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.

© 2003 The Radványi Chair in International Security Studies, Mississippi State University.
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For information about The Radványi Chair, contact Dr. János Radványi.
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