Meet Mónika Palotai, Visiting Research Fellow

by | Nov 19, 2021 | News

Mónika arrived in Washington D.C in September 2021 as a Visiting Research Fellow to conduct research at the Hudson Institute Center for Religious Freedom and Center for Common Culture. The aim of her fellowship is to provide a complex, interdisciplinary analysis of Religious and Minority Repression in China – protecting religious freedom and promoting democratic sovereignty in Europe utilizing her thorough international business and academic research experience.


Mónika Palotai


Mónika Palotai started her professional career working as a correspondent for Hungarian media outlets covering worldwide events such as the 2004 Presidential elections in the United States. She obtained her BA degree in 2006 in Communication and Media at the Budapest Business School, Faculty of Applied Sciences, Hungary. After graduating, she relocated to the United Arab Emirates, the Middle East, and began working in international business development. To complement her education and to be more efficient in doing business in the region, she immersed herself in Arabic Language and Culture and Sharia and Islamic Studies at the University of Sharjah. While living in the Middle East with her family, she launched the first English language monthly magazine for pregnant women in the region. Under her editorial stewardship, the magazine proved to be a great success.

“Working in business in a foreign country taught me that the lights are not always green, there is no such thing as ‘perfect condition.’ Nevertheless, the trinity of ‘vision-passion-hard work’ always helped me keep on going.” – Mónika Palotai

She developed a passion for the aviation industry that she consulted globally. Her field of expertise includes improving business processes and finding weak spots and value-added solutions. Returning to Budapest, Hungary, she graduated at master’s level in 2018 as an Expert in International Public Service at the University of Public Service, Hungary. Subsequently, she continued her studies at the Ph.D. program of the Doctoral School of Public Administration Sciences as a Hungarian state scholarship holder.

“I believe in lifelong learning. Whether it is for a career or for personal gratification, the mind and what it is filled with is assuredly one of the most precious assets. And that journey is not only books and schools but family, friends, and experiences as well. Just as Plutarch said ’The correct analogy for the mind is not only a vessel that needs filling but wood that needs igniting.” – Mónika Palotai

Mónika Palotai

The focus of her research is International Criminal Law. Her thesis investigates a specific aspect of the international legal regime that applies to private military and security companies and their contractors in conjunction with their accountability in front of international tribunals. Throughout her travels and work Mónika has observed the conduct of operation of such companies and their extreme adaptivity to geopolitical shifts and their structure as a transnational company. Therefore, the multidisciplinary methodology of her study utilizes legal and business theories and approaches. In 2019 she won the International Law Section of the National Scientific Students’ Association’s Spring Wind Conference. 

To complement her legal knowledge, Mónika is also a 4th-year J.D (Juris doctor) student at the Karoli Gáspár University of Reformed Church, Hungary. In addition to her academic studies, she accomplished Bank Law courses at the Budapest Institute of Banking.

“I am confident that combining academia and business-specific approaches and experiences will lead to a more practical, applicable and thorough understanding of crucial human rights and theoretical issues.” – Mónika Palotai

In her spare time, Mónika enjoys spending time with her family and two sons Noel and Benjamin. Mónika has a track record in competitive showjumping, and she is a hiking enthusiast.



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