01st June 2019

SNFCC

THE ONLY CONSTANT IN OUR LIVES IS CHANGE.

56 years ago two legendary comic creators imagined how an Xtra power, one that ordinary humans do not possess, would turn the gifted into awesome* human beings, called Mutants (*some of them at least). 10 years ago, a visionary inspired the world by applying a small multiplier (x) force next to his NGO’s logo to create the next step of the organization. The TED(x) platform became a reality.
For centuries the strangest, most mystifying and alluring of letters, X, has provided humanity with meanings in a diversity of fields, symbolizing the very essence of life. From algebra to genetics, to aerospace, to sports, to sex, to philosophy, to spirituality, X marks places of utmost importance, indicates historical milestones and determines behaviors of the natural world as we know it today. Can one claim that symmetry and order, multiplied by an X factor, signify a universal force for creation, life, and survival? No matter how simplified and arbitrary it may sound, can this be a hidden mechanism for change? If X stands for the random or the unexpected, can one say this is a law, governing our lives?
We live in an era where realities constantly change. Given the swift evolution of science and technology, the ever-increasing political, social and cultural turbulence and the environmental deprivation, what we perceive as common and ordinary today, may well be different tomorrow. Can years of accumulative experiences prepare us better for what lies ahead? How have we evolved to become part of this equation?
10 years ago TEDxAthens received the 19th global license of the TEDx Program worldwide, starting its own journey of evolution. Inspired by our very nature, we have explored and multiplied ideas and actions that contribute to the improvement and growth of human life. X reminds us the only constant in our lives, is change. If X is the variable of infinite possibilities, how do we want our world to look like 10 years from now?
Let us take you on an exploration of the state of X. Where X = the secret ingredient which can bring us all closer to who we truly are. Closer to awesomeness and greatness.

THE
SPEAKERS

Αctivist, writer
Arun Gandhi,  grandson of Mohandas "Mahatma" Gandhi, was born in Durban, South Africa during the apartheid years.  At age 12, Arun was taken to India to live with his famous grandfather and learn ways to cope with his anger and violent reactions, having been a victim of color prejudice while growing up. During his time in India, he learned valuable lessons on life next to his grandfather. Arun is now the President of the Gandhi Worldwide Education Institute to take the message of nonviolence all over the world and to rescue and train children living in poverty so that they can break the oppressive cycle crushing them. He has also started the M. K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence in 1991, based since 2008 at the University of Rochester, NY, which runs programs for inner city children, inmates of correctional facilities and poor families while teaching nonviolence to students. During his years in India Arun and his late wife, Sunanda, started self-help economic programs for the impoverished and oppressed sections of society, designed to rebuild the crushed self-respect of poverty victims.  They also found loving homes for new born babies abandoned by unwed mothers. Arun also leads two Legacy Tours to India and South Africa, both annual and open to all interested in field studies of nonviolence and peace.
Grammy-winning producer, writer & musicologist
Christopher C. King is a Grammy-winning producer, musicologist as well as a prominent 78 rpm collector. He has been profiled in the New York Times Magazine and the Washington Post, and has written for the Paris Review and the Oxford American. Christopher  was born and raised in southwest Virginia and studied philosophy at Radford University. Over the course of the last ten years, he has researched the tradition of Greek demotika songs, especially in Epirus. In 2018, W.W. Norton published his book, Lament from Epirus: An Odyssey into Europe’s Old Surviving Folk Music, to wide critical acclaim. His book was named one of the top ten books of 2018 by the Wall Street Journal and Christopher has presented his work at the New York Public Library, the Gennadius Library of Athens as well as the Odeon Conservatoire in Athens, among other venues. He currently splits his time between the United States and Greece.
Film maker
Udayan Prasad has been directing documentaries, television drama and feature films since graduating from the National Film & Television School in Beaconsfield, UK. Among his numerous television credits are five single dramas all written for BBC Television - three of them by Simon Gray and two of them by Alan Bennett, ultimately granting him two Golden Gate Awards and two Bafta Nominations. His first theatrical feature was Brothers in Trouble in 1995 (winning the Golden Alexander Award for Best First Feature at the Thessaloniki International Film Festival), followed by the awarded My son the fanatic in 1997 (Directors Fortnight Cannes Film Festival, Best Feature at the Potsdam Film Festival), Gabriel & Me in 2000 (Edinburgh Film Festival) and OPA! in 2005 (Toronto International Film Festival). His latest feature The Yellow Handkerchief (Sundance Film Festival) was released in the United States in 2010. When not actively involved in a production, he is a frequent visiting lecturer on directing and screenwriting programmes at several film schools including The National Film & Television School in Beaconsfield, UK; London Film School; The Wajda School in Warsaw and the National Film, Television and Theatre School in Łódź́́, Poland. He is also an advisor and mentor on various international directing and screenwriting workshops.
Author and Commentator
Chris Skinner is known as the most influential person in technology in the UK. He is an independent commentator on the financial markets and fintech, through his blog theFinanser.com, as well as author of the bestselling books Digital Bank, ValueWeb and Digital Human. Chris is described by Seth Wheeler (Former Special Assistant to the President for Economic Policy at the White House) as “one of the most authoritative voices on Fintech anywhere”. In his day job, he is Chair of the European networking forum The Financial Services Club and Nordic Finance Innovation, as well as a Non-Executive Director of the Fintech consultancy firm 11:FS and on the advisory boards of various firms. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand, as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal’s Financial News and Thomson Reuters. He is also a regular commentator on BBC News, Sky News, CNBC and Bloomberg about banking issues, a judge on many awards programs as well as having worked closely with leading banks such as HSBC and  the Royal Bank of Scotland.  
Designer/Animator
Michael is an award-winning designer, a traveller and speaker. He’s spent the last decade in the industry as a motion designer and animator working with major brands like Nike and Sony as well as start-ups and social enterprises. Two years ago, in a quest to redesign his life he decided to ditch the hustle culture, embraced minimalism and has been travelling full time, living out of a 30L backpack ever since. His goal is to help people re-evaluate the way they spend their time and resources and to start living more intentionally. His next project is about creating sustainable and affordable housing and a co-living community from shipping containers, addressing to people who are finding the cost or availability of suitable housing preventative for the life they want to live.
Co-Founder @ EarlySense, Entrepreneur
Avner Halperin is Co-Founder and Board Member at EarlySense.  Avner was CEO of EarlySense for 15 years, bringing the company from the idea stage to developing breakthrough analytics and sensing technology, with over one million patients served and tens of thousands of lives saved or significantly affected. Previously, Avner was CEO of Emmunet, VP Marketing at Radcom (NASDAQ: RDCM) and R&D team leader at Eldat Communications (acquired by Pricer(PRIC.ST)).  Prior to that, he was Department Head of an R&D Unit in the Israeli Defence Forces Intelligence Corps, where he won the Intelligence Innovation Award. Avner earned an M.Sc. in Applied Physics from Tel Aviv University and an MBA from the MIT Sloan Fellows Executive MBA Program.  He has been teaching courses on economy and entrepreneurship in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, with his research papers and 30 US Patents having been cited close to 3,000 times.
Magician
At just ten years of age, Issy Simpson has been hailed as one of the most unique magicians in the world, after she captured the hearts of the UK public on the last series of Britain’s Got Talent, forcing Simon Cowell to exclaim, “This is like real life Harry Potter”. Since then, she has become one of the most watched magicians online with over 200 million views and an army of avid fans. After BGT, she signed to the same management team as Daniel Radcliffe, appeared as a special guest on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, headlined at the world’s largest Magic Convention and has been given a prestigious award at the world famous Magic Circle. Issy also appeared in a run of sold-out shows in Abu Dhabi and made her US prime-time TV debut on NBC’s “Little Big Shots”. Most recently, she was invited by Simon Cowell to the US yet again to appear on the NBC TV show “AGT Champions”, which featured the greatest 50 acts to ever appear on the worldwide franchise, and where she was one of the youngest performers to partake.
Entrepreneur, Scientist & Sportswoman
Born in rural Australia, science proved to be Renée Watson’s catalyst for exploration and discovery, sparking her imagination early and leading to a degree in biochemistry and molecular biology. Her early experience working with the science community inspired a new goal; to shatter the preconceived ideas about the world of STEM and make it accessible to everyone, regardless of background, financial status or gender. Renée has been on the road to giving a jaw-dropping science experience to 1 million children ever since she landed in the UK in 2000 with a mere €16 to her name. On the way, she has raised more than €4.5 million for emerging scientific research charities, won awards for STEM leadership and role modeling and in 2016 launched The Curiosity Box, a STEM activity subscription box, that is now sold across the EU, Australia and South Korea. Currently, Renée is taking on the UK primary education system, championing a move away from test-led classrooms and back to celebrating a child’s innate inquisitive nature through curiosity-led learning. She also plans to set the rugby pitch alight in 2019 when she’ll co-captain the Europe over 35s team at the Touch Rugby World Cup.  
Computer Scientist
Dr. Costas Bekas (Distinguished Research Staff Member & Manager, IBM Research - Zurich), is responsible for foundational research in AI, spanning areas that include ML/DL, knowledge extraction and representation, new computing paradigms for AI (with applications in Healthcare & Life Sciences), Materials Discovery and acceleration of R&D. Costas studied at the pioneering Computer Engineering & Informatics Department of the University of Patras, Greece. He received B. Eng., MSc and Ph.D. diplomas in 1998, 2001 and 2003 respectively, along Prof. E. Gallopoulos. From 2003 to 2005, he worked as a postdoctoral associate with Professor Yousef Saad at the Computer Science & Engineering Department, University of Minnesota, USA. Dr. Bekas’ main focus is in Cognitive Systems and their impact in industry, science and business. His research agenda includes Machine & Deep Learning, large scale analytics, HPC and very large scale distributed systems. He is a recipient of the ACM Gordon Bell Prize (2013, 2015), as well as the PRACE Award (2012).
Futurist
Lisa Lang is a German entrepreneur, technologist, and international speaker. Her brands ElektroCouture and ThePowerHouse are leading agencies for FashionTech, wearable technologies and smart textiles manufacturing. From her experience as an entrepreneur, she has gained recognition as one of Forbes Europe’s Top 50 Women in Tech, top 100 most influential people in wearable tech worldwide, one of 25 leaders in fashion and technology worldwide and has been listed as one of the 50 most important women for innovation & startups in the EU. Lisa founded ElektroCouture in 2013, believing in the opportunity to fuse technology with fashion even though she did not come from a background in fashion. With the success of ElektroCouture, Lisa then started ThePowerHouse in response to the growing demand from companies searching for educational workshops, prototypes, and needs for consultation on FashionTech. Beyond her work on her companies, she has been a mentor for fashion and tech-focused programs, as well as has also advised the Ministerium für Wirtschaft Arbeit Energie und Verkehr and the European Union on the future of fashion technology within Germany and Europe. In 2018, she was included as an expert in the prestigious ‘The State of Fashion 2019’,  an annual report written and researched by the Business of Fashion and McKinsey & Company.
Presenter
Dimitris Dimopoulos started out in comedy as a stand-up comedian in 1996, as part of the comedy group "Comedy Nights". As an actor and singer, he has collaborated with the Greek National Opera, the music theatre company "The Beggars' Operas" as well as commercial theatre and dubbing companies. He has written the librettos for the operas  "Twilight of the Debts", "AirRossini" and "Yasou Aida!", for which he was awarded the 2012 "Karolos Koun" Honourable Mention for Greek Play by the Association of Greek Theatre and Music Critics. He has directed the music theatre pieces "Kafka Fragmente, "Das Schubert Diploma" and "Evening Songs", the operetta "Satanerie" as well as the theatre pieces "The Minions of Midas" and "Tsaika!". As a translator, he has worked in subtitling, dubbing, theatre and opera. He speaks greek, german, english, spanish and russian and holds a degree in Acting (Iasmos Drama School) as well as a degree in Tourism (Technical Education Institution of Athens). He is also a graduate of the German School of Athens.
Musician, Network technician, Activist
Giorgos Mparkouris completed his studies in Computing and IT in 1985 and during the 80s, he worked in a record company, was a radio producer in the national broadcasting as well as had his own band. He went on to work as a technician in computer labs in the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens as well as IT Manager in the Greek Center of European Studies, leaving his band days behind. Up until the early years of the economic crisis, he continued to work as a freelancer. However, in late 2011 he ended up as homeless and sought refuge in a homeless guest house, from which he left in 2013 firstly to move in with friends and later on in a commune up until 2017. It was in that year that he started to teach computer science in refugee communities at Tech Talent School. In 2018, he was assigned the coordination of Start Project, an educational program on computers and technology for economically challenged social groups, supported by the Municipality of Athens and Microsoft. During all these years, he has traveled extensively in many destinations including Europe, the Middle East and South America, in his quest to learn more about new cultures.  
Writer / Journalist
Mina Dennert is a Swedish writer, journalist, and the founder of the #iamhere network, which has inspired over a hundred thousand people from all over the world to stand up and work for a democratic and inclusive society. Through the Facebook groups of the same name, members counteract disinformation, alternative facts and hate speech. The purpose of #iamhere is to encourage people to speak up and engage in online debate; To strengthen journalists and politicians and opinion formers by making people react and stand up when others are exposed to hatred and threats. To stop the polarization by taking the political discussion in a nuanced and factual manner. And to prevent the spread of disinformation by helping others with sources of factual information. Social media has a huge impact on our lives and on the political climate. It is changing our world and we need to become involved in that development. Members of the network notice that they have become much more politically aware and better at debate and discussion since getting involved. They have been able to practice their civil rights, and as a result have experienced increased feelings of courage in general. Mina has won several awards for her work, including the prestigious Anna Lindh prize in 2017, for supporting just and democratic causes.
Opera's Children's Chorus
The Children's Chorus of the Greek National Opera was founded in September 2012 and has an exclusively educative role. To this day, the Chorus has given numerous concerts, performing a wide repertoire and has participated with great success in such productions of the Greek National Opera as La bohème, Tosca, Die Zauberflöte, Carmen, The Nutcracker, Il tabarro, Suor Angelica, in such venues as the Olympia Theater, Odeon of Herodes Atticus, Stavros Niarchos Hall of the Greek National Opera (Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center) etc. The first chorus mistress was soprano Mata Katsouli and since autumn 2017, the Chorus is conducted by soprano Konstantina Pitsiakou. The Children's Chorus of the National Opera counts about one hundred children, aged 6 to 15 years old.
Presenter
Lila Baklesi is an actress and a cum laude graduate of the National Theatre's Drama School. Through acting, she observes and tries to reach a deeper understanding of human behavior in all its various daily expressions, as well as under extreme conditions of joy and pain. Currently, she resides in London, attending acting seminars and exploring the perplexity of this new-age Babel. In her spare time, she studies History of Art. This summer she's returning to Greece, as she partakes in the tour of the play "Those under the stars" written by Telemachos Tsardakas, in which she co-stars along Konstantinos Mpimpis and co-directs along Artemis Grimpla.
Improvised Comedy Theater
ImproVIBE is Greece’s first Improv Comedy Theater training center. It was founded in 2012 by Menelaos Prokos and has been fully active to this day, offering improv shows and training as an art form as well as a way of life. During all its years of operation, it has offered improvised theatrical plays that are presented at well-known theatres around Athens, while has also toured all over Greece offering training and shows. It’s contribution on a global level is also worth mentioning and has  been recognized as Greece’s improv hub. Since 2015, ImproVIBE has been producing annually in Athens -and with huge success- Greece’s very own international improv festival, Mt Olymprov. One of ImproVIBE’s most important achievements is having introduced to the Greek public a brand new theatrical art form, and it is boasting now a 500-strong community comprised of people who are actively practising the art of improv through teaching and performing. Thousands of people have been affected by ImproVIBE’s activities and improv is gradually spreading all over the country.
Archaeologist
Dr. Ted Papakostas is an archaeologist who decided to introduce a different view of what antiquity is in modern Greek mentality and promote what is called “pop archaeology”, through his instagram project @archaeostoryteller. Starting out as a fun pastime activity, its reception by the general public led him to the realization that there is indeed room and necessity for a more approachable way of viewing archaeology in Greece. Through his work, he aims to introduce a fun way of perceiving the past and denounce the notion that antiquity is sacred and untouchable, by making archaeological information plain yet accurate and enjoyable to a wider audience.
Writer, Artist
Mari Andrew is a writer, illustrator, and speaker who shares her work daily on Instagram @bymariandrew. What started out as making one drawing a day for a year as a form of self-expression following a season of grief and loss has inspired over one million devoted fans. Through her art, writing, and speaking, she discusses the powers of uncertainty, sensitivity, setbacks, and finding small joys all around us. Her first book, Am I There Yet?, debuted on The New York Times Best Seller list. Mari is an avid traveler and dancer who calls New City home.
Linguist
Artemis Alexiadou was born in Volos. She studied Linguistics and Philology at the University of Athens. She received an MA in Linguistics from the University of Reading, UK and a PhD in Linguistics from the University of Potsdam, Germany. She received various scholarships and carried out research in Βerlin, Princeton, MIT, University of Pennsylvania and Potsdam. From 2002 to 2015 she was Professor of Theoretical and English Linguistics at the University of Stuttgart, where she was also the director of a collaborative research center, where theoretical and computational linguists joined forces to investigate ambiguity in linguistic expressions. Since 2015, she has been Professor of English Linguistics at the Humboldt University in Berlin and Vice-Director of the Leibniz-Center General Linguistics in Berlin.  She is a member of editorial teams of several journals. She is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters. In 2014 she was awarded the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize, as in her research she has discovered patterns and networks of phenomena that were previously unknown and that contributed to new key ideas about how language works; in 2016 she received an honorary doctorate from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology.  She has dual citizenship (Greece-Germany) and is currently interested in the multilingual individual and society.
DΙΥ Blogger
Alexandra Diona is an art director, conceptual photographer as well as the creative force behind the blog “A Shiny Day” (ashinyday.com). Born and raised in Athens, Alexandra began her studies in Architecture, however after 3 years, she decided to follow different creative paths, working as a freelance graphic designer, event organiser and  jewellery maker - all these while being completely self-taught. She also worked as a creative director and content editor for a greek fashion brand for 3 years. Alexandra is interested in the fields of photography, ecology, decoration, design and visual content - to name but a few- and is constantly inspired by her love for the environment and most of all, life itself. Through her blog, she shares ideas on a more creative and less toxic everyday life, challenging her readers to discover and reclaim their talents, making the most of them.
Mindfulness & Open Floor Meditation Instructor
Myrto studied Finance in Athens, earned an MBA from Boston University and then worked for 15 years as a management consultant and top-level marketing executive in fast paced organizations in New York, London and Athens. During a particularly difficult period in her life, dealing with a health issue and high levels of stress that brought her on the verge of burnout, her path led her to study Buddhist insight meditation and conscious movement. Over many years she deepened her practice, experiencing transformation and healing on every level. Transitioning from the corporate world to follow her calling in leading a life of purpose and after extensive international professional training, she founded One Breath Mindful Living Center aimed at sharing science-backed awareness practices that cultivate a more mindful, fulfilled life, and she teaches mindfulness and movement meditation to adults, children and corporations in Greece and internationally. She is a certified mindfulness and MBSR (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction) instructor from the Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, a certified mindfulness instructor for children from the Mindful Schools organization, as well as a certified Open Floor moving meditation instructor. She also studies systemic psychotherapy at the Athenian Institute of Anthropos (AKMA). Myrto is also a TEDx speaker and has participated at the Panhellenic Child Psychiatry conference and the European Conference for Body Psychotherapy. She maintains a daily meditation practice since 2010 and continues studying with important teachers across the world, fascinated with the breath, stillness, movement and what it is that makes us human.

THE PARTNERS

THE EDUCATIONAL PARTNERS

THE FOODS

THE ENABLERS

THE MEDIA PARTNERS

THE
LOCATION

SNFCC

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Leof. Andrea Siggrou
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