Andrea Carafa is an academic, entrepreneur, and angel investor based in Silicon Valley and interested in tech for environmental, human, and societal health. He currently serves as Director of the Blackstone Launchpad powered by Techstars as well as QB3 Entrepreneur in Residence and Rachel Carson Lecturer at the University of California, Santa Cruz. He has been named a member of the Review Committee for the National Science Foundation "America's Seed Fund" and a member of the Fast Company Impact Council — a group of entrepreneurs, academics, investors, civil society leaders, and top executives of companies such as Google, Rivian, Universal, Pfizer, NASDAQ, and Apple.
He has also been named a World Economic Forum Global Shaper, MIT Technology Review Innovators Under 35 Ambassador and Judge, Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce, National Science Foundation Innovation Corps Instructor, Member of the Partnership on AI, and Delegate to the UN Science, Technology & Innovation Forum for the Sustainable Development Goals.
Previously, Andrea served as Founding Emergence Fellow at Stanford, founded the food biotech startup Vita and the consumer tech startup ArtsUp, and conducted research and lectured about entrepreneurship, human-centered design, and technology innovation at Stanford and the University of Milan Bicocca. As a Fellow and Resident Entrepreneur at Stanford, he created and chaired the Impact Entrepreneurship Initiative at President Obama's Global Entrepreneurship Summit. He helped launch Emergence, a new Stanford initiative fostering entrepreneurship for planet and societal health. While at Stanford, he also co-developed an EU Knowledge Alliance for novel programs aimed at spurring more innovation and venture creation in European universities.
Prior to that, Andrea was an EU Marie Curie Fellow in emerging technology addressing sustainability and health problems at the European Commission's Joint Research Centre and at Grenoble School of Management. He was also a European Science Foundation Visiting Fellow at Bocconi University, and a HEPTech Visiting Researcher at GSI and CERN. He inspired as well as helped CERN to launch Collaboration Spotting, a data analytics platform that facilitates the technology transfer from science labs and companies to society, which CERN features among its success stories.
Previously, Andrea served as the AEGEE Representative of European students at the United Nations, where he created a multi-stakeholder initiative within the UN Rio+20 process and advocated for the creation of the Sustainable Development Goals and the Secretary-General's first ever Envoy on Youth role. He was also the Founder and Executive Director of the sustainability design venture Green Young Economy and helped shape Future Earth, a global sustainability research and innovation initiative announced at the UN Rio+20 Summit, and currently funded by the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, NASA, NSF, the European Space Agency, and universities, academies, foundations, and governments around the world.
Born and raised in Southern Italy, Andrea earned a Bachelor's Degree in Economics & Business Administration from LUISS University in Rome, a Master's Degree in EU Business & Law from Aarhus University in Denmark, and a Master's Degree in Management from ESADE Business School in Barcelona, thanks to a number of scholarships funded by the EU, ESADE, Apulia, and the Italian Ministry of Labor. He also received certificates and executive education from the University of Oxford (Climate Emergency Program), Stanford (Silicon Valley Innovation & Entrepreneurship), and the Kauffman Fellows & Techstars (Venture Deals), among others, as a lifelong learner.
In his free time, Andrea loves going on road trips and hikes with family and friends, playing volley, writing songs and jamming with other musicians, as well as bringing people together through food, music, and art.