x = independently organized TED event


This event occurred on
October 17, 2020
Chania, Kriti

TEDxEuropeanSustainabilityAcademy, online event: 17th October 1300 – 1730, Crete time, as part of the TED Countdown global launch to share ideas and showcases solutions, technologies and actions for addressing the global climate change emergency.

Due to the current pandemic restrictions, diverse speakers gave live talks via webinar. Attendees were from diverse locations with many from island states, suffering similar climate change crisies as Crete. Discussions were built in to the agenda for knowledge sharing and collaborative networking. The event closed with a CALL TO ACTION!
The content of these talks is very practical and grounded in suggestions for local action.
There is no more time for abstract theories.

The programme focusses on answering 3 core questions.

- What climate change impacts have you noticed on Crete? (or your own island)
- How do you envisage 10 years from now (2030) if no action for change is taken urgently?
- What actions for change would you like to see happening to reduce GHGs and prevent global warming from exceeding 1.5 degrees?

Themes of taking action will apply to one or all of 5 areas of: energy, transport, materials, food and nature.

13.00 Opening: Welcome address from Sharon Jackson in English followed by Greek translation by Panos Karachalios.

13.10 TED Countdown official event opening video

13.15 Global climate emergency and what that means on Crete: Sharon Jackson, Founder, Director, The European Sustainability Academy (ESA) Crete.

THEME: Transport
13.30 Sustainable Mobility on EU islands: Prof. Theocharis Tsoutsos, Director, Renewable and Sustainable Energy Lab. Technical University of Crete.

13.45 The Exemplary Case of EIT, Urban Mobility, HUB, Malta: Gonca Kara Demir, Senior Research Officer, Research & Innovation MCAST, Malta, Camille Bon Lead Project Manager of the Project Aegle Foundation and Malta EIT Urban Mobility Hub and , Rafael Pascual-Leone Communities & Projects Officer Valletta Design Cluster.
Followed by discussion

14.15 The devastation of storm Oceanis; A Mayor's perspective, February 2019: K. Kiriakakis, Cretan filmmaker

THEME: Energy
14.30 Greening Energy in Greece: Prof. Phoebe Koundouri, Professor School of Economics, Director ReSEES Research Laboratory, AUEB; President-Elect, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists.

14.45 Progressing Green Energy Solutions: Dr. Dawid Hanak, School of Water, Energy and Environment, Cranfield University. Followed by discussion

THEME: Materials
15.15 Pioneering Regenerative Manufacturing - circular economy in swim and gym wear: Jo Godden, Founder and Director of Ruby Moon. Followed by discussion

15.45 Creating Networks for Developing Sustainable Food Destinations: Kostas Bouyouris, Co-founder & Chief Operation Officer, Local Food Experts.

16.00 Tackling Food Waste in a post Covid19 era: Vee Bougani, CEO, Co-founder, Sustainable Food Movement in Greece.
Followed by discussion.

THEME: Nature
16.30 Nature and Humans in Crete: how to make this relationship work: Evelyn Bakinta, MSc, Founder of Chic Greek Gifts, The Cultural Gift Boutique
Followed by discussion.

17.00 How Investment is progressing climate action – Michael Spanos, Founder & Managing Director of Global Sustain Group, Expert Advisor to the European Commission on the Sustainable Development Goals.

17.15 Closing remarks and CALL to ACTION – Sharon Jackson and Panos Karachalios

BONUS: Talking Heads: The voices of Cretan women about climate change in their lives.

Language: Greek and English
Hosted from the Off-Grid, PV powered, natural materials, biophilia designed, European Sustainability Academy (ESA) building in Drapanos, Apokoronas, Crete.

The European Sustainability Academy (ESA) Crete
Chania, Kriti, 73800
Event type:
Countdown (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Dr. Dawid Hanak

Senior Lecturer, Associate Professor, Academic Coach
Dawid is Senior Lecturer at Cranfield University and Academic Coach at Motivated Academic. He aspires to bring a step-change in fighting climate emergency via academic leadership and coaching future energy leaders.

Evelyn Bakinta

Founder Chic Greek Gifts| The Cultural Gift Boutique
Born and raised in Crete, Evelyn came back to the island after studying and working abroad, to help local agrifood businesses' outreach. Her academic background in marketing and European civilization led her to design the brand Chic Greek Gifts and spreading the Greek culture all over the world.

Gonca Kara Demir

Senior Research Officer at MCAST, Hub Manager of EIT Climate-KIC Malta Hub
Gonca has studied Law and holds an LLM degree from University of Sussex on EU and International Trade Law Programme. During that time, she gained experience and knowledge in EU focused ICT and Intellectual Property Rights Law. She has over 10 years of experience working on EU and National Funding Programmes in particular related to ICT, Smart Cities, Environment, and Digital Skills. She helped scientists and innovators scaling up with International & EU Grants and offered tailor-made coaching in preparing successful grant proposals and winning business pitches. Her specialities include project management in EU funding programmes (Horizon 2020, EIT Knowledge and Innovation Communities, SME Instrument, Eurostars, EU Procurement, Int’l R&D and Innovation Grants, Venture Capital, etc.), Dissemination of EU-funded projects, Market Analysis, Business Planning and Coaching on Grant Identification.

Jo-Anne Godden

Director- RubyMoon CIC
After many years working in the unsustainable fashion industry, Jo decided to be part of the solution. An advocate of regenerative manufacturing she has pioneered a 'Circle of Impact' business that contributes to both people and planet- her work with materials lowers carbon and can eliminate waste.

Kostas Bouyouris

Soil and sustainable food production expert
Since 2013, Kostas has been a founding member and COO of 'Local Food Experts'. LFE is a Social Co-operative Enterprise situated in Heraklion, Crete, Greece. It mainly operates in the fields of: • Primary sector organizing • Foodstuffs companies’ organizing and development • Sustainable Tourism activities’ organizing and development During 2016-2019 he was the Chief Project Manager for the project “Crete: First steps towards a Sustainable Food Destination” Between 2004 – 2013: Gastronomic tourism networks on Crete, Kostas created networks among farmers which highlight the importance of Cretan diet. These networks were open to visits by guests and visitors to the island. Kostas studied Agricultural Development & Plant Production in the Agricultural University of Athens (1983-1990). He continued with a MSc degree in Ecological Agriculture in Wageningen Agricultural University in the Netherlands (1992-1993). 2004 he travelled to USA to be trained in Biointensive Farming by John Jeavons.

Michael Spanos

Founder & Managing Director of Global Sustain Group
Michael is an Expert Advisor to the European Commission on the Sustainable Development Goals, a member of the founding secretariat of the United Nations Global Compact Network Hellas, member of the Board of Directors of the CEO Clubs, Greece & of the Sustainability Advisory Council of FMC Corporation (USA). He leads projects in sustainable finance, strategy, non-financial reporting, sustainability activities and ESG performance. He speaks at international events and produces global publications on responsible investments, sustainable leadership and innovation. Collaborating with organisations such as PRI, Global Compact, GRI, TCFD, Social Value, European Commission and Parliament, EBRD and EIB. He has held senior positions in a venture capital firm, an investment fund and in the ICAP Group consulting firm. He is a visiting lecturer on the International MBA program AUEB, the Cyprus International Institute of Management and the Maastricht School of Management (Kuwait).

Prof. Phoebe Koundouri

Professor of International & European Economic Studies
Professor Koundouri holds a PhD and MPhil in Economics and Econometrics from the University of Cambridge (UK). She is Chair of Sustainable Development at the School of Economics, Athens University of Economics (AUEB) and Business & President of the European Association of Environmental &Natural Resource Economists. She is listed in the 1% of most-cited women economists in the world, with 15 published books and more than 250 published scientific papers. Prof. Phoebe Koundouri is also the Founder and Scientific Director of the Research laboratory on Socio-Economic and Environmental Sustainability at AUEB and an affiliated Professor at the ATHENA Research and Innovation Center where she directs EIT Climate-KIC Hub Greece. She is also the co-chair of the UN Sustainable Development Network Greece, chair of the Scientific Advisory Board of the International Centre for Research on the Environment and the Economy and of the scientific advisory board of the EU Forest Institute.

Prof. Theocharis Tsoutsos

Sustainable Energy & Mobility Systems
Professor (Environmental Eng School,TU Crete), Member, School Management Committee (2013-2017); Director, Graduate Programme "Environmental Engineering" (2014-2017); Founder & Director, Renewable & Sustainable Energy Lab (ReSEL) (2005-). Chem. Eng. (NTUA,1984); Economist (NKUA,Law School,1990); PhD (NTUA,1990) Head, Development Dept (Centre for Renewable Energy Sources & Energy Saving-CRES-,1992-2005) Adjunct Prof. (Heriot-Watt, W.Attica, Kingston, UK Open,1998-2004) (Energy, Management of Energy Systems, Adv. Ιndustrial& Μanufacturing Systems); Tutor (Greek Open Univ,2001-2014) Member, Management Council (RMEI -réseau méditerranéen des ecoles d'ingénieurs et de management, 2018-) Member, Steering Committee RHC (2018-, European Technology Platform - Renewable Heating-Cooling) Editorial Board Member: Sustainable Cities & Society; Int. J. of Sust Built Environment (Elsevier); Energy Efficiency; Current Sustainable/Renewable Energy Reports (SpringerNature); Energies (mdpi); Energy (AIMS)

Sofia Yialama

ESG reporting and sustainable finance
Senior Sustainability Analyst at DCarbon, Cairo, Egypt. Team Leader at Governance & Accountability Institute, Inc.

Vee Bougani

CEO/Co-Founder Sustainable Food Movement Greece | Food Sustainability Expert
Vee is a social entrepreneur and a Sustainable Culinary Arts Consultant. Her mission is to tackle food waste and promote sustainability in the Culinary Arts Industry. She studied Cultural & Creative Industries at King’s College London and has worked in the Cultural Industry over 10 years in Greece and the UK. She trained and worked as a chef since her early 20s and from 2012 as a Culinary Arts consultant & freelance Food & Travel Editor for platforms such as Time Out Group, Lonely Planet, Forbes Travel Guide, CN Traveller, the Londonist & the Thrillist. Her greatest passion has always been food and her focus is sustainability in the culinary and hospitality industry. While living in London she worked as a Food Sustainability Expert in diverse culinary projects in Europe, USA and the Middle East. She is a social entrepreneurship mentor at the Prince’s Trust International and Founders Nation in Greece, a EIT Food Associate Member for South Europe & a GSTC Certified Practitioner.

Organizing team


Chania, Greece


Crete, Greece
  • Panos Karachalios