About Us

Welcome To Ulixes!

Ulixes was born on September 21, 1994. Linux just born, no banners with ads on the net, no sms longer than 160 characters, no Euro, no Schengen, 12 countries in the EU, only one primitive browser to “surf” the World Wide Web, “multimedia” on the cutting edge of innovation in training. But some people, throughout Europe, already understood the importance of getting in touch, working together, pooling experience.

They came from Italy, Spain, the UK, Greece, France.

They had in common a need and a vision: the need for sharing and the vision of a European training area with no barriers, where one could exploit competences developed through training programmes in one country, to study or work in another one.

They knew well tools and direct funding channels of the EU: COMETT, ADAPT, NOW, Youthstart, Leonardo da Vinci. They were practical, and business-oriented: they chose the European Economic Interest Grouping, a dispositive in force since 1985, meant to facilitate or develop the economic activities of its members by a pooling of resources, activities or skills. The clear goal was to produce better results than the members acting alone. It is not intended that the grouping should make profits for itself. If it does make any profits, they will be apportioned among the members. Its activities must be related to the economic activities of its members, but cannot replace them.

They set the duration of the Grouping up to 1998. Actually, they did not know that the story they started would last much longer…

The mission of Ulixes is to anticipate and accompany the economic development through the fostering of local, national, European and international networks for the promotion of research, training and educational programmes.

The goals of Ulixes are:
  1. The pooling of information, expertise, knowledge and resources in order to increase its members’ performance.
  2. Supporting local, national, European and international development in the fields of HR and economic growth.
  3. Initiating and promoting the Ulixes EEIG image and representation on all levels.
  4. The development of programmes designed to facilitate mutual exchanges at all levels, thus encouraging international understanding and mobility.
  5. The raising of funding from both public and private sources to provide the means to fulfil its mission.
The organisation of Ulixes is characterised for being:
  1. Collaborative
  2. Mutually beneficial
  3. Mutually trustful
  4. Affordable
  5. Quick on the draw
  6. A gateway to large networks in partners’ countries


Hilde Hoefnagels (BE)

Hilde Hoefnagels is an international coordinator at Artesis Plantijn University of Applied Sciences (AP) in Antwerp, Belgium. Trained as a translator in Dutch/English/Italian her interests have always been of an international nature. She has worked in various fields before she joined AP in 2004 as a teacher (she holds an post graduate degree in didactics). She worked as an office manager for international companies, and as a freelance interpreter English/Italian for Joico, Helmond, the Netherlands. She was a lecturer of commercial, instructive and scientific translations Dutch/English at Lessius University College (currently KUL). For AP she initially worked as a lecturer of English and intercultural communication, and as a member of the international office specialized in networking. She covered an optional course of English in Hospitality at the University of Bologna, Campus Rimini. For three years, she was Chair of the Tourism and Hospitality Committee within the Space network for which she was also writer of case studies for language exams. She published a novel in the US.
In 2012 she took the logical step towards becoming a full time international coordinator for AP. Since then she has collaborated on a whole range of international projects. Fields of expertise in Erasmus + and other projects: Intensive Programs, Tempus, Knowledge Alliance, Strategic Partnership, Capacity Building in the field of Higher Education, Interreg and AMIF. Also, she has participated in a ERDF project
She firmly believes in networking and the strength of good communication.

Josef Stockinger (AT)

Senior Vice President
With more than 20 years of experience, Josef Stockinger is head of department for International projects and cooperation in his home organisation BBRZ Group of companies.
BBRZ is one of Austria’s largest service organization in the field of vocational training, vocational rehabilitation for persons with disabilities, and reintegration of disadvantaged group in the labour market.
He has in-depth knowledge of labor market-related issues and economy, excellent knowledge in Vocational Training issues and international project management skills and experience in performing activities under European Community programs.

Maria Elena Ortiz Ballester [ES]

Vice President
Elena is a passionate teacher of English as a foreign language. With 25 years of teaching experience at different education levels, Elena has combined her teaching passion in Primary, Secondary, adult education and University classroom, with the school management. She has worked as associate teacher in the University of Valencia, the Valencian International University and Universidad Europea.
With a Bachelor Degree in English Philology and another in Teacher Training, she has completed her studies with Master Degree in Spanish Linguistics as a second language. A never-stop-training person, Elena is in continuous learning and investigating, being part as a member of different investigation communities.
Considered as an ICT-geek, with a strong focus on how ICT resources can have a positive response on the students' learning process, Elena has published several articles about blended learning and active methodologies in the L2 classroom. Currently she is the Vice Director of the only state-run distance learning college for adult education in the Region of Valencia. With more than 13 years of experience as international coordinator in different colleges, she has promoted internationalization in high and adult education, cooperating and partnering with different institutions and boosting students' and staff's mobilities.

Luca Boetti (IT)

Head of Secretariat
Since 1985 Luca Boetti has been working for IFOA, training institute delivering both traditional and ODL post-diploma and post-graduate training for young unemployed, as well as lifelong training for professionals, practitioners and individuals, and consulting services and technical assistance for citizens, enterprises and public administrations.
He is head of the European projects department and has been Vice President of E.E.I.G. “Ulixes” from 2006 till 2012.
He has been working in VET since 1997, designing and managing several national and EU projects (Erasmus +, COSME, LLP/Leonardo da Vinci and Grundtvig, Interreg, Eco-Innovation, ESF Article 6 innovative measures, EQUAL, etc.) Former lecturer for University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, he is also a certified auditor for the Italian University Quality Management System, and in the list of project evaluators for the Italian Leonardo da Vinci agency, ISFOL.