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change makers

De Tijd & L’Echo proudly present ‘Changemakers’. The ultimate awards for Belgian companies that are shaping the future with sustainable and green solutions for 2030 and beyond.

Organisation by Mediafin

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In collaboration with

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Organisation by Mediafin:

In collaboration with:

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Why Changemakers Awards?

Humanity faces one of its greatest challenges ever: the transition to a more sustainable and environmentally responsible way of living. At De Tijd and L’Echo, we firmly believe that the business world will have a decisive impact in tackling this challenge.

‘With ‘Changemakers’, we want to put the spotlight on solution-driven entrepreneurship, the key factor to make the green transition a success.’

Peter De Groote Editor-in-chief De Tijd

Paul Gérard Editor-in-chief L’Echo

Today, there are already numerous established Belgian companies reinventing their production or service processes in a green manner, along with newcomers introducing radical solutions that disrupt the existing order. Every year, we select 30 companies through ‘Changemakers’ that we believe will be the leaders in this transition, both environmentally and economically.

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Three awards will be presented

Jury Award for Established Companies

Jury Award for Emerging Companies

Audience Award by Readers of ‘De Tijd’ and ‘L’Echo’


head of the jury

Bertrand Piccard

Founder and Chairman of the Solar Impulse Foundation

  • Passionate explorer, psychiatrist, and clean technology pioneer
  • Took a trip around the world in a plane fuelled by solar energy only (the Solar Impulse)
  • Founder of the Solar Impulse Foundation
  • Ambassador to UNEP
  • Special Advisor to Maros Sefcovic, EU Commission Executive Vice-President and Commissioner for the Green Deal
Bertrand Piccard profile picture

head of the jury

Steven Van Passel

Vice-rector Valorisation & Development, University of Antwerp

  • Professor of Environmental and Energy Economics
  • Expert in climate change (adaptation) economics
  • Member of the Flemish Panel on Climate and Energy
  • Member of the European Scientific Advisory Board of FACCE (Joint Programming Initiative on Agriculture, Food Security, and Climate Change)
  • Two-time recipient of the OECD fellowship (sustainable agriculture and food systems)
Steven Vanpassel profile picture

head of the jury

Ignace Schops

Director of Bond Beter Leefmilieu

  • Goldman Prize Winner
  • Ashoka Fellow
  • Climate Leadership Corps-Al Gore
Ignace Schops profile picture

head of the jury

Stéphanie Fellen

Founder & CEO of Smart2Circle

  • Entrepreneur, economist, TEDx speaker
  • Climate, Circular Economy, and CSR Expert
  • Creator of the Business Impact Podcast, which showcases inspiring personalities who are changing the world through their business
  • Known for concrete actions to make businesses more sustainable
Stephanie Fellen profile picture

head of the jury

Piet Colruyt

Founder of Impact House

  • Impact investor in climate solutions
  • In all stages: from seed capital, via social impact funds to listed equity
  • In different areas: from sustainable real estate, via planting trees, promoting plant-based food, renewable energy production, SaaS companies using AI to reduce carbon emission
  • Philanthropic support for system-changing initiatives
  • Lecturer in KUL’s Sustainable Leadership Programme & author of Allemaal Sociaal 3.0
Piet Colruyt profile picture

head of the jury

François Gemenne

Professor at HEC Paris and Director of the Hugo Observatory at the University of Liège

  • Lead author of the IPCC’s sixth assessment report
  • President of the Fondation pour la Nature et l’Homme’s Scientific Council
  • President of Climate Voices
  • Author of Atlas de l’Anthropocène (Presses de Sciences Po 2021) and L’Ecologie n’est pas un consensus (Fayard 2022)
François Gemenne profile picture

head of the jury

Julie Lietaer

CEO European Spinning Group and Founder & CEO of Ariadne Innovation

  • Born optimist
  • Entrepreneur and bridge builder with a circular impact
  • Sustainable textiles and fashion ambassador
  • Member of the boards of several federations and educational institutes/institutes of education
  • Received a Henry Van de Velde Ecodesign award for #hackyourjeans together with HNST
Julie Lietaer profile picture

head of the jury

Julien Pestiaux

Partner at Climact, Board Member of Ackermans & van Haaren and Union Wallonne des Entreprises

  • Entrepreneur facilitating sustainable business transformations at both the company and societal level
  • Supports the development of clear, actionable pathways towards a sustainable, low-carbon society
  • Leads a growing team driving the energy and climate transition at Climact, with a focus on the European deployment of open-source models
  • Driven by a sense of urgency to enhance the sustainability ambitions of companies
Julien Pestiaux profile picture

head of the jury

Isabel Albers

General editor-in-Chief at De Tijd & L’Echo

Isabel Albers profile picture


  1. General

    1. Mediafin NV is a public limited liability company organized and existing under the laws of Belgium, having its office at Havenlaan 86C, box 309, 1000 Brussels (Belgium) and registered with the Crossroads Bank for Enterprises under number 0404.800.301 (RLE Brussels, Dutch division) (hereinafter “Mediafin”).

    2. Mediafin shall organize every year a Changemakers award competition as part of its annual event “Changemakers” (hereinafter the “Competition”).

    3. Unless stated otherwise, these terms and conditions (hereinafter the “Rules”) apply to each Competition. Reasonable time before the Competition, Mediafin shall announce the special terms and conditions for the Competition, including the timeline for submitting entry and the composition of the jury (hereinafter the “Special Rules”). In case of a conflict between the Special Rules and the Rules, the Special Rules shall prevail.

    4. By registering and submitting a Competition entry, the Participant (as defined hereinafter) agrees to fully accept and be bound by the (Special) Rules.

  2. Participants

    1. The Competition is open to Belgian legal entities with office in Belgium (hereinafter a “Participant”).

    2. Mediafin shall verify the Participant’s eligibility before announcing the winner.

    3. There is a limit of one (1) Competition entry per Participant. Entries on behalf of another company or joint submissions are not allowed.

    4. If Mediafin (for whatever reason) believes that a Participant does not comply with the (Special) Rules, it may disqualify the Participant. The same applies for abuse, deception, fraud, or bad faith.

  3. Entry

    1. Participating to the Competition is free of charge.

    2. To participate to the Competition, the Participant must register through www.changemakers.be, answer an online questionnaire and submit a dossier. Mediafin may reject any incomplete dossier. The Participant must answer all questions in the online questionnaire.

    3. During the entry process, the Participant may upload any documents (including, but not limited to, videos, PDF documents and presentations) it deems necessary. Once submitted, the Competition entry is final, and no additional documents may be allowed.

    4. The Competition is exclusively in English. All answers and all documents in the dossier should be in English.

    5. A Competition entry must relate to an “environmentally sustainable” economic activity (as defined by the European Union) and in particular (1) climate change mitigation; (2) climate change adaptation; (3) sustainable use and protection of water and marine resources; (4) transition to a circular economy; (5) pollution prevention or control; and/or (6) protection and restoration of biodiversity and ecosystems.

    6. The timeline and closing date for the Participant’s entry are set out in the Special Rules. All entries received after the closing date are inadmissible.

    7. Mediafin shall not be responsible for Competition submissions that are lost, damaged or delayed, regardless of its cause, or for Competition submission that are not successfully completed due to an equipment failure, technical malfunction, systems, satellite, network, server, computer hardware or software failure of any kind.

    8. For more information or help with a Competition entry, the Participant can contact Mediafin by email (info@changemakers.be).

  4. Winner

    1. Mediafin shall categorize the Participants into two (2) groups based on the online questionnaire. The first (1st) category is the category of the “Established Companies” (i.e. legacy companies performing a transformative track towards a visible/measurable impact). The second (2nd) category is the category of the “Emerging Companies” (i.e. start- or scale-ups performing a highly promising track towards visible/measurable impact). Each Participant shall be eligible for one (1) award in the assigned category.

    2. The winner of the Competition shall be selected by an independent and objective expert jury. The jury members for the Competition shall be set out in the Special Rules. The jury shall vote by majority.

    3. The Participant’s entry shall be evaluated on the basis of the online questionnaire. In selecting the winner, the jury shall consider, amongst others, the following criteria: innovation, entrepreneurship, measurability, proven impact, scalability, and potential for internationalization and commercialization.

    4. The jury shall select the winner in two (2) phases. In a first (1st) phase, the jury shall select thirty (30) nominees amongst the Participants (the “30 for 2030”). In a second (2nd) phase, the jury shall select one (1) winner for the “Established Companies” and one (1) winner for the “Emerging Companies”. The subscribers of De Tijd and L’Echo shall also choose one (1) audience winner amongst the thirty (30) nominees. In case of equal votes, the jury shall choose the audience winner.

    5. Mediafin shall announce the winners during an award show. All thirty (30) nominees shall be invited to this award show. Attending the award show is free of charge for the nominees. Each nominee may attend the award show with a maximum of two (2) natural persons. The date and place of the award show shall be set out in the Special Rules. The winners of the Competition shall receive a Changemakers award at this award show.

  1. Participant data

    1. The Participant represents and warrants to Mediafin that the documents and information it uploads during the entry process (the “Participant Data”) do not infringe the intellectual property rights or other legal rights of any person, and will not breach the provisions of any law, statute or regulation, in any jurisdiction and under any applicable law. The Participant is solely liable and responsible for the accuracy and correctness of the Participant Data and shall at all times remain the owner of the Participant Data.

    2. By participating to the Competition, the Participant grants, free of charge to Mediafin and its partners a non-exclusive license to copy, reproduce, store, distribute, publish (e.g. on website, social media), export, adapt, edit and translate the Participant Data in the context of the “Changemakers” event (organization, promotion).

  2. GDPR

    The Participant represents and warrants to Mediafin that it has the legal right to disclose any personal data that it makes available to Mediafin under or in connection with the Competition. Mediafin shall process the Participant’s personal data in accordance with the applicable laws relating to the processing of personal data including, the General Data Protection Regulation (Regulation (EU) 2016/679) (“GDPR”) and the privacy policy available on the website.

  3. Liability

    1. Mediafin reserves the right to annul, suspend, cancel, or amend the Competition if and to the extent that it becomes necessary to do so, without any liability.

    2. Insofar as is permitted by law, Mediafin shall not, in any circumstances be responsible or liable to compensate the Participant or accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of participating to the Competition except (i) in case of fraud, deceit, deliberate fault or fraudulent misrepresentation on behalf of Mediafin or (ii) in case of personal injury or death caused by its negligence.

  4. Complaints

    Complaints with regard to the Competition must be sent to Mediafin by email to (info@changemakers.be). within seven (7) working days following the award show. Under no circumstances shall verbal complaints or complaints by telephone will be accepted. Complaints submitted after the due date shall also not be accepted.

  5. Applicable law and jurisdiction

    1. The (Special) Rules are governed by Belgian law.
    2. Any dispute which cannot be settled amicably shall be brought before the competent courts of Brussels, Dutch division.


November 9, 2023

Start of award submissions

January 16, 2024

End of award submissions

February 6, 2024

Selection of 30 nominees

February 13, 2024

Jury decision day

March 12, 2024

Announcement of winners at the award show

Aftermovie keynote Ellen MacArthur

Register now!