The Illiberal State against Science and Culture: The Case of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences

Márton Zászkaliczky - Viktor Olivér Lőrincz - László Péter - Judit Gárdos Plenary Panel, American Association for the Advancement of Science conference. More >> 

Plenary Panel

The Hungarian Academy of Sciences (HAS) was founded in 1825 to promote scientific research in Hungary. It was created and maintained with the support of private benefactors. It has since become a national symbol of scientific endeavor and a major center of cultural life in Hungary. In 2018, the Hungarian Government decided to reorganize the entire sector of research, development and innovation in Hungary in order to improve Hungary’s innovation and competitiveness positions in the EU. However, the Ministry for Innovation and Technology (MIT), entitled to carry out this plan, introduced its arbitrary and permanently changing plan without proper reform planning and the necessary consultations with those affected. At the end of a year-long struggle between the Government and the HAS, on 2 July 2019 the Parliament adopted a Bill that deprived the independent Academy of its research network and placed it under governmental control. This new law radically narrows the framework of independent scientific institutions in Hungary and violates academic freedom in many respects.