Professor Federico Mayor was born in Barcelona, Spain. He holds a PhD in Pharmacy and has been Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in the Universities of Granada, from 1963-1973, and Autonomous of Madrid, from 1973-2004. He was Director-General of UNESCO from 1987 until 1999. He was Advisor to the President of the Spanish Government from 1977-78, Minister of Education and Science from 1981-1982, and Deputy in the European Parliament in 1978.

In 1999, Professor Mayor created the Foundation for a Culture of Peace in order to implement the Declaration and Programme of Action for a Culture of Peace (United Nations General Assembly, September 1999). In 2002, he was appointed to chair the European Research Council Expert Group (ERCEG), and in 2005, former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan designated him as Co-President of the High Level Group for the Alliance of Civilizations, a post which he held from 2005-2007.

In January, 2007 he was appointed president of the Initiative for Science in Europe (ISE). He has served as chairman of the board of directors of the Inter Press Service (IPS) news agency since June, 2008. In October, 2010 he was appointed president of the International Commission against the Death Penalty.

To learn more about Federico Mayor, please visit Inter Press Service’s website.

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