Linda Austere

Nationality: Latvia
Program: One-Year MAPP
Graduated: 2007
Current job: Strategic Consultant to the Director at The State Chancellery
Location: Riga, Latvia

Beyond Work

+1. Which Hungarian words do you still remember?

Surprisingly, I remember more than I had expected. My favorite word has always been the unexpectedly musical rendben (okay).

+2. What helps you wake up on Monday mornings?

I happen to be a morning person. It helps!

1. What led you to study public policy at CEU?

I could answer this question in three words: "Professor Monroe Price." This is a story in itself, but in summary, there was a brief email exchange that ended with a suggestion: "Then you should go to Budapest!" This led to my decision to study public policy at CEU.

2. What do you remember most about your time at CEU?

Working on a term paper on Christmas Eve in Room 004 . Café Montmartre. And, most of all, the people who made it all possible!

3. What have you been engaged in professionally since graduating from CEU?

After graduating, I returned to my work as a policy researcher in PROVIDUS, a think tank in Riga, Latvia. In 2009, I became advisor to the Minister of Defense, Ambassador Imants Lieģis. The next year, I became advisor to the state secretary within the same ministry. In 2012, I took on the role of director of the Foreign Investors Council of Latvia, a non-governmental organization uniting a significant part of Latvia's FDI community. I eventually returned to the government in 2014 as chief of staff to the Minister for Education and Science, Ms. Mārīte Seile. Currently, I am working as strategic advisor to the director of the state chancellery.

4. How have your policy studies at CEU contributed to your career?

I came to CEU with prior experience in the field of policy research. This allowed me to apply the knowledge gained during the program to analyzing assumptions and conclusions I had made through professional practice. In that respect, policy studies at CEU helped me to structure my thinking and formulate ideas. Most importantly, it prepared me to help others.

5. Where do you see yourself in five years?

I appreciate public service—the structure, the interplay of duties, personalities, and expectations, and the labyrinth of logics that it entails. I see myself working in this field for at least the next five years.

6. Do you have any advice for current students?

Anais Nin said: Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage.
Keep this in mind!

7. What is your favorite thing to do in Budapest?


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