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Project Management Best Practices Conference 2022

Conference ∙ Online Event


Our Project Management Conference was completed with great success on December 19th - Online live!

Get actionable insights on new trends, emerging strategies and best practices to shift your projects to the next level.

Network with thought leaders and build your professional network. Be prepared to be inspired and educated on the following key themes:

  • Artificial Intelligence and its impact on Project Management
  • Project Success stories with lessons learned for project management professionals
  • Methodologies – a practical view
  • Agile Project Management
  • Emerging work models and how they affect project management teams
  • Portfolio Management
  • Resource Management

This event grants 6 PDUs.

9.15-9.30 - Welcome - Conference Chairman: George Merguerian, PMP, PfMP, Open PM² Advanced, Senior Partner & Head of EMEA Operations, Global Business Management Consultants

9.30-10.00 - Artificial Intelligence in Project Management: Impact and Improvements - Dr. Noushin Mokhtari, Global Business Services, Business Solutions & Services, Data Process Consulting, Siemens AG

10.00-10.30 - Learnings and challenges from setting up a Digital PMO - Sam Pecqueur, Head of Central Project Management Office & Digital Transformation Director, DEME Group

10.30-11.00 - Design Thinking – driving Inspiration, Ideation and Innovation  Dr. Sherman Ong, Director & Principal Consultant, Asia Operations, Global Business Management Consultants

11.00-11.30 Digital Transformation for an Integrated Lean Project Delivery Dr. David Kim Huat Chua, Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, College of Design and Engineering, National University of Singapore

11.30-12.00 - Break

12.00-12.30 - The art curator as project manager: The exhibition "Beholding Liberty!" at the Hellenic ParliamentDr Thodoris Koutsogiannis, Chief Curator of the Hellenic Parliament Art Collection

12.30-13.00 - Use of ΑΙ in Project Management- Impact analysis and outlook - Nikolaos Tsekouras, CIA, Audit Supervisor, Credit Suisse

13.00-14.00 Break

14.00-14.30 - Transitioning from allusive effectiveness to realistic outcomes. The impact on biases on project and risk management Dr. Ilias Katsagounos, PM², PMP, RMP, M_o_R, IT Portfolio Consultant at DG GROW (European Commission)

14.30-15.00 - Automation in Project Management​Prof. Ayman Hamdy Nassar, Associate Professor of Construction Management, German University in Cairo. President, Association of Engineering, Project, and Production Management (EPPM)

15.00-15.30 -  Portfolio Management​ Nicos Kourounakis, MAsc, MBA, PM², IPMA-D, PMP, PM² Alliance Founding Member and CEOSenior Consultant, Methodologies at European Commission

15.30-15.45 Break

15.45-16.15 - Applying AI to Agile processes - Konstantina Siettou, Project Manager, Trasys - Sword Group

16.15-16.45 - Emotional Intelligence Ioannis Petropoulos, Communication and Personal Development Instructor

Dr. David Kim Huat Chua, Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, College of Design and Engineering, National University of Singapore

Dr David Chua serves as Deputy Head (Admin) and Director, Built Environment 4.0 in the Department. He obtained his PhD degree in 1989 from University of California, Berkeley, USA. He is a registered professional engineer in Singapore. His research interests in recent years have been in lean construction, BIM, and digital construction. Presently, he serves in the editorial board of Auomation in Construction and other international journals.

Topic: Digital Transformation for an Integrated Lean Project Delivery

Lean construction has been thought to be the panacea for poor productivity ailment in the construction industry. But difficulties remain because of implementation on site. This presentation highlights a viable integrated digital platform for lean project delivery. It has been implemented in over 80 projects with consistent positive benefits. The presentation will also cover its implementation in a Design for Manufacturing and Assembly (DfMA) project setting.

Dr. Ilias Katsagounos PM², PMP, RMP, M_o_R, Senior IT Portfolio Consultant at DG GROW (European Commission)

Ilias is a Brussels based instructor and consultant with more than 15 years of experience in the fields of project, programme and portfolio management, currently working as a Senior IT Portfolio consultant at the European Commission’s Directorate General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs (DG GROW). He holds a Masters’ Degree in Engineering - Economic Systems (NTUA) and a B.A. in Military, Diplomatic and Law studies (SSE). Additionally, he is a certified Project (PMP®) & Risk Management Professional (RMP®, M_o_R) as well as a PM2 certified trainer. Ilias holds a Ph.D. in the fields of Risk Management and Decision Making. His research was focused in providing viable solutions to the corporate world, by enhancing the decision-making process through the provision of more accurate probabilistic forecasts, while taking under consideration the pragmatic scarcity of resources and available information.

Topic: Transitioning from allusive effectiveness to realistic outcomes. The impact on biases on project and risk management.

Since good decision-making is critical for good leadership and guidance, project managers need to know how heuristics (mental disposition) and biases (personal inclinations) influence their decisions. Prof Bent Flyvbjerg argues ‘’there are ten most important behavioral biases in project planning and management that are likely to trip up project planners and managers. These biases negatively impact project outcomes and if the biases are not identified and dealt with up front it is inevitable that history will repeat itself’’. During the presentation, we will try to shed light on the topic, and provide you with some advice for early identification, along with some best practices that will allow you to address both heuristics and biases.

Nicos Kourounakis, MAsc, MBA, PM², IPMA-D, PMP, PM² Alliance Founding Member and CEO, Senior Consultant, Methodologies at European Commission

Nicos is a Senior Management Consultant and Trainer. Over the past 20 years, Nicos has been leading consulting projects with major EU Institutions and private organizations working both with large organizations and with smaller ventures and start-ups. Nicos is co-author of PM² Methodology (2012, 2016, 2018), the Agile PM² Guide (2014), the PfM² Portfolio Management Guide (2019). He is a founding member of the PM² Alliance. He holds an MBA from McGill University, Montreal, Canada, an M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Victoria, Canada, and a B.Sc. in Physics from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece.

Topic: Portfolio Management

Dr Thodoris Koutsogiannis, Chief Curator of the Hellenic Parliament Art Collection

Thodoris Koutsogiannis has studied archaeology and art history at the University of Athens (bachelor 1996, master 2000, PhD 2008). Additionally, he attended seminars and conducted research, on scholarships, in various universities and institutes abroad (La Sapienza, Rome 1998 & 2000• Warburg Institute, London 2001-02• Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa 2003• Istituto di Studi Umanistici, Florence 2005-08• Center for Hellenic Studies, Princeton University 2011). Since 2009 he is working as Chief Curator of the Hellenic Parliament Art Collection, Athens. He has taught modern art history as visiting professor in Greece, he has presented many papers in international conferences and essays in collective volumes (please visit:, and he has curated various exhibitions in Greece (the last one: Beholding Liberty, 2021: He is working on modern European art from early Renaissance to late Neoclassicism, especially concerning the artistic reception of Antiquity, the phenomenon of Classicism, and Greek aspects of the modern visual culture.

Topic: The art curator as project manager: The exhibition "Beholding Liberty!" at the Hellenic Parliament

For the celebrations of 200 years since the declaration of the Greek War for Independence (1821), the Hellenic Parliament organized, in 2021, the largest exhibition ever presented in its building, with original exhibits (367 artworks, objects, manuscripts, books), entitled “Beholding Liberty”. The introductory section (“Awakening of Hellenism”) is presented in the so-called Peristyle, outside the Plenary Hall, i.e. in a functional space, used by all the visitors of the Parliament as a corridor or atrium. On the other side, the main exhibition narrative (“Imprints of the Regeneration”) is presented in the so-called Hall of Trophies and Adjutants, actually the only room preserved from the original 19th-century neoclassical building (built in 1836-1843 as a royal palace for king Otto). In order to transform both the Peristyle and the Hall of Trophies and Adjutants into exhibition spaces, a series of works were planned with museum standards. Apart from the impressive in site exhibition, various digital tools have been prepared (site with virtual tour, plus digital bank), as well as full catalogues and short guides are printed (in Greek and English). As a result, for the first time the Hellenic Parliament presented such a complete exhibition, with high quality criteria, innovating at the same time the building of the parliament itself. The initial concept, the detailed content and the final design of the exhibition, the various works and their schedule, the selection of the external collaborators and the coordination of the many people and agencies that collaborated, demanded from the curator to have practically the role of the general manager of this project.

Dr. Noushin Mokhtari, Global Business Services, Business Solutions & Services, Data Process Consulting, Siemens AG

Dr. Noushin Mokhtari holds a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from Leibniz University Hannover, a master's degree in Aviation and Astronautic engineering from Technische Universität Braunschweig and a PhD in the field of machine learning and data science methods for automated condition monitoring of jet engine components from Technische Universität Berlin. Due to her experiences and interest in data driven topics, she joined Deutsche Bahn AG in 2020 to work in the field of digitalization of rolling stock maintenance (Predictive Maintenance). Not only the engineering sector with machine data, but also many other sectors with different types of data have to deal with digitalization issues. The marketing and sales sector attracted her greatest interest as there is a huge movement nowadays and many different challenges to overcome. Therefore, she joined Siemens AG in February 2022 as a Senior Consultant Data Engineering.

Topic: Artificial Intelligence in Project Management: Impact and Improvements

Artificial intelligence has long since outgrown advanced IT and technology applications. It continues to progress, even in more traditional areas such as project management. This work not only highlights the impact of AI on project management, but also provides some notable examples where AI could take over supplant tasks traditionally done by project managers.

Impacts and improvements range from cost reduction to prioritization to resource planning and forecasting. Concrete AI examples for project management improvements include AI-powered tools that will take over administrative tasks, AI systems to keep projects on schedule and budget and of course AI-based risk mitigation methods.

Prof. Ayman Hamdy Nassar, Associate Professor of Construction Management, German University in Cairo. President, Association of Engineering, Project, and Production Management (EPPM)

Associate Professor of Construction Management, German University in Cairo (GUC). Ayman Nassar is full Assistant professor at GUC University at Civil Engineering programme. He worked as Assistant professor from 2000. He earned his doctoral degree in 2000. He is member of ASCE and ESE. He has been supervisor for more than fifteen M.Sc. Degree and Ph.D. of Construction and project management. He was instructor for more than 20 international courses and workshops in several countries. President, Association of Engineering, Project, and Production Management (EPPM). Extensive professional and consulting service in Egypt and the Gulf area. Experienced professional trainer for large construction companies and training centers.

Topic: Automation in Project Management

Project management is crucial for any business development because projects can lead to the success or failure of a business. Nowadays, businesses through projects and project management are leading the world. Academics and research can yield exciting developments in the project management discipline, especially where there is a well-organized collaboration with businesses. The first topic to discuss in this presentation will be future research areas in project management, including the future vision of EPPM (Engineering Project, Production Management Association). The second one will be about automation, how and what can automation provide for project management efficiency. The second part of the presentation will also include topics such as artificially intelligent, machine learning, and smart contracts; and how these can make many project management tasks much easier. Finally, there will be real examples of how to use automations for better project management in a company.


Dr. Sherman Ong, Director & Principal Consultant, Asia Operations, Global Business Management Consultants

Dr Sherman Ong is currently Director and Principal Consultant at Global Business Management Consultants Asia. Dr Ong has an extensive business experience across four industry sectors, namely, High Technology Aerospace and Defense Manufacturing industry (ten years), Information Technology and Communications industry thirteen years), Public Healthcare industry (seven years) and Higher Institute of Learning Education industry (one year), over thirty-six years. He held senior management positions over a span of twenty-six years, impacting lives across these four industry sectors. He was also involved in three start-up businesses across the Asia Pacific region. Dr Ong’s top five signature talent themes are Competition, Belief, Activator, Includer, and Strategic. As a Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach, he continues to engage clients to coach them in personal talent growth and strengths development. Dr Ong is an enthusiastic communicator and loves teaching, training, coaching and mentoring. Dr Ong’s life mission statement is: Live Best; Leave Best! As a Certified Lean Healthcare Leader, Dr Ong engages clients in clinical process improvement, quality healthcare services and enterprise risk management. He is a regular speaker at conferences, symposiums, and industry forums, and as keynote speaker variously on Change Management, Supply Chain Integration, Business Process Re-engineering, Transformational Leadership, Lean Optimization, Project Management and Operations Optimization, One-to-One Marketing, and Strategic Business Management. Since 2010, Dr Ong is also an Academic Advisor for doctoral candidates at the University of Southern Queensland, Australia, and an external examiner for doctoral theses for Doctor of Professional Studies degree programme.

TopicDesign Thinking – driving Inspiration, Ideation and Innovation

Design Thinking – driving Inspiration, Ideation and Innovation. The genesis of Design Thinking dates back to pre-1960, lie in the development of psychological studies on creativity in the 1940s and the development of creativity techniques in the 1950s. This paves the way for the human-centric approaches in design and solutioning. The start of the 21st century brings a significant increase in interest in design thinking as the term becomes popularised in the business press. The design approach also becomes extended and adapted to tackle the design of services, marking the beginning of the service design movement. Stanford University's Design School begins to teach design thinking as a generalisable approach to technical and social innovation. Paul Rand defines Design Thinking as a way of life, a point of view. It involves the whole complex of visual communications: talent, creative ability, manual skill, and technical knowledge. Aesthetics and economics, technology and psychology are intrinsically related to the process. There are seven critical mindsets that we need to adopt and put to practice, driving inspiration, ideation and innovation. In this short presentation, we will use the Double-Diamond Model to discuss the Design Thinking process. The entrance to the Design Thinking process is Empathy. How do we know, understand and apply Empathy in this process? We conduct the Gallup CliftonStrengths assessment to individuals intending to adopt the Design Thinking process, so that they begin to understand who they are, their DNA, and their potential contribution throughout the Design Thinking process. The Design Thinking journey starts here.

Sam Pecqueur, Head of Central Project Management Office & Digital Transformation Director, DEME Group

After graduating as a civil engineer in 2008, Sam joined DEME group to construct ports across the world, e.g., in Qatar, UK, Australia and Singapore. In these large projects the value of good project management methodologies and project controls skills became apparent and second nature. In 2017 he achieved an MBA at IMD Switzerland and then moved to support Borealis, an Austrian Petrochemical company, to deliver their large capex growth portfolio of new plants with a better governance and supportive systems. Three years ago, he rejoined DEME Group to lead digital transformation and set up a new central project management office, which focuses both on the group digital transformation, and on improving the project management capability for all construction projects.

Topic: Learnings & Challenges from setting up a Digital PMO

Three years ago, DEME embarked on a digital transformation journey. To drive this journey forward we have started a new Project Management Office, which is responsible to implement new processes and digital capabilities such as enterprise architecture. In this presentation our challenges and lessons learned will be shared, as well as the value we achieved with this PMO setup and our next steps. As a sneak peak into our learnings, we believe that a good PMO needs to role model the desired way of working, which in transformation needs to be with a very collaborative mindset but also requires a large upskilling effort. Another important challenge is the need of a PMO to be seen as a strategic partner for the organization to ensure focus, instead of sitting on the sideline.

Konstantina Siettou, Project Manager, Trasys - Sword Group

Konstantina Siettou is an accomplished Project Manager with more than 10 years’ experience in the IT sector, the last two of which have been working in three major European projects with SWORD, Trasys Group, a global leader in technology transformation projects. Konstantina started her career from IT support working in Upstream, moved on to CGI as a Web Developer and a Lead Consultant in Space sector projects and then moved to Lighthouse as Project Manager, leading several international projects, also providing technical guidance and research. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Technology from the University of Peloponnese and a Master’s Applied Mathematics from the National Technical University.

Topic:  Applying AI to Agile Processes

Today, Agile methodologies are some of the most popular approaches to project management due to providing greater flexibility in deliverables and adaptability to change. One of the key characteristics of such methodologies is breaking up the project into several phases which results in earlier delivery times and ensures the product or the project deliverable meets customer's needs. Applying AI to the Agile processes can contribute in improving agility and reducing risks. In this presentation we will showcase some examples to analyze how this is achieved. We will explain how AI tools using sentiment analysis or historical data can ensure that project deliverables meet customer requirements. We will show how NLP tools can be used to facilitate User Stories, and how Sprints' effectiveness can be improved by using AI and automation to save time and effort. Using such tools, we can better organize and plan Sprints as well as predict future Sprints loads based on data collected and analyzed from previous ones.

Nikolaos Tsekouras, CIA, Audit Supervisor, Credit Suisse

Nikos Tsekouras started his professional career at National Bank of Greece in 2004 he worked in various positions in Branches and Management Units. In 2012 he joined the Internal Audit Department of the same organization as an Auditor and later as Senior Auditor and Audit Supervisor. He then moved to Credit Suisse Banking Organization in Zurich, Switzerland, in the Group Internal Audit Department, as an Audit Supervisor. He has extensive experience working in audit projects mainly in Greece, Switzerland, Turkey, Luxembourg, and USA. He studied International and European Economic Studies at the Athens University of Economics and Business and holds an Msc in Banking and Finance from the same University. In 2020 started his Master's degree in Information Technology and Telematics (Information Systems in Business Administration) at Harokopio University, which is currently in progress. He is also a Certified Internal Auditor (CIA).

Topic: Use of ΑΙ in Project Management- Impact analysis and outlook

George Merguerian, PMP, PfMP, Open PM² Advanced, Senior Partner & Head of EMEA Operations, Global Business Management Consultants

Conference chairman

George is an experienced expert and trainer with more than 30 years of experience in senior technical/engineering, line management, marketing, and management development positions in multinational organizations. He has worked in industries such as construction, engineering, engine manufacturing, oil services, executive development, information technology, and consulting. George is certified by PMI to offer PMP prep courses.








Hellenic American Union
Global Business Management Consultants

In cooperation with

This event is offered by Global Business Management Consultants, a leading international project management consultancy, operating more than 50 countries in Europe, Middle East and Americas.

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