(SoP for Mundus MAPP Programme for AY 2020-22; Got through but couldn’t attend due to the lack of scholarship)
Having grown up in a former colony (India) that worships its freedom fighters, I am eager to find out how did that same society become so cavalier about its freedoms? What are the social injustices and economic desperations, or for that matter, hopes and aspirations behind the mass willingness to give up democracy and human rights? What are the insecurities driving people into seeking comfort in chaos? These are questions that one can ask anywhere in the world today, and I have while writing on diverse global industries and economies as well as for a national government the past 7.5 years. And I found that our fundamental failures in bridging inequality have led to a massive distrust of democracy and capitalism. Despite the promises of the modern age, a person’s past has never mattered more in deciding his/her future than it does now. Add to this the challenges brought up by climate change, pervasive governments, rising protectionism, disruptive technologies, and new-age terrorism, and we are in urgent need of future-ready public policies that will return people to the center of society.
The cracks in the most functional governmental and economic systems have called for fresh perspectives in public policy framing. Herein, my education in economics and political science in high school and UG college levels, my training in developmental journalism at the PG diploma level, and my work in business news and analysis make me a strong candidate to lend that perspective. To enable that voice, the Mundus MAPP program offers the best combination of schools and subjects in the field of public policy, from which I am keen to join the ISS-IBEI track – Political Economy and Development specialization. At ISS, I look forward to learning from scholars such as Saturnino Borras, Silke Heumann, Helen Hintjens, who have worked in the fields of urban poverty, agricultural policy, human displacement, and empowerment of sexual minorities, among others. At IBEI, I intend to learn from experts like Andrea Bianculli, Miriam Bradley, Yannis Karagiannis from the fields of trade regulations, international security, modern nationalism, among others. Right now, the best place to study and work in the social sciences is perhaps under the European Union, which is setting examples for the world in firm governance in trying times. That is why I will aim to absorb as much knowledge and experience I can from this course, and my stay in The Hague and Barcelona.
With the Master’s, I shall strive for an opportunity in public policy research with an intergovernmental organization or a non-governmental organization. And I will be sure to put to use my training at ISS and IBEI in my service. We are not in another cyclical downturn, the global order is changing for good, and we will need inclusive policies to restore people’s faith in institutions, governmental or otherwise. With my work experience and academic training under the Mundus MAPP program, I am confident in contributing to the public policy requirements of tomorrow.