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The Atlantic Institute

The Rhodes Trust announced a £75 million partnership in 2016 with The Atlantic Philanthropies, an international, limited-life foundation established by entrepreneur Charles F. Feeney.

The Rhodes Trust hosts the Atlantic Institute which works to connect the seven global Atlantic Fellows programs: Dynamic, accomplished leaders and thinkers, Atlantic Fellows are researchers, teachers, health professionals, activists, scholars, entrepreneurs, artists, writers, government officials and others dedicated to tackling global challenges to health, equity, opportunity and inclusion.

The Atlantic Institute seeks to amplify the impact of the Atlantic Fellows by:

  • Supporting lifelong community among Atlantic Fellows, with access to resources and opportunities to connect, learn and work together;
  • Promoting collaboration and shared approaches across Atlantic Fellows Programs, with virtual and face-to-face platforms for sharing knowledge;
  • Extending community by connecting Atlantic Fellows and Programs to a broader global network of equity-focused leadership initiatives, and
  • Raising global awareness of the work of the Fellows, and of the Programs.


“The Atlantic Fellows are energetic, diverse, international leaders who are acting on the world’s urgent needs and collaborating to build healthy and equitable societies. The Fellows’ work, individually and as a community, represents our highest aspirations for what our founder Chuck Feeney and The Atlantic Philanthropies set out to achieve over 35 years ago,” - Christopher G. Oechsli, president and CEO of The Atlantic Philanthropies.

The Atlantic Institute provides resources and opportunities for the Fellows to connect, learn and work together to amplify their influence and impact.

Each of the seven Atlantic Fellows programs is focused on solving a distinct 21st-century problem. They include reducing the impact of dementia worldwide; achieving health equity in South Africa, Southeast Asia and the United States; advancing racial equity in the United States and South Africa; improving the well-being of communities in Australia and the Pacific by drawing on the knowledge and expertise of Indigenous people; and addressing global inequalities. The programs are: 

  • Atlantic Fellows for Equity in Brain Health based at The Global Brain Health Institute at Trinity College Dublin and the University of California, San Francisco
  • Atlantic Fellows for Health Equity in Southeast Asia based at The Equity Initiative at the China Medical Board in Bangkok
  • Atlantic Fellows for Social and Economic Equity based at the International Inequalities Institute at the London School of Economics and Political Science
  • Atlantic Fellows for Health Equity in South Africa based at TEKANO
  • Atlantic Fellows for Social Equity based at The University of Melbourne
  • Atlantic Fellows for Racial Equity based at Columbia University in New York City and the Nelson Mandela Foundation in Johannesburg
  • Atlantic Fellows for Health Equity based at the George Washington University Health Workforce Institute

There are currently 267 Fellows, with diverse and inspiring stories, hail from 48 countries and disciplines. Some Atlantic Fellows and their work include:

  • Tala Al-Rousan, a Jordanian doctor and an Atlantic Fellow for Equity in Brain Health, is examining the causes and connections between stress from war and cases of dementia among refugees in the Middle East.
  • Fredrick Alucheli, an Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity and Disability Inclusion Advisor at Light for the World, is investigating how unequal access to educational opportunities affects employment of persons with disabilities in Kenya.
  • Faye McMillan, an Atlantic Fellow for Social Equity and an Associate Professor at Charles Sturt University, is developing a mental health app that creates a community of support based on people identified within an individual’s mobile phone contact list.
  • Santi Lapbenjakul, an Atlantic Fellow for Health Equity in Southeast Asia and champion of care for the elderly in Thailand, is collaborating with the government to train caregivers and redirect healthcare resources toward home care.
  • Rukia Lumumba, an Atlantic Fellow for Racial Equity and founder of People’s Advocacy Institute in Jackson, Mississippi, is working to develop a community model centered around co-governance to expand economic opportunity, promote sustainability and build community.
  • Sibongile Mtungwa, an Atlantic Fellow for Health Equity in South Africa, is the director of the Women’s Leadership and Training Programme where she is exploring partnerships and sustainable ways of advancing girls’ health, education and identity as part of their human rights.
  • Christina Rosenthal, an Atlantic Fellow for Health Equity, CEO of Paradigm Dental Center and Founder of The 516 Foundation, is practicing dentistry and connecting under-represented and/or under-resourced youth to mentors and resources needed to become healthcare professionals.


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Voices from the Atlantic Fellows Community

A truly global group of changemakers.