Dr. Vasile Puscas

ICD Advisory Board Member - Former Romanian Minister for European Affairs

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Dr. Vasile Puscas: professor, diplomat, International Relations scholar and last but not least, Romanian politician, is highly thought of in Romania as well in the international arena. Between 2000 and 2008, he was a member of the Romanian Parliament, and between 2000 and 2004 he was the Chief Negotiator with the EU and member of the Romanian Government. He returned to the Romanian Government in December 2008 as the Minister for European Affairs.

Many consider Puscas to be the key influence behind Romania’s accession to the EU. Since the Romanian Revolution in 1989 and the collapse of communism, it has been every subsequent Romanian government’s goal to strengthen the relationship between Romania, Western democracies, and the EU. During Puscas’ term as Chief Negotiator with the EU, Romania concluded the negotiation of the Accession Treaty, obtaining a firm accession date – the 1st of January 2007. His expertise in International Negotiation was used not only for negotiations with the EU, but also, between 1992 and 1994, in negotiating the “Most Favored Nation Clause” with the United States.

Between 1990 and 1991, he was also the co-director of the Centre for Democracy and Post-Communist Studies in Cluj-Napoca, as well as a consultant with the Manfred Woerner Foundation in Bucharest. Additionally, he has held the position of Director at the Master’s Program for the Management of International Affairs with the Institute for International Studies (ISI), the Journalism and Communication Training Centre, as well as at the Institute for Political Sciences and International Relations (Romanian Academy).

Dr. Puscas became Director of the Romanian Cultural Centre in New York in 1991 and followed by becoming Minister-Counselor (DCM) and Acting Ambassador with the Romanian Embassy in the United States until 1994. In addition, he has also been a valuable member of the Society of Romanian Historians, the Scientific Committee of ISIG-Gorizia, the Board of Governors of IUIES-Gorizia, the European Institute in Florence, and the Institute for Cultural Diplomacy in Berlin.

Born in 1952, Puscas obtained a degree in history and social sciences at Babes-Bolyai University of Cluj-Napoca in 1976. In 1991, he completed his doctorate in history. His long career in the academic field began at the University of Babes-Bolyai. In 1995, he became the Dean of the Faculty of Political Science and Public Administration. In that same year, he became a professor of International Relations in the Faculty of History and Philosophy. He remains an academic and professor, teaching courses at the International University Institute for European Studies (Gorizia, Italy), and Babes-Bolyai University of Cluj-Napoca (Romania) where he is also the PhD co-ordinator and Head of the Institute for International Studies.

The author of 24 volumes, co-author of 16 books, professor of 2 academic courses on International Relations and European Integration, and writer of over 100 articles and essays, Dr. Puscas also works a coordinator of the Politics Collection in the Dacia Publishing House, Cluj-Napoca. Additionally, he is the editor of the International Politics and Diplomatic Collection in the Sincron Publishing, the special periodicals Dosarele Istoriei (History Files) in Bucharest, and the Central European Political Science Review in Budapest. His particular areas of research are Central and Eastern Europe within International Relations, its cultural history, as well as business relations and conflict management in Central and Eastern Europe in the 20th and 21st Centuries.

In 2009, he received recognition from the Romanian Academy, who awarded him a prize for his volume: Romania towards the European Union. The accession negotiation (2000-2004).

With his rich background in contemporary history, political science and International Relations, Dr. Puscas has greatly contributed academic literature on the importance of European Union as a coherent and successful example of integration in a time of increasing global interdependence.