WASHINGTON, D.C.- The Southeast Europe Project today announced its appointment of Dr. Ruby Gropas, Research Fellow at the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy (ELIAMEP); Dr. Athanasios Moulakis, former director of the Institute for Mediterranean Studies at the University of Lugano in Switzerland; Dr. Ellen Rosskam, Visiting Senior Fellow in the European Institute of Health and Medical Sciences at the University of Surrey, England; and Dr. Eleonora Siliprandi, lecturer at the University of Milan in Italy, as Southeast Europe Policy Scholars who, along with five contributing scholars, will conduct high-level research for the Southeast Europe Project during the 2007 scholarship period.

In addition, Dr. Tozun Bahcheli, Professor of Political Science at Kings College in Ontario, Canada; Andreas Borgeas, Fulbright Fellow at the Hellenic Center for European Studies; Dr. Stan Draenos, Research Consultant for the Andreas G. Papandreou Foundation; Dr. Fabrizio Tassinari, Associate Professor at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark; and Dr. Sappho Xenakis, Post-Doctoral Scholar at the State Scholarships Foundation of Greece, have been selected as Contributing Scholars conducting short-term non-residency research projects for the Southeast Europe Project.

"The Wilson Center Southeast Europe Project is pleased to embark on this collaborative effort with such accomplished foreign and security policy specialists," said John Sitilides, Chairman of the Project's Board of Advisors. "We are confident our scholars will contribute distinguished professional experience, extensive regional knowledge, and a commitment to informed and dispassionate scholarship that will broaden and enhance the dialogue in Washington, D.C. on U.S., European, and allied policies in the eastern Mediterranean, southern Balkan, and surrounding regions."

"Clearly, the level of expertise these scholars bring fulfills part of the program's goal," said Markos Kounalakis, Vice Chairman. "The expectation is for these exemplary scholars to strive for excellence in their research, but also to find practical application and relevance to contemporary democracy's many challenges."

The Southeast Europe Project was established in January 2005, after the merger of the Western Policy Center with the Wilson Center, to promote scholarly research and informed debate about the full range of U.S. political, commercial, and security issues and interests in the eastern Mediterranean and adjacent regions. The project's research and public affairs programs explore regional and functional issues centered on Greece, Turkey, Cyprus, and Bulgaria, with particular attention to European Union enlargement and NATO expansion and realignment in the geopolitical landscape of the 21st century. The project features the Tsakopoulos-Kounalakis Lecture Series as a forum for world leaders and distinguished scholars who study, understand, and manifest democracy and reason as classical Hellenism's vital contributions to contemporary statecraft and society.

Dr. Moulakis' research project on "Greece in the Middle East and North Africa" is being conducted June–August 2007. Dr. Gropas' research project, "The US – EU Partnership: Enlargement and Change," will be conducted from August-December 2007. Dr. Rosskam's research project, "Liberalizing Education in Turkey: Promoting Social Cohesion, Unrest, or Islamic Fundamentalism?" will be conducted from October-January 2008, and Dr. Siliprandi's research project, "The Treatment of Religion in the Greek Constitution: A Socio-Legal Analysis," will be conducted from October 2007-March 2008.

Dr. Gropas is a Research Fellow at ELIAMEP, a managing editor at the Journal of Southeast European and Black Sea Studies, and teaches at the International Center for Hellenic and Mediterranean Studies/College Year in Athens and on South East European Studies at the University of Athens. She received her MPhil in International Relations and her PhD from Cambridge University in the United Kingdom.

Dr. Moulakis served as the Director of the Institute of Mediterranean Studies at the University of Lugano in Switzerland, while concurrently serving as Professor of Public Communication for the University and as an advisor on Mediterranean affairs to the Swiss Secretary of Science and Research. He received his PhD, magna cum laude, from the University of Bochum in Germany.

Dr. Rosskam is a Research Associate at the European Centre for Occupational Health, Safety and the Environment at the University of Glasgow in Scotland, a Visiting Professor at the University of Massachusetts in Lowell, Massachusetts, and a Visiting Senior Fellow for the European Institute of Health and Medical Sciences at the University of Surrey in England. She received her PhD in Management of Economic Sciences from the University of Lausanne in Switzerland.

Dr. Siliprandi recently received her PhD in Sociology of Law from the University of Milan in Italy, while working as a Teaching Assistant for the University. She holds an MA in Sociology of Law from the University of Athens in Greece, and a BA in Roman and Greek Antiquity as well as a Law Degree from the University of Milan.

More information on all the policy and contributing scholars and their projects can be found at www.wilsoncenter.org/sepscholars.

The Project offers annual scholarships for Policy and Contributing Scholars to encourage the efforts of scholars and analysts in work focused on pertinent regional and functional issues involving Greece, Turkey, Cyprus, and Bulgaria, as well as in the eastern Mediterranean and adjacent regions. All interested scholars are encouraged to pursue additional detailed information at www.wilsoncenter.org/sepcompetition. Applications for 2008 scholars are due on September 1, 2007.