Innovation Leaders 2020: Meet our mentors and experts

We introduce the mentors and experts supporting our new mentorship and open leadership training programme.
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eLife Innovation Leaders is a 14-week open leadership training and mentorship programme designed for innovators developing prototypes or community projects to improve open science and research communication.

Please visit our introduction Labs post to find out more about the curriculum, application process and other details of the programme – applications are open until December 8.

  1. Apply now

We are pleased to introduce the mentors and experts who have kindly agreed to volunteer time and share experiences and skills with the participants. Each participant/participating group will be assigned a mentor, who will support their open leadership journey through bi-weekly mentorship calls. Participants can also request consultation meetings with experts through their mentors, who can advise them on specific aspects of their project’s development.

Mentors

Bradly Alicea, Head Scientist, Orthogonal Research and Education Lab
Twitter @balicea1 / @Orthogonal_Lab | Research website | Blog
“Bradly Alicea has a PhD from Michigan State University. He has published in multiple academic fields and in venues including Nature Reviews Neuroscience, Stem Cells and Development, Biosystems, and Proceedings of Artificial Life. Bradly is currently Head Scientist and Founder of Orthogonal Research, Senior Contributor at the OpenWorm Foundation, a Mozilla Open Leader and an eLife Community Ambassador.”

Madeleine Bonsma-Fisher, PhD Student, University of Toronto, Department of Physics
Twitter @mbonsma | GitHub mbonsma
“I am a PhD student in physics at the University of Toronto. I study bacteria-virus interactions and the role of the CRISPR adaptive immune system in communities of microorganisms. I run an open source project called phageParser, a tool to annotate bacterial DNA and automate analysis of all publicly-available CRISPR data. I love programming, physics, and teaching, and when I'm not frowning at my computer screen I like to read, run, and drink tea.”

Sarah Brown, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Brown University
Twitter @Brownsarahm | GitHub Brownsarahm
“Dr. Sarah Brown is a Postdoctoral Research Associate in Data Science at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. She is an Instructor, Instructor Trainer and Carpentries Incubator Maintainer with the Carpentries and a Mozilla Open Leaders Alum. Dr. Brown’s degrees are in Electrical Engineering. Her research aims to understand complex uncertainty through probabilistic modelling; currently focused on applications in fair machine learning and applied to affective neuroscience. Sarah has supported diversifying her field through service to Women In Machine Learning, including the Broadening Participation in Data Mining Program and National Society of Black Engineers.”

Virginia Brussa, +Datalab /AREA
Twitter @virbrussa | GitHub virbrussa
"I am internationalist, living in Rosario, Argentina. An activist-researcher interested in promoting Internet health , innovation , digital rights, open practices (academic + gov + OSC spheres). I like co-create spaces, agendas and policies related to science, open gov, civic participation. I co-organized the First Latin American MSF Scientific Day, OpenCon Latam (2018), OpendataDay. Coord +Datalab and the Argentine Network of Open Education (AREA). Member of the Argentine Association of Digital Humanities, CIM and others academics/researcher spaces. I work closely with innovation labs and the design of collaboratives methodologies. Love maps, the ritual of "mate" and be part of the Mozilla Open Leaders community!"

Luca Castiglione, PhD Student, Imperial College of London
Twitter @ecleipteon | GitHub ecleipteon
“Born and raised in Napoli (Italy), I am currently a PhD student at Imperial College London, working within the Resilient Information Systems Security (RISS) group. My research activity lays on the edge between cyber-security and control engineering aiming to investigate the resilience of Cyber Physical Systems against cyber-attacks. Just another open-source addict, my interests are mainly in security, resilience and control. When not studying, I love swimming, travelling and complaining about the food in the UK. Decent – but not outstanding – at cooking.”

Sanli Faez, Assistant Professor, Utrecht University
Twitter @sanli | Website
“I am an Assistant Professor at the Physics department of Utrecht University. I am also a member of Utrecht Young Academy, open-science Community Utrecht, and the Utrecht University open-science platform. I graduated from the Mozilla OL7 program on the cultural track with the case-study: The University Cooperative workshop. Previously, I have hosted and produced the Road to Open Science podcast.”

Anne Fouilloux, Research Software Engineer, University of Oslo, Department of Geosciences, Norway
Twitter @AnneFouilloux | GitHub annefou
“I got a Master in Computer Sciences but a PhD in Atmospheric Physics. I am currently working at the University of Oslo (Norway) on Climate Modelling as a Research Software Engineer. What I enjoy the most in my work is teaching best practices and improving/developing training materials to facilitate multi-disciplinary research. I am a big fan of Open Science and Open Education: my journey started with welcoming communities like the Carpentries, the Galaxy Community and several Open Source Communities. I also want to encourage and help others to benefit from Open Communities and embrace Open Science.​”

Eriol Fox, Lead Designer, Ushahidi
"Eriol is a Design Lead who has worked in-house roles for 9+ years. Now working at Ushahidi, a humanitarian, non-profit technology leader, developing open-source, digital tools to help people with better democratic process, human rights issues, natural and human-made disasters.
Eriol is a non-binary, queer person who uses they/them pronouns and an LGBTQIA+ advocate.
They are deeply passionate about intersectional inclusion and promoting healthy attitudes towards mental health in the tech sector."

Katja Heuer, PhD Student, Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences
Twitter @katjaQheuer | GitHub katjaq
"I use neuroimaging to understand the evolution and development of the brain. I am strongly involved in open, reproducible, science and interdisciplinary research: I develop open Web applications to facilitate access to open data, foster collaboration and citizen science (such as Brainbox and MicroDraw). I have a background in fine arts and in many of my projects I combine art and science as a way to engage with the general public."

Ivo Jimenez, Research Scientist, UC Santa Cruz
Twitter @ivotron | GitHub ivotron
“Ivo Jimenez is a Research Scientist at UC Santa Cruz and Incubator Fellow at the UC Santa Cruz Center for Research on Open Source Software (CROSS). He is interested in large-scale distributed data management systems. Hs 2019 PhD dissertation focused on the practical aspects in the reproducible evaluation of systems research, work for which he was awarded the 2018 Better Scientific Software Fellowship. Ivo is originally from Mexico, where he got his B.S. in Computer Science from Universidad de Sonora. From 2006 to 2010 he worked as a research associate in the Database Research Lab at HP Labs.”

Apostolos Kritikos, Software Engineer/Researcher, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece
Twitter @akritiko | GitHub akritiko
“Apostolos Kritikos is a Researcher with the Computer Science Department of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece in the research areas of Open Source Software Engineering and Software Resilience. Apostolos received his BSc in Informatics in 2008 and his MSc in Informational Systems in 2010. In 2014 he co-founded Social Mind, a 360 degrees digital marketing agency and software house based in Thessaloniki. Since 2015 he is an Open Data Registered Trainer with the Open Data Institute (UK) and since 2018 part of Mozilla Open Leaders Mentors & Experts Network. During his 10+ years career he has participated in more than 100 software projects based on open source solutions.”

Lauren Maggio, Associate Professor of Medicine, Uniformed Services University
Twitter @LaurenMaggio
"Lauren Maggio is an associate professor of medicine at Uniformed Services University (USA). With a background in medicine and information science, her research explores how to effectively connect physicians, learners and patients with information through the design of educational initiatives and by facilitating access to knowledge for public and professional use. Recently, she has also focused on understanding the responsible conduct of researchers. Utilizing a variety of methods, she collaborates with a global community of researchers from academia, federal agencies, and organizations, such as Wikimedia, Altmetric, and Google. Lauren received her PhD in 2015 from University Medical Centre Utrecht."

Oarabile Mudongo, Research Fellow, Research ICT Africa
Twitter @o_mudongo | GitHub omudongo
“Media Democracy Fellow. Policy Researcher. Open Source, Mentorship & prototyping. web + technology =😍”

Ian Mulvany, Head of Transformation, SAGE Publishing
Twitter @IanMulvany | GitHub IanMulvany
"Ian Mulvany is Head of Transformation at SAGE Publishing. He helped set up SAGE’s methods innovation incubator SAGE Ocean following a lean product development approach. Previously he ran technology operations for eLife, was head of product for Mendeley and ran a number of early web2.0 products for Nature Publishing Group.

Previously he was head of technology at eLife Sciences, head of product at Mendeley and a product manager for a number of researcher oriented services that Nature Publishing Group. Over that time he has gained a breadth of experience of modern product management practice, software engineering practice, program management and a deep understanding of the technical underpinnings of many modelling scholarly communication systems.

He collaborated in defining the extensions to the NLM DTD required to support software citation and was also one of the original organising members of the Altmetrics conference series that started in 2014. He was a founding editorial advisory board member for the Journal of Open Research Software.

He is passionate about creating digital tools that support the research enterprise. He is interested in the interplay between different stakeholders that can lead to the sustainably of these kinds of tools."

Daniel Nüst, Researcher, Opening Reproducible Research (o2r) @ University of Münster, Institute for Geoinformatics
Twitter: @nordholmen | GitHub nuest
“Daniel is researcher at Spatio-temporal Modelling Lab at the Institute for Geoinformatics (ifgi) at the University of Münster. Daniel pursues a PhD in the DFG-funded project Opening Reproducible Research (o2r) on tools for creation and execution of research compendia. Before he was a consultant and software developer at 52°North Initiative for Geospatial Software Solutions GmbH. His professional interest is improving the scholarly publication process with new information technology — of course with Open Source software! He enjoys playing Ultimate Frisbee — the best sport ever invented by man.”

Bonface Ochieng, Service Coordinator Africa, Musoni Systems
Twitter @TheBonface | GitHub TheBonface | Linkedin
“Bonface is a social innovator, with a keen interest in Working Open and how to leverage technology in solving socio-economic challenges, currently residing in Nairobi, Kenya.”

Pablo Diego Silva da Silva, DevOps Technical Leader, LAPPIS at University of Brasília (UnB, Brazil)
GitHub pablodiegoss
“I am a Software Engineer from the University of Brasilia and a member of the Advanced Laboratory of Software Production, Research and Innovation (LAPPIS) of Faculdade Gama - UnB. Technical leader in DevOps, continuous deploy pipelines, microservices architecture, and containers. I am primarily a developer of open-source projects and interests in game development, augmented reality, art, and technology.”

Harry Smith, PhD Student In Nano Technology, UCL

Kaitlin Stack Whitney, Assistant Professor, Rochester Institute of Technology
Twitter @KStackWhitney
“Dr. Kaitlin Stack Whitney (she/her/hers) is an Assistant Professor in the Science, Technology, & Society Department and Environmental Science Program at the Rochester Institute of Technology (NY, USA). Her research incorporates approaches from ecoinformatics, insect ecology, animal studies, and feminist biology. She was a 2019 Mozilla Open Leader focused on accessibility in open science and acoustic ecology. She thinks and publishes on barriers to inclusive and accessible open practices.”

Grant R. Vousden-Dishington, Research Software Engineer, Anti-Defamation League
Twitter @usethespacebar | GitHub GrantRVD

Experts

Stefanie Butland, Community Manager, rOpenSci
Twitter @StefanieButland | GitHub stefaniebutland | Website
“I’m a biologist, former low-throughput bioinformatician, and a compulsive people-connector and knowledge-sharer. My research life involved bacteria, plants, insects, and mammals, first at the bench and then on a laptop. I’m involved with the new Center for Scientific Collaboration and Community Engagement as an alumna and mentor. At rOpenSci we are building the social and technical infrastructure for open and reproducible research with shared data and reusable software in the R programming language.

Selected expertise:

  • building sustainable collaborations and online communities
  • setting participants up for success at hackathons, unconferences, community calls
  • helping people recognize their unique skills and contributions"

Hannah Drury, Product Manager, eLife
Twitter @hgdrury
"I have experience in product discovery and delivery, project management and principles of UX design. I can help with communicating your ideas, aligning stakeholders and prioritisation during all phases of your idea's lifecycle. Let's have a chat!"

Saloni Garg, Software Engineering Intern, Red Hat
Twitter @salonigarg_
"International Women in Open Source awardee by Red Hat and Mozilla Open Leader 2019.
I love talking to new people, and talking about Open Source in general."

Monica Granados, Policy Analyst, PREreview and Environment and Climate Change Canada
Twitter @Monsauce | GitHub monsauce
“I am a currently a Mitacs Canadian Science Policy Fellow working as Policy Analyst at Environment and Climate Change Canada in open science. In my research, I am interested in taking all we know about food webs and using this information to monitor changes in freshwater systems and provide tangible recommendations to decision makers and the public. As a staunch advocate of open science, I work in the open making all the code and publications from my research openly available.”

Bastian Greshake Tzovaras, Director of Research, Open Humans Foundation & Research Fellow, Center for Research and Interdisciplinarity
“Bastian is a biologist-turned-bioinformatician who has been working on various open* projects to make research accessible to all. His research spans evolutionary biology, scholarly publishing, bioethics, citizen science at large and more. Bastian is the co-founder of openSNP – an open repository for personal genomes – and the Director of Research for Open Humans – a platform for personal data-based citizen science. Currently he is a research fellow at the Center for Research & Interdisciplinarity in Paris. Bastian has experience in software development, data science and community management.”

Chris Holdgraf, Post-doc, Project Jupyter / UC Berkeley
Twitter @choldgraf | GitHub choldgraf
“I work at UC Berkeley with the Jupyter Project and the Berkeley Institute for Data Science. I work with teams that build open source tools for interactive computing and that apply those tools to problems in education and science. I also work with Jupyter and Berkeley at an organizational level - focusing on issues of governance and organizational infrastructure.”

Peter Hooper, Lead Node Developer, eLife
Twitter @diversemix | GitHub diversemix
“Peter has a PhD in Physics and has been in the software industry for over 20 years. His language skills include, JavaScript, TypeScript, node.js, python, C#, C and C++. Interested in all web based technologies especially data storage, but also has experience with hardware. Owns a rescue border collie - be kind to dogs!”

Chris Huggins, User Experience Designer, eLife
“I’ve worked in user experience design on projects from consumer apps to complex professional software systems. I joined eLife’s Product team in 2018 and have mostly been involved in research, design and user testing for the Libero product suite. I’ve also supported smaller projects from eLife’s Innovation programs such as Plaudit and our work with Bio Protocol with suggestions to improve the design of their prototypes and advising on user testing and UX best practices. I look forward to offering similar advice to projects joining the Innovation Leaders program.”

Suze Kundu, Head of Public Engagement, Digital Science
Twitter @FunSizeSuze
“Suze is fascinated about breaking down the building blocks of life into its fundamental components, and communicating her scientific findings to anyone that stands still for long enough. After completing her PhD in Materials Chemistry from University College London, Suze spent six years as an academic in the Department of Materials at Imperial College London and at the University of Surrey’s Chemical and Process Engineering Department. A passionate educator, she has also studied for a PGCE in Senior School Science, and an MEd in University Learning and Teaching. Suze joined Digital Science a year ago as Head of Public Engagement.”

Mauro Lepore, Research software developer, 2 Degrees Investing Initiative
Twitter @mauro_lepore | GitHub maurolepore | Linkedin
“I build software and train people so they can better manage and understand their data.”

Giuliano Maciocci, Head of Product and UX, eLife
Twitter @augmentl
“As Head of Product and User Experience, I lead a multi-disciplinary team helping to guide eLife’s product vision through user-centred design and community-driven innovation.
With my Product Management hat on, I look forward to opportunities to help innovators translate their ideas into actionable technology initiatives, helping to identify problem areas and key stakeholders, pinpoint the most promising solutions, and scope out the work needed to turn them into reality.
With my UX hat on, I can help make sure that those solutions are fit for their intended user base."

Miranda Marcus, Lead Development Producer, Open Data Institute/ BBC
Twitter @roomarcus
“Miranda Marcus specialises in research and development in emerging technology and data practices. Her background is in applied research, design and anthropology. Her personal research field focuses on the impact of engineering practices on medical artificial intelligence applications. She works at the BBC as Lead Development Producer in the R&D department and at the Open Data Institute as Senior Consultant focusing on health innovation.”

Veethika Mishra, Interaction Designer, Red Hat
Twitter @veethikaa
"Veethika is an Interaction Designer by practice, a tabletop gaming enthusiast. and an active Creative Commoner. She believes in the power of play and storytelling in crafting extraordinary experiences. Her work at Red Hat allows her to observe the open communities from a closer proximity and propose immediate solutions for the problems faced.
She had also been long involved with the Creative Commons community and has been developing a process for designing educational games that could be released under CC license."

Ross Mounce, Director of Open Access Programmes, Arcadia Fund
Twitter @rmounce | GitHub rossmounce
"I'm a biologist by background with a PhD in paleontology from the University of Bath. My research expanded into biodiversity informatics, and text & data mining. I was and still am extremely frustrated with how dumb and complex the scholarly communication system is - it completely misuses the internet in the best interest of maximizing profits rather focussing on doing and providing what is best for research.
I think there is much potential for increased transparency in schol-comms, particularly in granting and peer-review. I'm also very interested in altmetrics - not the numbers but the visibility of links to people, identities, conversations and geographies of readership and interest in research. I do hope I can help :)
PS My participation in this programme is not an on-ramp to Arcadia funding for mentees - just to make that clear!"

Nikolaos Nerantzis, Physicist in Secondary Special Education, 1st Junior High School of Thessaloniki
Twitter @nerantzis | GitHub nerantzis | Blog#1 | Blog#2
"I am a Physicist in Secondary Special Education, PL in projects promoting inclusion, digital inclusion, openness, and Mozilla fun."

Maël Plaine, Product Manager, eLife
Twitter @maelplaine
“Maël Plaine developed his interest in building digital products while working in the music industry at New State Entertainment in London. During his 5 years in this industry he created digital campaigns to promote new album releases and helped building a tool to aggregate royalties from online sales and streaming services. He shifted his career to software product management and moved to Cambridge in 2015, where he managed an online services platform for the public sector at Arcus Global. In 2018, he joined eLife as Product Manager for the organisation’s journal platform and Libero Publisher and the Libero Data Hub.”

Serah Rono, Community Engagement Lead, The Carpentries
Twitter @serahrono | GitHub serahrono

Daniela Saderi, Project Director, PREreview / Code for Science & Society
Twitter @Neurosarda | GitHub dasaderi
"Daniela is Co-Founder and Project Director at PREreview, a platform and a community for the constructive review of preprints. She has a background in research with a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Oregon Health and Science University, in Portland OR, USA. During her time as a student, she became increasingly interested in how open practices can be used to empower early-career researchers in taking ownership over their work, and to facilitate collaborations within and across teams. In 2018-2019, she was a Mozilla Fellow for Science."

Amit Sagtani, Software Engineering Intern, Perpule
Twitter @asagtani06
"A Google Summer of code student and mentor, I love Open Source. I'm involved with KDE community with the GCompris project."

Sayak Sarkar, Senior Software Engineer, Red Hat
Twitter @sayak_sarkar | GitHub sayak-sarkar | Website
“An open-source evangelist by passion and a web developer by profession, I'm a tech enthusiast involved with multiple tech and non-tech communities. I work as a Senior Software Engineer at Red Hat where I mostly dabble with web tech and related technologies.”

Paul Shannon, Head of Technology, eLife
Twitter @BlueReZZ | GitHub BlueReZZ
“Paul Shannon is responsible for the technology strategy at eLife ensuring the team are committed to openness in the products they produce to encourage broad change across the research communication landscape. He leads the community efforts around eLife’s open source products (Libero, Lens, ScienceBeam) and contributes to the Coko Community (xPub) through leadership and facilitation. He’s a regular conference speaker and was previously VP Technology for innovative digital music platform 7digital, where he grew the team and scaled the API platform to support the vastly changing music technology industry.”

Giorgio Sironi, Team Lead and SETI, eLife
Twitter @giorgiosironi | GitHub giorgiosironi
“I search for the harmony between form and context, which is a fancy way of saying I build software to fit in the world I'm in and all the forces around it.
My focus is to make software development both faster and safer at the same time, whether this is accomplished through code, practices or talking to people."

Gabriel Stein, Head of Operations and Product, Knowledge Futures Group
Twitter @gabestein | GitHub gabestein
“Gabriel is the Head of Operations and Product at the Knowledge Futures Group. He has worked at the intersection of media and technology in many roles, including front-end engineering at Ogilvy, support for Google's advertising platform, reporting and editing at Fast Company, audience development and product management at Upworthy, and product development at Heleo. Before joining the KFG, he co-founded Massive Science, a company that teaches researchers how to communicate their work to the public, publishes their stories and studies the impact of communication using interactive web tools. In his spare time, he bakes a lot of sourdough bread.”

Dr. Athina Tzovara, University of Bern
Twitter @aath0 | GitHub aath0
“I am a neuroscientist, with a background in electrical and computer engineering. My research combines computational and electrophysiological techniques to study human cognition.”

Tyler Whitehouse, CEO, Gigantum
Twitter @tylercasablanca
“I made the transition from academia to consulting and now into running a software company. In my role at Gigantum, I do pretty much everything except software development. On a daily basis I go from finances and fundraising, to strategy and product development, and even to writing docs and helping out with the testing. ”

Lilly Winfree, Product Manager, Open Knowledge Foundation
Twitter @lilscientista | GitHub lwinfree
“Lilly works on open source software for open science as the product manager for the Frictionless Data for Reproducible Research project at Open Knowledge Foundation. She is happy to help answer questions about project management, open source, open data, open science, data management, project communications, giving presentations, writing documentation, and working with a distributed team. Lilly has her PhD in neuroscience from Oregon Health and Science University, where she researched brain injury in fruit flies and became an advocate for open science and open data.”

Hao Ye, Postdoc, University of Florida
Twitter @Hao_and_Y | GitHub ha0ye
“I am a computational ecologist at the University of Florida, working on methods for unraveling mechanisms among time series data. I am interested in open science and related programs as a lever for broadening inclusion and participation in STEM/academia/research; hence my participation in this program alongside the OpenLifeSci program.”

Yo Yehudi, Software Developer, University of Cambridge
Twitter @yoyehudi | GitHub yochannah
“Yo is a Software Sustainability Institute Fellow, founder of Code is Science, EngD student at the University of Manchester studying the effects of community and usability on open source software, editor for the PLOS Open Source Toolkit, board member of the Open Bioinformatics Foundation, and a software developer at the University of Cambridge, working on an open source biological data warehouse called InterMine.”

Vot Zardzewialy, Head of Platform Solutions (Frontend), Cambridge University Press
GitHub vot
“I write code. Lots of code. Nearly 10 years in academic publishing. I'm an enthusiast, advocate, contributor, maintainer and consumer of Open Source, Open Access, Open Research and Open Science. I write mostly JavaScript and Go, I also support some Python code. I create and maintain systems of various degrees of complexity. I like working on projects that address real problems. I have experience with every aspect of software development, from design to deployments. I have worked on a variety of projects including Cambridge Core, ProQuest Search, Queen Victoria's Journals and Citation Gecko. I maintain and contribute to two projects that started at eLife Innovation Sprints: Octopus and Hidden Preprints. I also created some pretty useful Open Source projects (ffbinaries, xkpasswd, urlgent and a few more).”

If you would like to join this co-learning journey as a mentor or expert, please contact Emmy at innovation [at] elifesciences [dot] org.

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