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Our guests

  • Dr. Natalie Tillack

    Scalewonder

    Co-Founder and Managing Partner

    »Power can be given back through digital money. Up to now, it has mainly been the privileged that have benefited. Not everyone can open a bank account, for example.<«

    Dr Natalie Tillack is the co-founder and managing partner of Scalewonder, a blockchain consultancy based in Berlin. Here she is building up an ecosystem through which she offers support to start-ups on issues of growth and scaling, while also generating synergies with regard to selected companies or investors.

    Natalie obtained her PhD in computational physics from the University of Oxford in 2016. She then became an associate at McKinsey & Company, driving digital projects and managing pro bono consulting projects for the German start-up ecosystem. She is now a mentor for Techstars and greatly values her strong links with the alumni societies of the University of Oxford, the Max Planck Society and the Friedrich Naumann Foundation.

  • Jakob von Weizsäcker

    Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs

    Chief economist and Director General for Economic and Fiscal Policy and Global Economy

    »It was not without reason that Nobel Prize recipient Robert Mundell posed the question as to what the optimum currency area is since such an area can be too small or too large. A global currency’s area would be too great, which would not be sensible economics.«

    In early 2019, Jakob von Weizsäcker was appointed as Chief economist and Director General for Economic and Fiscal Policy and Global Economy at the German Federal Ministry of Finance in Germany. From 2014 to 2019, he served as Member of the European Parliament for Thuringia (Germany), both as a member of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs and the Parliament's Delegation for the Relations with India. Previously, he worked - among others - at the Ministry for Economic Affairs of Thuringia, the Brussels-based think tank Bruegel, the World Bank and the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs.

  • Kathrin Latsch

    Freelance Journalist

    Journalist and freelance Author

    »In these times of digitalisation, data is the online currency, and large companies are amassing it without asking. How I pay is decisive for gaining control.«

    Kathrin Latsch is the executive director of MONNETA gGmbH, a journalist and freelance author for reports and documentary films eg for ARTE and NDR. In 2007 she received the Ekotop Film Prize for „International Sustainable Development Film“. In addition, she facilitates events on the topics of economics, education, environment and sustainable finance. Since the finance crisis of 2008 she has been working with the MONNETA network of experts, who advise on, research and develop sustainable monetary systems and social currencies. Together with Ludwig Schuster she developed the ‘environmental card’, an incentive scheme for environmentally friendly behaviour, which won a competition for citizens’ ideas in Hamburg in 2012.

    Her short film „A Flaw in the Monetary System?“ explains the consequences of interest and compound interest, which is useful as an introduction to the basic problems in the financial economy and to possible solutions for example in lectures.

  • Prof. Dr. Bernhard Weisser

    Numismatische Kommission der Länder (German Commission of Numismatists)

    Deputy Chairman

    »It shouldn’t be allowed to use the term ‘coin’ for digital money such as ‘bitcoin’. Coins are minted and can only be issued by a state, and bitcoin is certainly not a state product.«

    Prof. Dr Bernhard Weisser studied classical archaeology, ancient history and pre- and early history in Göttingen, Cologne, Athens and Munich. For his doctorate on the imperial coinage of Pergamon, he won the German Archaeological Institute’s travelling scholarship, which led to a year spent touring the Mediterranean countries. Since 1996 he has been working in the coin collection of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin (Berlin State Museums) and is the director of Germany’s largest archive of old money.

    He conducts research into antique coinage and teaches numismatics at Humboldt University of Berlin. He is the deputy chairman of the Numismatische Kommission der Länder (German Commission of Numismatists), a member of the International Numismatic Council and a jury member whenever artist competitions are held for commemorative coins for the Federal Republic of Germany.

  • Lisa Nienhaus

    Die Zeit

    Head of Frankfurt Office

    »Trust is critical when it comes to recognition of money. Acceptance of digital money is growing ever broader, despite the fact that we Germans are still fans of cash.«

    Born in 1979. Studied economics and politics in Cologne and Stockholm while also attending the Kölner Journalistenschule (Cologne School of Journalism). Worked at the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung from 2006 to 2016, above all in the business editorial department. Since summer 2016 she has been deputy head of the business desk at DIE ZEIT, and since autumn 2018 she has also been head of the paper’s Frankfurt office.

Our hosts

  • Tanja Samrotzki

    Tanja Samrotzki is a self-employed journalist and presenter. As a parliamentary correspondent, she has spent 20 years reporting on political developments in Bonn and Berlin for a variety of television channels. She uses her profound knowledge of political topics, players and structures to liven up a highly diverse range of formats – from conferences to debates. Combining in-depth preparation with a bold improvisational flair, she covers every topic that happens to be worth talking about.

  • Geraldine de Bastion

    Geraldine de Bastion is a bilingual (en/de) political scientist with an intercultural background and experience working with activists, governments, startups and NGOs across the word. Her work focuses on digital transformation and international cooperation, innovation, and human rights. Geraldine co-founded Konnektiv in 2013, advising various organisations on digital transformation.

    Geraldine is also the founder of the Global Innovation Gathering (GIG), a network of grassroots innovators, social entrepreneurs, founders, and managers of makerspaces, hackerspaces, and innovation hubs. In 2018 she authored and moderated the Arte documentary “Digital Africa” which captures many of the innovators active in the GIG network.

    Since 2012, she has been part of the curatorial team for the re:publica, Europe’s largest conference on the topic of the Internet and society, and regularly organizes and curates events in the field of politics and digitization. In 2018 she organised the first re:publica in Accra, Ghana with over 2000 participants and over 260 speakers from across Africa.

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