Brief History of the Department of Social Policy
The Department of Social Policy was established by Law 4610/2019 (Government Gazette AD 70 of 7 May 2019) and comes from the division of the Department of Social Administration and Political Science into three departments: a) Department of Social Policy, b) Department of Social Work and c) Department of Political Science.
It started its operation on September 1, 2019. However, this is not a new University Department. It is the continuation of the pathway/major of Social Administration and Policy of the Department of Social Administration, which was established in 1994 with the P.D. 304/1994 (Government Gazette AD 163) and later in the framework of the “Athena” Plan merged with the Department of Political Science to form the Department of Social Administration and Political Science.
In these almost 25 years of operation, the Department of Social Administration and in particular the pathway/major of Social Administration and Policy has contributed decisively to the development of the field of Social Policy in higher education in Greece, through pioneering studies of the Greek society conducted by internationally renowned academics that served it. It has provided comprehensive undergraduate and postgraduate studies to hundreds of students who became its graduates and many of whom work in social policy institutions in Greece and abroad (European Union). It has also awarded doctoral degrees to many well-known researchers in the field of Social Policy. The accumulated research and educational experience of the Department makes it a mature academic unit which will continue from a better position (as a scientifically self-existing Department of Social Policy) to offer knowledge and specialization in the fields of Social Policy to its students.
The Department of Social Policy is part of the School of Social, Political and Economic Sciences of the Democritus University of Thrace.
A Brief History of the Democritus University of Thrace
Democritus University of Thrace (D.U.Th.) was founded with the legislative decree no. 37 in July 27th 1973 and started to run in the academic year 1974-1975 with the admission of its first students to the Department of Civil Engineering in Xanthi and the Department of Law in Komotini. It was named ‘Democritus’ in honor of the ancient Greek philosopher Democritus, whose origin was from the town of Abdera in the Prefecture of Xanthi. The administrative seat of the University resides in the city of Komotini, the capital city of the Administrative Region of East Macedonia & Thrace while administrative services are also provided in all four cities where the university expands.
Democritus University of Thrace has, since its foundation, been the first Greek regional multi-campus university that not only solely served purely educational objectives. Aapart from its primary educational and research activity, its running via its multiple campuses, at first in the cities of Xanthi and Komotini, and later on in Alexandroupolis and Orestiada, has essentially participated in the efforts for the economic growth of the Administrative Region of Thrace. At the same time, the university has also significantly contributed to the reinforcement of the national and cultural character of the wider area in Thrace as well as to the upgrade of its living and social status through direct and indirect initiatives.
The University is classified among the biggest Greek Universities in terms of the number of its active student population. Geographically dispersed throughout Thrace, with 8 Schools, 20 Departments and a wide variety of Postgraduate Programs, with a student population that reaches approximately 29,000 (undergraduate, graduate students and candidate PhD students) and with a research and teaching staff that exceeds 700 people, the university still is the only academic institution in the Administrative Region of East Macedonia & Thrace. The outline of the course curricula on offer covers themajority of modern scientific subjects starting from the School of Agricultural and Forestry Sciences in Orestiada, the Schools of Health Sciences and Education Studies in Alexandoupolis, the Schools of Law, Classical and Humanity Studies, Social, Political and Economic Studies and the School of Physical Education and Sports in Komotini to the Polytechnic School in Xanthi. Obviously, the education provided and the research undertaken at the university are both highly multi-faceted. Additionally, the international academic dimension of the institution in combination with the longitudinal commitment of its staff to the quality of the educational services it provides have as an immediate consequence the creation of a dominant footprint in the academic timeliness of our country and the wider geographic area.
Within a vividly changing environment, D.U.Th. continues to aim both at educational and research excellence while, it also builds upon the challenges and demands of the future. It re-orients its research strategy based upon innovation, entrepreneurship, technology, the new digital era, the growth of large-scale research and thepursuit of financial resources from various agencies both in Greece and abroad. Nowadays, the landmark of D.U.Th. is imparted via innovative graduate programs of international recognition as well as through initiatives that allows the university to overcome the barriers of modern bureaucracy and geographical seclusion.
D.U.Th. seeks to reinforce its research profile through collaborations and projects that render it one of the leading research organizations in Greece.