Struggling Bulgarian Science Academy Boasts 1000 Innovation Projects in 2010

Society » EDUCATION | May 16, 2011, Monday // 17:56| Views: | Comments: 0
Bulgaria: Struggling Bulgarian Science Academy Boasts 1000 Innovation Projects in 2010 Pictured: one of the mass protests of Bulgarian scientists against the government's ill-advised attempts to reform the BAS. The left posters proclaims the collecting of money to send Bulgarian Finance Minister Djankov back to the USA. Photo by BGNES

The Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, which barely survived an attempt by the Borisov Cabinet to shut it down in 2010, has announced it had over 1000 innovations projects last year.

The BAS chief secretary Prof. Stefan Hadjitodorov presented in Sofia Monday the Annual Report for the activities of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences.

The BAS had a total budget of BGN 104 M in 2010, including BGN 61 M of state subsidies. The Academy got BGN 36 M under research and development contracts and projects abroad, including both Bulgarian and foreign funding, which a decrease compared with the BGN 58 M in 2009.

Bulgaria's "Scientific Research Fund", a government body, contributed BGN 13 M to the Academy in 2010, various other ministries and state institutions added BGN 5.6 M, while BGN 6.3 M were raised under contracts with private companies. The BAS got BGN 4 M from renting its properties, while the donations to the largest Bulgarian science institution amounted to only BGN 141 000.

The total expenditure of the BAS in 2010 came at BGN 114 M, with the largest share of the spending going for salaries and social security.

At the end of 2010, the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences had a total of 6 747 employees, including 3 125 scientists. Some 400 scientists left the BAS in just one year, as their number a year earlier was 3 574.

A total of more than 1 000 employees left the Academy in 2010 – about 600 were retired, while some 500 decided to leave on their own. A total of 130 young scientists were appointed in 2010.

Of the 1 029 innovation projects that BAS came up with in 2010, 315 were in the field of nano technologies, 227 in biomedicine and improving the quality of life.

The BAS scientists produced a total of 10 295 publications in 2010, with 40% of those being published in foreign scientific journals.

The articles in the field of cultural and historical heritage are the largest number – 3 026; in nano technologies – 1 549; in IT and communications – 1 380.

"The 2010 BAS state subsidy was insufficient to pay out the salaries and social security payments... Because of that, the salaries were reduced by BGN 9 M, and the social security payments – by BGN 2.2 M. Unpopular measures such as the use of unpaid leaves and reduced office hours had to be employed," explains the BAS report.

According to the cited figures, the average monthly salary in the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences was supposed to be BGN 628 in 2010 but in the second half of the year it had to be reduced to under BGN 500.

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Tags: BAS, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Stefan Hadjitodorov, research and development, R & D, nanotechnology, IT, ICT
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