2014 Warsaw Regional Conference

  • When : 8 November 2014
  • Where : Warsaw School of Economics
  • Host : Civil Development Forum (FOR)
  • Conference : 9h – 19h
  • Social : 20h
  • Program : Available here!
  • Sponsor : Rising Tide Foundation
  • Registration cost : Free!
  • Language : English
  • Dress Code : Business casual
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Leszek Balcerowicz – economist, professor at the Warsaw School of Economics (Szkoła Główna Handlowa), MBA at the Saint John’s University in New York. Author of the economic reforms in Poland that were commenced after the fall of communism in 1989.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance in the first non-communist Polish government after the Second World War (1989-1991) and in the years 1997-2000. Chairman of the National Bank of Poland in the years 2000-2007. He was awarded the Doctor Honoris Causa title at 20 Polish and foreign universities.

Author of over 100 publications on economics published both in Poland and abroad. Awarded with many Polish and foreign prestigious prizes and honors – including the Order of the White Eagle, the highest possible Polish decoration, awarded to Leszek Balcerowicz for his input in the systemic transformation in Poland.

In 2007 he founded the Civil Development Forum Foundation (FOR) of which he is the Council Chairman.


Michael Tanner is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute and heads research into a variety of domestic policies with a particular emphasis on health care reform, social welfare policy, and Social Security.

Most recently, Tanner co-edited Replacing Obamacare: The Cato Institute on Health Care Reform, a compilation of the Cato Institute’s work over the past several years on health care reform and Obamacare, with contributions by over a dozen national experts, including Tanner himself. He is also the author of numerous books on public policy, including Leviathan on the Right: How Big-Government Conservatism Brought Down the Republican Revolution (2007, Healthy Competition: What’s Holding Back Health Care and How to Free It (Second Edition, 2007), The Poverty of Welfare: Helping Others in Civil Society (2003), and A New Deal for Social Security (1998).

Tanner’s writings have appeared in nearly every major American newspaper, including the New York TimesWashington PostLos Angeles TimesWall Street Journal, and USA Today. He writes a weekly column for National Review Online, and is a contributing columnist with the New York Post.

A prolific writer and frequent guest lecturer, Tanner appears regularly on network and cable news programs. Under Tanner’s direction, Cato launched the Project on Social Security Choice, which is widely considered the leading impetus for transforming the soon-to-be-bankrupt system into a private savings program.

Time Magazine calls Tanner, “one of the architects of the private accounts movement,” and Congressional Quarterly named him one of the nation’s five most influential experts on Social Security. The New York Times refers to him as “a lucid writer and skilled polemicist.” Before joining Cato in 1993, Tanner served as director of research of the Georgia Public Policy Foundation and as legislative director for the American Legislative Exchange Council.

Pawel Dobrowolski – assistant to Jeff Sachs during the first Balcerowicz government that implemented Poland’s transition from a planned to a market economy.  BA in economics from Harvard University.  During the last 20 years worked on some 50 M&A transactions of which around 20 have closed successfully at an aggregate value in excess of 1 billion EURO. Successfully lobbied for the introduction of public hearings into Poland’s parliamentary procedure and liberalization of Poland’s consumer bankruptcy law. Authored a number of articles on central banking, public finance and the media industry. His most recent report estimates Poland’s public debt at over 200% of GDP. Serves as a non executive board member for several companies and a volunteer fire fighter in the village where he lives.

Yulia Tychkivska (Kocherhan) is a Vice President for Management Education at Kyiv School of Economics, a world-class academic institution, consultancy and think tank. She is a civic activist in Ukraine and founder of Open University of Maidan. Mrs. Tychkivska also worked as a Head of advisory group for Ukrainian Minister of Economic Development and Trade.

Prior to joining Kyiv School of Economics, Yulia worked as a Business Development Manager of Inspira Strategy Institute and furniture production company Solidwood. Previously, she worked for 2 years as International Projects Coordinator at the Ukrainian Reform Support Foundation, a free market think tank. Over 2008-2009, Yulia performed duties of Vice-President of Corporate relations in AIESEC in Kyiv. Yuliya is the winner of the year-long internship program at the Ministry of Economy of Ukraine. In search for new knowledge she participated in different educational conferences and executive development seminars in Central and Eastern Europe. Yuliya graduated from Ukrainian National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy with a Master’s degree in economics. She participated in short term Think Tank MBA program, provided by The Atlas Economic Research Foundation and is a graduate of Atlas Leadership Academy and a member of The Global Shapers Community by WEF. Yuliya’s hobbies are photographing, volunteering and snowboarding. She loves to travel and enjoys reading.


Pieter Cleppe is the Head of the Brussels office of Open Europe, a think tank campaigning for free market reform of the European Union. A trained lawyer, he has been practicing law in Belgium and has worked as a cabinet advisor and speechwriter to the Belgian State Secretary for Administrative Reform and as an analyst at the Belgian Itinera Institute, which he helped establish. Pieter received his legal training at the Catholic University of Leuven, and also studied law and economics at the universities of Hamburg, Bologna and Vienna.


Marcin Nowacki holds the position of a Vice President at the Union of Entrepreneurs and Employers (ZPP) as well as he manages public affairs’ and lobbing activities of the organization. ZPP is an employers’ organization representing the interests of SMEs in Poland. Marcin is also a director for international relations at the Warsaw Enterprise Institute (WEI). Apart of his work for ZPP and WEI, Marcin is an entrepreneur active in various sectors. For last few years he was very active in healthcare services being focused on development of teleradiology business and new investments in the fields of radiology.

Before joining the ZPP and WEI, Marcin was working in the area of attracting and managing direct investments. As an investment development director at Lodz Special Economic Zone as well as an enterprise director in the Region of Lodz, he has been involved in the management of more than 40 investment projects.

Marcin Nowacki graduated with the master degree in international relations at the University of Lodz, Poland.

Jacek Spendel is a founder and president of the Freedom and Entrepreneurship Foundation and executive director of the Polish-American Leadership Academy, FEF’s flagship project. He is PhD candidate (Political Philosophy) at the Jagiellonian University in Cracow, Poland. Graduated in sociology at the University of Silesia and also studied at the Georgetown University in Washington, DC. Spendel also serves as the Local Coordinator for the European Students for Liberty. He is a former president of the KoLiber (Conservative – Libertarian) Youth Association. As Polish representative of the Language of Liberty Institute, he organized four times Liberty English Camp in Poland. Spendel gained experience in think-tank management from the Globalization Institute (where he worked between 2005 and 2012) and several internships (i.e. Eastman Kodak, Goldwater Institute) he completed over the years.

Vera Kichanova was born on May 24, 1991 in Moscow. She graduated from the Department of Journalism of the Moscow State University in 2013. She worked for “Novaya Gazeta” and was elected a member of the “Novaya Gazeta” Network Parliament, one of a number of virtual “proto-parliaments” in Russia. Later she worked for the “Voice of America” Russian Bureau.  In April 2010, Kichanova was one of the co-founders of the “Kangaroo” debate club. Politicians, right up to Duma deputies, regularly participated in “Kangaroo” discussions. From 2011 to 2012, she worked with the “Soldiers’ Mothers” human rights organization as a social media activist and coordinator of civil campaigns. In spring 2011, she launched a campaign entitled “Girls Against Draft”. She was a co-founder and the editor of the www.RealArmy.org website which was nominated for the The Bobs – Best of Online Activism award in 2011. In October 2011, she was the brain behind a students’ protest action in Moscow State University against President Dmitry Medvedev, who had announced a meeting with MSU students, which turned out to be shamelessly staged as real students had been removed from the university building and the premises filled with ‘shills’ when the President arrived. Several students, including Kichanova, were detained by the police. In March 2012, Vera Kichanova was elected as a municipal deputy in Moscow’s Yuzhnoye Tushino district. As a member of the municipal council she fights for more transparency on the part of the local authorities. She keeps a blog recounting her everyday activity as a local council deputy. From March 2012, she has been working for Slon.ru as a journalist. She also publishes a blog on the “Echo of Moscow” website and another one on Grani.ru. Vera won the 2013 Democracy Award.

Mateusz Machaj is an assistant professor in economics at the University of Wroclaw. In 2009 he defended his Ph.D. thesis on the criticism of the market socialism model. He was a five time summer fellow at the Mises Institute in Auburn. Additionally he was involved in the creation of the Polish Mises Institute branch.

His main economic interests are in various theoretical issues and their relation to economic reality. Recently he has been working on monetary theory and rationales for economic policies.

Marek Tatala is the Executive Board member and economist at the Civil Development Forum (FOR Foundation) in Warsaw, Poland. FOR is a pro-liberty and pro-market think tank founded in 2007 by prof. Leszek Balcerowicz. He received his BSc in economics and politics from the University of Bristol in England and MA in economics from the Warsaw School of Economics in Poland, where he is currently a PhD student. During his studies he served as the Vice-President of the Law and Economics Students’ Association (Warsaw) and President of the Polish Society (Bristol). In 2013 he completed the CPPR-ACE Winter School in Public Policy Research Methods in India and the Think Tank MBA program organized by the Atlas Economic Research Foundation. He is the graduate of the Atlas Leadership Academy.


Jan Skapa is an Executive Board Member at European Students For Liberty, currently serving as a Regional Director for Central Europe. He has an undergraduate degree in Management in IT and is currently a graduate student at two universities in Brno, CZ – studying Law at Masaryk University and Corporate Finance and Business at Brno University of Technology. He has been a freelance web developer and programmer since 2007. He is a permanent self-learner – being interested in IT, technology, economics, business, law and things that combine them (e.g. cryptocurrencies). He started Students for Liberty Czech Republic, a fast-growing, nation-wide student organization dedicated to connecting students while spreading the ideas of liberty. He loves to ride a bike, play tennis and floorball.



Máté Hajba is the vice president of the Free Market Foundation in Hungary. He is also the co-founder of the Hungarian libertarian youth group, Eötvös Club and he is a local coordinator for the European Students for Liberty. As a student of law he is interested in political radicalism as a phenomenon more specifically the rising anti-Semitism and racism in his region, on which he wrote several articles and spoke at conferences. Being a keen advocate of liberty he helped set up in his country an organization, called Civic Platform, which promotes democratic values and where he is currently vice president.

Anna Podyma is the Secretary of the KoLiber Association. She studies Polish culture and literature, and law at the University of Warsaw. She is interested in culture of Polish language, alpinism and theater. For many years she has been active in orgniasing cultural evnets and conferences. For two years she has been an active member of the KoLiber Association.

Questions? Contact Krzysztof Kowalski at kkowalski@studentsforliberty.org