In Germany are concerned the order of the Ministry of science and higher education of Russia about the rules of contacts of Russian scientists with foreign colleagues. What are you talking about – DW.
The order of the Ministry of science and higher education of the Russian Federation about the rules of contacts of Russian scientists with foreign colleagues raised concerns in the academic environment of Germany. Any official statement on this issue has not yet sounded. Probably out of fear to complicate the existing cooperation. But critical voices of German scientists are growing louder.
The order of the Ministry of science has put under the threat of international contacts
The conference of University rectors (HRK) to inform the management of all educational institutions of Germany. In an open letter on behalf of many industry associations University professors and scientists signed on, including the German society for East European studies, speaks of “great concern” the fact that the Ministry of science and higher education of the Russian Federation issued an order that will toughen rules of joint work with foreign scientists. The authors of the letter warn about the threat trust international contacts, and talking about feeling “anxiety and anger” in the academic environment.
The newspaper Mitteldeutsche Zeitung quotes the Chairman of the land conference of rectors of universities of Saxony-Anhalt Jens Strackeljan (Jens Strackeljan): “In such circumstances, scientific exchange on a continuous basis can not exist”. Currently, between German and Russian universities there are more than 290 of the cooperation agreements.
The rector of the University of Hamburg Dieter Lenzen (Dieter Lenzen) sees in the order of the Russian Ministry of a desire to “limit the Russian colleagues in their freedom of scientific research and to check and send their contacts”. An obvious way at the same time we are talking about the regulation of contacts of German scientists during their trips to Russia, he said. “Such changes are a normal free scientific communication on a global scale are unacceptable,” said Lenzen in an open letter to the lecturers and teachers.
Russian scientists were forbidden to meet foreigners alone
The reason for the concerns of the German scientists was published in August 2019 the order of the Ministry of science and higher education of the Russian Federation. It says that scientists will need to inform the Ministry about the meetings with foreign colleagues. After the meetings they are required to provide a report on the content of the conversations. Scientists will also need to ask his superiors to allow a meeting with foreign colleagues outside of work.
Also will be limited to the activities of foreigners in the Russian scientific institutions. Meeting with them should be only in “specially designed and equipped” areas and foreigners shall not use (except for specially stipulated cases) “technical means of processing and accumulation of information”, including cell phones, cameras, recording devices.
To participate in meetings with foreigners are prescribed to prevent only included in the special lists of persons, each meeting should involve “at least two people relevant to the issues”. The order applies to all organizations subordinate to the Ministry of science and higher education.
The attack on the freedom of research and cooperation between Russia and Germany
The President HRK Peter-andré Alt (Peter-Andre Alt) described this requirement as “targeted attack on the freedom of exchange of opinions” and “violation of freedom of scientific research.” He also reported that he had discussed the matter with the German foreign Ministry and with the Alliance of scientific organizations in Germany.
Familiar with the situation and the Federal Ministry of education and research of Germany. “We are closely watching the situation and expressed its concern to the Russian partners at all levels,” – said in response to a DW query, the representative of the Ministry. In December 2018, the head of the Ministry Karlicek Anya (Anja Karliczek) signed in Moscow with his Russian counterpart Mikhail Kotyukova “German-Russian road map for cooperation in education, science, research and innovation”.
A political scientist from the Berlin Foundation “Science and politics” Fabian BURKHARDT (Fabian Burkhardt) said in an interview with DW disposal of Russian officials from science “a burden to the societies”. According to him, today the cooperation in the field of humanitarian disciplines has been hampered, while the contacts of scientists in the natural Sciences are carried out without problems.
The expert speaks about the deeply contradictory policy of Russia in the field of higher education. On the one hand, the national project 2018-2024 years involves the internationalization of the Russian science and seeks to make the country more attractive for foreign scientists. On the other – there are regulations that put bureaucratic obstacles to scientific contacts.
In Germany assess the impact of the regulations of the Ministry of education
What impact will new regulation of the Russian Ministry of education and science on international contacts of Russian scientists is not clear. In Germany, we intend to closely monitor the situation. Dieter Lenzen appealed to all scientists of the Hamburg University, has contacts with Russia, to report any emerging issues. After some time he intends to present an analysis of the situation based on facts.
In 2020, the Minister Anja Carlick again visit Moscow in the framework of bilateral cooperation agreements. It will be accompanied by representatives of the scientific and educational communities of Germany. At the meeting, the representatives of the German parties intend to openly raise the issue of prescribing the Ministry of education. “You can’t hide behind friendly formula “We are strengthening our international cooperation”, – summed up the President HRK Peter-andré Alt.