The 200th anniversary of the Greek Revolution of 1821 and the War of Independence is an important remembrance date for Greeks around the world and an opportunity to reflect on the present-day position of Greece and its future.
To mark the event, the Greek state has commissioned the Greece2021 Committee to oversee the planning of the celebration and to organise a comprehensive layout of projects and events that aim to reintroducing Greece, from the beginning of its contemporary history to today, over the course of 200 years.
The Committee has invited expressions of interest from individuals and organisations to organise events such as lectures, exhibitions, conferences and talks. Special emphasis is being put to actions having an innovative and forward-looking character, aiming at having a long-lasting impact in the society. The approved events will be placed under the auspices of the Greece2021 Committee and will be included in the national programme of celebrations. They will also be granted permission to use the logo of the Committee.
This call for proposals was perfectly aligned with the remit of the Impact for Greece element of GAPSTI. Our intention was to leave a long-lasting footprint of the anniversary, rather than propose an ephemeral event, such as a conference. To this end, GAPSTI proposed to establish at the University of Cambridge, the Greece 2021 Mathematical Legacy Programme and the Greece 2021 Next Generation Modelling Programme.
These two Programmes will initiate long-lasting collaborations between researchers at the University and their counterparts at the Academy of Athens and Greek academic institutions including the National Technical University of Athens and FORTH.
The collaborations will initially focus on the topical areas of precision medicine, clean energy and astrophysics, and they will take the form of joint research projects, exchanges between researchers, jointly supervised doctoral training programmes and technology transfer of the outcomes of this research for the benefit of industry and society. Both of these activities were approved by the Greece2021 Committee and are collectively referred to as GAPSTI@Greece2021.
It is an honour to announce that the Greece 2021 Mathematical Legacy Programme will be conducted under the Directorship of Professor Fokas, the eminent mathematician and member of the Academy of Athens. Professor Fokas has degrees in Aeronautical Engineering (Imperial College), Applied Mathematics (CalTech) and Medicine (Miami). He has written papers and books on symmetries, integrable nonlinear partial differential equations (PDEs), Painlevé equations and random matrices, models for leukaemia and protein folding, electro-magnetoencephalography, nuclear imaging, and relativistic gravity. Also, he has introduced a new method for solving boundary value problems known as the Fokas method.
Among his many distinctions, Professor Fokas is the Commander of the Order of the Phoenix of the Hellenic Republic and the recipient of the Naylor Prize (previous recipients include Professor Stephen Hawking and Sir Roger Penrose). Fokas is listed on the ISI Web of Science as one of the most highly cited researchers in the field of mathematics.
The schedule of outreach events and research collaborations led by Professor Fokas will be announced in the months to come and we anticipate an inaugural event in 2021, depending on the prevailing pandemic conditions.