On 13th October 1999, scholars and students from universities in Germany and abroad met at the country house of the University of Münster at Rothenberge in order to found the Academia Platonica Septima Monasteriensis, a non-profit group.
In contrast to the International Plato Society, the Academia Platonica Septima will not focus its attention primarily on the works of Plato, but rather on the writings of his early interpreters, from ancient times until the Renaissance. The example that it wishes to follow is that of the Platonic academies of the past, i.e. Plato's own Athenian school in its four successive manifestations and the Florentine Platonic Academy founded by Cosimo de' Medici. In emulation of the ancient Platonic academy, the Academia Platonica Monasteriensis will consist of an outer and an inner circle. The inner circle is formed by scholars, who are all recognized experts in the area of Platonist studies. The outer circle embraces advanced students and young scholars who are pursuing their studies in the area of Platonism.
The Academy's goal is to promote the study of Platonist writings. This will take place in the following way. In the meetings, which are held once a year, Platonist texts are read and interpreted in a group context. A young scholar, who is preparing his dissertation or Habilitationsschrift, will be invited to discuss his work in the circle of scholars. This will take place not in the form of an individual presentation, but rather through shared reading and interpretation of the text on which his or her study is focussed. This was the procedure followed by Plato in his own school and continued by his successors. 'To spend some days teaching, learning and living Platonically': this is the motto of the Academia Platonica Monasteriensis.