Dr Sean Kelly, Senior Project Manager & Interim Director General

Sean has led NIA's project activities since he joined in 2015.  Prior to joining NIA, Sean worked for 10 years at the University of Leeds where he managed collaborative research between the university and industry.  He has worked across diverse collaboration types within nano applications, including European Regional Development Funds (ERDF), a joint venture with the King Abdullah Institute for Nanotechnology, and at senior project management levels in collaborative Framework Programme projects from FP6 onwards.


Jean-Marc Willems, Chief Accountant

Jean-Marc is a qualified accountant, starting his professional career in 1987 within the insurance sector before becoming fully qualified and joining the European Commission as a Finance Assistant.  He has worked within a number of associations and has significant experience in managing finances and compliance within complex international projects.


Nikolina Latković, Communications and Project Officer

Nikolina holds a Master degree in International Relations and was involved in the organisation and management of different youth-oriented projects before joining NIA in 2018. As Communications and Project Officer, Nikolina manages communication activities and events for NIA . As well, she is involved in the management of various NIA's EU-funded projects.


Dr Blanca Suarez Merino, Director of Regulatory Affairs

Blanca has a DPhil in Human Molecular Genetics from the University of Oxford and followed that with positions at University College London, the Istituto Neurologico Carlo Besta in Milan and the Centre for Cooperative Research in Biosciences (Spain) on the molecular biology of cancer. She then joined Gaiker Technology Centre as head of the Biotechnology group, working on pre-clinical studies in pharma, cosmetics and medical devices and started to work on nanomaterials as well, including participating in several large-scale EU funded projects. Blanca was then Head of Technology at TEMAS AG (Switzerland) where she provided consultancy services on processes and products containing nanomaterials under different regulations (REACH, Occupational Health, Biocides, Food, Medical Devices and Cosmetics). She is a national expert under the Nanotechnologies Standardization Group through the Swiss Association for Standardisation (SNV), an expert of the Swiss National Platform on the safe handling of synthetic nanomaterials and has contributed to the development of the Precautionary Matrix for Nanomaterials, and the on-going adaptation of OECD Guideline 442D for nanomaterials. Blanca joined the NIA in October 2020 as Director of Regulatory Affairs to support members on all aspects of nanotechnology regulations and standards.


Dr James Baker, Project Developer

James has a PhD in Geochemistry (Univ. Amsterdam), and has worked with water treatment and environmental technologies, sensor development (UV, fast and thermal neutrons, boron doped carbon nano-film), CRM, low energy nano-silica production. Previous employment includes NSG, RGD, TNO and as private consultant. He has successfully developed and managed more than 40 European and Nationally funded research projects over the past 25 years, mostly in the EU, but also Russia, Japan, Ukraine, Tanzania, Armenia and other countries. Over the past 10 years he was jointly responsible for a family of major EU projects focussed on Manufactured NanoMaterials (MNM), OECD test guidelines, application of Safe by Design to MNM, and the governance of risks for nano materials.