Coffee with Alumni

In March, we had a chance to welcome our PhD in Economics alumni, Boryana Madzharova from Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg and Martin Kuncl from the Bank of Canada at two #AlumniLive Coffees with Alumni for CERGE-EI students.

In the cozy Faculty lounge, we hosted alumni and students with sweets and homemade cake.  Students had an opportunity to informally network with alumni and ask them about their studies, or career path.

How does Martin remember his studies at CERGE-EI? “I learned graduate-level economics at CERGE-EI. Thanks to the relatively small scale of the program, I benefited a lot from individual guidance, feedback, and interactions with faculty and CERGE-EI’s research community including visiting scholars but also other students. I learned how to find research ideas, develop them into papers, and present them to other researchers.”

What would he advise students who want to proceed with their career in a central bank? “Apply, even if you think you have little chance. You never know – your job market paper topics may fit with what the central bank is actually looking for. Also, enlarge your portfolio during your PhD studies – go for mobility, apply for research internships/traineeships at central banks and similar policy institutions, try to present at conferences, go to summer schools in your field, and look for international cooperation. All these can help you succeed.”

Boryana talked about her career in academia and about her research. How did CERGE-EI help in her career? CERGE-EI provided a solid academic foundation, supplying the tools for one’s continuous self-improvement and strive for excellence.”

And what is her advice to those who want to pursue a career in academia?Perseverance is as important for a successful academic career as an excellent educational background. It goes hand in hand with a belief in oneself and in the value of one’s own contributions.”

Martin Kuncl is a 2014 PhD in Economics graduate. He is a Senior Economist in the Canadian Economic Analysis Department at the Bank of Canada. His research interests include macro-financial linkages, financial crises, and macro-prudential policies. Specific topics include financial innovation, interaction of monetary and macro-prudential policies, and government intervention in the mortgage market.

Boryana Madzharova is a 2013 PhD in Economics graduate, an empirical microeconomist, and a senior researcher at the Chair of Public Finance at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg.  Her research predominantly conducts micro-level analysis of public policies with a broad focus on taxation. She is especially interested in various aspects of the Value Added Tax such as its design and taxpayers’ compliance in the presence of third-party reporting.

#AlumniLive is a series of networking events for CERGE-EI students & alumni. We bring inspiring alumni to hold #AlumniLive Seminar or informally network at Coffee with Alumni at CERGE-EI.


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