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New Hopkins institute aims to restore civic engagement in worldwide political discourse

A $150 million gift by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation establishes the Agora Institute in the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences
Posted July 19, 2017

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation has committed $150 million to a joint effort with Johns Hopkins University to forge new ways to address the deterioration of civic engagement worldwide and facilitate the restoration of open and inclusive discourse that is the cornerstone of healthy democracies. The gift establishes the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Agora Institute at Johns Hopkins University as an academic and public forum bringing together experts from fields such as political science, psychology, neuroscience, philosophy, ethics, sociology, and history.

"Today, cutting-edge research across a range of disciplines — coupled with a commitment to strengthen civic dialogue — can give us new insight into these trends and new opportunities for productive policymaking and problem-solving," said Hopkins President Ronald J. Daniels. "The Agora Institute represents an extraordinary commitment to these aims."

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation Agora Institute at Johns Hopkins draws its inspiration from the agora of ancient Athens.

“The Stavros Niarchos Foundation is committed to exploring issues that improve the functioning of civil societies today, and the connection to the Greek agora makes this particularly profound for us, since the agora was the heart of civic life, a common space for people to coexist as citizens rather than individuals," said Andreas Dracopoulos, co-president of the foundation.

Learn more about the Agora Institute on The Hub.