Our team

Nicolae Ratiu

Chairman of The Ratiu Family Charitable Foundation,
Managing Director of Regent House Properties Ltd

Educated in the United Kingdom at Marlborough College, and the United States, New York University, with a BSc in Marine Transportation and economics. As Chairman of The Ratiu Foundation, a British registered charity (est. 1979) with headquarters in Manchester Square, London, Nicolae chairs a board of 5 Ratiu family members who award annually up to 50 grants, worth c. GBP 200,000, in various fields (study, research, projects, travel etc.) both in the UK and Romania. A businessman and philanthropist, Nicolae is also trustee of charities in Romania and the UK: The Romanian Cultural Centre in London, Pro Patrimonio (The National Trust of Romania), ADEPT, The Relief Fund for Romania and the Ratiu Center for Democracy. In addition, through the Ratiu Foundation, Nicolae supports major cultural and educational programs in UK, Romania and US, among which are: The Ion Ratiu Chair of Romanian Studies at Georgetown University, Washington; The annual Ion Ratiu Democracy Award and Fellowship in Washington; The Ion Ratiu Award for Investigative Journalism; The Elisabeth Pilkington Ratiu Award for Advances in Mental Health.

Professor Christopher Coker

DIRECTOR OF LSE IDEAS

DIRECTOR OF THE RATIU FORUM

Christopher Coker is Professor of International Relations at LSE. His publications include The Rise of the Civilizational State (2019); Rebooting Clausewitz (2018); Men at War; what fiction tells us about conflict from The Iliad to Catch 22 (2014); Warrior Geeks: how 21st century technology is changing the way we fight and think about war (Oxford University Press 2013) and Barbarous Philosophers: reflections on the nature of war from Heraclitus to Heisenberg (Columbia University Press 2010). He has written for The Times, Times Literary Supplement, The Financial Times, The Spectator, the Independent and The Wall St Journal. He has been a Visiting Fellow at National Institute of Defence Studies (Tokyo); the Rajaratnam School National technological University (Singapore), the Institute for Security Studies (Chulalongkorn University Bangkok) and is a regular lecturer at staff colleges and academies around the world. He is at present Visiting Professor in War Studies at the Swedish National Defence College.

Pamela Roussos Ratiu

executive director, ratiu family charitable foundation

Pamela Ratiu is executive director to Romania of U.K. registered Ratiu Family Charitable Foundation and of the Ratiu Forum, a project run in partnership with the London School of Economics IDEAS Think Tank. Her expertise covers management, event concept, public relations and partnership development. Pamela has 30 years of experience in international management for both the public and private sector, actively supporting sustainable non-profit organizational development in Transylvania. Pamela joined Ratiu Democracy Centre in 2004 and has actively supported the partnership with Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in offering the Ion Ratiu Democracy Award to those fighting for democracy around the world. She has also initiated the Ratiu Dialogues on Democracy, a series of lectures that aim to strengthen discussions and visions on democracy, reuniting professionals with diverse backgrounds who share an interest in current challenges facing Balkan nations, with a particular emphasis on Romania. Pamela Ratiu is also coordinating the sustainability initiatives run by the Ratiu foundations in Romania to support the local community projects of the Ratiu Democracy Centre. Throughout the years she developed a sustainability ecosystem in Turda, seat of the Ratiu family. This includes social businesses in the field of hospitality and creates local employment opportunities. Contact: pratiu@ratiuforum.com

Leon Hartwell







SENIOR ADVISOR OF LSE IDEAs

Leon Hartwell is the Senior Advisor for the Central and South Eastern European Programme (CSEEP) at IDEAS, London School of Economics, and the 2022 Sotirov Fellow. He is also a Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA) in Washington D.C. His research interests include conflict resolution, genocide, transitional justice, diplomacy, and democracy. Previously, Hartwell was CEPA’s Acting Director of the Transatlantic Leadership Program and a Title VIII Fellow. From 2012 to 2013, he was the Senior Policy Advisor for Political and Development Cooperation at the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Zimbabwe, where his work included government and civil society engagement, political reporting, peace building projects, and supporting human rights defenders. Prior to that, he was a policy officer at the Netherlands Embassy in South Africa, where he conducted project management and analysed domestic and regional issues, including elections, peace processes, and democracy. In 2019, Hartwell completed a joint doctoral degree summa cum laude at Leipzig University (Germany) and Stellenbosch University (South Africa). His thesis analysed the use of mediation in the resolution of armed conflicts. He also holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Pretoria, where from 2005 to 2009, he lectured in the Political Sciences Department on international relations and politics. In addition, Hartwell has also lectured at the Stockholm School of Economics in Riga and presented guest lectures at universities and institutions in the U.S., Japan, Australia, Latvia, South Africa, and Zimbabwe. Hartwell has published extensively in professional journals and mainstream media ranging from the Negotiation Journal (Harvard-MIT-Tufts) to Balkan Insight. He speaks Afrikaans, English, Dutch, and Latvian, which he studied at the U.S. Foreign Service Institute.  








Emilia Knight




CENTRE MANAGER OF LSE IDEAs

A senior executive with a substantial record of strategic business development in international markets. Dr Knight holds a Ph.D. in linguistics and an Executive MBA. As Centre Manager of LSE IDEAS, she is in charge of the day-to-day running of the centre.  She oversees all financial arrangements concerning the centre and is in overall charge of information, events and external communication. She has previously worked as Marketing Manager, Publishing for Apple UK and later joined Adobe as their Marketing Director, Europe. She went on to establish the Business Software Alliance in Europe to combat software piracy and protect intellectual property.








Dana Stoica




Communication and Events Consultant

Dana Stoica has been working with the Rațiu foundations since 2013. She has a background in Journalism, Public Relations and Corporate Social Responsibility, and a passion for sustainability projects. More recently, she has coordinated communication activities for various CSR initiatives in the fields of vocational education, digital education, environment protection, corporate volunteering and employee engagement. 

Andreea Scridon

project manager

Andreea Iulia Scridon is a Romanian-American writer and translator. She studied Comparative Literature at King’s College London and Creative Writing at the University of Oxford. She is the author of four books of poetry, one of which won second place in a national manuscript contest in 2021. A translator of Romanian literature into English, Andreea Iulia Scridon has translated two books of poetry from Romanian to English, one of short stories, and is the editor of an anthology of contemporary Romanian poetry. Her efforts in cultural journalism were rewarded with the University of Oxford’s 2020 STAAR Editorial Prize, and she currently co-manages the English section of www.universul.net, while also acting as a founding member of Syntopic, a youth-run intellectual platform. She is currently pursuing a PhD in Comparative Literature, examining the exportability of Romanian literature in English translation.








Oana Bakos




Project Manager

Oana is a BA graduate in Social Work at Babeş-Bolyai University (Faculty of Sociology and Social Work, Cluj-Napoca). She was a volunteer at Raţiu Democracy Center between 2005 and 2007, then became a team member, coordinating a series of projects. 
In 2013, Oana represented CRD during the Building Grassroots Democracy in Minority Communities exchange program funded by the U.S. State Department, Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs.  She believes that, during the past 13 years of promoting democracy as a way of life, she grew up and formed nicely, through a learning and self-knowing process.

Maria Branea

Project Manager

Maria recently graduated with an MSc in Russian and East European Studies from the University of Oxford where she previously studied for a BA in History. Her master’s research has focused on the increasing rise of illiberalism in Eastern Europe, looking particularly at the use of propaganda and disinformation in the refashioning of national identity and international relations in the region. She has volunteering experience in event management for university publications and organisations. Maria is originally from Timisoara, Romania but grew up in London where she is currently based.

Nicoleta Bucur

Graphic & Web design

Nicoleta has an Art and Design background and a bachelor degree in Science Education, and has been working with the Ratiu foundations since 2007. Starting as a Program Manager, she focused afterwards on design, handling various projects – from concept development and branding, to graphic illustration and web design. She holds a postgraduate certificate in graphic and web design obtained in Milan, where she has also worked as an e-learning specialist and as a graphic designer for various fashion press offices.

Vladd Coker

THE IDEA'S MASCOT, BORN IN TIMISOARA ROMANIA

Vladd’s job description:
Meet and Greet (sometimes over enthusiastically).
Oversees activities in the courtyard.
Chases all cats.
Exercise visiting professors who spend far too much time at their computers.
His favorite book? The “Iliad”, of course.