mta academy demonstration
Photo: MTI/Balogh Zoltán

János Kertész Hungarian physicist has written an open letter to Manfred Weber, leader of the European People’s Party in the EU parliament, on behalf of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (MTA). reports that János Kertész has uploaded his letter on Facebook while waiting for fellow scientists to sign it as a form of show of support. The letter includes a cry for help that follows a year of ongoing conflict between the Hungarian government and the Academy. The scientists 

ask Manfred Weber to convince Hungarian PM Viktor Orbán to withdraw the legislative proposal that would, according to them, end the Academy’s independence.

The proposal was handed in by László Palkovics, minister for innovation two days ago, following a protest that saw thousands flock to the streets of Budapest. The proposal would overhaul the structure of Hungarian research funding: it would create a new institution, called Eötvös Loránd Research Centre and would replace the currently existing numerous research hubs. The research centre would fall under a heavy governmental influence: something its critics warn against.


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