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Insights into the Current Energy and Security Challenges in Eastern Mediterranean

Insights into the Current Energy and Security Challenges in Eastern Mediterranean

The one-day conference on ‘Security, energy, and the environment in the Eastern Mediterranean’ occurred on February 18, 2023, at the Bissell library. The Division of Humanities and Social Sciences at ACT organized the open event with the support of the Michael and Kitty Dukakis Center for Public and Humanitarian Service. The purpose of the event was to bring together experts of academia from three institutions - ACT, the University of Piraeus, and the University of Macedonia - along with a representative of the Think Tank ‘Greek Energy Forum’ to discuss current affairs related, on the one hand, to security, and, on the other, to energy and the environment in Greece and more broadly in the Eastern Mediterranean.

 The keynote speaker was Dr. Aristotle Tziampiris, Professor of International Relations and Chair at the Department of International and European Studies of the University of Piraeus and Anatolia High School Alumnus of Class 1988. His presentation was titled ‘The New Region of Eastern Mediterranean and Greece.’

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He referred to the region of the Eastern Mediterranean as ‘New’ because of the issues of energy and Great Power competition. In addition, Greece is following a new foreign policy in the region with strategic partnerships with Israel and the USA and moving into the 21st century as a force for stability and an indispensable part of the West.

The program was divided into two panels: the first focused on security questions at a national and supranational level considering the impact of new threats and technologies on the (re)conceptualization of security and sovereignty in the 21st century. The second panel turned to combine energy and environmental policies with security concerns. It began with a historical overview of energy security since the mid-20th century and then connected energy with geopolitics and sustainability in the Eastern Mediterranean setting.

Panelists included: Dr. Christos Aliprantis, ACT adjunct professor and postdoctoral research fellow at the Institute for Social Movements, Ruhr University, Bochum, Dr. Kalliopi Chainoglou, Assistant Professor, Department of International and European Studies at the University of Macedonia, Mr. Michalis Mathioulakis, Academic Director at the Greek Energy Forum, Dr. John Paravantis, Professor of Energy, Environment, and Technology in Global Politics at the Department of International and European Studies, University of Piraeus, Dr. Eleni Kapsokoli, University of Piraeus, International and European Studies Department, Department Member, and Nicoletta Kontoulis, Vasilis Papakostas and Panagiotis Tasios from the University of Piraeus.

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Dr. David Wisner, Executive Director, Michael and Kitty Dukakis Center for Public and Humanitarian Service, Dr. Maria Kyriakidou, Chair Division of Humanities and Social Sciences, Dr. Christos Aliprantis, ACT adjunct professor, keynote speaker Dr. Aristotle Tziampiris, Professor of International Relations and Chair at the Department of International and European Studies of the University of Piraeus 

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Dr. Serap Kayatekin, Professor of Economics and Social Science, ACT, and Dr. Tina Mavrikos-Adamou, Adjunct Professor of Political Science and International Relations ACT, coordinated the event. 

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The event was well attended, primarily by students, who got actively engaged in the Q&A sessions that followed, and our guest speakers expressed their wish to return to ACT for future joint initiatives.

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