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Johns Hopkins University holds Board of Trustees meeting in Athens to celebrate partnership with SNF

Jun 21, 2022
Gathering will be held at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center in advance of a symposium on civic health from Hopkins’s SNF Agora Institute and of the Foundation’s SNF Nostos Health events.

Celebrating the longstanding and multifaceted collaboration between the renowned Baltimore institution and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF), Johns Hopkins University will hold its upcoming Board of Trustees meeting at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (SNFCC) in Athens, Greece.

In addition to a full slate of board meetings, the trustees will visit the city’s ancient Agora with Dr. John Camp, the SNF Professor of Classics at Randolph Macon University who has worked at the site since 1966. This ancient nexus of civic life served as the inspiration for the largest collaboration between SNF and Johns Hopkins to date: the creation in 2018 of the SNF Agora Institute, an interdisciplinary incubator at Hopkins for more robust civil discourse and civic engagement.

“Like the Agora in ancient Athens, the SNF Agora at Johns Hopkins is a vibrant meeting point for transformational ideas about our world, a world in turmoil.” said SNF Co-President Andreas Dracopoulos, who is also a member of the Hopkins Board of Trustees. “Our partnership, again like the Agora, has grown organically through productive collaboration and exchange to yield results far greater than the sum of its individual parts. We are thrilled that the university’s trustees are meeting at one of our favorite places in the world, Athens, Greece, the cradle of democracy, and at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (SNFCC), designed to echo the spirit of the ancient Agora, and civic life at large. We, at SNF, are proud to be sharing this fruitful journey of discovery with Johns Hopkins.”

“The Stavros Niarchos Foundation is one of the world's great philanthropic organizations," said Johns Hopkins President Ron Daniels. "Johns Hopkins’ enduring partnership with SNF has enabled our two institutions to marshal cross-disciplinary insights to address some of our society’s greatest concerns, from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic to the future of bioethics to the fate of global democracy.”

SNF and Hopkins have also collaborated around efforts to share knowledge between the university and Greece in the space of international studies, to provide academic enrichment to help talented students in Greece reach their full potential using an approach honed in the United States, and to remake Baltimore’s once dilapidated Parkway Theatre into a community hub with something for everyone.

The two organizations have worked together extensively around health, with SNF supporting research and practice at Johns Hopkins Medicine in fields from COVID tracking to eye health to pediatric palliative care, and Hopkins sharing their expertise to aid in SNF’s delivery of state-of-the-art radiotherapy equipment to hospitals across Greece.

Around the same time as the Board of Trustees meeting, the SNF Agora Institute will hold a Symposium on Civic Health at the SNFCC on June 22, weaving together two key threads of the Hopkins-SNF collaboration—health and civics—within the framing idea that just as governments can influence our individual health, we can influence the health of our democracies and our planet.

The focus on health at the SNFCC continues on June 23 and 24 with SNF Nostos Health, the 2022 edition of the Foundation’s annual summer event that’s free and open to all.

Within the health sector and extending beyond it, a special focus of the collaboration between SNF and Hopkins for over two decades has been exploring fundamental questions in bioethics—including global food ethics—and strengthening the field in Greece. The third annual SNF Bioethics Academy, which will be held at the SNFCC from June 19 to 21, seeks to help share knowledge between Hopkins experts and practitioners in Greece.