2009-2015 State National Strategy Plan for the development of science is ready - INTERVIEW

2009-2015 State National Strategy Plan for the development of science is ready - <font color=red> INTERVIEW  </font>
# 12 December 2008 13:22 (UTC +04:00)
Baku. Elbrus Seyfullayev–APA. Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev issued an executive order to establish State Commission on implementation of reforms in Azerbaijani science on April 10, 2008. The commission led by Prime Minister Arthur Rasizadeh was instructed to prepare 2009-2015 State National Strategy Plan for the development of Azerbaijani science. Deputy Chairman of the Commission, President of ANAS, academician Mahmud Karimov gave an interview to APA regarding the execution of the order.

-What can you say about the commitments and activity of State Commission on implementation of reforms in science during the previous period?

Working Group led by Vice-President of ANAS, academician Arif Hashimov consisting of responsible representatives of ministries, state committees, companies, higher schools, scientists, specialists was established in connection with execution of the decree. As a result of activity of the Working Group, many reports about indicators of scientific-research enterprises in the fields of science and innovation were collected, analysed and main directions and fundamental thesis of the National Strategy had been determined basing on proposals of proper specialists of the Republic. Members of the commission approved main priorities and fundamental thesis of the National Strategy during discussions held in the Cabinet on July 17, 2008. 2009-2015 State National Strategy Plan for the development of science was reconsidered by members of ANAS, certain scientists and experts, teachers of higher schools, members of state Commission and the project is ready at present.

-What fields does the Strategy project cover and what mechanisms have been elaborated to carry out the planned works?

-The Strategy, as it was noted in the presidential order, was prepared for definition of the structures of scientific bodies in Azerbaijan, conducting and funding the researches within the modern standards, increasing of the country’s scientific personnel capacity and strengthening of its social protection, integration of Azerbaijan’s sciences to the international scientific world and comprehensive development of the sciences. The project substantiates, at first, role and place of the fundamental science in the socio-economic, political-legal and cultural-spiritual progress of the humankind, its security and sustainable development and reviews on the development of Azerbaijani scientific thought from this aspect. Then present situation of the scientific field in Azerbaijan was analyzed on the statistic figures and factors making the project necessary were defined. The project of National Strategy for the development of sciences is covering the systematic qualification of the scientific-research institutes in Azerbaijan; evaluation of scientific and scientific-organizational activity; determination of main directions of the state’s scientific-technical and innovation policy; improvement of managing system in the scientific and technical fields and structures of the scientific institutions; determination of priorities of the scientific researches in accordance with the solution to the socio-economic and public-cultural issues of the country; modernization of the scientific-technical infrastructure; improvement of mechanisms for funding the scientific-researching institutes and the sciences at large; international scientific cooperation; training of high-skill professionals; protection of scientific schools and heritage; making the material and technical basis of the scientific-researching institutes corresponding to the modern demands and etc. The National Strategy’s main directions also included the integration of science, education and production, social protection of scientists, creation of normative-legal basis of the science and information support of science.
The State Program of implementation of the strategy determined concrete measures to carry out works considered by the strategy in 2009-2015, mechanisms and organizations responsible for their implementation. The State Program considers joint activity of the Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences with the ministries, state committees, joint-stock companies and other executive bodies.

-How does the National Strategy of scientific development evaluate the role and place of Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences?

-Undoubtedly, Azerbaijan Academy of Sciences played exceptional role in the advantageous organization of the intellectual capacity of Azerbaijani people, who have old and rich scientific traditions, determination of the science’s strategic directions dictated of the time and development of fundamental and applicative scientific fields in the past 60 years. A large phase of the development of Academy is related with the name of national leader Heydar Aliyev. Numerous scientific successes of the Azerbaijan Academy of Sciences promoted the development of scientific processes not only in USSR, but all over the world in 1970-80, establishing of number of institutes and research centers was a result of the national leader’s care for the science.
By the presidential decree issued on January 4, 2003 the Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences was granted with the status of high state scientific organization, which is organizing and providing the development of sciences in Azerbaijan Republic, coordinating and guiding all scientific institutes and high schools in the country, representing Azerbaijan in the world scientific arena. This status extended area of activity and authorities of the Academy and obliged it with the important duties to protect and to develop scientific-technical potential, to strengthen the economy, to enrich the culture and to protect national interests.
The Strategy based on the opportunities of the Azerbaijan’s scientific potential, particularly the potential of the Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences, its innovation policy and personnel training. The document put immediate requirements before the scientific-research institutes of the National Academy of Sciences and official structures responsible for the state policy in the different courses as well. The implementation of the Strategy made the joint activity of scientific institutions with the relevant executive organizations necessary and put special duties and responsibilities before the Azerbaijan National academy of Sciences.

-The State Program for implementation of the National Strategy covers 2009-2015. Probably it is not accidentally that period of implementation of the strategy of development of science covers 7 years.

- Of course. This first of all arises from the perspective socio-economic development strategy determined by President Ilham Aliyev. The majority of the state programs, development strategies approved by the President, which are important not only in scientific, educational and cultural spheres, but in terms of socio-economic development of the republic, cover the past ten years. The majority of the state programs on development of oil and non-oil sector in the republic, efficiency of production in agriculture, socio-economic development of the regions, elimination of poverty, healthy and all-round improvement of t7he youth, development of information-communication technologies, protection of people’s health etc. are long-lasting. I want to mention once more that it arises from the long-term socio-economic development strategy of the country determined by President Ilham Aliyev. The head of state determined such a long-term development strategy that economic, industrial, technical, intellectual, educational and scientific potential of the country together form moral and material values and serve the country’s development. The development strategy scientifically grounded and accurately forecasted taking into account development tendencies of the modern civil world is long-lasting as the future activities are large-scale, state programs are intended for higher targets. By the way, I want to take a stance on an important factor that may impede the implementation of long-term socio-economic development strategy of the republic, this is the limit imposed on electing the President of the Republic more than twice. There are two historically proven models of republics in the world. In the United States president is elected every four years, and he is not allowed to be elected more than twice. In France there is no such a limit. I think imposing limit on electing a person more than twice in itself contradicts the principles of democracy. Actually, this is the limit imposed not on the election of any person, but on the people’s right to elect. The limit imposed on the president’s tenure is a very serious limit. It contradicts people’s right to express their will and elect any person to a higher post.
It should also be taken into consideration that Azerbaijani Constitution provides broad authorities to the President. Realization of these authorities envisages great political experience, management skills, and also people’s trust and resolute support. All these features and realization of the strategic programs intended for the development of the state requires it to reconsider the norm limiting president’s tenure. Otherwise, the people will be obliged to vote for any candidate, instead of the person able to make great contributions to the country’s further development. And this in itself is undemocratic and unfair.

-What results are expected to happen in scientific-intellectual sphere, and generally socio-political life of the Republic in the near future?

-Development of science in Azerbaijan is one of the priorities of the state policy covering economic, political, social, legal, moral, cultural, national security spheres. In this respect the results we forecast for the near future are, development of natural sciences, technical, social and humanitarian sciences, reliable protection, development of environment, research of fundamental problems of medicine, establishment of necessary material-technical basis for extending research of fundamental sciences; broader application of the achievements of the scientific-technical progress in order to ensure economic, political and social growth of the state; unbiased, conceptual and complex examination of national, moral values, ethno-culture, Azerbaijan’s history; increase of science’s role in realizing national security policy of the state, development of conceptual scientific principles of the ideology of Azerbaijanism due to the joint activity of humanitarian and social sciences; improvement of social protection of scientists; use of technological, economic, ecological, management, military, political, cultural-social, legal and other kinds of recent innovations aiming to increase efficiency of a man’s activity.