Advisory Board

Dr Kamal Azrague


Dr. Azrague is Senior Researcher at SINTEF. He holds a M.Sc. (2002) and a PhD (2005) in Chemistry from the University Paul Sabatier, France. He has been working with SINTEF since 2009, both in scientific and management positions. His expertise covers a wide range of activities related to environmental issues including water and wastewater treatment, waste management and sustainability assessment with the use of LCA and LCC. Azrague has participated to several EU projects with focus on water (e.g. TECHNEAU, PREPARED, TRUST, RASORGMAT) and is participating to EU projects related to circular economy and bio-economy (e.g. Wider Uptake, B-WaterSmart, Plasticircle, Perfecoat). Azrague is a key personal in the Norwegian Research-Based Innovation Center (SFI) Klima 2050, leading a task on innovative stormwater treatment solutions. Azrague is leading the working group Nature Based Solutions at Water Europe. He has published more than 40 articles in scientific journals and international conferences.

Dr Vicente Bernal

Repsol Technology Lab

Dr Vicente Bernal is a researcher with over 20 years of experience in the fields of Microbial Biotechnology, Metabolic Engineering, Circular Economy, Wastewater treatment and Waste to Fuels, both at the Academia and the Industry sector. He studied and received a PhD in Biochemistry and Biotechnology in the University of Murcia in Spain. He has worked as a Post-doctoral Researcher at the Department of Animal Cell Technology of the Institute of Chemical and Biological Technology (University Nova, Lisbon, Portugal), as well as the Department of Biotechnology in the University of Murcia. He has also worked as a substitute Lecturer at the University of Murcia, teaching General Biochemistry, Metabolism and Molecular Biology and co-supervised 3 PhD theses (plus 1 currently on-going in REPSOL). He is the co-author of 38 papers in peer reviewed journals (>1100 citations in Scopus: h index 18) and has 4 patents filed in the fields of biotechnology and circular economy (1 granted). Since the end of 2012 he has been working as a scientist at REPSOL Technology Lab. REPSOL is an integrated global energy company with vast sector experience.

Professor Salvador Gil Grau

University of Valencia

Dr. Gil is a University of Valencia professor in the organic chemistry department and member of the Interuniversity (UPV-UV) research institute on molecular recognition and technological development (IDM). After his Ph.D. thesis on synthesis of Xanthones and a post-doctoral stage in University of Cambridge (UK) on Enantioselective additions on allyl-silanes (1988-89) under Dr. Ian Fleming supervision, he joint Dr. Ramon Mestres’ group to study the reactivity of carboxylic acid dianions and co-authored with him the book Química Orgànica General (ISBN 84-370-2301-7, 2ª ed. 1995, Ed. UVEG). Then he contributed to Dr. Miranda’s research on photoinduced damage to AND bases. After joining Dr. Ana M. Costero’s group of supramolecular chemistry, he developed chemosensors for cations, anions (both chain length and enantiomeric selective), biomolecules and hazardous gases. More recently, with Dr. Ramón Martínez CIBER-bbn group, he contributed to the development of hybrid materials (mesoporous silica closed with organic gates) for the detection and controlled release of substances. His post-degree teaching experience englobes 25 years, 11 Ph.D. theses co-supervised and 115 students in 24 different industries tutorized in the program of practices in industries of the chemistry degree. He has got one UV “Green Idea awards” for the project “implementation of a centralized system for the recovery of chemical products in the University of Valencia”. A research activity, with the financial support of 28 competitive research projects (5 as IP) and 12 contracts (3 as IP) have led to 7 book chapters, 6 patents, 7 reviews and 160 ISI publications (90% of them in half top journals; 26 citations/pub. average). He is Scientific Coordinator of the Unit 26 (ICTS NANBIOSIS) and he has been: director of the UV Core service (SCSIE) (2014-18); Secretary of the Chemistry Faculty (2012-14) and president of the Habilitated organism for evaluation of Animal experimentation procedures (2016-18).

Dr Thrasyvoulos Manios

Hellenic Mediterranean University

Dr Thrasyvoulos Manios is an Agronomist. He is a graduate of the Department of Agricultural Biology and Biotechnology of the Agricultural University of Athens, a graduate of the Department of Chemical Engineering of the University of Patras and also holds a PhD from the School of Civil Engineering from the University of Leeds. He is currently the Vice Rector for Finances, Planning & Development of the Hellenic Mediterranean University. He also teaches the undergraduate courses “Irrigation – Drainage”, “Agricultural Waste Management” and “Extraterrestrial Cultures” at the Department of Agricultural Technologists and the postgraduate course “Business Utilization of Agricultural Residues” in the Hellenic Mediterranean University (HMU). His research interests include issues of management, processing, and utilization of urban or agricultural / agro-industrial solid and liquid waste for energy and non-energy applications. He has more than 65 publications in international scientific journals with over 1,000 hetero references, over 100 participations and presentations at international and national conferences and has managed more than 25 research and development projects as a scientific director. He also holds three patents. Currently he is participating in a number of projects focusing on biowaste circular management in urban environments, such as the project Life “Food for Feed: An Innovative Process for Transforming Hotels’ Food Wastes into Animal Feed-Food from Food” and UIA “A2UFood – Avoidable and Unavoidable Food Wastes: A Holistic Managing Approach for Urban Environments”. 

Vicen Mañez Martinez

Mercavalència S.A.

Vicen Mañez Martinez is a Technical Agricultural Engineer, specializing in Agricultural and Food Industries. She is a Graduate of the Food Science and Technology Department of the Polytechnic University of Valencia and holds a Master’s degree in Integrated Management Systems of Quality, Environment and Hazard Prevention and Control in the Work Environment from the San Pablo University in Valencia. She has worked for 8 years as Head of the Department of Quality and Prevention of occupational hazards in a company of the fruit and vegetable sector. Since 2016 she is in charge of the Environmental Management and General Services of the Quality Management Directorate at Mercavalència S.A., the largest Agri-Food Center in the Valencian Community. In its facilities Mercavalència has the most advanced logistics and distribution infrastructure for the production, processing, and marketing of fresh and frozen products. 

Hara Xirou

Eunomia Research & Consulting

Hara Xirou, a native Greek speaker, is the Head of South East Europe Office for Eunomia Research & Consulting, based in Athens with 15 years of experience in the waste management and resource efficiency sector. Hara joined Eunomia in July 2014 and has recently been managing projects for: The Federation of Recycling and Energy recovery Industries and Enterprises (SEPAN) – “Circular Economy potential in Greece” an EU Product Policy Framework initiative of Circular Economy”. Hara was assigned a country analyst for Greece and Cyprus under the “Early Warning System” project (2017-18), awarded by DG Environment of the European Commission. Hara was a member of the project team in the “Waste Assessment in the South East of Europe: assessing the Solid examining the circularity in several sectors, including food and packaging, the GIZ/ Ministry Of Environment And Energy – “Market of Alternative Fuels in Greece” and for the European Commission (DG ENV) –“Towards Waste Management situation and providing recommendations and roadmaps for 8 Member States”. In these two projects, Hara assessed the biowaste management (from collection to treatment) in selected Member States and provided policy and technical recommendations to improve the quality and quantity of biowaste materials. She had previously worked with Tetra Pak International in Brussels on the coordination and monitoring of EU environmental policy activities in the packaging and food sector. She has also worked as a project manager at ACR+ (Association of Cities and Regions for Recycling and Sustainable Resource Management) in Brussels and as an environmental senior consultant for 5 years at LRS Consultancy in London. In London, Hara, developed and managed Islington Council’s commercial food waste recycling trials, funded by the London Development Agency. She worked closely with the Council, collection and reprocessing contractors to develop charging mechanisms, communication campaigns, business recruitment methods and monitoring the scheme performance. The pilot over a 9-month period, achieved a diversion of 255 tones in food waste from landfill and 115 tones of CO2 savings. Hara holds an MSc on Environmental Science and Technology from Imperial College and is a LEAD Fellow of the LEAD International Network. Hara is an expert researcher, experienced in organizing and delivering EU, national and regional projects on waste and resource efficiency.

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