Aleksandra Vladisavljević is a co-founder of regional organization Social Innovation Laboratory that aims to address socio-economic challenges in the Western Balkans through innovative sustainable approaches to learning, cross sectoral networking, policy development and implementation. She is entrepreneur, leads Bizz doo – business consulting and entrepreneurship development firm based in Belgrade, Serbia. Her professional focus is on supporting strategic growth of the private sector, local and regional socio-economic development in Serbia and the Balkans region.
Aleksandra specializes in local/regional economic planning capacity development, institutional capacity building, and design of programs/measures contributing to employment generation and entrepreneurship development. She has extensive consulting and training experience in entrepreneurship development, business growth and innovations,business planning, SME development and policy work, including gender analysis of public policies and budgets, public policy advocacy, policy development and training for policy makers. Her clients are international organizations, local CSO, SMEs and public sector.
From 2010-2014 Aleksandra served as President of Managing Board within UPKS – Association of Management Consultants of Serbia an association gathering management consulting professionals and seeking to remove obstacles to private sector development.
Amanda Pearson is an International Development Co-ordinator of the Federation of WWOOF Organisations (FoWO). Amanda is inspired by the WWOOF life changing stories – how they go WWOOFing for a weekend and decide to change their life direction completely. “The best part of my job is talking with people from all over the world on a daily basis – it really makes you feel like you are part of a large village.”, Amanda says.
Biljana Filipovska is one of the founders of the first organic food coop of buyers in Macedonia, “Dobra zemja – Good Earth“. They have started as an informal group of twenty families in search of organic, ecological local food from the most environment friendly and cleanest regions across the country. In less than two years, creating a budget with their own donations, the team of Good Earth has visited many producers and sneaked into the most of well-hidden villages to visit many agriculturalists and find seeds and products that usually do not reach the market. For their efforts, Good Earth received the Social Impact Award 2015. They also won at the Regional Contest “Philanthropy for green ideas” organized by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund.
Before, Biljana worked in business consulting and diplomacy. She says “I am leaving my dream now; in the future I see the food coop Good Earth as a replicated and spread model of social and organic social coexistence. My next dream is a village self sustainable natural house and surroundings with animals and beautiful plants. Can hardly wait to make that happen, but before still some societal impact on the agenda.”