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Meet the Speakers

Recordings of the talks and panel discussions, along with the written proceedings will be available in our LIBRARY in early 2024

Katharina Schmidt / Rovio

Katharina is a business strategy professional who leads partnerships across platforms, technologies, medias and games at Rovio (part of SEGA). She approaches opportunities with a data driven mindset, a big heart for product and a sharp plan for negotiations. In her past she has managed a wide range of large international sales deals and delivered business and product strategy projects for clients in Gaming, Media and High-Tech industries.

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Neha Joshi / Metacore

Neha Joshi’s career has taken her from the Himalayas to Helsinki: starting as a research scientist at McAfee, Neha crossed over to the games industry over 12 years ago and has been involved in game production ever since. She’s worked on various platforms including Facebook, PC, console, and mobile, and on titles such as Empires & Allies, CastleVille, Trials, South Park Phone Destroyer and Angry Birds Friends. Neha joined Metacore as a Producer in January 2023 and is currently working on a new game project. She's a mother of two and lives in Espoo with her family.

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Felicia Prehn / Next Games - Netflix

Felicia Prehn is a legally-blind, queer game industry professional with mearly eight years of industry experience. They are currently a Diversity, Inclusion, and Communications Specialist at Next Games.

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Alexandru “Alex” Gospodin, Redhill Games

Alex started his career as a Game tester back in 2016. Since then, he has acquired a deep knowledge of quality assurance and the importance of having QA in-house. He joined Redhill in early 2021 where he is a valuable member of the QA team. In his free time he enjoys playing games which are his passion, and they bring him comfort during difficult times.

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Ari Arnbjörnsson / Epic Games

Ari Arnbjörnsson is an Unreal Engine Evangelist at Epic Games. He has 15 years of varied games industry experience ranging from social, web and mobile games to console games. His latest work before joining Epic Games was as a lead programmer on Housemarque’s BAFTA-winning Returnal for PlayStation 5.

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Eyram Tawia / Leti Arts

Eyram Tawia is the CEO/Co-founder of Leti Arts. Born to a Fine Arts lecturer and a Teacher, he was nurtured by his parents who recognized his creative attributes from the comics he drew as a child. He became fascinated with computers and taught himself to program. Years later, he’s spearheading the game industry in Sub Saharan Africa with the aim of creating games and comics that can compete on the global market.

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Eevi Korhonen / Housemarque

After ten years of experience from mobile, Facebook and AAA games, Eevi has an expansive view of what game design can be, but her heart has always belonged to the narrative side of games. As a narrative designer, her main area of interest lies in the intersection of mechanics and storytelling. Her latest work includes CONTROL and Returnal.

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Oleg Paliy / Games Factory Talents

Oleg is leading Games Factory Talents, a talent attraction agency and event organizer for the games industry helping game development studios from Europe find the best global talent and make great games. As a team they combine their love of games and love of people. Twice a year, in April and October, they organize the gamedev-focused hybrid Games Job Fairs!

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Solip Park / Aalto University

Solip is a doctoral student at Aalto University with her current research interest focused on immigrants and expatriates in the video game industry and cultural diversity in game productions. She is also the author of "Game Expats Story" comic series, while also acting as a member of the board at Finnish Game Jam Ry.

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Kim Kupiainen / Huuuge Games

Kim Kupiainen is a prominent figure in the Finnish gaming industry, known for his role as a game producer and the active leadership within the IGDA Finland. With a career deeply rooted in the world of gaming, Kim has not only contributed to the creation of captivating and innovative games but has also made a significant impact in fostering a more inclusive and compassionate game development community.

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Joseph Azzam, Them Ask

Joseph is an Evangelist, Joseph traveled mostly in the Middle East to talk and teach Unreal Engine for Epic games.
Joseph is a co-founder of Arabic Games, an initiative that aims to grow the game dev ecosystem in the MENA Region, along with LebGameDev and other wide range of activities.
He is currently teaching Game Development at universities in Lebanon.

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Essi Jukkala / Supercell. We In Games Finland

Essi Jukkala is the President of We in Games Finland, an organisation that works to improve the diversity, equity and inclusion of the Finnish game industry. Essi is also a Game Programmer at Supercell, and in addition to the daily work of a developer, Essi works with DEI both at Supercell and with We in Games.

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Kshiraj Telang / Moon Active

Kshiraj is an Art Director with over 20 years of experience in the entertainment industry, 13 of which have been dedicated to gaming. He currently spearheads a highly skilled, globally distributed team of game artists at Moon Active. His previous roles include tenures at industry giants such as Rovio, King, and PerBlue, among others.

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Dina Ramse / Dina Said So Studio

Dina Ramse is passionate about helping indie game companies successfully crowdfund their games. They help with all sorts of the aspects of bringing a game to life, such as social media and marketing.

Dina has turned her hands to a huge range of gaming industry roles. An expert in social media and marketing as well as running demos, editing rulebooks, planning conventions and much, much more. Jumping into games with both feet, she started her marketing company: DinaSaidSoStudio to help game designers and publishers with all the things involved in connecting games to their audience.

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Suzanne Freyjadis / IGDA

Suzanne Freyjadis is the Director of Global Development for the International Game Developers Association (IGDA).  She is a globalist, expert in diversity, inclusion and belonging and game education. Suzanne has a BA in International Relations and an MA in Women’s & Gender Studies with particular attention to diverse and thought-provoking material on humanism, where advancing equal rights, compassion, and goodwill is crucial for a better world. She gives talks about game education, DEI as well as how to create more diverse, thoughtful, and inclusive games. 

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Nazih Fares, The 4 Winds Entertainment

An accomplished, award-winning gaming professional with more than 14 years of experience in the videogame industry, Nazih Fares  has been mostly fighting for marginalized people, including Arab/Mena-Indigenous representation in video games and the problems they still face throughout his entire career. His other industry work includes being Co-Chair of the IGDA Game Credits SIG, advisors and public speaker on numerous conferences including Game Quality Forum, Indieway, GDC and more.

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Taina Myöhänen / University of Tampere

I'm Taina Myöhänen, researching diversity in the Finnish game industry, and I would love to hear your feedback on the research results I'll be presenting in my talk! Prior to the research, I worked in the game industry, starting for the first time in 2006. I have been involved in initiatives making the game industry more inclusive as a co-founder and the first chair of DEI organisation We in Games Finland, and a member of the Finnish Game Industry Task Force preventing sexual harassment.

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Salla Hiiskoski / We in Games Finland, Metacore

Salla Hiiskoski is the Mentorship Lead at We in Games Finland and Art Producer at Metacore. She has close to a decade of experience in the game industry and has been organizing the WiGFi Mentorship Program since 2020.

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Marina Díez  / Three of Cups Games

Marina Díez (she/they) is a Spanish award-winning game designer and filmmaker based in Berlin and London, UK. She's the CEO at Three of Cups Games, an ethical and diverse games studio based in London. Marina is also a Principal Game Designer at BTF Games for The Berlin Apartment. Previously, she was the Lead Game Designer for the game Dordogne by Un Je Ne Sais Quoi Studios & Umanimation.

Marina is also a filmmaker and her work has been screened and awarded all over the world.

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Taha Rasouli/ Ava Games

Taha is co-founder and game development coach at Ava Games, one of Iran's leading investment and publishing companies. with the purpose of helping, supporting and empowering local indie game developers to enter domestic and global markets. As IGDA Iran's Chapter leader, Taha's goal has always been supporting game developers and giving back to the community as much as he can. 

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Adam Al-Sawad / Kalla Gameworks

For the past decade, Adam Al-Sawad has been an aspiring politician, activist and lecturer, focusing on social equity and equality to create healthy and inclusive environments.

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Scott M. Graffius / Exceptional PPM

Scott M. Graffius is an agile project management practitioner, consultant, multi-award-winning author, and international speaker. Founder and CEO of Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions and subsidiary Exceptional Agility, he’s generated over $1.9 billion of business value in aggregate for Global Fortune 500 businesses and other organizations he’s served. Graffius has worked in diverse businesses and industries, ranging from consumer products to ecommerce, entertainment (music, streaming/OTT video, television, film, and games), financial services, government, R&D (AI), and more. 

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Rob Carr / Redhill Games

Rob is an industry veteran with over 16 years working in Video games and over 20 years working in the audio industry, Rob has spent a significant part of his life devoted to making some of the world best known titles such as GTA V, LA Noire, Red Dead Redemption, Max Payne, Nine to Five and many more in between. 

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Marienne and Christina from Female Gaming Finland

Female Gaming Finland ry (FGF) is a an association for women and gender minorities of all ages in gaming and e-sports. We aim to promote the position of our target group in the gaming community in Finland and worldwide.


President Marianne Määttä is studying social work, and worked as a game educator and e-sports coach. 

Christina Piirainen is an event producer who is oriented to gaming events. She is finishing her thesis about how to get more women and non-binary gamers attend gaming events.


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