On Wednesday, November 13, 2019, a roundtable was held at the Slovak University of Technology on the topic: “Proposals for the Improvement of Science, Research and Higher Education in Slovakia”. The event was organized by the rectors of 4 research universities (STU, UK, TUKE, UPJŠ), chairman of SAS and chairman of the Learned Society of Slovakia and attended by top representatives of state administration, experts and representatives of political parties (SMER-SD, Mosthíd, PS / TOTAL, SaS, Za ľudí, Oľano, Dobrá voľba), experts in government policy and also representatives of employers and top innovative companies in Slovakia.
The aim of the meeting was to introduce and get acquainted with solutions and proposed measures as considered by individual participants of the meeting - key actors in the field of science policy in Slovakia.
At the beginning of the meeting Professor Peter Moczo, Chairman of the Learned Society of Slovakia, presented the main starting points for improving science, research and higher education. He identified the situation as very serious and identified the sources of problems on two basic levels:
He mentioned three main issues in this area: the outdated (2005) State Science Policy Act, the absence of regular international audit of research results and the overall low financial support for science, research and education and its poor distribution (also influenced by local political and economic interests).
He mentioned three main problems in this area: oversized, atomized and non-stratified / non-diversified university network, feigning of scientific quality and the application of egalitarianism and not creating a healthy competitive and motivating environment.
This view and the distribution of the set of causes of the critical state was accepted with understanding by the round table participants.
Subsequently, participants in the discussion discussed suggestions for improving the situation. Peter Moczo presented the proposals of Learned Society, representatives of the political parties presented the proposals they bring in their programs, and the experts brought the full spectrum of other proposals for action.
In particular, the main areas for improvement were:
The discussion was held on an extremely constructive level and there were a number of conceptual and partial proposals for measures. In conclusion, the participants agreed that: