Gazmend Kapllani


We are very glad to have among our 2012 speakers Dr Gazmend Kapllani. Born in Lushnje, Albania in 1967, Gazmend Kapllani is an author and journalist who has been living in Athens for the past 20 years. In 1991, after the collapse of the totalitarian regime in Albania, he crossed the border into Greece on foot.

He had to work as a builder, cook, and kiosk attendant in order to make it possible to enter the University of Athens where he read Philosophy. In 2000 he finished his postgraduate studies in Intercultural Education and in 2007 he completed his PhD in Political Science and History at the Panteion University in Athens.

As an author and columnist in leading newspapers in Greece (To Vima, Ta Nea) and abroad, Dr. Kapllani has been an advocate for human rights, fairness, and diversity andhas received Greek and international awards for his work such as the European Union journalist award, in the framework of the European-wide initiative “For Diversity. Against Discrimination”.

His best-selling first novel, A Short Border Handbook which has been translated into three languages (English, Polish and Danish), has received excellent reviews by London’s Guardian and Independent and major newspapers in Greece, Poland and Denmark. This was followed in 2010 by his second novel, My Name is Europe, which was also warmly acclaimed by the press in Greece and abroad.

Dr Kapllani has also written a theatrical play named  Edo (“Here”) which is based on true stories of immigrants living in Greece, and had a successful 12-month run on stage in Athens.

In addition, Dr. Kapllani teaches History and Culture of modern Albania at the Panteion University. He has authored and co-athored scientific articles and studies on migration, Balkan history and the Mediterranean. In September 2012 he will be a Fellow at Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University.

You can read his recent articles on and also read his personal blogs and