Meet the team (in alphabetical order):
Aina Massanet currently studies towards a masters degree in Communication at the University of Barcelona. She is captivated by the ability of strategic place branding to convert cultural heritage into economic assets, to put limits to the overexposure of cities and regions, and to strengthen the sense of place of inhabitants.
Annica Jansson is a tourism marketing professional with over 20 years of experience working with destinations on both a national and regional/city level, including marketing strategy and destination branding. Annica has an MBA from the University of Wyoming, USA and is currently dividing her time between Copenhagen and Stockholm.
Digital Strategy Assistant
Bobbie Bailey holds a Master in Urban Planning from Newcastle University. He has a profound belief that through the use of place branding and cultural activities we can improve the perception of post-industrial towns and foster a strong sense of place identity and belonging. Bobbie currently divides his time between Barcelona and his home region of Teesside, UK.
Emmanuel Lemaignen is a 360° communications specialist, with a keen interest in place branding and territorial development. He has expertise in EU issues, especially regional affairs. As Head of Cabinet at a social enterprise, Emmanuel is convinced that place branding needs to involve citizens.
Founder & Editor
Florian Kaefer (PhD) founded The Place Brand Observer in 2014 following his doctoral studies in management communication at the University of Waikato, New Zealand. He is a context curator, matchmaker and information scout on a mission to demystify Place Branding and to connect academics with practitioners.
Maísa Prieto is an independent tourism marketing consultant based in Santiago, Chile, with a focus on ecotourism and sustainability. She works at Universidad Andrés Bello in Chile, teaching at master and undergraduate levels and in projects in Chile as part of an interdisciplinary team offering market research and destination branding.
Maja Jović (PhD) comes to the field of branding as an architectural engineer. She is interested in the way the built environment tells the story of a nation, and specialises in post-conflict and transitional cases. She teaches Architecture, Planning, and Tourism to undergraduate and postgraduate students, and currently focuses on research and consultancy work.
Marcela Villa holds a Master in Communication, Media and Creative Industries from Sciences Po, Paris. Originally from Colombia, she is a Consultant in UX and Service Design at the PwC Experience Center in Paris. Marcela is particularly interested in the links between place branding and the cultural and creative industries, and in place branding as a way to boost community development and sense of belonging.
Maria Lindmäe is a doctoral student in Human Geography at the Pompeu Fabra University of Barcelona. She is especially interested in the construction of place image, sonic geographies and placemaking practices that give sense to a place. Her focus is on place branding and the commodification of socio-cultural practices.
Michela Siuni is a masters student of Business Management & International Relations at the University of Aberdeen, UK. Experienced in international marketing and communication, she is particularly interested in nation branding as a means to pursue public and cultural diplomacy. Among the different regions, her main focus in on the Sinosphere.
Place Brand Academy
Natàlia Ferrer Roca (PhD) is a business and journalism graduate (Barcelona) and expert in communications policy (London and New Zealand). She is especially interested in the links between place branding and cultural industries, and currently teaches destination and city branding at master level and to undergraduate students.
Paulina Pantoja is a student of the Master “Strategy and Creative Brand Management” at the Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona. She has great interest in the use of city branding to promote the development of small cities as a way to promote and improve the welfare of citizens.
The Place Brand Observer is the living example of the old adage that together we can achieve more. Our Skills-Based Volunteering program offers you the opportunity to use your skills, strengthen your CV, connect with our international team, and to get to know The Observer inside out. Nurture your professional network, stand out from the crowd. Find out more here.
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