Italian Forbes Top 50 Women in Technology, digital and innovation policy expert: UN advisor (World Urban Forum) leading DECODE
Digital and innovation policy expert Francesca Bria is the Italian National Innovation Fund president and a board member of RAI, the Italian public broadcasting company. She is also an honorary professor at the UCL in London’s Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose and a member of the New European Bauhaus High-level Roundtable
Her career before this saw Francesca Bria fill the role of Chief Digital Technology and Innovation for the City of Barcelona, Spain. The position saw her take a leading role in the smart city Agenda. She was also, during this time, a founding member of the UN-backed platform Cities Coalition for Digital Rights. The platform promotes sustainable digitisation and digital transformation in cities. She was also a senior advisor to the United Nations’ Word Urban Forum. The forum focuses on people and their digital rights in digital cities. Another of her functions sees her lead the DECODE project that deals with data Sovereignty in Europe. Other positions held include that of a member of the European Commission’s expert group Economic and Societal Impact of Research and Innovation (ESIR) and senior advisor on the EC STARTS ( Innovation at the nexus of science, technology, and the arts) programme.
Her position as Senior Progamme Lead for the UK innovative agency NESTA has seen her lead the EU D-CENT project. It is Europe’s biggest digital democracy platforms and digital currencies project. She also led the DSI4EU project where she advised the EU about digital innovation and digital innovation policies.
Concerning her educational background, Francesca Bria holds a Ph.D. in innovation and entrepreneurship from London’s Imperial College and an MSc in the digital economy from the University of London, Birbeck. She has, during her career, taught at several universities in Italy and the UK and advised various governments and public and private organisations about technology and innovation policies as well as their impact on the environment and socio-economic structures.
Francesca Bria has been nominated for and received numerous awards and accolades. Examples:
Francesca Bria is a well-rounded conference speaker who speaks on all topics around digitalisation and data privacy. She lives in Italy and presents in English and Italian.