Are you a Slovak researcher and/or do you care about science in your country? Then, you may be interested in joining the apolitical platform Zijemvedu.sk. Established by five Slovak young scientists working abroad to boost research and science in their home country, “Žijemvedu.sk” is a response to dissatisfaction over a huge corruption affair with EU funds allocated to science and research in Slovakia. As the first initiative to gather signatures on the anticorruption petition was quite successful, the idea to team up people who care about advancing science in Slovakia popped up. The platform counts a constantly growing number of members, now reaching more than 200 Slovak researchers at home and abroad.
This active community strives to improve the situation of the Slovak academia as well as to enforce principles of good research. The members use the platform to inform about research opportunities abroad, present their expert opinion on relevant topics, highlight early education and critical thinking, point out misuse of public money directed to science, promote the importance of basic research and urge the government to implement necessary changes to improve the education system and research environment. The main objective is to make the evaluation system of research project proposals transparent and independent, to build more international research teams and to encourage the Slovak scientific community to open up for cross-border collaborations. The Slovak academic sector cries for new ideas, innovations and foreign experts.
The core members of Zijemvedu.sk has been very active in attempting to enhance Slovak science, notably through open letters sent to the Slovak President and members of the government (including the Prime Minister and Minister of education), and meetings with the President of the Slovak Academy of Sciences and the Slovak Funding Agency. Heading Slovak media towards relevant scientific and current hot topics, cooperating with other initiatives on education and science, organizing the Annual meeting of Slovak scientists, writing blogs, sharing experience with other researchers and students, and promoting new ideas are some of the many activities they conduct.