ISET’s Pati Mamardashvili, the head of Agricultural Policy Research Center, has been awarded the prestigious Fulbright Scholarship to conduct research in the USA. The Fulbright Program is the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program, contributing to finding solutions to shared concerns. The main criteria for the selection in the program are academic merit and leadership potential.

Pati spent four months (September-December 2017) at Texas Tech University (TTU), collaborating on research into the wine sector. Dr. Natalia Velikova and Dr. Tim Dodd were Pati’s academic hosts at TTU. In addition to conducting research, Pati attended academic talks and held guest lectures at the host university.

“I worked on two specific research projects,” Pati said. “The first project was aimed at analyzing the characteristics and economic impact of model wineries in Texas. I met with the representatives of wineries in Texas to collect data on the number of jobs created by the wineries, their production costs and revenues, as well as their plans for business development. I summarized the findings of the research in the industry report, which will be useful for wineries of different sizes to demonstrate to community leaders, politicians and others the value of their business to their region.

“As for the second project, we designed an online choice-experiment to understand US consumers’ preferences for different winery landscapes. In November 2017, we collected data from 1400 wine consumers in the USA and are now analyzing this data.”

Pati has returned to ISET this week. She describes how she has benefited from the program: “Over the last few months, I grew in my research and leadership skills and developed a better sense of cultural intelligence. I plan to apply these skills to contribute to ISET’s further success.”

ISET congratulates Pati once again for making it through all the stages of the extremely competitive Fulbright grantee selection process and successfully completing this program. We are looking forward to her further contribution to our community.

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