Tbilisi, Georgia

Tblisi, Georgia

April 2012
Policy Expert Visits Tbilisi, Advises MPA Program

Professor Robert Melnick was in Georgia from April 8 – 14 as part of the EWMI G-PAC MPA program at Ilia State University (ISU). While in Tbilisi, he met with ISU MPA program administrators, professors, and students to help develop the program’s management, teaching, materials, and future goals.

On Tuesday, April 10, Prof. Melnick also gave a public lecture entitled “Challenges to a Sustainable World” at ISU. The lecture was attended by approximately 40 representatives from ISU and civil society organizations.

“If the world’s population and resource consumption continue to increase at their current rates, two Earths will be required by 2050,” Prof. Melnick warned at the lecture. He emphasized that because we now live in a globalized world where the fates of individual countries are intertwined, it is important for every country to pursue policies that ensure their sustainability. “Sustainability” is a metric for determining whether a community or country can continue its resource consumption patterns into the foreseeable future.

Prof. Melnick’s lecture can be seen in its entirety at www.youtube.com/watch?v=rqAjTQ4utVM.

During his time in Georgia, Prof. Melnick also taught a class for ISU MPA students focusing on science and sustainability policy and the role university-based research centers. Additionally, he appeared on “Economic Talk,” an internet radio and television show, to discuss the tension between economic growth and sustainability, and policy strategies for ensuring that both are possible. The interview, conducted in Georgian, can be viewed at www.dailymotion.com/video/xq3aif_economic-talk-by-teimuraz-murgulia-s03e10_lifestyle&start=879.

Professor Melnick is Executive Dean of the Global Institute of Sustainability (GIOS) at Arizona State University (ASU). He has held a number of distinguished positions in academia, and has advised governments on an array of social and economic issues. Prior to joining ASU, Professor Melnick was a Senior Research Fellow and Vice President of the Hudson Institute in Washington, D.C., where he was in charge of policy studies on employment, education, and economic issues.

This was Prof. Melnick’s second trip to Georgia. Last autumn, he came to Tbilisi on similar business to help ISU develop its MPA program.