Prof. Dr. Kostianev became an Honorable Member of the Aristotle Committee  The Rector of the Medical University in Plovdiv brings his expertise to the Committee


World Business Assembly (WBA) is a non-governmental organization which supports and fosters economic, community and charitable partnerships and implementation of projects at an international level. The core values of WBA are honesty, quality, achievement, prosperity and mutual respect. The main events which WBA organizes are the WBA Conference of Leaders, which is a meeting place for world leaders in different fields such as politics, science, culture and economy, and The International Aristotle and Socrates Award Ceremonies.

WBA chooses its members very carefully. Members of WBA are business leaders, prominent scientists, politicians and experts who have contributed greatly to the development of their fields. WBA covers more than 35 countries and is not restricted to any geographical scope. Moreover, WBA is more than happy to find collaborators sharing its values in new countries. The members need to meet the following criteria: work in politics, business, education, culture or science, be committed to excellence, have achieved significant successes in their fields, and be tolerant and professional.

Now, WBA is proud to present its new member – an Honorable Member of the Aristotle Committee – Prof. Dr. Stephan Kostianev, Rector of the Medical University in Plovdiv, Bulgaria. With his work, Prof. Dr. Kostianev has undoubtedly proved that he is an outstanding scientist with immaculate work ethics who is dedicated to excellence. Moreover, he showed his great leadership and management skills in his capacity of Rector of the Medical University in Plovdiv, Bulgaria – a position for which he was elected in 2011. Not surprisingly, he was reelected for a second term in 2015 with a huge majority.

WBA strongly believes that his expertise would be very useful and that his professional successes will inspire many young leaders. Prof. Dr. Kostianev started his career path at the Medical University in Plovdiv in 1972. After getting his Masters’ in 1978, he started his professional career at the same university in 1979… and he has been working there ever since! He started as an assistant to go all the way to Rector 32 years later! During this time, he was an associate professor, a professor, a dean and Head of the Pathophysiology Department. He holds two doctorates in Medicine and his professional interests are in the fields of Pathophysiology, Pulmonary function diagnostics and Children’s respiratory physiology. He was also a visiting professor at the St. James` Hospital and the Trinity College, University Dublin, Ireland, the Clinical University Saint Luck, Brussels, Belgium, and the INSERM, U 14, Vandoeuvre-les-Nancy, France. He has also done short-term exchanges all over the world. He has more than 150 publications in peer-reviewed journals and was cited more than 700 times. Prof. Dr. Kostianev has participated in clinical research and has had an active role in projects by Tempus, the World Bank and the Medical University in Plovdiv and whose total value exceeds 7 million euros. He is also a member of the European Respiratory Society and the European Academy of Allergology and Clinical Immunology.

We should also underline the changes that he brought to the Medical University in Plovdiv after his election as Rector in 2011. Prof. Dr. Kostianev managed to increase the budget, to attract investments to the university and to modernize its technical equipment and its infrastructure. He is rated very positively by colleagues, students and third entities that work with the university.

One of the latest news for him is that Prof. Dr. Kostianev took part in the successful WBA Conference of Leaders and Socrates Award Ceremony 2015 – Rome, Italy, where he gave the awards in some categories. We believe that he will have a strong and long-lasting impact in his capacity of an Honorable Member of the Aristotle Committee.

Following is the transcript of the speech, Prof. Dr. Kostianev made on the evening of 27th September 2015 at the Socrates Award Ceremony:

International Socrates Awards 2015

Corr. Mem. Prof. Stefan Kostianev, MD, PhD, DMSc

Rector of Medical University–Plovdiv, Bulgaria



I find it difficult to describe the pleasure and honor I feel to be with you this evening. To present awards to those who have most deserved them because of their hard work, dedication and self-sacrifice is itself a rewarding and fulfilling experience. As a Business Assembly. This evening I am, so to speak, on the other side but I am no less excited than I was when I was at your place. I would like to express my gratitude to the organizers at the World Business Assembly and to the Aristotle Committee for the invitation to be part of this wonderful event and the opportunity to meet so many inspiring people from all corners of the world.

Socrates is believed to have said “I am not an Athenian or a Greek, but a citizen of the world.” What better way to describe this evening? The fact that at this ceremony in the beautiful, ancient and cosmopolitan city of Rome there are people from several continents is a proof that we reach progress and success only through multicultural dialogue and mutual respect. If we want to develop personally as well as professionally, we should keep in mind that any one of us is only a small part of a vast and dynamic world. Our enterprises, indeed all our efforts, must be directed not to the satisfaction of our transient selves, but to humanity as a whole.

In our times of turbulent change, violent conflicts, humanitarian crisis and unprecedented wave of migration we should keep Socrates’ wisdom both in our minds and our hearts. For several decades, I have been part of Medical University–Plovdiv, a leading institution in medical training in Europe. Our University’s motto is “Dedicated to Humanity” and we always strive to teach our students not only to be experts at what they do, but to be humane and to understand the moral imperatives and responsibilities of those dedicated to live a good life by saving lives and curing illness. For what is good, ladies and gentlemen, is not equivalent to personal utility, but to sacrificing one’s own quest for perfection in order to help those in need.

DEAR AWARDEES, you will receive the Socrates Award tonight, which is a token of the success you have achieved in the fields of Government management, Education, Science and Technology, Culture and Art, Economics and Business, Medicine and Pharmacy. Never doubt that you have deserved these awards, for nothing of any worth and value comes for free. These awards are a proof of your innovative ideas and tireless strivings – often accompanied with many privations – to bring them to life. However, you should never forget that the Socrates Award comes with certain responsibilities to the legacy and memory of a great man, if ever there were great men. Because, to quote Socrates once more, “We cannot live better than in seeking to become better.”

This evening’s awardees come from countries like Turkey, Australia, India, Nigeria, South Africa, Ghana and Uganda. I am not a historian but a medical doctor and a teacher. But I know that those countries and their peoples have had their fair share of political, economic and military turbulence. They have all had dark periods in their history and their exacerbating struggles to get out of the darkness with dignity. Indeed, some of those struggles continue today. Being here to receive the Socrates Award in your respective fields of expertise proves that the creative spirit of humanity is strongest in times of uncertainty. There are no limits to what you can achieve when you invest good intentions and all your energy.

To the winners I would like to say “Congratulations!” To the organizers, a warmhearted “Thank you!” I wish everyone a splendid evening and I do not doubt that we all are going to use this opportunity to establish new friendships and new partnerships as citizens of the world.”

Corr. Mem. Prof. Stefan Kostianev, MD, PhD, DMSc – CV