ESMA Board

The ESMA Board supports the development of ESMA as a globally recognised professional organisation for European Social Marketing. The Board members and their personal statements are listed below in alphabetical order.

Rita Brophy


I am a social marketing professional specialising in strategic research, development and training to inform, design and deliver user-centred behavioural change programmes.

A passionate advocate of the benefits of embedding social marketing in social policy, I travel into the heart of communities in order to fully engage with people from various target audiences to identify their situations, hopes and aspirations and work with them to create public-centred services that meet their needs.

Working at a senior-level, advising public health organisations, charities and global manufacturers specialising in the health-care and well-being sectors, it is my intention to communicate the work of ESMA with the aim of inspiring appropriate partnerships to deliver programmes for social good.

I have been an enthusiastic supporter of ESMA since its inception, having attended its launch in London in 2011 and being an active member of the working group, chaired by Jeff French, that developed the ESMA, iSMA and AASM global consensus definition of social marketing in 2013. I am excited about ESMA’s future and I look forward to working together as a team to further strengthen ESMA’s position as a centre of excellence in social marketing within the European and global community.

Jeff French


I have been involved with ESMA from its founding and continue to believe that the ESMA is a key vehicle for promoting evidence and citizen informed social policy. I have chaired the ESMA conference committee that has delivered a number of highly successful conferences in Lisbon and Rotterdam and Espoo, our forth conference will take place in Antwerp in September 2018. I have also chaired the global definition of Social Marketing group that resulted in the publication of the first global consensus definition in 2013 and the consensus principles working group. The global principles of Social Marketing were endorsed by ESMA and all other associations and published in October 2017.

I am keen to contribute to the next phase of ESMA development. My vision for ESMA is that it will become recognised as one of the central global sources of expert advice and information about good practice in Social Marketing.

I believe that ESMA has a key role to play in ensuring that social marketing is seen as an integral part of all social policy development programme delivery. Finally I believe that a European perspective on Social Marketing needs to be articulated and contributed to the global development of the field and that ESMA is the organisation that can deliver this.

Julie Huibregtsen

julie-boardWhy promote social marketing? In my experience social marketing is a practical method, that fits within the daily work of professionals. It requires skills that most people already have, like true curiosity, which only needs to be recognised and put to use as a professional competence and supported by social marketing tools.

My main drive for the last years? To enlighten the daily work and challenges of professionals. Social marketing can do this, by helping you collect the insights you need to be truly effective.

My value for ESMA? My experience in providing training in, promoting and implementing social marketing and translating social marketing into practice, always aware of the implementation challenges.

I’m fond of metaphors and one I often use is the elephant trail: the small, often bumpy and sandy paths people walk or bicycle, perceiving it’s a faster lane then the official sidewalk. As a metaphor elephant trails represent the heart of social marketing. They are about being curious about how people ‘walk’ instinctively and why. Just like elephants always choose the straightest path into the wilderness, people do so in their daily life. This helps you realise that you need to know exactly why people behave the way they do, before (re)designing your program. So you design a path they will walk voluntarily…

Julie runs the Dutch company Huibregtsen Sociale Marketing. Julie was one of the first to provide social marketing training and support to professionals in the Netherlands since 2008. She was one of the organisers of the European Social Marketing Conference in the Netherlands, Finland and Antwerp.

Nadina Luca

N-Luca-boardI am a social marketing specialist, researcher and teacher. I am currently a Lecturer at the University of York where I teach ethical marketing and sustainability and work on food and well-being and public health projects.

As a passionate social marketer with a long-standing interest in social change I have always been committed to supporting the advancement of social marketing. I welcomed the ESMA project as a great opportunity for our field and engaged with its activities since the very early stages of the project contributing to the creation of the Association, including branding and website. Having held the ESMA administrator position since 2014 allowed me to contribute to developing the Association, including setting up the membership, managing the ESMA communications and working closely with the Board on creating new services for our members. My experience with ESMA’s developmental stages has given me rich insight on the needs of the Association and a clear view of the future pathways.

My ten years of experience as a social marketing researcher in health and well-being with a focus on community programmes enabled me to develop knowledge of the key issues in the field, build networks with academics and practitioners in the UK and Internationally and contribute to the efforts to advance social marketing theory and practice. I have helped to organise the European Social Marketing Conferences and look forward to supporting future events.

I am enthusiastic to continue my work to further develop the ESMA and increase awareness of its valuable contribution to the field of social marketing. One of my aims is to work with the Board to expand the ESMA membership across Europe and I would like to focus especially on setting up a knowledge sharing platform and strengthening the skills and application of social marketing in European countries with an emerging interest in social marketing.

David James McElroy

photo cropped David McElroyI am a social marketer and an academic ecologist. I currently work for a pro-environmental behaviour change charity called Global Action Plan as their Research Manager. At Global Action Plan we engage big schools, companies and communities on pressing sustainability issues. Given my skill set, it is my goal as a member of the ESMA board to:

  • Help facilitate trilateral interactions between academics, practitioners and private enterprise;
  • Strengthen our organisation’s sustainability credentials;
  • and see more scientists consider the behavioural and social impacts of their research, to ask: what do I want people to be doing differently, and what would that mean for them?

L. Suzanne Suggs

l-suzanne-suggsI am invested in the growth of social marketing globally and in Europe. I am one of the co-founders of ESMA and served as an interim Board Member during the initial years. I am dedicated to continue to grow ESMA, helping us to become the European go-to place for social change know-how, networking, evidence and skill development.

I am a researcher, teacher and practitioner of social marketing and am dedicated to developing better dialogue between researches, practitioners and policy makers to facilitate sustainable social change. One of my aims is to continue to promote the organisation within Europe and abroad. I work with the knowledge sharing work group to support the exchange and development of accessible quality research and practice. I also support training in social marketing in communities, regions and universities. Having helped organise the first two ESMA conferences, I look forward to the third and to celebrating the successes we have achieved so far as an organisation and network.

Disclosure of roles and affiliations with other organisations (boards)

  • WHO Regional Health Network: Steering Committee
  • Geneva Health Forum: Steering Committee
  • Journal of Health Communication: Editorial Review Board

Diogo Verissimo

Diogo-board-photoI am a behaviour change specialist with 15 years of experience in the fields of social marketing and community-based natural resource management. My focus has been the design and evaluation of interventions to change environmentally relevant human behaviours, in particular those focused on biodiversity conservation. My research has been published in more than 60 peer-reviewed publications and book chapters.

In 2016, I was recognised by the IUCN Commission of Education & Communication with their Young Professional Award and in 2017 by the Society for Conservation Biology, with their Early Career Conservationist Award.

I am currently an Oxford Martin Fellow at the University of Oxford, where I work on interventions to reduce demand for illegally traded wildlife products, such as ivory, shark fin or rhino horn. I was previously a David H. Smith Conservation Research Fellow at Johns Hopkins University, where I worked on the impact evaluation of different behaviour change interventions focused on environmental conservation.

I have been an ESMA member since its foundation, and hope to help broaden the scope of its work towards environmental conservation as well as strengthen the research component of our field by improving the links between academic institutions and practitioners on the ground.

You can learn more about my work at


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