Inaugural Mints Conference Tackles Major Issues
The BMI-organized gathering attempted to understand the political and economic context for business and social affairs in 2017, the direction of international relations following “Brexit” – the British exit from the European Union – and the potential impact of the upcoming presidential election in the USA.
The opening symposium on “The International System” was addressed by Dr. Boris Mints of Moscow, founder of BMI. Talks were given by public figures from leading European institutions and a select group of academics who joined members of the BMI’s International Board. Head of BMI Prof. Itai Sened, Chair of the Department of Public Policy at TAU’s Gershon H. Gordon Faculty of Social Sciences, gave an overview of the Institute’s activities, noting that during its first year of operation, it had awarded scholarships and research grants, organized conferences, and gained recognition in international forums.
The merit of various strategic policy solutions was brought before the group to be judged and assessed. Debate was vigorous as participants sought to determine the most effective approaches to fixing global problems.
The forum comprised three panels: “Tension, Prospects and Complexities between East and West” featuring renowned economics expert Prof. William T. Bianco of the University of Arizona; “The Political Economy of Russian Engagement in Europe”; and a round table on global affairs in 2017. The keynote speaker was Prof. Simon Hix, Harold Laski Professor of Political Science, London School of Economics. The closing lecture was given by Václav Klaus, co-founder of the Václav Klaus Institute and former President of the Czech Republic, who spoke on the effects of Brexit on Europe.
A group of TAU doctoral students were given the task of summarizing the discussion and its findings, defining the steps to follow on the most pressing issues, and publicizing the work of the forum. The first Annual Report of the BMI for 2016 was presented at the Conference.
Dr. Mints with TAU doctoral students Sagit Azari-Viesel (left) and Karen Umansky (right)