BALTDEFCOL 15th anniversary conference

BALTDEFCOL 15th anniversary conference

As part of the 15th Anniversary celebration the Baltic Defence College hosted an academic conference on the future of higher military education.

In the first session of the conference there was a panel of distinguished defence education institutions with Rear Admiral Nils Wang, Commandant of the Royal Danish Defence Academy as the main speaker; followed by General (ret.) Zoltan Szenes , Professor of the National University of Public Service of Hungary; Major General (ret.) Dr. Pertii Salminen, former Rector of the Finnish National Defence University; and Colonel Professor Dariusz Kozerawski, Vice-Rector of the Polish National Defence University.

Each speaker discussed the model of their national military educational institutions, which are all adapting to the major changes in the Western security posture, as well as discussed the need to incorporate civilian and military students studying a wide variety of different aspects of security. It is clear the higher military education is in a process of transformation with the need to teach many new subjects to include cyber defence and counter terrorism and other subjects that are not traditionally military.

The second part of the Conference provided a discussion by five professors from Baltic educational institutions speaking to the theme of merging civilian and military education. The panellists were Dr. Artis Pabriks, former Latvian Defence Minister and current member of Latvian Parliament and a Professor at the Riga International School of Economics and Business; Dr. Margarita Šešelgyte, Studies Director at the Institute of International Relations and Political Science of the Vilnius University; Dr. Janis Berzins, Director of Research of Latvian National Defence Academy; Dr. Viktor Trasberg, Associate Professor of Macroeconomics of the University of Tartu; and Dr. Rene Värk, Professor at the Faculty of Law of the University of Tartu.

Each speaker spoke about the particular needs to educate military officers in special military skills, but the evolution of conflict also means that military and civilians needs to be educated together to understand the complex issues of cyber, defence management and security.



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