Mississippi State University provides both students and
faculty with a wide-range of opportunities to gain awareness
of international political, economic, and security issues.
To strengthen and enhance the scope of such availabilities,
the university launched a one-million dollar fund raising
drive to establish a Chair in International Security
Studies. The effort was successful; and the endowed chair,
titled "Chair in International Security Studies,"
was inaugurated in June 1996. In May 2000, the University
leadership named the Chair the Radványi Chair in
International Security Studies. The Chair is a
university-wide institute and reports directly to the Vice
President for Research at Mississippi State University.
In its complex activities, the Chair
devotes full attention to vital global problems with
emphasis on the post communist era's complex security
problems. It follows closely the four East-Central European
democracies, the Czech Republic, Slovak Republic, Poland,
and Hungary's integration into the Western Hemisphere
politico-economic environment, as well as their role in
NATO. In addition, the Chair pays special attention to the
developing situation between the U.S. and the European
Union, and the future of the transatlantic interrelation.
The Chair researchers are not neglecting to study the
prospect of peace in the Middle East and the problems of the
African nations. We are also pursuing the People's Republic
of China's military modernization and its effect on the
United States, Japan, and Russia.
Understandably, the Chair is also
focusing on the revolutionary changes in the realm of
military affairs and America's national-security challenges.
We pay special attention to the 21st Century’s
information technology and network centric warfare. We are
deeply concerned about America's vulnerability of not having
a reliable defense against hostile missile attacks. As a new
field of research, we are studying the escalating space race
and its impact on our security posture. We are also working
on the "homeland defense front". The Chair is
studying the effectiveness and results of international
cooperation in the war against terrorism. For the Office of
Research, we are working to establish a Center for Homeland
Security at Mississippi State University.
In addition, we are moving into a novel
area of research:" Defense Science." This research
activity focuses on the latest findings in biological
science, and neurological pharmacology, new classes of
drugs, and their impact on the testing, selection, and
training of our military. In sum, we are trying to determine
whether after the end of the Cold War in the post-Communist
era, we are living in a safer world, or not.
As part of our mission, we are working
together with the Mississippi Department of Economic
Authority and bringing to Jackson high level economic and
trade representatives from Germany, Japan, Mexico, Turkey
and Jordan, just to mention a few.
Another main function of the Radványi Chair in the new
set-up remains the management of the Executive Lecture Forum
(ELF). This unique outreach program hosts internationally
respected speakers from around the globe to address its
membership. Its publications reach government agencies,
think-tanks, and major libraries. Through its programs, the
ELF members are developing a keener understanding of
conflicts and opportunities in our global environment.
Beyond the educational benefits to ELF members, the Chair is
spotlighting Mississippi's potentialities for trade and
investment to high ranking foreign diplomats and career
professionals. As a result, Western and Central European and
Asian countries continue to explore the establishment of
closer economic ties with our State. As ELF Chairman, Mr.
Earle Jones puts it, "Their [ELF] efforts are mirrored
by Mississippi's state government, agribusinesses, and
manufacturers." Since its twenty years of existence,
the ELF has become one of the most prestigious associations
in the Southeastern United States.