I joined GraSPP’s MPP-IP seven years ago, determined to enjoy this academic year to the fullest, knowing that I would then fly to SIPA in New York for my second year.
The first year went by even faster than I anticipated, in a flurry of intense economic courses, evenings at the izakaya with friends and engaging in sometimes heated debates over public policies and politics in Asia. During my previous studies in France, I already had the chance of studying for a year as an exchange student in Kyoto and upon graduation in 2010 I had chosen to pursue my career in Asia, first in Japan and then South Korea. Picking GraSPP for my next degree was therefore a natural choice to strengthen my academic credentials and deepen my knowledge of the region. And indeed, I can confidently say that GraSPP played a key role in leading me to my next job at The Economist Intelligence Unit in London where I was the country analyst on South Korea and Japan for a couple of years.
In addition to its rigorous curriculum, in particular in macroeconomics and microeconomics, I also found that the key strength of the MPP-IP programme was its exceptional student body, made up of accomplished professionals hailing from all over the world and from Asia in particular. I’m forever grateful for the opportunity to engage and befriend my fellow students, whose careers and lives I follow these days from snowy Norway. I understand that the incoming students will have to adapt to the new COVID-19 situation but I’m optimistic that they will find new innovative ways to collaborate and exchange online.
Throughout my professional experiences after graduation, I have deeply appreciated not only the value of the courses I took in Tokyo but also the different intellectual perspectives I was exposed to. Amidst an increasingly polarized international environment, it is more important than ever for public policy students and practitioners to critically assess ideological positioning, and use their quantitative and qualitative skills to analyze policy making decisions.
I believe that GraSPP offers to its students the necessary tool for this challenging task and look forward to seeing the positive and diverse impacts of GraSPP alumni on the world in the years to come.