Security Scholars Program
PSSI was the first public policy group in the Czech Republic – and one of the first in the region – to launch an intensive educational initiative to train future generations of national security-minded experts in the Czech Republic and the region. In the interest of providing world-class experience for students and young professionals, PSSI has worked to make available foreign policy and national security luminaries from around the world, as well as senior policy practitioners in this field, in small group settings.
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PSSI’s core educational program is its two-semester Robinson-Martin Security Scholars Academy (RMSSA), operating continuously since 2002. This two-semester course offers a range of distinguished experts to lecture our students (including diplomats, journalists, parliamentarians, and current and former high-level security policy decision-makers). Its curriculum covers breaking issues as well as historical ones for the purpose of building a solid foundation for our scholars.
To expand its reach, PSSI also established a formal partnership with the Charles University in Prague in 2007, initially through security-oriented accredited courses and culminating in PSSI’s co-sponsorship of the University’s Master’s Degree Program in International Security Studies at the Faculty of Social Sciences, accredited in both in the Czech and English languages. In addition, PSSI supports specialized courses and a lecture series in Space Security and Economic & Financial Warfare with further opportunities provided by the William P. Clark and Oldřich Černý Ph.D. scholarships for two four-year doctoral students.
In 2019, PSSI celebrated the 15th anniversary of its annual NATO Summer School, organized with the support of NATO’s Public Diplomacy Division and the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs. This intensive one-week course, conducted in English, includes lectures, group discussions and simulations led by Czech and foreign security experts, including former and current senior policy practitioners. The retreat-type setting outside of Prague provides a rather unique networking opportunity for the approximately 35 participants from as many as 15 countries.
Other educational initiatives have included the Institute’s Cyber Security Academy, now in its third year in 2020. It consists of 15 lectures, workshops and practical training exercises, and is designed for a group of 20–30 university students and young professionals. It provides an overview of the most important geopolitical, policy, legal, and institutional aspects of cyber security. The concept and structure of the course provides participants with a unique perspective on this burgeoning field.
The Institute’s educational mission was originally configured with the encouragement and involvement of former Czech President Václav Havel, who chaired PSSI’s International Advisory Board for some ten years, as well as our beloved Co-Founder and Executive Director, Oldřich Černý, National Security Advisor and Director of Foreign Intelligence, whose legacy will be honored through the impressive careers of our many alumni.