Pelin Öztürk is the co-founder and president of the organization, boasts a rich academic background with a bachelor’s degree in international relations and a Master's in International Affairs and Public Policy. She has been a dynamic figure since 2008, immersing herself in sectors like education, innovation, rural development, sustainability, youth empowerment, green entrepreneurship, and gender equality. Her extensive experience has endowed her with a robust skill set, encompassing outstanding communication, effective networking, adept negotiation, and proficiency in project implementation and development.
Sarah Pallauf has a master’s degree in German as Foreign Language and is certified hiking guide in Austria. For several years she is much involved in several NGOs in Vienna, worked as social worker with refugees and teaches German at university. Therefore, and thanks to her strong language skills (English, Arabic, Turkish, French), she has a large network and much contact to different communities. Hiking and green mobility are her big passions, and she loves to connect people by organizing hikes.
Alina Bublyk, a researcher and youth worker, serves as a board member of the organization. Equipped with a master’s degree in English Philology, focusing on General Linguistics, and a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science and International Relations, she excels in social communication and regional studies. Alina also holds a Candidate of Pedagogy Diploma from Luhansk Taras Shevchenko National University in Luhansk, Ukraine. Presently, she is pursuing a Master of Education at the University of Vienna, further enhancing her knowledge and skills.
Dr. Jeanette Müller
Dr. Jeanette Müller is a conceptual artist and political scientist who resides both in Vienna and Asia. She operates at the nexus of science and art, with a primary focus on establishing transcultural spaces for communication and global learning. Her academic journey encompasses studies in Political Science, Jewish and Arabic studies at the University of Vienna, along with Fine Arts at the University of Applied Arts, Vienna. Her doctoral thesis in Political Science, titled 'Trust and Creativity: The Significance of Trust Among People from Diverse Backgrounds within Innovation Networks', earned her the prestigious 'Theodor-Körner-Preis for Science and Art' in 2008.
Dr. Paul Divjak
Dr. Paul Divjak is a versatile individual, known for his roles as an author, artist, and scent composer. His work encapsulates a wide range of media, including site-specific installations, sculptures, performances, collages, photographs, and texts. He uses these mediums to investigate and portray the sensual perception of contemporary phenomena, as well as the reciprocal impact of living systems. His unique approach allows him to create immersive experiences that captivate and engage audiences.
Akmaljon (Jon) Akhmedjonov
Akmaljon (Jon) Akhmedjonov is Researcher, Project Assistant and Volunteer Coordinator. Jon, currently pursuing his MA in International Public Affairs at the Central European University, holds a B.A in Social Sciences from Bard College, NY, USA. His global experience spans across multiple countries including Russia, USA, Germany, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Turkey, with notable work at international organizations like Access Now, Search for Common Ground, Caritas, and 180 Degrees Consulting. His expertise lies in security, environmental sustainability, policy and research. Presently, Jon contributes as a part-time researcher and project assistant, while also interning at the Action against Terrorism Unit of OSCE in Vienna.
Frans Folkvord serves as a Behavior Scientist, and functions as an advisor and consultant for IEC's various projects. Next to a Bachelor and Master degree in Psychology, Frans obtained a Research Master degree in Sociology (Social and Cultural Science, bene meritum) and a PhD in Social Science (cum laude). He is also an associate professor at Tilburg School of Humanities and Digital Sciences, Communication and Information Science. He is a freelancer and senior policy researcher. Frans has been actively involved as a project manager and researcher in several European (e.g, H2020, IMI, Erasmus+) and national projects (e.g., Veni, National Research Grants).
Fethiye Aytac, an Environmental Specialist, brings to the table six years of experience as an urban planner. Her expertise includes coordinating and aiding projects aimed at fulfilling the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. These projects span a range of areas, including urban ecosystem services, nature-based solutions, waste management, and sustainability awareness activities, with a focus on nature conservation. Fethiye has successfully collaborated with both national and international stakeholders, setting goals for healthier ecosystems through her joint ventures with soil and water, climate change, and nature education programs at non-profit organizations.
Maya Galimidi is the Founder and Board President of Empower with Nature, a transdisciplinary education and project management NGO. She is a Global Ecovillage Network Ambassador on an international level. Maya is pursuing an MA in Ecology and Spirituality at Trinity Saint David, University of Wales. At Istanbul Bilgi University, she double-majored in Public Relations and Management of the performing arts. Maya worked in London, New York City, Istanbul, and the Negev Desert following her graduation. She has designed and produced international conferences in 30 countries for 10 different sectors over the past 15 years and has collaborated with politicians including George W. Bush and Colin Powell. Kibbutz Lotan is where Maya earned her Permaculture Design Certificate. She worked on ecotourism, Eco peacebuilding, and Eco school projects in the Middle East and Brazil while working as the Global Business Developer for Kibbutz Lotan Centre for Creative Ecology. She creates Ecological education programmes with European and American universities. She is a mentor for climate action at Techcamp under the US Department of State. She teaches Ecology and Purpose and Nature and Belonging. She constantly gives workshops at Art galleries about human nature connections. Works with the private sector on Sustainable Leadership. UN Women and the European Union fund her work on capacity building for nature-based solutions, traditional ecological knowledge growth, empowerment, rural empowerment, women and climate action, youth knowledge and nature harmony, and art and ecology projects.
Stefano Campaniello, an esteemed sommelier and co-founder of Morra Gabriele Vini, carries with him a rich experience from top-tier dining establishments across France, Spain, London, and Italy. His dedication to unraveling the mysteries of outstanding wines has taken him on a voyage through a myriad of European wine regions. Beyond his expertise in wines, Stefano is a certified diver and a passionate hiker. These skills have expanded his appreciation for the outdoors and bio-dynamic wine production, instilling in him a profound respect for nature and a commitment to eco-friendly practices which he applies in his winemaking. Stefano's entrepreneurial prowess is evident in his work within the wine industry, providing valuable insights into sustainable business practices. His superior financial management skills, refined during his role as a manager at premium restaurants in Italy, make him a strategic powerhouse in any organizational context. At IEC, Stefano's wide-ranging skills prove to be invaluable. His understanding of sustainable winemaking significantly propels the organization's environmental goals forward, while his enthusiasm for outdoor activities enriches IEC's focus on outdoor sports. With his unique combination of introducing bio-dynamic wine, promoting cultural heritage, and his managerial expertise, Stefano stands out as a well-rounded and vital addition to the team.
Onikiienko Olia, a 22-year-old grassroots sports trainer, was born and raised in Kyiv and is currently based in Vienna, Austria. She holds the title of Master of Sports in rhythmic gymnastics and has earned a bachelor’s degree from the National University of Ukraine in Physical Education and Sport. Currently, she is expanding her academic horizons by pursuing two master’s programs at the NUUPES and Universität Wien, focusing on Public Health and Physical Activity. Her dedication to both her sport and her education makes her an asset to the organization.
Anna Morhovska, a vibrant and energetic individual hailing from Ukraine, is presently pursuing her master’s degree in "European Master of Physical Activity and Public Health" at the University of Wien. Her life is deeply intertwined with the worlds of art and sport. With a decade-long journey as a dancer under her belt, Anna's artistic prowess extends to music as well - she can skillfully play the guitar. Currently, she is broadening her creative horizons by delving into the realm of photo and video creation. Committed to both academic excellence and creative expression, Anna embodies a unique blend of intellectual curiosity and artistic passion.
Cem Sonel, a distinguished graphic designer and street artist, graduated with honors from the Graphic Design Department at Hacettepe University's Faculty of Fine Arts. His childhood interest in street art was realized in 2009 when he co-founded the street art collective, KÜF Project. Later, in 2014, he expanded his artistic knowledge by joining the Sculpture master’s Program at Hacettepe University Fine Arts Institute. Cem's work, which often criticizes consumption culture, ranges from upcycling projects to murals, digital serial works, and graffiti, and is currently on display in exhibitions in Istanbul and Berlin. In his role at IEC, Cem leverages his skills as a graphic designer and his passion for street art to produce engaging visual content and branding materials. He designs graphics for a variety of projects, brings unique artistic viewpoints to team discussions, and incorporates elements of street art into the organization's aesthetic. His insightful understanding of consumption culture, developed through his graffiti-based artwork, contributes significantly to shaping IEC's commitment to sustainability and conscious consumption. Additionally, Cem fosters a dynamic and inventive artistic environment within the organization by leading street art workshops, and directing creative sessions.
Ozge Ozturk is a celebrated photographer and videographer, deeply passionate about encapsulating the grandeur of nature through her lens. At present, Ozge contributes her talents to IEC, using her compelling visuals as a potent medium to advocate for sustainability and environmental conservation. Her specialization lies in capturing the environment and natural landscapes, reflecting her steadfast dedication to highlighting the planet's splendor while championing its protection. Ozge's distinctive knack for crafting stories through her imagery has garnered her recognition and esteem in her field. With every snapshot, she strives to motivate a movement towards a more sustainable future, reinforcing the notion that an image can indeed resonate a thousand words, and potentially, inspire a thousand deeds.