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Andreas Constantinides

Andreas Constantinides, Senior Director

APCO APCO Worldwide

AConstantinides@apcoworldwide.com

My Job

I lead APCO Worldwide’s European technology/ICT practice. Based in Brussels, I directly manage the Brussels ICT/technology team that advises clients on positioning themselves in Brussels on all policy issues under the Digital Single Market (DSM) strategy, such as telecoms, e-privacy, cybersecurity, copyright, artificial intelligence, digital contracts, cloud computing, e-commerce and free flow of data. Current clients include Microsoft, Salesforce, VMware, Oculus, Palo Alto Networks, DTCC, Premier League and Match.com.

I also oversee and coordinate pan-European client work (with our offices in London, Paris, Berlin, Rome, Istanbul, and Tel Aviv) and collaborate closely with other APCO regional technology leads to discuss and understand evolving and emerging global technology policy trends in order to better advise and serve clients.

My Experience

Before joining APCO in 2017, my consultancy life started when I led the digital and telecoms team at Cabinet DN for two years. There I advised technology clients on a wide range of technology and ICT policy issues, including Microsoft, Dell, Intel, Facebook, CA Technologies, ICANN, Amadeus and Accenture.

My understanding of the EU Institutions and the inner workings of the EU decision-making process, stems from two stints with the Cyprus Permanent Representation, 2011-2013 and 2015-2017. I was the Attaché responsible for, among other things, telecoms, information society, cybersecurity, standardisation, internal market (including e-commerce), competition, industrial policy, and consumer protection. I helped in preparations for the Cypriot Presidency of the Council of the EU in the second half of 2012 and during the Presidency, I chaired the Telecoms, Space, and Postal Services working parties, as well as represented the Council in trilogue negotiations with the European Parliament.

I’ve also worked as a research scientist, a consultant in financial services and a technical advisor in patent law. During my Master and PhD studies at Columbia University, I was a teaching assistant (for a range of courses in the telecommunications, networking, probability and system performance evaluation fields) and a research assistant in the area of modelling and performance evaluation of communication systems and computer networks (funded by the US National Science Foundation). This educational and research background in engineering has been key in my various Brussels positions as it allows me to understand the wider technical issues and potential solutions around technology policy.

My Proudest Achievements

I’d pick the successful completion of the Cyprus Presidency of the Council of the EU. Despite the significant workload (I had five legislative files just in the area of telecoms and information society) and the political pressure (this was the first time that Cyprus had led the Council), I managed with the help of my team to achieve significant results: finalising a Council Decision, helping the Council finalise its position in two legislative files and start the trilogue processes, and achieving substantial progress in the remaining files. We also helped setup and organise the first meeting of the Council “Friends of Presidency on Cyber Issues” Working Party.

It isn’t that this was simply a lot of complex work, work that mattered to my country. More than this, it was an experience that enabled me to truly understand how the EU legislative process really works and to develop particular sensitivities in relation to what kind of messaging is appropriate. It has helped me become a better consultant and a better advisor to companies and other stakeholders that want to engage with to policy makers in a constructive way.

My Education

Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, Master of Philosophy, and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in Electrical Engineering from Columbia University in the City of New York.

My Languages

English and Greek.

My Interests outside work

Greek and Cypriot folklore dancing, good wine (not only French!) and good food (not only Greek – although you would find me at Philema restaurant in Ixelles quite often).

My Favourite Brussels anecdote

Before first arriving in Brussels (with Ryan Air at Charleroi airport on a Saturday night) in July 2011, I was warned by a couple of friends that taxis can be expensive. Having lived in New York for 11 years and having taken the taxi from and to the JFK airport numerous times, I thought it couldn’t be more expensive than that. How wrong I was! I ended up paying 220 Euros for my taxi trip to Brussels… As you can imagine, ever since Uber has arrived in town, I have never set foot in a taxi again. 

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