Advancing Aviation: Expanding the value of sustainable flight

This year’s symposium will take place on the 2nd and 3rd of March 2021. In the past 100 years flight, the value of flight for society has been growing. Now that the world of aviation has suddenly come to a halt due to the COVID-19 crisis, this might be just the right time to look at the possibilities for change. Looking ahead, our sights are set on a future without the polluting aviation that exists today. Aviation has shown us how much is possible in our world when we have the very unique and valuable ability to fly, so let us take on the challenge of creating the green aviation of the future. 

With this symposium, it will be shown how much aviation has meant for the world, the value in modern day society and how this can continue in a sustainable way in the future. On the 2nd of March the day will consist of presentations, workshops and discussion panels. You will have some time to let everything sink in and on the 3rd of March the symposium will be concluded with an online network drink and innovation platform for you to ask all your questions. We all encourage you to join the discussion and think about the value of sustainable flight. 

Join the VSV Symposium 2020
Get your ticket for a workshop!

Tuesday 2nd of March


10:00-11:30 Workshops


12:45 - 14:45 The Value of Sustainable Flight:

  • Word of welcome - Jaime Aalders, VSV 'Leonardo da Vinci'
  • Opening of the symposium - Arjan Meijer, Chair of the Day
  • Speaker 1: Karel Bockstael
  • Speaker 2: Michael Gill
  • Discussion panel 1
    • Guillaume Burghouwt
    • Yteke de Jong
    • Udo Pesch
    • Karel Bockstael

14:45 - 15:05 Break

15:05 - 17:30 Advancing Aviation:

  • Introduction by Ron van Manen
  • Speaker 3: Glenn Llewellyn
  • Speaker 4: Paul Riemens
  • Discussion panel 2
    • Arjan Meijer
    • Liam Megill
    • Michel Peters
    • Patrique Zaman
  • Professor Stoewer Award for best Space Master Thesis
  • Conclusion of the symposium - Arjan Meijer, Chair of the Day
  • Closing of the symposium - Chiel van Baardwijk, Symposium Organisation Committee

Wednesday 3rd of March

 17:30 - 19:00 

Online innovation platform

Online network drink

Chair of the day


Arjan Meijer

Chair of the day for this year’s symposium is Arjan Meijer, President and CEO of Embraer Commercial Aviation.  Arjan Meijer graduated from the TU Delft with a Master of Science in Aeronautical Engineering. After this he has fulfilled  multiple management functions within companies like KLM Royal Dutch Airlines before starting his career at Embraer in April 2016.  

At Embraer, Meijer first was responsible for a team of the sales, marketing, and customer support professionals in diverse regions such as EuropeAfrica, and Central Asia. In 2017, his role broadened by becoming Chief Commercial Officer. This meant he had to oversee all regional marketing and sales teams around the globe. In 2020 Meijer got promoted to President and CEO of Embraer Commercial Aviation.  

With over 20 years of experience in the aviation industry on different disciplines such as sales, marketing but also engineering, Arjan Meijer clearly understands the value of sustainable flight.  


Karel Bockstael – Speaker

Karel Bockstael is a long-term employee of KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and is currently Vice President Sustainability at KLM. He studiet Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering at Delft University of Technology between 1981 and 1988. After his masters he started at KLM as a management trainee. Other jobs at KLM include Director Aircraft Engineering and VP Business Development. Since 2019 he is working on sustainability at KLM.

Michael Gill - Speaker

Michael Gill has an extensive background in law, having obtained law degrees at King’s College London, Sorbonne University in Paris and the University of Edinburgh. He worked as an aviation lawyer for airlines and their insurers before joining the International Air Transport Association (IATA) in 2007. In 2013 he became Director Aviation Environment at IATA, leading IATA’s activities with governments and focusing on international negotiations on climate change policy. Next to this he became Executive Director at the Air Transport Action Group (ATAG) in 2014. ATAG is the only global association representing all sectors of the air transport industry. Michael’s mission here is to promote aviation’s sustainable growth for the benefit of global society.

Ron van Manen - Speaker

Ron van Manen is the Head of Strategic Development at Clean Sky Joint undertaking. Van Manen started his career in aviation in 1989 at KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. He worked 5 years at KLM before joining British Airways. After this Ron Van Manen worked for companies like GKN Fokker, QinetiQ, Farnborough Aerospace Consortium. He started his career in Clean Sky Joint Undertaking in 2011. He fulfilled multiple positions such as Technology Evaluation Officer and Programme Manager.

Glenn Llewellyn - Speaker

Glenn Llewellyn is Vice President, Zero Emission Aircraft at Airbus. He is responsible for Airbus plans and activities to achieve our ambition to be the first major manufacturer to bring a zero-emission commercial aircraft to market.

Prior to this appointment, Glenn was responsible for the research & technology portfolio focused on reducing Airbus product climate impact. This portfolio included demonstrators such as Vahana and City Airbus e-VTOLs as well as the E-FAN X hybrid-electric demonstrator.

Before that, Glenn was the engineering and then program lead for several systems on the A350XWB, working as part of the overall aircraft design team on the aircraft concept, leading engineering trades, and ultimately leading the contracting and industrialisation of the different systems and equipment.

Paul Riemens - Speaker

Like our chair of the day, Paul Riemens has roots at Delft University of Technology. However it didn't start there. He started as air traffic controller at LVNL from 1984 to 1988. Then he obtained a Bachelor of Science at Technical College Delft and continued on to study at the TU Delft with a Master of Science in Computer Science. He went back to LVNL and after 12 years became CEO of LVNL. In the 8 years of being CEO there he was Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation (CANSO) for 5 years. Since 2016 he is CEO and Chairman of the Executive Board of RAI Amsterdam


Discussion panel members

Liam Megill

Liam Megill

Founder of AeroDelft Student team, TU Delft Master student


Udo Pesch

Udo Pesch

Associate professor at TU Delft Faculty of Technology, Policy and Management


Michel Peters

Michel Peters

General Director at Royal NLR


Arjan Meijer

Arjan Meijer

Chair of the day, President and CEO of Embraer Commercial Aviation


Guillaume Burghouwt

Guillaume Burghouwt

Strategist Royal Schiphol Group


Patrique Zaman

Patrique Zaman

Founder and CEO of AVY



Yteke de Jong

Yteke de Jong

Reporter at De Telegraaf


Karel Bockstael

Karel Bockstael

Vice President of Sustainability at KLM



To70 Aviation consultants - 10:00-11:30

“Growth versus Environment versus Society: Engineering data for societal choices.”

Have you ever had ideas on how to reduce aviation nuisance? Did you ever stumble on a way to fly more with less impact? Good, society needs ideas like yours.

In this workshop, you’ll explore current data of Schiphol airport on operations, noise and emissions in order to come up with solutions that allow the airport to grow and reduce impact on the surrounding communities, nature, and society. In small teams, you’ll work with our specialist aviation consultants to study the problem, brainstorm ideas, do the analysis and present your results.

This workshop will give you a good insight in the current question of balancing the need for aviation with the other needs of society. At the same time, you will get a quick peek into the work of an aerospace engineer as an aviation consultant with To70.

Innovation platform


Revolutionary aircraft design for a highly efficient long-distance airplane.


Developer of autonomous piloting systems for aircraft.


TU Delft student team developing a hydrogen powered airplane.

MAV lab

Micro Air Vehicle Laboratory (MAVLab) at the faculty of Aerospace engineering at Delft University of Technology.

Advancing Aviation: Expanding the Value of Sustainable Flight

During a crisis, humanity always shows the resilience to change in the face of adversity. Now that the world of aviation has suddenly come to a halt due to the CoVID-19 crisis, this might be just the right time to look at the possibilities for change. Looking ahead, our sights are set on a future without the polluting aviation that exists today. Aviation has shown us how much is possible in our world when we have the very unique and valuable ability to fly, so let us take on the challenge of creating the green aviation of the future.

With our Symposium, we want to show you how much aviation has meant for the world, the value it has in the modern day society, and how this can continue into the future. What is the value of flight? How can we help aviation advance into the future? And what will aviation mean to society in that future? These and many other questions will be answered during the VSV Symposium on the 2nd of March. People from all sorts of disciplines, ranging from visionaries to realists and sceptics, will shed their light on the different sides of the debate.

In the morning, students can attend workshops given by various companies that will challenge them and provide a fun learning experience. There will also be an innovation floor, where fascinating start-ups and student teams can present their ideas to show the many opportunities that are worth pursuing. In the afternoon, a program filled with presentations will enlighten attendees about the value of aviation and its future value in society, featuring professionals from different fields of expertise. Next to the presentations, multiple discussion panels consisting of speakers, other great minds, and students will open up a debate led by the Chair of the Day, in which also the attendees are encouraged to partake!

The value of aviation is in its opportunities to make the world a better place in every way imaginable. With our Symposium we want to motivate students to use these possibilities, dare them to look differently at the issues in our world, and show how aviation can be a solution. Because in this world it takes the greatest minds, and the most committed people, to advance aviation into the world of tomorrow.

Main partner of the symposium

NLR - Netherlands Aerospace center

Partner of the symposium

To70 - Aviation Consultants

Partner of the symposium

LVNL - Air traffic Control the Netherlands

Partner of the symposium

GKN Fokker