career on running long distances after becoming a mother and since then is listed in the leaderboard of German triathletes on the Ironman distance. The pharmacist is the German Champion Ironman 2016, runner-up for the Ironman European Champion, ITU Long Distance World Champion Team 2013 and runner-up for German Champion Long Distance 2013.

Peter Kurz

Dr. Peter Kurz, Mayor of Mannheim since 2007, graduated from the law school at Mannheim University and then received his JD in 1995. Mayor Kurz was an administrative judge and leader of the social democratic fraction in Mannheim till 1999, until his election as mayor for schools, culture, sport and leisure. For his modernizing process of the administration, he received several Awards, such as the Sustainability Award for Governance. Mannheim was awarded the title UNESCO city of music in 2014 whose application was led by Mayor Kurz. His interest in urban development is reflected in being the president of the German association of urban development and housing. He is also vice chair of the executive committee of the Global Parliament of Mayors and a member of the board of trustees of the European young academic society, the Chairman of Supervisory Board at MVV Energie AG, and was awarded by the UJA Federation New York “Star of David” award.

Reinhold Ewald

After studying experimental physics at the University of Cologne, Dr. Reinhold Ewald was selected for the German Astronaut Team in 1990 and started training for the Russian/German missions to the space station MIR. In 1997 he spent 20 days in space as researcher/cosmonaut during the second German–Russian mission, Mir’97. In 1999 he joined the European Space Agency and became a member ESA‘s European Astronaut Corps at the European Astronaut Centre Cologne. He is currently a Professor for Astronautics and Space Stations at the Institute of Space Systems at the University of Stuttgart on secondment from ESA.

Silvia Hernandez

Silvia was born and raised in Spain, has spent the last 25 years studying and working overseas. She joined EY in 2006. After graduating from the University of Leon and Manchester Metropolitan University, she obtained an MBA from the Goizueta Business School, of Emory University and recently completed Advanced Strategy Executive Education at INSEAD – Business School.

Stefan Utz

Stefan Utz is a passionate international Electric Wheelchair Hockey player from Germany. He was chair of the organizational committee of the 2014 World Championships. By bringing the Electric Wheelchair Hockey World Championships to his home city of Munich, Utz made his biggest dream come true in 2014. He led a team of 17 members organizing the tournament in his native Bavaria. The German national team missed a medal by finishing fifth but Stefan Utz was awarded with the golden needle of honor by the German Wheelchair Sports Federation. Utz suffers from brittle-bone disease (Osteogenesis imperfecta), which makes his bones very fragile and susceptible to serious injuries. His two older brothers suffer from the same disease and work as a city councilor and social education worker, respectively, in Munich.

Thomas Girst

Thomas Girst, b. 1971, studied Art History, American Studies and German Literature at Hamburg University and New York University, PhD. While in New York between 1995-2003 he was Research Manager of the Art Science Research Laboratory under the directorship of Stephen Jay Gould, Harvard University. Since 2003, he is the global Head of Cultural Engagement at the BMW Group. Girst lectures at various universities and publishes widely. In 2016, Girst received the “European Cultural Manager of the Year” award. Recent books include: Art, Literature, and the Japanese American Internment, The Indefinite Duchamp, The Duchamp Dictionary, BMW Art Cars, 100 Secrets of the Art World.

Tobias Schirneck

Apart from this work as a rap pedagogue, Tobias is committed to topics ranging from supporting people with learning disabilities to helping youngsters to get into professional employment to the integration of newcomers to the city of Mannheim. Besides all that, he has published several records, tours clubs and festivals across the country and has been featured on works of famous artists like Gentleman and Claus Eisenmann.

Organizing team


Mannheim, Germany