Maria Vilanidou

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Maria Vilanidou
Maria Vilanidou
With FWC July 2014 - present
Title Project Leader and Consultant
Key Project(s) Digital Cyprus
Key Interests Social Innovation, Gender Equality, Photography, Travelling, Meditation
Degree(s) MA Communication Arts
Filed(s) of study Marketing Communications, Management, Strategic Planning
University(ies) New York Institute of Technology
Specialization(s) Business and Communications Strategy. Project Management.

Mrs. Maria Vilanidou joined Future Worlds Center, as an Independent Professional, in 2014 to lead one of the organization's most ambitious projects: Digital Cyprus. Maria was invited to lead this effort because of her ability to inspire and empower teams for achieving goals and beyond as well as to manage diverse groups of people achieving results through creativity and innovation.

Short Bio

Maria Vilanidou (MA Communications, NYIT) is an Independent Professional with 20 years of experience, mostly within the Publicis network, in creating powerful strategies and leading brands and communications teams. Her business experience stems from the Account Management of National and International Brands and it expands in the spectrum of Business and Strategic Planning, Communication, Advertising, Public Relations, Event Management, Digital Marketing, Consultancy and New Business Development. She has also managed and supervised Governmental and European co-funded projects as well as International Projects under most of the Ministries in Cyprus. She has also been trained in Corporate Social Responsibility by Global Education Services and the University of Seattle. She has served as the Client Service Director of Marketway/Publicis and has launched the operations of MarketwayKenya and lead the local team for creating and implementing the communications strategy for launching Nairobi's biggest mall, Garden City. She has also been a Guest Lecturer at the Mediterranean Institute of Management for more than a decade, facilitating numerous workshops on how to develop an effective Marketing Communications Plan.

She is currently an associate of Future Worlds Centre for leading Digital Cyprus as well as providing strategic and communications consultancy to the organisation. She is working independently in collaborating with organizations for creating powerful strategies and providing specialized communication services. Furthermore, she facilitates workshops in Business and Marketing Communication’s relevant fields, including Change Management, Communication and Strategic Thinking. She is a founding member of the European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC) in Cyprus and the Social Media Strategist for EMCC International. She loves nature and especially the sea. She practices meditation, enjoys hiking, photographing everything that captures her heart, reading books and traveling around the world.

Professional Experience

Managing Director, Digital Cyprus (under Future Worlds Center), 2014 - present Leading the team for Digital Cyprus, an electronic encyclopedia using Wikipedia’s open source platform. Providing consultancy Services towards Future Worlds Center on matters of Strategy and Communication.

Marketing Communications Strategist, 2014 - present Working independently in collaborating with organizations for creating powerful strategies as well as leading brands, projects and communication teams. And providing specialized communication services. Facilitating workshops in Business and Marketing Communication’s relevant fields, including Change Management, Communication and Strategic Thinking.

Managing Director, MarketwayKenya, Nairobi, Kenya, 2015 Selecting and leading the company’s local team for launching Nairobi’s biggest mall and running operations for the company whose scope was to provide Marketing Communication services. Creating and implementing the Marketing Strategy for launching Garden City mall

Social Media Strategist, European Mentoring & Coaching Council, 2013 - present Creating the Social Media Strategy and Providing Consultancy and Support

Client Service Director, Marketway/Publicis, 2007-2013 Management of the Client Service Department which was comprised of two sections: Account Management & New Business Development; Strategic Planning, Leadership and Supervision of teams for the implementation of Communication Campaigns. Strategic Planning for attracting new business as well as creating new services for the company and for its existing clients.

Assistant Client Service Director, Marketway/Publicis, 2001-2007 Strategic Planning, Direction and Supervision of teams for the implementation of Communication Campaigns. Responsible for the monitoring and supervision of the Client Service team’s effectiveness as well as developing training programs based each member’s needs and monitoring improvement.

Account Director, Marketway/Publicis, 1999-2001 Strategic Planning, Direction and Supervision of teams for the implementation of Communication Campaigns and providing consultancy services.

Guest Lecturer, Mediterranean Institute of Management, 1996-2008 Speaker on subjects of Integrated Marketing Communications at the Postgraduate Program «Business Management» and under the Government’s Plan for developing technical and other assistance from Cyprus to other countries. Organisation and Coordination of Workshops aiming in helping the teams to develop Integrated Marketing Communications Plans.

Account Executive, DeLeMa/TBWA Cyprus, 1996-1999 Coordination and Implementation of Communications campaigns.


New York Institute of Technology (NYIT), New York MA Communication Arts (1994)

New York Institute of Technology (NYIT), New York BSc Advertising (1993)

Additional Training

TedxNicosia, Cyprus (2014) Perspectives.

TedxUNPLAZA, New York (2013) Brave. United in Action.

TedxSVA, New York Design for Social Innovation (2013)

TedxNicosia, Cyprus Regenerate, Rethink, React (2013)

TedxNicosia, Cyprus Dream. Risk. Care. Live (2011)

Cyprus Chamber of Commerce Managing Employee Engagement (2010)

University of Seattle & GES Global Education, USA Corporate Social Responsibility (2008)

World Bank Managing Effective Investment Promotion Campaigns (2008)

Prothesis Business Consultants Athens Jay Conrad Levinson on ‘Mastering Guerilla Marketing’ (2006)

Prothesis Business Consultants Athens Jack Trout on Strategy ‘Differentiate or Die’ (2006)

Landes Productions, USA Beyond the Brainstorm; valuing your creativity (2002)

Demstar Training Advertising for Advertising Executives (2002)

Irish Management Institute Be a Master Presenter (2002)

Maui Photography Workshop, Hawaii Photographing Nature and the Human Body with Karen Rosenthal (2001)

Harvard University Extension School New Approaches for Success through Strategic Planning & Total Quality Management (2000)

Harvard University Extension School New Approaches to Successful Leadership & Management (2000)

Canon Photography Masters Certificate of Achievement (1997)

Advertising Women of New York Advertising Workshops (1993 and 1994)

Project Management

Team Leader for acquiring and managing the following governmental (partially EU funded) projects:

Communications Strategy Consultancy Services and Crisis Management for Cyprus Investment Promotion Agency – CIPA (2008-2010)

Market Research and Consultancy Study for the development of tourist markets (2009-2010). Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism – Cyprus Tourism Organization

The Programme for International Assessment of Adult Competencies PIAAC – Pilot and Main Study (2010 & 2011-2012). Cyprus Ministry of Education and Culture - Centre for Educational Research and Evaluation

Publicity for the training program for the development of Administrative & Leadership Skills in the Local Authorities Sector (2010 – 2013). Ministry of Finance – Cyprus Academy of Public Administration

Publicity for the training program for the Strategic, Management and Leadership Development of the Cyprus Public Service (2010 – 2013). Ministry of Finance – Cyprus Academy of Public Administration

Communications Strategy, Consultancy and Publicity for the Development of Productivity Culture (2008 – 2010). Ministry of Labour and Social Insurance – Cyprus Productivity Centre

Communications Strategy Development for the integrated domestic solid waste management plant for Larnaca & Famagusta districts (2008-2010). Ministry of Interior.

Promotion of Renewable Energy Sources and Energy Conservation Programs (2009). Cyprus Institute of Energy.

Publicity for the introduction of the e-procurement system - implementing electronic procedures for conducting public procurement competitions in Cyprus (2009). Ministry of Finance (General Treasury).

Publicity for the modernization of the Public Employment Services (2006 – 2008). Ministry of Labour & Social Insurance.