Fotis Papathanasiou was born in Athens. He studied Medicine at the University of Athens and specialized in Sport Medicine at the University of Paris. He then studied International Relations in Paris, where he received his PhD from the Ecole des Hautes Etudes Internationales, where he taught Cultural and City Diplomacy as a Visiting Professor (2002-2010).
He served as a Special Adviser to the former French Minister of Culture, Jack Lang (1985-1989). Special adviser to the Greek Foreign Minister (1991-93), Deputy Mayor of Athens (1998-2002), Secretary General (1990-1994) and Vice President of the Board of the Greek National Opera (2006-2009). Executive Secretary of the Union of Mayors of Southeast Europe (1998-2004). CEO of the Center for Diplomatic and Strategic Studies (1994-present).
He founded the Technopolis of Athens and the Maria Callas Museum. Since 2009 he is the General Manager of the B&M Theocharakis Foundation of Fine Arts and Music. In 2016 he was elected President of the Association of the Foundations “FILOTIS”. Member of the Friends of Music Association he is also a member of the Board of the Megaron (2020). He is an Assistant Professor in Arts Management at the International Hellenic University.
He is the author of many books and hundreds of articles on Music, Medicine and International Relations.
He has been awarded the Legion of Honor and he is Commander of the Arts and Letters Order of the French Republic, as well as the Austrian Republic’s Cross for Arts and Sciences.