The Institute for Security and Defence Analysis (ISDA) was founded in October 2009, as a private non-profit organization with the aim to provide an open and independent forum for the exchange of thoughts and ideas on security, defence, foreign policy and industry issues, between professionals, academics, members of the armed forces as well as the concerned public.
With forward operating bases in capitals and a network of researchers all over the region, the ISDA is predominantly concerned with matters of foreign and defence policy in the regions of the South Eastern Europe, the Middle East and the Persian Gulf.
The ISDA, as a private and independent organization takes a proactive role in monitoring all defence related news and information within the region of interest. It performs market research and analysis, forecasting and strategic assessments that are published regularly in its electronically distributed bulletins, available by subscription. Reports on specific issues of interest may be offered upon request, through the use of independent field experts and professionals coming from different backgrounds, including governmental and non governmental agencies armed forces, the defence and national think tanks.
These activities are complemented with the organization of conferences and workshops aimed at bringing together targeted audiences and facilitating interaction between participating parties.
The present organizational structure of ISDA includes the following departments (Units & Cells) and Directorates:
• Hellenic Intelligence Unit
• Middle East & Persian Gulf Intelligence Unit
• Southeastern Europe Intelligence Unit
• Energy Security Intelligence Unit
• Military Space Applications Cell
• Orion Operational Research Cell
• Administrative Directorate
Periklis N. Zorzovilis
Periklis N. Zorzovilis is a military analyst. He has worked for over fifteen years as a journalist in top circulation publications covering developments within the Greek defence environment and has held chief editorial positions in many prominent Greek defence reviews and magazines.
In parallel to other vocations, he has been local correspondent for various international publications including the US weekly “Defense News”. An associate of many international defence institutes and associations, he has also worked as a military analyst at the Defence Analyses Institute (DAI) affiliated to the Hellenic Ministry of National Defence and has been a visiting lecturer to the Hellenic Air Force Command and Staff College.
Since 2003, he has been active in the conceptual design, creation and operation of informational portals and other international web applications covering the fields of defence and security.
Director of Studies
Zacharias Michas is a Strategic Studies specialist. He has a graduate degree (MSc) from the International Politics Department of the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. He is an associate at the Center for the Middle East Development, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).
He has worked as a strategic and international security analyst at the Defence Analyses Institute (DAI) affiliated to the Hellenic Ministry of National Defence. Working as a journalist and strategic analyst for defence magazines, he was the defence Correspondent for the Greek daily journal “Imerissia”.
He is co-author (with Konstantinos Grivas) of the book “Hellenic Defence Strategy for the 21st Century”, author of a published study for the Imia Crisis between Greece and Turkey, as well as contributor of numerous articles and analyses to specialized defence and foreign policy magazines.
Anastasia Nikolopoulou holds a “Diplome d’Universite de Traducteur” – Degree in Translation, languages: Greek-French-English, from the University Marc Bloch Strasbourg.
She has worked in Athens for the European Finance Associates Group as a translator and administrative executive, responsible for communications with international partners and the correspondence and translation of Concession Agreements.
In 2004 she joined Epicos S.A., as responsible for the development of future growth concepts, strategies and roadmaps, while participating in the design, testing and updates of the Epicos portal.
She is fluent in French, Spanish, Portuguese and English.
Middle East & Persian Gulf Intelligence Unit Director
Antonia Dimou is a fellow at the Center for Strategic Studies, University of Jordan and senior fellow at the Center for Middle East Development (CMED), University of California, Los Angeles, United States since 2006.
She was Special Advisor to the Greek Ministry of National Defence on Middle East and Israel, and on Greek-American Political Relations from 2003 to 2006. She was also Resident Specialist at the Defence Analyses Institute, Greek Ministry of Defence from 2000 to 2003, Middle East Studies Coordinator at the Research Institute for European and American Studies from 2002 to 2006, Researcher at the Institute of International Relations from 2000 to 2001, and an Analyst at the Centre for Analysis and Planning, Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 2001.
She speaks English and Arabic and has a working knowledge of Iranian.
Major General (Ret) Polychronis Nalmpantis
Senior Research Fellow
Polychronis Nalmpantis was born in 1959 in Alexandroupolis. He graduated the Hellenic Military Academy in 1982. As a Hellenic Army officer, he was commander of several units and served in many posts, including that of Commander of Hellenic Armor School, Director of National Defence Policy (2004-06) and Deputy Director of Strategic Studies Division within the Hellenic Ministry of National Defence Minister’s Staff (1999-2001). He has also played a pivotal role in the formulation of the HMoND– Strategic Defence Review (2001) and the National Defence Policy (2005) documents, and contributed in the 1998-99 edition of the HMoND’s Defence White Paper on National Defence. He has retired from the military in March 2011 as Major General.
Throughout his career, he has participated in numerous National, NATO seminars including those organized by SPAPE. Furthermore, academic seminars organized by Harvard University / John F. Kennedy School of Government, within the “Black Sea Security Program”. He holds a Ptychio (Degree) in Political Sciences and International Studies from the Pantion University of Athens, a Diploma from CEDS (Centre d’ Etudes Diplomatiques et Strategiques) in Athens, a Diploma in the field of “Strategic Analysis and Conflict Crisis Management from the University of Aberdeen, as well as an M.Phil Degree in Strategic Studies from King’s College, University of London.
Polychronis Nalmpantis has also translated and edited “War”, the strategic studies textbook, by Lawrence Freedman in modern Greek.
Major General (Ret.) Konstantinos Loukopoulos
Senior Research Fellow
MG (Ret) Loukopoulos is a NATO and Euro – Atlantic Security analyst. He graduated from the Hellenic Military Academy in 1981 and he served his Service and Branch in various posts. He is a graduate of the Hellenic Army War College and National Defence School. Moreover he studied Strategic Security Studies in the European Center for Security Studies in Germany. In June 2001 he was in the NATO School Oberammergau, Course Director, lecturer and Chief Military Cooperation. His Subject Matter of Expertise was Euro – Atlantic Security and Military Cooperation.
He organized Mobile Training Teams and conducted Courses in Algeria, Tunisia, Greece as well as in the Russian Federation while two times served as Faculty Advisor in the National Defence Academy in Kiev. After his repatriation in Aug 2004, he served in the Hellenic National Defence General Staff (Joint Staff) as Press Officer–Spokesman. The period 2005-2006 he was the International Relations Division Director in the Armaments General Secretariat. In this capacity represented very often the Secretary General, in the NATO Conference of the Armaments Directors (CNAD) and at the same time in the Steering Committee for Armaments in the European Defence Agency (EDA).
His international career includes also a tour in the NATO HQ (IMS) for 2,5 years as Force and Defence Planning Coordinator. Major General (Ret) Loukopoulos has occasionally published various articles concerning NATO matters and Security Issues.
Dr. George Salapasidis
Dr. Georgios Salapasidis is a foreign and defence policy analyst. He holds a degree in Politics and Economics from the University of Macedonia, Thessaloniki and has a Master’s Degree in War Studies, King’s College, the University of London. He earned his PhD from Panteion University of Political and Social Sciences.
He has worked as a strategic and international security analyst at the Defence Analyses Institute (DAI) affiliated to the Hellenic Ministry of National Defence. He has also worked as a freelance strategic analyst for the Institute of International Relations, Athens and the National Defence College Alumni Association.
He is the author of numerous articles on Greek defence policy, NATO, American foreign and defence policy, as well as geo-strategy and energy security. His Doctorate Degree focused on Cumulative Resources of Power as coefficients of major war.
Sub-coordinator of Southeastern Europe Intelligence Unit & Research Fellow on Organized Crime Issues
Ioannis Michaletos is a security and energy affairs analyst. He has studied political science and human resources management in the UK and has participated in numerous training programs in his field of work. He is occupied as a consultant and editor for organizations and publications in the fields of country risk assesment, energy investment analysis and anti-terrorism policy with a special focus in the region of South Eastern Europe. He has cooperated and is affiliated with international organizations & policy networks regarding the aforementioned issues and regularly provides interviews and commentary to the international media. He has also worked as a freelance journalist for defence and security publications and has wide-range experience in preparing research reports.
Stylianos Kanavakis is a Defence and Foreign Policy Analyst. He holds a BA in Politics and Economics from the University of Macedonia (Thessaloniki), has an MA in International Relations and Strategic Studies from Panteion University (Athens) and an MA in War Studies, at King’s College in London. He served his military duty as a mechanized infantry reservist officer. He worked as a freelance journalist for defence magazines, as a defence analyst for the Institute of Defence Analyses of the Hellenic Ministry of Defence and as a researcher for the Association of National Defence Staff. He has also worked in development project management with an NGO in Albania. His areas of interest and research are Greek defence issues, defence technology and market, and open source intelligence.
He has interned at IHS – Jane’s Strategic Advisory Services in London and currently works as a Research Assistant with IHS – DS Forecast, in the C4ISR sector.
Dr. Aris Georgopoulos
Dr Georgopoulos is Lecturer in European and Public Law at the School of Law of the University of Nottingham. He is also member of the Athens Bar, registered at the Athens Court of Appeal and Head of the Research Unit for Strategic and Defence Procurement of the Public Procurement Research Group (PPRG). Dr Georgopoulos has been also a visiting scholar at the Law School of the University of Michigan for the academic year 2009-2010 after having been awarded a Grotius Scholarship from the Center for International and Comparative Law of the University of Michigan. Dr Georgopoulos has acted as expert advisor to a number of national authorities of EU Member States as well as national authorities of other countries in the framework of European Union’s CARDS capacity building program -on the review of their domestic public procurement legislation. Moreover he has been an expert advisor in similar projects in the framework of the USAID Millennium Challenge, the World Bank and in comparable public procurement programs of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
He has published a number of articles and book chapters on aspects of European Union Law, public procurement law, European Common Foreign Security and Defence Policy and European defence procurement.
Ioannis Nikolopoulos is a foreign policy and strategic affairs analyst. He holds a BA in International and European Studies from Panteion University (Athens) and has an MA in International Relations and Strategic Studies from the same University (Panteion). He worked as a researcher for the Center of Russia, Eurasia and Southeastern Europe (CERE) and the Institute of International Relations (I.I.R.-IDIS). His areas of interest and research are U.S. foreign policy, geopolitical issues and the history of warfare.
Dr. Georgios Filis
Dr. Filis is the publisher & director of the AEGIS PUBLISHING, which publishes two monthly journals the «Military Balance & Geopolitics» and the «Armies & Tactics». Dr. Filis is a Lecturer in the American College of Greece – Deree College where he teaches in the Business School (courses related to International Business, European Affairs & International Relations). Dr. Filis holds a Ph.D. in International Relations and Geopolitical Analysis from the Durham University, UK. His Master Degree in International Relations was completed in the Durham University as well, while his Bachelor Degree in Economics was completed in the Deree College. His research interests focus on matters of geopolitical theory & analysis, geoeconomics, energy security, Eurasian developments, Russia, Turkey, Greece and International Business.
Vassilis Pergalias is a military analyst. He holds a BA in War Studies and an MA in Conflict, Security and Development both from King’s College London. He has worked as a freelance writer for defence and military history magazines. His research interests lie in the field of Strategic Theory, European Security and finally the effects of privatization on modern conflict. His BA thesis focused on the regulation of Private Security Companies in Iraq and his MA thesis on the prospects and consequences of privatizing Security Sector Reform in developing countries.
Ioannis Dandoulakis is a foreign policy analyst and political theorist. He holds a BA in War from King’s College London, an MA in European and International Politics from University of Surrey and is currently a PhD candidate in the same institution doing research on NATO and ESDP over the last two decades. He is also a freelance writer of academic and other articles which are occasionally published on strategic defence journals and on the web. His BA dissertation thesis was on the Greek-Turkish relations in 1974-2004, while his MA and doctoral research alike is on NATO and European Defence Policy. His overall interests include Greek, European and global politics as well as political theory and philosophy.
Maria Loukopoulou completed her undergraduate studies in International and European Studies from the University of Piraeus and holds an MA in Middle East Politics from the University of Exeter. She spent the summer of 2006 in Amman for language and research at the University of Jordan. She has been a trainee in the Department of Middle East and the Gulf of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 2008 and she has worked as temporary officer at the NATO School in Oberammergau, while living in Germany. Since January 2011, Maria has been a research associate at the Center of for Mediterranean, Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies. Her interests focus on democratization, Iran and GCC foreign policy. She is fluent in English, German and she continues Arabic.
Ioannis Theodoratos is a journalist and a military analyst. Since 1997 he has been working as editor/editor in chief for defence magazines: “Modern Army”, “Modern Air Force & Navy”, “Hellenic Defence Review”. He worked also as editor in chief for the military history magazines: “Military History” and “Panzer”. He has written over 200 articles for defense related periodicals. Since 2006 he has lectured seminars in Defence Matters, History, Greek and Global Military History from Antiquity to 21st Century combined with the Geopolitic-Geostrategy analyses.
Foivos Apostolopoulos is a political scientist with graduate degrees in International Relations (MA) and Security Studies (PhD). He has worked as a researcher (1999-2003) at the Centre for Security Studies in the University of Hull on the topics of intelligence, satellite implementation on national security affairs, and military technology. He has also worked (2004-2006) as an analyst for the Defense Analyses Institute of the Hellenic Ministry of National Defense in the fields of national security, intelligence, geopolitics and military technology, and later on (2006-2009) as scientific collaborator for the Defencenet Media Ltd. Group of publications focusing on issues regarding intelligence, terrorism, geopolitics, innovative military technology, and national security. He has written numerous articles for defense- and security-related periodicals.
He is the co-author (with professor Ioannis Mazis) of the book “Greece’s New Defense Doctrine” (Athens, 2005) and of the article “Greece’s New Defense Doctrine. A Framework Proposal” (CRiSSMA working paper n.8-2005), published in the journal of the political science department of the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart of Milan (Italy).
He is a visiting lecturer at the Hellenic National Defense College, the Hellenic Navy Naval Warfare School, the Higher Interservice Warfare College, and a part-time lecturer at the Hellenic Police National Security School (national security theory and practice, comparative analysis of national security structures). He has also lectured seminars under the auspices of the 1st Hellenic Army and the Hellenic Tactical Air Force Command.
Southeastern Europe Intelligence Unit
He has graduated from the Hellenic Military Academy and holds an MA in Southeastern Europe Studies from the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. His master thesis focused on Security Sector Reforms in Serbia, Albania and F.Y.R. of Macedonia. In 2003-2004 he worked in former Yugoslavia as monitor of the European Union under the international mission “European Union Monitoring Mission” where he focused on minority, defense and security issues. In 2006-2007 he joined as an intern researcher the “Euro – Atlantic relations” team in the Institute for International Relations (IIR). The period 2010-2011 he joined as an intern researcher the Center for Russia, Eurasia and Southeastern Europe (CERENE) and more specifically in the Foreign affairs, Defense and Security group.
He has attended several seminars and conferences regarding international relations and more specifically in the field of defense, security, energy and conflict resolution. He speaks excellent English, Greek (mother tongue), good French and fair Arabic.
He is a security and energy affairs analyst. He has studied political science and human resources management in the UK and has participated in numerous training programs in his field of work. He is occupied as a consultant and editor for organizations and publications in the fields of country risk assessment, energy investment analysis and anti-terrorism policy with a special focus in the region of South Eastern Europe. He has cooperated and is affiliated with international organizations & policy networks regarding the aforementioned issues and regularly provides interviews and commentary to the international media. He has also worked as a freelance journalist for defense and security publications and has wide-range experience in preparing research reports.
Dimitrios has graduated from the Hellenic Military Academy in 1992 as a second lieutenant of the artillery. In 1997 he was transferred to the military aviation as a helicopter pilot serving in various military aviation units. Among the others he was appointed as the Hellenic Ministry of Defense representative (2007 – 2010) in France regarding the Greek armed forces purchase of cargo helicopters NH-90. Dimitrios holds an MA in law, economy and management with specialization in comparative military history, geostrategic, defense and security from the University “Aix-Marseille III”. He is scientific associate of the Institute of Continuing Education of the Hellenic Armed Forces General Staff (HAFGS) since July 2014. Apart from that he is a PhD candidate in the faculty of economics in the University of Peloponnesus doing his research in geo-economics. Dimitrios speaks excellent Greek (mother tongue), English and French, good German and fair Spanish and Serbian.
He is a Political Analyst and a PhD Candidate at the University of Athens, doing research on nationalistic rhetoric and the rise of nationalism in Europe. He holds a BA in Political Science and Public Administration from the University of Athens, a PgDip in Political Communication from the University of Glasgow, a MA in Southeast European Studies from the University of Athens and a MBA from the University of Nicosia. He has worked for the European Union and the United Nations and has several publications in scientific journals. He speaks excellent Greek (mother tongue), English and French, very good Spanish and good Italian and German.
She holds a BA in “Political Science and Public Administration” from the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens where she attends the MA program “International and European Studies”. In 2010 she has worked as an intern in the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs and more specifically in the Directorate for economic relations with the countries of North Africa, Middle East and Cyprus. She speaks excellent Greek and English and fair French.
Irene holds a BA in International Relations from the University “Libre de Bruxelles” and MPHIL in International Politics from the University of Glasgow. She has spent six months (2006) as an intern in the Delegation of the European Commission to the U.S.A working in the Deputy Head’s office doing research comparison and analysis on international political and economic subjects and writing reports. In 2012 she has worked as research assistant in Jean Monnet European Center of Excellence/National and Kapodistrian University of Athens where she focused on research and analysis on EU’s topics. Finally Irene has spent almost five years in the Greek National Television and Radio as a research analyst on international political topics (American and Greek foreign policy) discussed during radio broadcasting. In 2009 she has worked in the Institute of Research and Training on European Affairs (I.R.T.E.A) as radio presenter on topics concerning the EU, interviews from MEPs, policy analysis and comments on Europe’s news in collaboration with the European Parliament Information Office in Greece. Since September 2009 she works as an associate at the news section of the website “defencenet.gr”, monitoring and analyzing current political, economic, defense and security issues. She has published various research papers and articles regarding international politics, defense and security. Irene speaks excellent Greek, English and French.
Konstantina has graduated from the Hellenic Police Academy (BA) and holds a second BA from the University of Macedonia in applied informatics. Apart from that she has got her MA in economics and politics in South and Southeastern Europe from the University of Macedonia. Konstantina has attended several seminars and conferences focusing on Balkan politics, civil rights and illegal immigration. She has excellent knowledge of English and Greek language, good of Arabic and fair of German.
She has graduated from the “Democritus” University of Thrace holding a BA from the department of languages, literature and culture of the Black Sea countries (specialization specialization: Turkish language, literature and culture). Katerina holds an MA in international relations (focus on Greek – Turkish relations) from the Istanbul “Bilgi” University and she is a PhD candidate in “John Moores” University of Liverpool, School of Humanities and Social Sciences. In 2010 she has taught Turkish language in various organizations (National Bank of Greece, Greek Police, etc) while in 2011 she was a Scholar researcher in Jean Monnet European Center of Excellence/National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. She speaks excellent Greek (native speaker), Turkish and English and fair French.
Catrinel holds a BA in law from the University of Manchester and MA in public international law from the University of Leiden. She has long working experience in the private sector as legal advisor. Apart from that Catrinel is an active member of volunteer work and has worked on voluntary basis on various organizations. She speaks excellent Romanian (native language), English and German and fair Japanese and Spanish.
Evangelos Koulis (GREECE)
External Scientific Associate/Research Analyst on Political and Defence & Security Issues
Evangelos holds a BS in Political Science & History from Panteion University of Social & Political Sciences in Greece. He also holds an MA in International Relations from the University of Manchester. His MA dissertation focused on several UN Peace Operations regarding the Protection of Civilians (POC) issues and how they have transformed since 1999. His area of interests includes issues such as International Terrorism, Security & Defence and Political issues. In 2010, he worked as an intern in the Hellenic Parliament. Since 2013, he joined a UK-based NGO, PEPAIDS, alleviating poverty and HIV/AIDS in Zambia, as a volunteer Researcher and Consultant developing several research papers, drafting a proposal to obtain funding for a new project and facilitated several meetings to monitor existing and develop new policies for the NGO. Recently, he joined the Center for International Strategic Analyses as an Analyst. He speaks Greek, English, French and has basic knowledge of Russian.
Evanthia is studying International, European and Area Studies in Panteion University of Social & Political Sciences, in Greece. Since 2012, she has participated in Model United Nations and Model European Parliament in Bulgaria, Belgium and Greece. She is a volunteer in the translation workshop of UNICEF. She has attended several seminars and conferences regarding international relations focusing on Balkan politics. She speaks excellent Greek (native language), Albanian, English and fair Italian.
Maja has graduated from the Panteion University, holding a BA in Communications, Media and Culture (specialization in Journalism) with a support of Greek’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs Scholarship. Afterwards she gained a MA in Southeast European Studies from National and Kapodistrian University of Athens with a specialization in Sources of Conflicts and her master thesis was focused on “Inter-ethnic relations and the problem of reconciliation in post-conflict Bosnia and Herzegovina”. She worked as a freelance journalist on wider range of topics and did her internship in Alexis Foundation India where she was editing on conflict resolution, terrorism, politics, media and culture of SEE. In parallel to that, she is a PhD candidate at the Faculty of IR, communications and culture of Panteion University where she is guiding a research on how memory management through monuments impacts the building of National/ Ethnic identities and the reconciliation in post-conflict Bosnia and Herzegovina. She speaks Serb, Bosnian and Croatian (native languages), English and Greek (excellent), Portuguese (Good) and Italian, Spanish and French (fair).
Sanin holds a BA in Political Science from University of Sarajevo and MA in Southeast European Studies from National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. He served as an intern to the Parliamentary Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Foreign Policy and Trade Commission in the House of People. His previous working experience is mainly related to social research and publishing. His areas of interest are political marketing, social psychology as well as film and mass media. He speaks English and the official languages of Bosnia and Herzegovina.