A.         First International Congress on Macedonian Studies (February 1988)


In February 1988 the AIMS organized its First International Congress on Macedonian Studies with the participation of 234 renowned academics and academicians from 35 European, American, Asian and Australian Universities (Poster of the Congress). The proceedings of the Conference led to the publication of a collective volume edited by A. M. Tamis, entitled Macedonian Hellenism, published in 1990 in Melbourne by the River Seine Press.  The intention of the congress was to stimulate academic research, the dissemination and discussion of findings and the identification of future directions for research.

A total of 63 participating academics presented a paper. The range of topics covered is illustrated in the Program of the First International Congress and included theoretical and Empirical aspects of archaeological evidence in the region, arts and culture, history, literature, anthropology, linguistics, international law, folkloric tradition, immigration and settlements patterns. The works of the Conference highlighted the complexity of the issues surrounding the Macedonian cultural heritage in an explicatory and immitigable way.

The Congress was open by the Deputy-Prime Minister of Australia and was attended by prominent academics, politicians, Scholars and students. This congress provoked the unnecessary reaction of the Macedoslav community who demonstrated not only at the site of the venue where the Congress was taking place but also at the venues where the social events happened.

The participants of the First International Congress on Macedonian Studies included the following prominent academics:

Photios Petsas, Constantine Romaios, Georgios Babiniotis, Nicholas Katsanis, George Delopoulos, Nicholas Nikonanos, George Lavvas, Harilaos Symeonidis, Milton Papanicolaou, Antonios Thavoris, Euthymia Georgiadis-Koundoura, Dimitrios Panternalis, Ioannis Hassiotis, Phaedon Malingoudis, Vissilios Dimitriadis, Vassilios Kontis, Stephanos Papadopoulos, Agapitos Tsopanakis, Michael Sakellariou, Artemis Xanthopoulou-Kyriacou, Charalambos Papastathis, Areti Fergadis-Toundas,  Ioannis papandrianos, Kaeti Manolopoulou, Evdokia Miliatzidou-Ioannou, Lring D. Danforthm Ricki Van Boeschoten, Evangelos Kofos, Evangelos Kyriacoudis, A. Papaspyropoulos, Michael Katiforis, Nicholas Themelis, Poly Enepekidis, Deftereos Angelos, Constantine Plastiras, Constantine Pyrzas, Vickie Hatzigeorgiou-Hassiotis and Nicholas Ioannou;


Charalmbos Bousbourelis (Vema newspaper), George Karayiorgas (Kathimerine newspaper), Eleni Kypreou-Filippidou (Acropolis newspaper);


Ministers and parliamentarians:

Stylianos Papathemelis, Nicholas Martis, Vassilios Papas;


Friends of the AIMS in Greece:

Nicholas Kyriacou (President), Maro Lazaridis, Zois Oikonomou, Constantinos Stergiadis,  Pantelis Vysoulis, Gregorios Velkos,


B. Second International Congress on Macedonian Studies (8-13 July 1991)

In July 1991, the AIMS organized its Second International Congress on Macedonian Studies focusing on Ancient Macedonia at the University of Melbourne and was dedicated to renowned British historian Nicholas Hammond (Poster of the Congress). The Congress organized with the active participation of the University of Thessaloniki under the leadership of Prof. Dimitris Pantermalis and the Department of Classics and Archaeology of the University of Melbourne under the leadership of Peter Connor (Program of the Second International Congress on Macedonian Studies). The Publication of this Congress was sponsored by Ioannis Boutaris of the Boutaris Wines Industries in Thessaloniki and Greece. The Academic Committee of the Congress was headed by the President of the Department Peter Connor. Other members of the Committee included Prof. R. Milns (University of Queensland), A. McDevitt (Monash University), Dr. N. Ashton (University of Western Australia), P. Thomas (University of New England), Prof. Con Castan (University of Queensland), Professor D. Pantermalis (University of Thessaloniki), C. Procopiou (Victoria College) Dr. G. Horsley, C.N. Fifis and A.M. Tamis (La Trobe University).

 Publication Outcome:

Prof. Peter Connor wrote in the Preface of his Ancient Macedonia: an Australian Symposium:

“…The Congress was a great success. Large numbers of participants attended the day-sessionsdevoted to specialist papers, whilst the general public filled the large Sunderland Theatre of the Medical Centre on each of the three nights to hear the keynore speakers: Professors E. Borza, R.M. Errington and D. Pantermalis. The Symposium was opened on Monday 8th July at 8.15 by Professor Nicholas Hammond in the Great Hall of the National Gallery of Victoria before a capacity audience.

            The theme of the Symposium was the history and archaeology of Ancient Macedonia and aims to present recent research by scholars from Australia and Greece, together with the contributions of several eminent international scholars. Our four special guests each performed on two occasions. The program achieved an affective balance between history and archaeology and, in particular, the participants at both day and evening sessions were privileged to hear of the very latest archaeological discoveries in Northern Greece…”

Eminent Professor N. G. L. Hammond in his introduction of the volume Ancient Macedonia: an Australian Symposium offered the following comments:

“The organizers of the Second International Congress on Macedonian Studies are to be congratulated on bringing together a number of historians from Australia, Europe and America and a brilliant team of archaeologists from Greece and Australia. The Congress provided a wonderful opportunity for scholars to report on their own researches and to learn from one another. Moreover, it was very well attended by citizens of Melbourne, who proved most appreciative of both the public lectures and the specialists papers and sometimes took part in the discussions…”

and Professor N.G. L. Hammond notes with emphasis:

“…Many recent archaeological discoveries have confirmed the correctness of ancient oral and literary traditions, For example, the excavation of the ‘Cemetery of Tumuli’ below Vergina has revealed phases of occupation which correspond well with the oral tradition of the Makedones, as told to Herodotus, that their early neighbours were the Phrygians eho then migrated to Asian and that, according to Strabo, Illyrians and Epirotes occupied the area next. We should therefore be ready to accept the tradition in Hesiod that the Macedones were Greek-speaking people who lived in very early times in the high country of Mt. Olympus and Pieria…”


C.         Third International Congress on Macedonian studies (10-17 July 1995)

The Third International Congress entitled Byzantine Macedonia (Program of the Third International Congress on Macedonian Studies) organized by the Australian Institute for Macedonian studies was held at the University of Melbourne 10-17 July 1995 (Poster of the Congress), with the participation of the Australian Association for Byzantine Studies, the University of Thessaloniki, the University of Melbourne and La Trobe University. The Academic Committee comprised Prof. Roger Scott, John Burke (University of Melbourne), Professor A. M. Tamis (La Trobe University), Professor Phaedon Malingoudis (University of Thessaloniki).

This is how Prof. Roger Scott and John Burke described the Congress in the two volumes that they edited (Byzantine Macedonia – Identity, Image and History; Byzantine Macedonia- Art, Architecture, Music and Hagiography):


“…The Conference was the third international conference on Macedonia organized by the Australian Institute for Macedonian Studies. As with its two earlier conferences on Macedonia (1988) and Ancient Macedonia (19910, the Conference organizers were able to add to our local strengths by bringing to Australia a distinguished group of scholars from Europe and America with, on this occasion, an appropriately strong representation from Thessaloniki. The Australian Institute for Macedonian studies aimed at providing not merely an academic forum within the discipline but also at making this discussion accessible to the general community of Melbourne and at reaching the English-speaking audience in Australia rather than only the Hellenic one…”

A total of 34 distinguished scholars from across the world contributed to the success of this Congress, including Prof. Angeliki Laiou form Harvard University, Johannes Koder from Vienna University, Ioannis Tarnanidis from the Aristotle University, Jochannes Irmscher from Berlin University, Andreas Schminck from Frankfurt University, Dion Smyth from King’s College, University of London and Prof. Pirros Thorno of the University Tirana.

To download and read the brief review of the Third International Congress on Byzantine Macedonia, see 3rd International Congress of Macedonian Studies, Macedonian Bulletin, p. 8, vol. 21, 1995.