Honorary Professor in the Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose at UCL in London and a Senior Adviser to the United Nation (UN-Habitat) on digital cities and digital rights, Francesca Bria is leading the DECODE project on data sovereignty in Europe and is a member of the European Commission high level expert group Economic and Societal Impact of Research and Innovation (ESIR). She is the former Chief Digital Technology and Innovation Officer for the City of Barcelona in Spain.
Francesca Bria has a PhD in Innovation and Entrepreneurship from Imperial College, London and MSc on Digital Economy from University of London, Birbeck. As Senior Programme Lead at Nesta, the UK Innovation Agency, she has led the EU D-CENT project, the biggest European Project on digital democracy platforms and digital currencies. She also led the DSI4EU project, advising the EU on digital social innovation policies and purpose-driven innovation. She has been teaching in several universities in the UK and Italy and she has advised Governments, public and private organizations on technology and innovation policy and its socio-economic and environmental impact.
Francesca Bria has been listed in the Top 50 Women in Tech by the Forbes Magazine and in the World's top 20 most influential people in digital government by Apolitical. She has also been featured in the Italian Magazine Repubblica "D", amongst the 100 Women Changing the World. In 2020 she has been nominated “Culture Person of the year” by Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.
Francesca Bria has been awarded the honor of Commander of Merit of the Italian Republic.