Useful contribution into European science

Achievements of Belarusian science are in demand on the world market
Achievements of Belarusian science are in demand on the world market.

Since the European Union, anxious about increase of competitive ability of economy and scientific personnel deficiency, opened doors for Belarus among other non-member EU countries to its frame programs of scientific and technological development, these creative exams became a peculiar “Hamburg account” for Belarusian scientists. You can preen at home, but if foreign colleagues don’t see the results of your activity — publications in leading magazines, patents, reports on high level conferences, if you don’t have previous experience of implementation of scientific projects, then in Europe you will not be able to prove that you are a valuable partner.

— In the 7th EU Frame program (2007–2013) two cycles of projects’ contests has already been finished, in September the third one will be announced, however, for summing up the data is not enough yet, — Olga Meerovskaya said, a national coordinator of the program. — It is possible to speak about results of participation in the contests of the 6th program. Belarusian research organizations work in 20 projects now, 4 mini-projects of individual probations were financed. Each fifth claim, filed with participation of Belarusian teams, underwent the system of independent competitive selection, what doesn’t differ from an average effectiveness indicator for EU countries.

It is true, that ideas of projects belong to us. It is yet difficult to imagine that a large-scale plan valued at 5–15 million of Euro, firstly targeted at solution of problems of a big Europe, could have been designed by Belarusian scientists. Even Chinese and Russians can’t do this, who are the leading EU partners in the Frame program. If Belarusian scientists join project offers, initiated by their western colleagues, — this is success, especially when obtained results allow to speed up the work within the frames of national programs. Belarusian contribution from the European budget is financed modestly — 1,5 million of Euro, the greater part falls on 2006–2008. However, there is no discrimination here, and this result is unacceptable for a debut.

Institute of physics of the National Academy of Sciences, occupied in five projects of the 6th program is among the most required scientific collectives. Alongside with the partners from leading research centers physicists create optical, optic-electronic and photonic components, and also nanotechnologies and nanomaterials for new processes and devices, including a quantum computer, study delicate natural mechanisms, influencing the climate of the planet. Scientists of the Joined institute of energy and nuclear research “Sosny” carry out fundamental research, aimed at provision of a higher reliability level of atomic reactors, create new technologies in bioenergetics. The Institute of zoology of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus joined “Alarm” project, aimed at study of alien species of animals, spread in our country and estimations of risks for an ecosystem, caused by these processes.

Can our science count on further serious support of the European budget? According to specialists, it is yet untimely to indulge into such perspectives.

— Financing trainings, seminars and stock exchanges, spreading information about the coordinated program, the European Commission tries to involve in it the scientists from Russia, Ukraine, Moldova and Western Balkans, Mediterranean. However, it doesn’t support our activity as energetic as we would like, — Olga Meerovskaya says. — Meanwhile Russia, as well as Ukraine and Moldova, plans to shift relations to a higher level and directed an official inquiry to the European Commission on its acceptance to associated program members. Of course, it implies financial obligations, but gives a possibility to the Russians to expand the range of joint research substantially and to increase feedback from projects’ realization. As for our situation, it is worth mentioning, that Belarus doesn’t yet have a base for agreements on scientific and technological cooperation — partnership and cooperation agreement with the European Union, which hasn’t yet been ratified by EU. This is why success of tomorrow scientific interaction in many ways depends on diplomats.

Denis Pimenov
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