YOUTH IN THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF UKRAINE ABOUT THE REFORM OF THE ACADEMY
1 Dobrov Institute for Scientific and Technological Potential and Science History Studies of the NAS of Ukraine
Nauka naukozn. 2021, 2(112): 64-76
Section: Vital problems of modern science
Abstract: The article is devoted to the problem of reforming the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, which has retained the relevance over the past 30 years. Considering that the Academy science, being a core part of the national innovation system, cannot be preserved without the replenishment by youth and the continuity of generations in the science system, the authors conducted a sociological survey of young scientists in 2021. The purpose of the study is to identify and sum up the opinions of young scientists who are going to work in the science system in the next 20—30 years about ways of creating conditions for effective work, increasing the prestige of the researcher’s profession and reforming the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine. This publication is mainly devoted to the analysis of respondents’ answers to the question “Do you share the opinion about the need to reform the NAS of Ukraine? Indicate how the reform should take place”. The analysis covers 250 responses of the total 2082 researches younger than 35 (who worked in the NAS of Ukraine on the date of the interview) who filled out a publicly available Google questionnaire.
There was a significant divergence of respondent opinions about the need of reforms in the NAS of Ukraine: 58 % believe that the reform is necessary; 21.1 % say that they are not needed; 14 % are in doubt and it is difficult for them to answer this question. According to the overwhelming majority of respondents, too low funding is the cause of many troubles and problems. With the major part of respondents welcoming reforms in the NAS of Ukraine, their ideas on what kind of reform should it be proved to be quite different or even strictly opposite: from proposals of not rushing to reforms to the rapid acceleration of reforms, or from arguments that it cannot be permissible to transfer Academy institutes to universities to demands that the NAS of Ukraine has to be take over the current authorities of the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine regarding the science system management, including the control over the evaluation of the highly qualified research staff, etc. According to many respondents, a key direction of the reform must be de-bureaucratization of the science system management.
Results of the interview led the authors to the following conclusions: although a large part of young researchers from the NAS of Ukraine feels the need in reforms, this share is far lower than in 2004; there is not agreement among the respondents about directions of the reform, and they are less inclined to welcome “reforms for the sake of reforms”; as the situation in the NAS of Ukraine raises concern with a large part of young researchers, they are potentially ready to take on the responsibility for the development of Academy science in Ukraine; some of the respondents’ propositions can be realizable only by the involvement and support of the government (e. g. the one to increase the R&D funding); some propositions would require change in management methods and procedures at the level of the Presidium of the NAS of Ukraine or research institutions, others give evidence of the need to improve the social and psychological climate and observe ethical norms in the society, including the scientific community.
Keywords: young researchers, interview, respondent, reforms in the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, funding, councils of young researchers.
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