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Planetary Health:
The Hidden Threat


Hellenic American Union Theater

Dr. Costas Synolakis to deliver the inaugural lecture in the new Distinguished Lecture Series

The first lecture in the Hellenic American University’s Distinguished Lecture Series features Prof. Costas Synolakis, President of Athens College, who will speak on the history and current state of the climate crisis and the threats it poses to health and safety of people around the world. The event is co-organized by the University and Hellenic American Union.

As Dr. Synolakis notes in his abstract for the lecture:  

The future of our planet is on the line and the natural systems, people, animals, and so much more that we care about, are at risk. As climate change crisis intensifies, people around the world are experiencing powerful and unprecedented weather phenomena such as tropical cyclones, intense rainstorms, severe droughts and extreme heat waves. Rising sea levels are flooding coastal areas, destroying homes and natural environments and threatening human and animal lives. We are all in danger and unless we act, it will all get worse.

The Distinguished Lecture Series presents leading thinkers, researchers, and public figures from a broad spectrum of disciplines to share their insights and perspectives on their work but also on issues of broader social importance. The series aims to fuel an ongoing discussion about topical issues of social and cultural importance.

The event will be also delivered online through Zoom platform. For those who wish to participate online, the Zoom link and meeting ID follows:

Zoom link:
Meeting ID: 831 5815 1203

Reservation is required either you participate onsite or online.


Costas Emmanuel Synolakis earned a B.Sc. in Engineering and Applied Science, an M.Sc. in Civil Engineering and a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering, all from the California Institute of Technology. An internationally recognized pioneer in the field of tsunami research and other natural hazards, Professor Synolakis has held professorships in engineering at the University of Southern California and the Technical University of Crete. He is a regular member of the Academy of Athens and serves currently as Secretary of the Division of Natural Sciences. In 2019, he was elected Chairman of the Scientific Committee on Climate Change in Greece, and a member of the Board of Directors of the Hellenic Space Center. In July 2020, he assumed the Office of President of Athens College. A passionate educator and mentor, he has helped produce documentaries for Discovery Channel, BBC, National Geographic, History Channel and ZDF. He has received numerous distinctions in Greece and the US, including the Presidential Young Investigator Award and the International Coastal Engineering Award from the American Society of Civil Engineers.

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