Science: Hungarian academy president vows to keep fighting for independence as government takes control

Science: Hungarian academy president vows to keep fighting for independence as government takes control

Today, Hungary’s parliament approved an amendment that makes it legally possible to transfer a large part of the budget of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (MTA) in Budapest to the country’s newly established Ministry of Innovation and Technology (MIT). The vote is the first step in a process that may bring almost €88 million of MTS’s €124 million annual budget under direct control of MIT; the next step is a parliamentary vote on the science budget itself on Friday. The government’s proposal is widely expected to pass.

Statement of the Partners of Visegrad Group Academies Forum Statement of the Partners of Visegrad Group Academies Forum

Statement of the Partners of Visegrad Group Academies Forum

The Partner Academies of Sciences of the Visegrad Group Forum fully support the demand to withdraw the proposed amendments from voting and to allow for wider consultations with all relevant stakeholders, in particular with the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.

ALLEA Open Letter in support of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences ALLEA Open Letter in support of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences

ALLEA Open Letter in support of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences

In response to two proposed laws introduced for voting by the Hungarian Parliament and which threaten the scientific autonomy and financial independence of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, the ALLEA President Antonio Loprieno has sent an open letter to the responsible Hungarian Minister of Innovation and Technology, Mr László Palkovics.

MTA–ITM budget talks will continue on Tuesday MTA–ITM budget talks will continue on Tuesday

MTA–ITM budget talks will continue on Tuesday

President László Lovász, will meet with László Palkovics, leader of the Ministry for Innovation and Technology (ITM) on Tuesday, 26 June to continue talks regarding the planned budgetary change in the funding of the Academy. President Lovász will present the results of these negotiations with the MTA’s Presidium during a meeting at 2 pm the same day.

Declaration by the MTA Lendület (Momentum) Research Group Leaders Declaration by the MTA Lendület (Momentum) Research Group Leaders

Declaration by the MTA Lendület (Momentum) Research Group Leaders

The Hungarian Academy of Sciences founded the Lendület (Momentum) Program in 2009 as an excellence program for young scientists. The primary aim of the program is to renew academic and university research programs by inviting excellent Hungarian researchers back home from abroad and keeping talented researchers in the country. To the present day, 164 Lendület (Momentum) Research Groups have been founded. The majority of them have signed the declaration below.

The Academy stands by its independence and the freedom of research The Academy stands by its independence and the freedom of research

The Academy stands by its independence and the freedom of research

The Hungarian Academy of Sciences demands that the proposed amendment of the Law on the Hungarian Academy of Sciences and the Law on the 2019 state budget be withdrawn from voting in Parliament, since these amendments were prepared without prior consultation with the Academy – this was one of the resolutions unanimously accepted by the Presidium of the Academy during its extraordinary session on 15 June. The resolution was submitted to the Presidium (i.e. the main decision-making body of the Academy between two general assemblies) by President László Lovász. The session was also attended by the heads of the MTA research institutions.

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