The Board

Fouli Papageorgiou

Fouli Papageorgiou is the Managing Director and Partner of PRISMA Centre for Development Studies, based in Athens. She is a qualified architect since 1969, and holds a PhD in Urban and Regional Studies from the Centre for Urban and Regional Studies, University of Birmingham, UK. She has been a University teacher and researcher from 1970 to 1985 in the Technical University of Athens, School of Architecture, and in the Universities of Aston in Birmingham, Leeds and Edinburgh in the UK. She worked in the Economic Office of the Prime Minister of Greece between 1985 and 1989 as a special advisor for quality of life and environmental policy. Through her current position she has been involved in a large number of integrated local development studies, structure plans and regional plans, mostly in rural areas. She has also accumulated substantial experience on management and evaluation of EU Programmes and Initiatives and on transnational coordination of EU projects. She is a member and ex-President of ECOVAST, the European Council for the Village and Small Town.


Iren Kukorelli

Iren Kukorelli is a scientific advisor at the Institute for Regional Studies, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences. She has a PhD in Geography, and a DSc (Doctor of Science).  Her main areas of interest are in the Regional Sciences, such as regional and urban economics, meoctor thods of regional economics, rural development and management, and developing integrated strategies for rural territories. She has extensive experience in the coordination of transnational European projects. She is the professor of geography teaching at Széchenyi István University in Győr. She has more than 100 publications in the Hungarian and English languages. She is one of the founders of Euracademy Association. She was previously the Secretary-General of the association, later the President, now is currently the Vice-President.


Former members

Lili Mahne

Lili Mahne is an initiator and active member of the Notranjska Ecological Centre, an NGO that actively supports sustainable rural development in Slovenia. She is a project manager, landscape planner, and has an MBA as well as more than 20 years of practical experience in projects dealing with landscape planning and management, SME development in protected areas (one stop shop, clusters, EMAS Eazy, investments, innovations), environmental protection (protected area initiatives, One Planet Living initiatives, an eco schools project) and heritage management (Heritage trails, National Network for Interpretation of Heritage, Standards and Guidelines).


Erika Jeret

Erika Jeret is a university lecturer of English and holds an MA in English Philology and an MA in Written Translation. She has many years of experience in teaching English for specific purposes where her expertise lies in teaching English for tourism, business, social work and sport among other areas, and compiling and writing teaching materials. She is also a licenced tour guide and has developed and delivers guide training.

She has ample experience in working with the voluntary sector and in organising events and festivals. Erika has also been involved in the development and implementation of Interreg projects of the Central Baltic region amongst others.


Pirjo Sjögren

Pirjo Sjögren is currently working as a volunteer to develop local democracy mainly in the municipality of Lohja but also helping the village associations in the neighbouring municipalities. She studied at the University of Technology in Helsinki and got the degree of Master of Science in Engineering in 1981. She has been working for 25 years in production, sales and marketing for the forest industry in cooperation with publisher and printer customers from 50 countries. She did special further professional examinations in rural development in 2006 at JAKK Jalasjärvi. She is President or Vice-President of many NGOs developing rural areas, for instance the Lake Lohja Islands Associationand Lohja Villages Association. She is actively working to improve welfare especially in rural areas but also in small towns, for instance by being an active member in many steering groups of local, provincial and national rural development projects. She is a member of Lohja city council.


Roger Evans

Dr Roger Evans is an independent trainer and consultant and runs his own private training and consulting company (Evanter OÜ) in Estonia. He studied at Newcastle University where he was awarded his PhD on the husbandry of Linum usitatissimum. Since 1980 he worked at the Scottish Agricultural College as lecturer, rural tourism course leader and senior consultant until forming his own company in 2004. He has been working with multi country projects in education, training, e-learning, consultancy and project leadership throughout Europe including Estonia, Bulgaria, Finland, Iceland, Lithuania, Russia, Scandinavia, Slovenia, Slovakia and Sweden and with partners throughout the EU. He has experience of EU Phare, Interreg, Structural Funds, Leonardo da Vinci, EQUAL, UK and Estonian Government projects.

 Roger specialises in business start-up and development for social entrepreneurship, food and activity tourism, community tourism development, business enterprise (SME) and rural business diversification opportunities, education, training and project management for small enterprises, the development of vocational education and qualifications with an emphasis on agricultural and rural development training; rural community and rural development education; curriculum development; rural tourism, craft and local food production, training and transnational co-operation.


Wojciech Kniec

Wojciech Kniec, Professor of Rural Sociology, Head of the Rural Sociology Department, Institute of Sociology, Nicolaus Copernicus University, Torun, Poland. His main areas of scientific interest are related with sustainable rural development, especially with sustainable agriculture, rural social and cultural revival processes and the sustainability of the European Union’s Common Agricultural Policy. He is also an active member of NGO’s dealing with rural development, including Local Action Groups and Rural Revival Associations. He works as an expert for the EU Committee of Regions, the Polish Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, regional governments and local associations.