Ball in Hungarian Science: Dismissals, Resignations, Appointments

Contrary to the Academic Workers Forum (ADF) press release, Miklos Maruth, head of the Eötvös Loránd Research Network (ELKH), left his post not at the end of his term, but a year and a half ago. Previously, the research network belonged to the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, then it was separated from it and began operating under a new name.

However, this was not the only event at the helm of the Hungarian scientific administration in recent weeks – reveals István Kenesei, academician, retired professor from the University of Szeged From the article published in Élét és Irodalom.

Zoltán Berkner, head of the National Research, Development and Innovation Office (NKFIH), has not resigned, but has been dismissed from his post. The head of the National Intellectual Property Office, Gyula Boumazzi, was sacked without warning. Thus, the resignation of Miklos Maroth is only the third in this row.

Miklos Maroth (Photo: Andor Elix)

In the quoted article, István Kenesi somewhat ironically noted that the head of the Hungarian Research Institute had also been fired, and added: This fact can hardly be mentioned on the same page as the other three news stories. However, there is no doubt that all personnel changes can be attributed to the Ministry of Culture and Innovation led by Janos Csak, because the listed institutions are under such supervision.

It should be noted that four years ago, after a sudden government idea, the Academy’s research network, which was called Eötvös Loránd Kutatási Hálózat (ELKH), was separated from the Academy. It was headed by Miklós Maroth, who was already seventy-six years old at the time, and as a classical historian of philosophy and philologist he did not seem the perfect choice to manage the network of research institutes.

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As can be seen from Istvan Knessi’s article: The news about Miklos Maroth’s departure had been circulating for months, which was nonetheless unexpected. Pallas Julius, a researcher at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, was appointed in his place on May 1 – Written by HVG. Golias’ person is reassuring because in his case we are talking about a scientist who has completed a distinguished international career.

Here comes the other important thing. Two members of the Academy preparing for the General Assembly propose the adoption of a resolution that would find a solution to the current impossible legal situation. The status of properties that are used by ELKH but owned by MTA should definitely be settled. The author of the article warns that the assets of the RTA are not state assets, as they are subject to constitutional protection, so they cannot be confiscated.

In a more understandable way, this means that it was not possible to create a public interest and general purpose asset management institution (kekva) out of the research network that previously belonged to the Academy. Precisely because the property of the Academy is not the property of the state, unlike, for example, the university’s real estate. Although it is also questionable in the case of universities whether it is permissible to proceed with institutional transformation. But since the universities were truly owned by the state, there were at least no property obstacles to their transformation.

The gravity and clarity of the situation due to the plight of ownership of academic estates is demonstrated by the fact that the Constitutional Court found Parliament guilty of a constitutional offense in this case.

In his article István Kenesi also mentions that some of the concerns expressed at the time of the creation of the Eötvös Loránd Research Network (ELKH) were not realized. His crime did not affect the Institute of Economics, which was threatened by Minister Laszlo Balković, previously in charge of the region. In addition, as the author of the article says, he “did not” dilute “the search network with the aforementioned state institutions, did not allow the Turkish Hunnic oils, etc. kinship, especially to the alarm calls coming from MAKI, and even fiercely resisted this kind of amateurishness, and celebrated loudly The results of local Finnugristics are recognized internationally.”

Opening photo: Institute of Linguistics of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences

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