A partnership with academia

Building knowledge for trade and development


The University of Sarajevo (UNSA) became the Virtual Institute's 59th core member today, bringing total Vi membership to 123 universities and think tanks from 61 countries.
The idea of Vi membership was first raised by UNCTAD colleague, Mohan Panicker, during the.2012 regional course on key issues on the international economic agenda organized for transition economies in Belgrade. One of the UNSA academics attending the course, Snježana Brkic, then followed up with university management, and her efforts resulted in a Vi application in November 2015. 
The Vi's counterpart at the university will be the School of Economics and Business Sarajevo (SEBS). Founded in 1952, SEBS is the oldest and largest school of economics and business in the country, committed to educating new generations of highly capable, creative and internationally competent academic and research practitioners with expertise in areas of interest for the country. The mid-term objective of the school is to become a prestigious higher education institution in the area of economic and business sciences in the South East Europe region by 2025. 
SEBS offers a wide range of undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate degree programmes, as well as shorter tailored courses for specific industries or companies. Degree programmes include Bachelor's and Master's in economics, management, and applied business, as well as English-language programmes in Management, and a Master programme in economic diplomacy. SEBS's PhD in business and economics gives students the possibility to follow a research-oriented stream or an executive doctorate in business administration. Additionally, several undergraduate and graduate programmes have been developed jointly with universities in Ireland, Germany, Slovenia, Croatia and the United Kingdom. 
In terms of research, SEBS publishes two indexed journals - the School of Economics and Business Review, and the South East European Journal. Every second year since 2002, it has been organizing an International Economic Conference (ICES) whose accepted papers are then published in the indexed conference proceedings. Under a standing agreement on cooperation and partnership, SEBS staff also contribute to the work of the Economic Institute Sarajevo -- recent projects relate to the competitive position of the country's economy, export promotion strategy for Bosnia and Herzegovina, foreign trade policy of the country, and an innovation policy for Western Balkan countries. 
Cooperation between SEBS and the Vi will be coordinated by Brkic, Assistant Professor and Deputy Head of SEBS's Department for Economic Theory and Policy. Holder of a PhD in international economics, she teaches courses on international economics, international trade, international trade and the European Union, advanced international economics and the world trading system. Her recent research publications concern intra-industry trade and competitiveness of Bosnia and Herzegovina; integration of the country into the international trading system/WTO; currency risks; foreign direct investment in the manufacturing sector; and characteristics of Bosnia and Herzegovina as an investment destination, to name a few. 
The school is ready to cooperate in research (especially on the process of transition, integration into the world trading system, and development economics), development of joint Master's or PhD programmes, or joint organization of conferences and seminars with other members. They are also open to student and staff exchange, and exchange of mentors for doctoral studies. 
They expect that Vi membership will help them support their teaching and research, as well as strengthen professional skills of their staff, and assist in developing a policy dialogue between academia and government officials. 
For more information, visit the university profile on the Vi website.