Sasha Toperich

Senior Fellow, Senior Fellow and Director - Mediterranean Basin Initiative, CTR - SAIS

Sasha Toperich

Senior Fellow, Senior Fellow and Director - Mediterranean Basin Initiative, CTR - SAIS


Sasha Toperich is a Senior Fellow and Mediterranean Basin Intitiative Director at the Center for Transatlantic Relations at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University in Washington. He is also President of the America – Bosnia Foundation, President of the World Youth Leadership Network, business consultant to a number of companies world-wide, and a world-renowned pianist. Dr. Toperich is the Coordinator of the Mediterranean Basin Initiative, co-chairman of the Mediterranean Women in Leadership and Civil Society Conference, and chairman of the Supervisory Board at the Mediterranean Development Initiative in Tunisia, established as part of the Initiative. Together with Andrew Mullins, he is an editor of the book “A New Paradigm: Perspectives on the Changing Mediterranean” (Brookings Institute/CTR, 2014). With Aylin Unver Noi, he edited a book “Challenges of Democracy in the European Union and Its Neighbors” (Brookings Institute/CTR, 2016).

He is a co-author of two papers in the book “Unfinished Business: Western Balkans and the International Community” (Brookings Institute/CTR, 2012) titled “The Regulatory Environment in the Financial System in Bosnia and Herzegovina and How to Improve It” and “A New Paradigm for the Mediterranean: US – North Africa- Southeast Europe”. He also co-authored the article “Challenges of Democracy in Bosnia – Herzegovina” in the book “Challenges of Democracy in the European Union and Its Neighbors” (Brookings Institute/CTR 2016). In 2011, Dr. Toperich co-chaired a major international conference in Sarajevo titled “The Western Balkans: Progress, Stagnation, or Regression”, organized by the America-Bosnia Foundation and the Center for Transatlantic Relations SAIS. He was also a Coordinator of the “SAIS Southeast Europe Economic Forum” held in March 2012 at the Johns Hopkins University in Washington DC.

Dr. Toperich has also held several diplomatic positions for Bosnia and Herzegovina. In 2002 – 2003, he was advisor to the Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the United Nations, from 2003- 2007, he was a Special Envoy of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the United States; and in 2009 and 2010, he served as a Counselor at the Permanent Mission of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the United Nations. He is a featured columnist at and has a blog at the Huffington Post.

A native of Sarajevo, he earned his B.A. and M.A. degrees in piano from the Rubin Academy of Music in Jerusalem and his doctorate of music from the Academy in Lovran, Croatia. Dr. Toperich has performed concerts in Austria, Germany, France, The Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, Russia, Croatia, Serbia, Switzerland, China, South Korea, Japan, Brazil, Egypt, Israel, Liberia and the United States, in legendary halls including the Concertgebow, Lisinski, Carnegie Hall, and ORT Hall, and with conductors such as Zubin Mehta and Kazushi Ono. VPRO TV in the Netherlands produced a film entitled “Sasha Toperich plays Rachmaninov at Cristophori in Amsterdam”. At the age of sixteen, Toperich won first place in the national piano competition in the former Yugoslavia. He is the recipient of the UNESCO Artist for Peace title.

All session by Sasha Toperich

Opening Remarks

Hotel Europe Sarajevo