Conference - June 22-23, 2018

Homeland-Diaspora Relations in Flux

Greece and Greeks abroad at times of Crisis

St Antony's College, University of Oxford.

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Presenting paper

Diaspora Philanthropy: Opportunities and Constraints

The presentation will evaluate the opportunities and constraints that characterise diaspora philanthropy in Greece. It will utilise interviews undertaken by the Diaspora Philanthropy Commission, a joint undertaking of SESSOX and the Bodossaki Foundation, with four categories of relevant stakeholders: (1) Greek philanthropic organisations of either diaspora or home origin (2) US non-profits with a long-standing presence in Greece and with a strong relationship with the Greek diaspora (3) Greek state organisations and non-profits which have developed or are capable of developing a diaspora-centric fundraising strategy (4) Greek policy makers interested in the diaspora’s interaction, including the philanthropic one, with the homeland. Key themes that will be addressed are the disposition of the diaspora communities to engage with institutions based in Greece through philanthropy, the impact of the crisis on diaspora philanthropic giving, the Greek foundations as transnational, strategic philanthropists, the role of church and state in diaspora philanthropic giving, the strategies of sourcing diaspora philanthropic support developed by non-profits based in Greece and the limitations of state institutions in securing philanthropic support from the diaspora. The presentation will also enumerate future directions of research on Greek diaspora philanthropy and Greece.

Author bio

Antonis Kamaras holds a BA degree in Government from Connecticut College, an MSc degree in Political Theory and an MPhil degree from the LSE. He has also been a Research Officer at the Hellenic Observatory, at the European Institute of the LSE, where he conducted research on the internationalisation of Greek business in the Balkans and on the impact of market reforms on urban disparity in Greece. He has worked as an advisor to the Governor of the National Bank of Greece (NBG) for a sixyear period where he was mostly involved in the formulation and execution of the bank’s regional strategy. He concluded his career in Greek banking in 2006, in Istanbul, Turkey, where he participated in the landmark acquisition by NBG of Finansbank, a leading, privately-owned financial institution. He joined, as an analyst, Levant Partners, an Athens-based hedge fund specialising in the emerging markets of South East Europe and the Middle East, in 2008. He was an advisor to the Mayor of Thessaloniki in 2011-2014 and subsequently joined the Council of Economic Advisors of the Greek Ministry of Finance in 2014-2015.
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