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P. Nikiforos Diamandouros

P. Nikiforos Diamandouros was born on 25 June 1942 in Athens, Greece. From 2003 to October 2013, he was the Ombudsman of the European Union (European Ombudsman). From 1998 to 2003, he served as the first National Ombudsman of Greece. He is Emeritus Professor of comparative politics at the Department of Political Science and Public Administration of the University of Athens. From 1995 to 1998 he served as Director and Chairman of the Greek National Centre for Social Research (EKKE). Since 2012, he is a Visiting Professor at the College of Europe (Bruges). In May 2014, he was elected to the Greek Academy (=National Academy of Arts and Sciences).

He received his B.A. degree from Indiana University (1963) and his M.A. (1965), M.Phil. (1969) and Ph.D. (1972) degrees from Columbia University. Prior to joining the faculty of the University of Athens in 1988, he held teaching and research appointments at the State University of New York and Columbia University respectively (1973-78). From 1980 to 1983, he served as Director of Development at Athens College, Athens, Greece. From 1983 to 1988, he was Programme Director for Western Europe and for the Near and Middle East at the Social Science Research Council, New York. From 1988 until 1991, he was the Director of the Greek Institute for International and Strategic Studies, Athens, a policy think tank funded by the Ford and MacArthur Foundations. In 1997, he was Visiting Professor of political science at the Juan March Centre for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences (Madrid). In 2011, he received the degree of Doctor of Laws (honoris causa) by the American College of Greece.

He has served as President of the Greek Political Science Association (1992-98) and of the Modern Greek Studies Association of the United States (1985-88). In 1999 and 2000, he was appointed as member of Greece’s National Commission on Human Rights and of the National Council for Administrative Reform respectively. Between 1988 and 1996, he served as co-chair of the Subcommittee on Southern Europe of the Social Science Research Council, New York, whose activities were funded by the Volkswagen Foundation. He was also joint General Editor of the Series on the New Southern Europe published by Oxford University Press, the Johns Hopkins University Press and Palgrave. He has been the recipient of Fulbright and National (US) Endowment for the Humanities research grants.

He has written extensively on the politics and history of Southern, Eastern, and Southeastern Europe, including Greece, and, more specifically, on democratisation, state and nation-building, the relationship between culture and politics, as well as the ombudsman institution, and the principles of good administrative practice. Edited volumes: The Politics of Democratic Consolidation: Southern Europe in Comparative Perspective, 1995; Parties, Politics and Democracy in the New Southern Europe, 2001; The European Ombudsman: Origins, Establishment, Evolution, 2005; Democracy and the State in the New Southern Europe, 2006; Spatial Conceptions of the Nation; Modernizing Geographies in Greece and Turkey, 2010. Monographs: The Origins of State-Building in Modern Greece, 1821-1828, 2002 (in Greek) and Cultural Dualism and Political Change in Postauthoritarian Greece, 2000 (in Greek).

Decorations: Grand Commander of the Order of the Phoenix, Greece, 2004; Golden Cross of Merit, Poland, 2010; Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur, France, 2014.

Languages: Greek, English, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Portuguese. His hobbies include reading, writing, classical music and films.