The CERGE-EI experience makes us part of the same community: An Interview with Pavel Dvořák (PhD 2008, Czech Republic)

We are quite lucky to see you often at the Gala. How does it feel, coming back and experiencing this “condensed” version of CERGE-EI from your perspective?

It always feels great to come back to meet with the CERGE-EI community and friends. CERGE-EI is a very special place for me, full of great people. We all have different experiences and diverse backgrounds but the CERGE-EI experience makes us part of the same community. I always leave inspired, having spent the evening with the CERGE-EI community and the distinguished guests.

You have been working as a Principal Economist for the EBRD for the past 8 years. This is a very successful career. Could you imagine that or what were your expectations when you were roaming CERGE-EI corridors nearly 15 years ago?

It is hard to believe it has already been 8 years since I moved to London to work for the EBRD. It has been a very interesting experience and hopefully it also allowed me to give something back to the region I came from. I had always wanted to have a job that would allow me to have a real impact. A career at an institution with a strong economic development focus proved to be a very good choice for me.

You graduated at CERGE-EI in 2008. What from your PhD studies helped you the most for your future career?

I think the key skill one gets at CERGE-EI is the ability and confidence to apply rigorous economic thinking to a diverse range of problems. That combined with the knowledge of the region was a key factor that helped me succeed in my current job.

Your help with organizing our alumni events in London was essential for us. What was the most rewarding thing about it?

It was great to see the CERGE-EI alumni in the UK come together and to help raise the awareness of CERGE-EI and the research it produces.

We had a chance to see your dance performance at the latest Gala. It seems that dance has been always an inherent part of your life. Do you think that developing our talents makes us happier and therefore more successful in general?

Yes, I think so. Although it is not always easy to combine a demanding career with dancing, I think the two can be in many ways quite complementary. It is important to have a clear focus but at the same time developing our other talents may help us stay energized and sometimes also less likely to lose the big picture.

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