On April 4-6, 2014, The Fund for American Studies (TFAS), and an education partner from the USA of the Greek Association for Atlantic and European Cooperation from 1996 along with the Liberty Fund, Inc. , gathered for the weekend Liberty Seminar “Liberty from Locke to Hayek ”.
Participants of the seminar included 15 young scholars, many of them alumni of the programs of the American Institute on Political and Economic Systems (AIPES), and the International Institute for Political and Economic Studies (IIPES).
Co-discussion leaders included Mrs. Michelle Jeffress Le , Vice President of the International and Alumni Programs from the Fund for American Studies, Dr. Stephen Davies from the Institute of Economic Affairs, London, and Dr. Adam Martin, from the Department of Political Economy King’s College London, facilitated rich discussions among the students.
Sessions were observed by Mr. Douglas J. Den Uyl , Vice President of Educational Programs at Liberty Fund, Mrs. Jane Mack, Director of Special Events from The Fund for American Studies, Mr. Theodossis Georgiou, President of the Greek Association for Atlantic and European Cooperation, and Ava Ratajczak, Project Assistant at GAAEC.
During the seminar, Mr. Georgiou, expressed GAAEC’s support of this event and summarized the endless cooperation with The Fund for American Studies to the students, many of whom were familiar faces of alumni of the IIPES programs. He presented summer educational programs organized by GAAEC and TFAS from 1996 to 2012. Moreover, he introduced these prosperous students to new opportunities for deepening their scholarly knowledge and personal development that the new educational platform of GAAEC offers – The International Center for Leading Studies (TICLS). TICLS organizes a successor program of IIPES – The International Academy for Advanced Studies (TIAAS), designed for university students along with Leaders for Our Future, summer school for students aged 15 – 18, as well as Euro-Med Forum, in a close cooperation with previous and new partners both from the U.S. and Europe. As in previous years, the summer programs take place in Crete, in a beautiful surrounding of the town of Chania. Tutors of TIAAS include professors who have been teaching in previous years as well as new personalities from around the world, who recently joined the program.
Within the framework of the seminar, Mrs. Michelle Jeffress, Mr. Douglas J.Den Uyl along with the President of GAAEC, Mr. Theodossis Georgiou, the Dean, Dr. Aliki Mitsakos, and Mrs. Jane Mack had a long discussion about future cooperation and exploration of new possibilities of educational programs in Greece.
The program of the seminar included seven sessions, each one of them devoted to the most prominent figures of the American political thought, from John Locke and Adam Smith, through Fréderic Bastiat, John Stuart Mill to Friedrich Hayek. The first session was aimed to answer the question on how Locke conceives “freedom” and “equality” and how he relates them to the proper conception of limited government. The next session was a discussion on Adam Smith’s perception of the development of trade and preconditions for it, while the third session was on Bastiat and his distinction between the public and the private realms. Following was the lecture on Liberty and Property aiming to explore the relationship between liberty and property rights from both historical and theoretical perspectives. Towards the end of the event, questions of Mill’s principle justifying third-party interference into other people’s actions were discussed during the sixth session and the closing seminar included important concepts of “individualism” and “human liberty” as understood by Hayek.
The essence—and success—of these seminars lied in the civil discourse that was cultivated in an atmosphere of learned fellowship shared among attendees.