Serbia, like many European countries, is plagued by economic misconceptions espoused by populists. Several Atlas Network partners are confronting illiberalism throughout Europe, and on June 16, Libertarian Club Libek — a partner based in Belgrade, Serbia — celebrated the graduation of 21 students from its two-semester-long Public Policy Academy (PPA) program. This is Libek’s seventh class of students, and these recent graduates join Libek’s PPA Alumni Community, which has 142 members, and the wider Libek alumni community of more than 350. Libek alumni have proven to be prominent thought leaders, starting their own initiatives, getting involved with the movement to advance freedom in Serbia, the international liberty movement, and European Students for Liberty.
Participants in Libek's Public Policy Academy 7.
"The participants of Public Policy Academy 7 are among the most engaged we have had in our programs, and we are sure that they will be great contributors to the liberty movement in Serbia in the future,” said Petar Čekerevac, executive manager of Libek. “It will be exciting to watch them network with other Libek alumni at our events. Libek will always be there to support any new ideas or projects they might have"
PPA teaches the ideas of liberty and the skills necessary to promote them to future leaders in academia, business, civil society, and politics. Every year, between 20 and 25 students attend around 100 seminar sessions where they learn to understand public policy processes, stakeholders, solutions, and outcomes from a libertarian perspective, and gain skills in public speaking, public opinion research, policy analysis, journalism, and other fields, which they can apply throughout their careers.
"This generation of participants is a group of excellent individuals, and at the same time the generation where the gap between youngest and oldest participants was felt the least," said Miloš Nikolić, the president of Libek.
Besides the 50 lecturers, prominent academics, politicians, business leaders, and activists, the program brings together almost 30 mentors who help participants achieve their personal or career goals during a six-month mentorship program.
The next Public Policy Academy is expected to start in October 2018.