Europe is still the region with the highest alcohol consumption in the world, which contributes significantly to the mortality from non-communicable diseases (NCD). Reducing alcohol-related harm is also one of the key factors for healthy workforce, increased productivity and reduced costs for healthcare services. The conference focuses on cross-border issues in alcohol policy which can dilute the effectiveness of national measures to tackle harmful use of alcohol.
The general aim of the conference 'Cross-Border Aspects in Alcohol Policy – Tackling Harmful Use of Alcohol' is to reduce alcohol-related harm in the EU by strengthening the member states' capacities to implement effective health policy and tackle cross-border issues. Labelling of alcoholic beverages, cross-border purchases of alcohol, and marketing are a focus of the conference, as well as discussions on research and monitoring concerning alcohol policy. Representatives of different sectors – health, agriculture, culture, finance - are invited to the meeting.
The aim is to discuss the recent developments and envisage the future steps to tackle the harmful use of alcohol in the EU. The conference, together with the debate at the informal meeting of health ministers, held in July in Tallinn, feeds into the preparation of the Council conclusions on these issues.
Radisson Blu Hotel Olümpia
Radisson Blu Hotel Olümpia, Liivalaia 33, 10118 Tallinn, Estonia
Public health researcher and activist, (conference moderator)
Riina Raudne, PhD, is an Estonian researcher, social entrepreneur and activist. She studied sociology and comparative social policy at Durham and Oxford universities in the UK and completed her doctorate in public health at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in 2012.
Her public health work in Estonia has focused on communicating and reframing stigmatised health topics such as HIV and alcohol, leading to changes at the levels of public discourse, organisational and national policies, and funding. She served as a coordinator of the Estonian government’s drug policy committee, was the lead author of the Drug Policy White Paper 2014-2017, and has conceptualised several award-winning awareness and advocacy campaigns tackling various aspects of addiction in Estonia.
Deputy Secretary-General, Ministry of Finance of Estonia, (moderator of discussion panel on cross-border trade)
Dmitri Jegorov has worked at the Estonian Finance Ministry as the Deputy Secretary-General for Tax and Customs Policy since 2014. He coordinates the work of departments of tax policy and of customs and excise policy. He is also responsible for the tax and customs program of the Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Prior to the Ministry, Dmitri Jegorov worked for the tax and customs administration for almost 10 years. There he served as the head of direct taxes division as well as the deputy DG for core processes, dealing with matters from service to criminal investigation for both tax and customs. Before joining the civil service, Dmitri Jegorov worked as a corporate finance consultant for KPMG. Dmitri holds an MA in economics from the University of Tartu. He has also undertaken doctoral studies at the Norwegian School of Economics in Bergen focusing on taxpayers' attitudes to earmarked taxes.
Deputy Secretary General, Ministry of Social Affairs of Estonia, (moderator of discussion panel on cross-border marketing)
Dr Maris Jesse has held the position of Deputy Secretary General on Health since 2016. Previously, since 2008, she served as the Director of the National Institute for Health Development. She holds a medical degree from Tartu University and MSc degrees from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and the London School of Economics and Political Science. She has led the Estonian Health Insurance Fund as the chairperson of the management board, worked as a senior health specialist at the World Bank and as a health policy analyst at Estonia’s PRAXIS Center for Policy Studies.
Dr Maris Jesse served as Member of the Executive Board of WHO from 2009 to 2012, and represented the WHO European Region in the working group of WHO governance reform in 2015.
Senior Policy Officer, Eurocare, (moderator of discussion panel on labelling)
Aleksandra Kaczmarek has a Master’s degree in European Union law from King’s College London and a Bachelor’s degree in politics and sociology from the University of Liverpool. She has worked for the European Alcohol Policy Alliance since 2010, covering areas of labelling, alcohol as a risk factor in non-communicable diseases, as well as relations with the European Parliament. Aleksandra Kaczmarek has experience in working for civil society organisations, both at national and European levels. Prior to joining Eurocare, Aleksandra Kaczmarek worked in the UK on the development and implementation of participatory budgeting and public community consultation projects.
Senior Policy Advisor, EuroHealthNet, (moderator of political discussion panel)
Clive Needle joined EuroHealthNet in 2000 following his consultative report and recommendations on network progress. Since then he has helped to lead development and policy initiatives, including successive EC co-funded projects on health inequalities, social inclusion, and capacity building for health promotion. During this time, he has represented the network as a founding member of the EU Health Policy Platform and at numerous international events, including as the Chairperson of the EC Mental Health Consultative Platform and at the Presidency of the Council of the EU events in several member states.
Clive Needle is also an independent public policy advisor to several not-for-profit organisations. Prior to his work with EuroHealthNet, Clive Needle worked in business management, voluntary organisations and on political campaigns. He was an elected Member of the European Parliament from 1994 to 99, working particularly on health and development issues, including authorship of the 1999 Report on the Future of EU Public Health.
Laure Alexandre is the director of ‘spirits and society’ at spiritsEUROPE, which she joined in March 2011. She oversees spiritsEUROPE’s responsible commercial communications practices, prevention activities and partnerships to reduce alcohol-related harm. Prior to joining spiritsEUROPE, Laure Alexandre was the policy and implementation manager at the European Advertising Standards Alliance (EASA). Laure Alexandre studied law, political science and languages applied to international business at the University of La Rochelle, completed her Erasmus semester in Cordoba, and finished a post-Master diploma in European public policy in London and Paris.
Senior Adviser, Swedish Customs law enforcement
Anna Björklund has been working in Swedish Customs law enforcement since 2005. She focuses on border questions – national and international. She was an employee of the Swedish Police from 1995 to 2005. Anna has a Master’s of law degree from Lund University.
Project Manager, Directorate-General Joint Research Centre, European Commission
Sandra Caldeira is a project manager at the DG Joint Research Centre where she works with an enthusiastic team on public health. The team provides independent scientific advice and support to EU policies in the area of the prevention of non-communicable disease. Their research portfolio is broad and covers nutrition, physical activity, and alcohol-related issues as well as their impact to the health of European citizens.
Sandra Caldeira holds degrees in microbiology and in biotechnology as well as a PhD in biomedical sciences. She worked as a postdoctoral researcher in the University of Lisbon, Cambridge University, and Stanford University. Prior to joining the European Commission in 2010, she held positions as an invited professor of genetics at the University of Lisbon and as a scientific editor at the European Molecular Biology Organisation (EMBO) in Heidelberg.
Health Policy Analyst, OECD
Michele Cecchini is senior health economist and policy analyst in the OECD health division. Michele Cecchini is responsible for the OECD programme of work on Public Health. His research interests include priority setting and programme evaluation of policies influencing population health, in particular concerning the health and economic assessment of public health policies across different sectors. Michele Cecchini holds the position of adjunct professor in applied health economics at the School of Public Health of the University of Siena and held a visiting position at the Health Services & Systems Research Centre of the Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School in Singapore. He has also served as a temporary advisor to a number of government and international agencies, including WHO, IARC, EC and the World Bank on a range of public health issues.
After obtaining a degree in Medicine and Surgery from the University of Genoa, Michele completed his specialist training in Public Health at the University of Siena. He also obtained a Master’s Degree in Health Policy, Planning and Financing from the London School of Economics and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
Director of the Division of Noncommunicable Diseases and Promoting Health through the Life-course, WHO Regional Office for Europe
Dr Gauden Galea is a public health physician who has worked for WHO since 1998. He has held posts as the regional adviser on noncommunicable diseases in the Western Pacific Region, and as the coordinator of health promotion in WHO headquarters. He has been the director of the division of noncommunicable diseases and health promotion at WHO/Europe since January 2011. He has a special interest in health promotion, in the social determinants of noncommunicable diseases, and in the links between these diseases and the development agenda.
Director of EU Public Affairs, European Association for the Study of the Liver
Fiona Godfrey is the director of policy and public affairs at the European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL). Originally from the UK she is a law graduate who has worked as a criminal and civil litigation solicitor in England before moving to Luxembourg in 1995. She has worked in EU and international public health for 20 years, starting off as a consultant in the EU Commission Europe Against Cancer unit before moving to work for the Union Internationale contre le Cancer, WHO, the European Respiratory Society, the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease and finally EASL in 2013 on a consultancy basis.
She has drafted EU health legislation and worked on the WHO FCTC for 12 years, during which time she served as an expert NGO observer to the parties working groups on advertising and taxation helping to develop Article 13 and Article 6 guidelines. Between 2007 and 2012 she worked on the Bloomberg funded international tobacco control project and served as an advisor to several health ministries around the world, including Russia, Ukraine and Poland. In 2011 she was awarded a WHO World No Tobacco Day individual award for Europe. From 2014 to 2017 she was the alternate member for health on the EU Commission TTIP Advisory Group. In her work at EASL she focuses on viral hepatitis and alcohol policy
Director of the Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth, John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
David Jernigan, PhD, directs the Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth (CAMY) and is an associate professor in the Department of Health, Behavior and Society at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. He is also the co-director of the Maryland Collaborative to Reduce College Drinking and Related Problems, a state-wide effort involving 15 institutions of higher education committed to reducing alcohol-related problems on campus and in the surrounding communities.
David Jernigan serves on the boards of Behavioral Health System Baltimore and the Global Alcohol Policy Alliance, and on advisory boards for Cancer Research UK and the UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies. He has written more than 100 peer-reviewed journal articles, co-authored three books and monographs, and contributed chapters to 6 books on alcohol issues. He has served as an advisor to the World Bank and the World Health Organization (WHO) and was the principal author of WHO’s first Global Status Report on Alcohol and Global Status Report on Alcohol and Youth, and co-author of Alcohol in the Developing World: A Public Health Perspective and Media Advocacy and Public Health: Power for Prevention.
Director, Institute of Economic Research of Estonia
Marje Josing is the Director of Institute of Economic Research. The institute is focused on analyses of markets and economies, it has monitored the alcohol market in Estonia for more than 30 years. It is the primary source of national data about yearly alcohol consumption, sales, import, export, etc. The institute also surveys illegal markets, cross-border purchases and the public opinion on alcohol policy.
Zbigniew J. Król
Undersecretary of State, Ministry of Health of Poland
As Undersecretary of State Zbigniew J. Król is authorised by the Minister for Health to pass decisions (settlements) in his name, including making administrative decisions. He is the chairperson of the Crisis Management Team. He also initiates, coordinates and supervises tasks performed by the healthcare organisation department and the department of defence matters, crisis management, medical emergency rescue service and classified information protection.
He supervises the activity of the Research Centre for Quality of Laboratory Diagnostics in Lodz, the Research Centre for Quality of Microbiology in Warsaw, the Central Base of Sanitary and Anti-epidemic Reserves in Poręby, near Zduńska Wola, the Quality in Healthcare Monitoring Centre in Kraków and the Independent Public Healthcare Centre Air Ambulance Service in Warsaw.
Professor of European Public Health, the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM)
Martin McKee is professor of European public health at LSHTM. He qualified in medicine in Northern Ireland and subsequently trained in public health in London. He manages the largest research team working on the challenges to health and health systems in the countries of central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, co-directing the European Centre on Health of Societies in Transition (ECOHOST), a WHO Collaborating Centre. He has published over 530 papers in peer-reviewed journals and he is the author or editor of almost 40 books.
His contributions to health policy in Europe have been recognised by his election to fellowship of the UK Academy of Medical Sciences, Foreign Associate Membership of Institute of Medicine of the US National Academies of Sciences, and membership of the Romanian Academy of Medical Sciences. He has also been awarded honorary doctorates by the University of Debrecen in Hungary, Maastricht in the Netherlands, and Karlstad in Sweden. He is a visiting professor at the Universities of Belgrade and Zagreb, the London School of Economics, and Taipei Medical University. In 2003 he was awarded the Andrija Stampar medal by the Association of Schools of Public Health in European Region (ASPHER) and in 2005 he was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for services to health care in Europe.
National Institute for Health and Welfare in Finland
Pia Mäkelä is a research professor in the National Institute for Health and Welfare in Finland. Her main areas of expertise are alcohol use, drinking habits, drinking culture, consequences of alcohol use, and alcohol policy. She has received her PhD at the University of Helsinki, where she is currently an adjunct professor at the department of social research. She is also a senior editor of the journal Addiction, and a board member for the Finnish Foundation for Alcohol Studies.
Member of the Committee of the Regions
Ewa-May Karlsson has been member of the European Committee of the Regions since 2004. She was entrepreneur in rural development before 1998 and Mayor of municipality of Vindeln, Sweden between years 1998-2014. She has been board member, Kommuninvest since 2005, board member, Region of Västerbotten since 2008, board member, Västerbotten County Council since 2015 and a board member of VLL Innovation AB since 2015.
Senior researcher, National Institute of Health and Welfare, Finland
Thomas Karlsson is a senior researcher at the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL). Between 2000 and 2008, Thomas Karlsson worked as a researcher at THL’s predecessor, STAKES. In 2012, Thomas Karlsson was appointed vice head of Unit and has, since the beginning of 2017, worked as team leader and vice head at the Unit for Alcohol, Drugs and Addictions. During the past 20 years Thomas Karlsson has been involved in many international comparative research projects, for example, in the European Comparative Alcohol Study (ECAS), the Bridging the Gap study, led by Eurocare, as well as the EU co-financed research projects of SMART, AMPHORA, and Alice Rap (FP7 and DG Sanco). He also chairs the WHO collaborating centre on alcohol policy implementation and evaluation based in THL.
Expert on Alcohol Policy, Finland
Marjatta Montonen has extensive experience in the alcohol field, having worked most recently as special adviser with the National Institute for Health and Welfare, Finland and as a work package coordinator in the Joint Action on Reducing Alcohol Related Harm (RARHA), co-funded by member states and the EU Health Programme. She has previously worked as seconded national expert with the European Commission and as a researcher in Finland, in particular on the communication aspects of alcohol.
Institute of Psychiatry and Neurology, Poland
Jacek Moskalewicz, is a sociologist with a research interest that covers social and epidemiological studies on alcohol and other drugs. He has substantial experience in comparative studies and recently coordinated the first-ever Standardised European Alcohol Survey in 19 European countries within EU Joint Action on Alcohol. He heads the Department of Studies on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence in the Institute of Psychiatry and Neurology, Warsaw, Poland. He has acted as an expert for national and international bodies, including European Commission, World Health Organisation and United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.
Minister for Health and Labour of Estonia
Jevgeni Ossinovski is working to improve the working environment of Estonia in an innovative way. He is currently the Minister for Health and Labour of Estonia and the leader of the Estonian Social Democratic Party. His main fields of expertise are modernising education to fit the needs of the labour market, improving the labour environment, employment relations, and the promotion of equal treatment of all people in the workplace. Previously, he was the Minister for Education and Research. He has a Master’s degree in philosophy from Warwick University as well as a master’s degree in political science from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
World Health Organisation
Dag Rekve works as a technical officer in the department of mental health and substance abuse in the WHO in Geneva. He holds degree in business and economics and has specialised in psychology and addiction behavior. He has over fifteen years of experience in prevention and treatment of substance use problems. He has worked in a treatment institution for young drug addicts, as a municipal drug advisor, as a director of an NGO and as a senior adviser on substance use problems in the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs in Norway.
Dag Rekve has also worked as a media consultant and programme manager for alcohol and drugs in the WHO Regional Office for Europe in Copenhagen. Dag Rekve is a former member of the Norwegian Government's Drug Advisory Committee, the European Commission's working group on alcohol and health and the network of counterparts to the WHO European Alcohol Action Plan. He has been the writer or co-writer/contributor to numerous articles and policy papers at local, national and international level, including a municipal drug strategy for the city of Porsgrunn, two consecutive national strategies to combat alcohol and drug problems in Norway and the Framework for Alcohol Policy in the WHO European Region (2005). He is currently working at the global level with the follow up of the 2005 World Health Assembly resolution on public health problems caused by harmful use of alcohol.
John F. Ryan
Director for Public Health, DG Health and Food Safety, European Commission
John F. Ryan has been the director of public health, country knowledge and crisis management since September 2016. Previously, in the same department, he was the head of unit responsible for health threats, health information, the cancer programme, the pollution related disease programme, the drugs prevention programme, the health monitoring programme, the health promotion programme, the rare diseases programme and the injury prevention programme.
Most recently, he led the unit responsible for health determinants and inequalities. He was a Commission representative on the board of the EU Lisbon Drugs Agency, and is currently the Commission representative on the board of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. He also had the charge of dealing with tobacco control issues including product regulation directives, tobacco advertising, and the WHO international treaty negotiations for a tobacco convention. He has previously worked in other European Commission departments dealing with the completion of the internal market, and on international trade negotiations.
Senior Manager, Computer & Communications Industry Association
Maud Sacquet is senior manager, public policy in the Brussels office of the Computer & Communications Industry Association. She is working on digital policy matters (including audiovisual, copyright and the liability of online intermediaries) coming up at the European Union level. Maud Sacquet holds a Master's degree in business law from the Institute of Political Studies of Paris and a LLM degree in regulation and technology from King’s College London.
Advocacy Manager, National Association of Prevention in Alcohology and Addictology
After 8 years at Transparency International France, main non-governmental organisation fighting corruption, Myriam Savy joined the National Association of Prevention in Alcohology and Addictology (ANPAA) in November 2016. As Advocacy Manager France & International, she is in charge of developing the advocacy and communication strategy aiming at better integrating health issues in public policies, in particular to promote the reduction of alcohol’s and other addictions’ risks. ANPAA is the main French non-profit organisation managing care and prevention centers all across French territory. Myriam Savy graduated from Sciences Po Bordeaux and detained a Master’s degree in political sciences and international relations.
General Secretary, Eurocare
Mariann Skar has been the General Secretary for Eurocare (European Alcohol Policy Alliance) since October 2007. Mariann is qualified as cand.polit (sociology and social policy) from the University of Tromsø, Norway. Her working experience, which dates back to 1979, is varied, spanning from being an independent public health consultant in Brussels and Thessaloniki, seconded national expert in the European Commission, Directorate-General Health & Consumer Protection, Unit for Strategy and Analyse (Brussels) and Unit for Health Determinants (Luxembourg). Mariann was working at Tromsø University College for 13 years and during this time she had management responsibilities (Head of Nursing Education), was lecturing in general nursing and sociology/social policies and involved in various developmental, evaluation and research activities.
Ministerial Advisor, Ministry of Health and Social Affairs of Finland
Ismo Tuominen has a Master's of Laws Degree from Helsinki University and has been trained on the Bench. He has been responsible for the Finnish alcohol policy and legislation from 2002 as a Ministerial Counsellor in the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health. He has been engaged in developing the legal framework in the field of alcohol, tobacco and other public health issues. He was responsible for renewal of Finnish alcohol legislation in 2014, introducing innovative ways to curb the alcohol marketing in new media.
Head of the Customs and Excise Policy Department, Ministry of Finance of Estonia
Marek Uusküla serves as head of the customs and excise policy department in the Ministry of Finance of Estonia since 2008. He has held different positions in the Ministry of Finance since 1992, engaged in building up Estonian custom system and developing tax policy. He has been responsible for drafting the legal framework regulating customs and excise area. In his current post, he is responsible for customs issues, indirect taxation (VAT, excise duties), gambling tax and road vehicle tax.
Minister of Health of Lithuania
Aurelijus Veryga is professor of the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences and a doctor psychiatrist with more than 10 years of professional experience in addiction treatment. Initiator and one of the establishers of two successfully acting national NGO’s: Kaunas Drug Abuse Help Centre for Youth and Lithuanian National Tobacco and Alcohol Control Coalition. In 2005, he became a member of the National Health Council and was responsible for tobacco, alcohol, drugs control and prevention.
In 2008, he was a freelance expert of the Committee on Health Affairs of the Parliament of the Republic of Lithuania. During 2009-2012 served as a public adviser on the prevention of tobacco, alcohol and drugs for the Prime Minister of the Republic of Lithuania. During 2011-2016 he was the Head of the Health Research Institute (WHO Collaborating centre) under the Faculty of Public Health of the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences. Aurelijus Veryga has served as the Minister for Health of the Republic of Lithuania from 13 December 2016.
Jožica Maučec Zakotnik
State Secretary, Ministry of Health of the Republic of Slovenia
Jožica Maučec Zakotnik has been the State Secretary at the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Slovenia since 8 May 2017. She already served as State Secretary at the same Ministry once before from 2000 to 2005. During that time the Ministry of Health promoted and facilitated the launching of the National Programme of Primary Prevention of Coronary Heart Diseases, designed and adopted two key public health policies regarding nutrition and promotion of physical activity for health, developed legislation for tobacco control and harmful use of alcohol, and carried out the 'health impact assessment of food and agricultural policies on the health of the people of Slovenia after the accession to the EU'.
Jožica Maučec Zakotnik graduated from the Medical Faculty of the University of Ljubljana. Her specialisation is in general/family medicine, including a postgraduate degree in a two-semester study of public health/social medicine. For more than two decades, she worked as family physician, and then turned her attention to prevention, health promotion and healthy lifestyle programmes.