University of Oxford launched today the Blavatnik School of Government which is the first major school of this kind in Europe. American industrialist and philanthropist Leonard Blavatnik has committed £75 million to make the School possible and is ready to consider additional measures of support. The University is contributing an additional £26 million as well as land in the Radcliffe Observatory Quarter, where the School will be located.
The commitment and the gift by Mr. Blavatnik is perhaps the most generous in the 900 year history of the university. The university hopes to attract outstanding graduates from across the world. It will provide a highly practical series of courses, leading to a Master’s degree, with a unique balance of the humanities, social sciences, law, science, technology, health, finance, energy and security policy.
Mr Blavatnik who was the guest of honor at today’s opening ceremony in Oxford, emphasized that “Oxford University’s reputation provides the School with the opportunity to bring together distinguished teachers and leaders in government to address the entire spectrum of policy issues.” The course will start in 2012 and the student strength will grow to 120 ultimately. The Chancellor of the University of Oxford called it a once in a century opportunity that will make the university the centre for the training of future leaders in government and public policy.