Scientists require the Presidium of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine to distribute budgetary funds fairly.
On January 16 more than a hundred scientists from various institutes of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine (NAS) came out in public protest “Skating Rink near the Presidium of the NAS of Ukraine” requesting fair distribution of budgetary funds for the scientific activity.
Protest organizers applied to the president and to the Presidium members of the NAS of Ukraine declaring that, in particular, over the past decade the Academy’s management team failed to convince the government of the importance of the science. Executives of the Academy were basically the passive spectaculars of the processes that occurred in the scientific field. Thus, for instance, the scientists emphasized that precisely as a result of Presidium’s failure to act in 2016 the scientific institutions were faced with the choice: to reduce the staff or to transfer employees to reduced working week.
Late last year, Presidium has issued the decree “On funding of the activities of the NAS of Ukraine in 2018” that does not mention any funding problem at all. But this year, on January 9, the Academy’s institutions were informed about the funding levels showing that once again the scientists shall work on reduced working week basis.
Protest organizers are sure that at this stage the functioning of the NAS of Ukraine is inconceivable without its reformation. “We believe that executives of the NAS of Ukraine has failed to meet the present-day challenges and its competence issue shall be on the agenda of the next general meeting of the NAS of Ukraine,” – the appeal says.
During the protest the scientists, inter alia, required as follows:
- To distribute the budgetary funds for 2018 based on the results of the scientific activity of institutions.
- To consider the results of state certification/attestation of scientific institutions while distributing the funds. This implies that each institution shall be explained why it has got such a funding level. This demand is particularly important in cases where the allocated funds amount is not quite sufficient to pay salaries of the employees and to cover the administrative expenses.
- To divert additional funds, allocated by the state budget for this year for code 6541030 “Basic research…” amounting to UAH 354,881 mln ($12,426 mln), exclusively to cover the shortfall of payroll fund of scientific institutions’ employees.
Once demands of the scientists are met, they insist on the convening of an extraordinary meeting of the Presidium of the NAS of Ukraine with the participation of the Heads of all the scientific institutions and representatives of the researchers to discuss the funding situation and to elaborate the action plan of the Academy for the immediate future.
If the Presidium fails to meet the demands, the scientists will protect their legitimate rights and interests under existing legislation.
Repeated public protest is scheduled for today, January 17.