The visits of international evaluation panels at SAS workplaces have concluded
The accreditation of SAS institutes 2016-2021 from September to November of this year continued with the visits of evaluation panels in SAS organizations. It included discussions with individual academic communities as well as with representatives of young scientists. The final results of the accreditation will be known in February 2023.
Scientific Section 2 was the first to complete meetings with the evaluation panel. The evaluation of the institutes of Scientific Section 1 took place from October 17 – 22, 2022. Vice-President of Scientific Section 1, Martin Venhart, highlighted the readiness of the directors, presidents of scientific councils, as well as academic communities, which contributed to the smooth progress of the visits. "They perfectly did their homework. The discussions with the panel were also very informative for the academic community, and I think that they took away several ideas, which will definitely appear in the evaluation sheets as well," adds M. Venhart.
Evaluation Panel 1 was led by prof. Helmuth Weissert (ETH Zurich), other members were prof. Valeria Nicolosi (University of Dublin), prof. Bart De Moor (Katholieke Universiteit Leuven), prof. Martin Pohl (University of Geneva) and prof. Jaroslav Fabián (University of Regensburg).
"The panel was very professional. It included scientists of the highest world level. I highly appreciate the fact that they approached the discussions at the institutes in a very complex manner. At the same time, our panel did not deal with scientometric parameters at all. From my personal discussions, these people consider scientometric-based methods of evaluation to be outdated. I have not even come across the fact that our institutes would be evaluated based on these numbers," emphasizes M. Venhart.
During the evaluation of the institutes of Scientific Section 1, a seminar on the transfer of SAS research results into practice was also held. "Intellectual property created at the Academy, such as patents and copyrights, will gain great added value after the transition of our organizations to public research institutions and will improve our position in cooperation with the private and public spheres," said the Vice-President of the SAS for Science, Research and Innovations prof. P. Samuely. The seminar, which was attended by SAS scientists from all three Scientific Sections as well as representatives of the SAS Technology Transfer Office, was led by Metapanel member dr. Špela Stress (University of Ljubljana), whose task during the accreditation was to map the area in the activities of SAS scientific organizations and propose further improvements.
From November 7 to 11, 2022, the institutes and centres of Scientific Section 3 of the SAS were evaluated. The panel was led by prof. Wim van den Doel, historian from the University of Leiden. Other panel members were: prof. Balázs Kiss (Center for Social Sciences, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest), prof. Özen Nergis Dolcerocca (University of Bologna), prof. Ortwin de Graef (Doctoral School Humanities & Social Sciences, KU Leuven) and prof. Markéta Křížová (FF of Charles University, Prague).
"Accreditation went very smoothly thanks to the good organization and friendliness of the institutes. I was positively surprised by the high-quality presentation of individual institutes, as well as the range of their research topics. It was understandably a stressful situation for most of the directors or presenters, but the members of the evaluation panel tried to create a friendly atmosphere, which they succeeded in most cases," Michal Kšiňan, a member of the Presidium of SAS sums up the accreditation of institutes and centres of Scientific Section 3.
According to him, the members of the evaluation panel addressed constructive criticism to individual organizations in an effort to improve the quality of their activities. "Of course, most institutes will be interested in the final grade, but for me, their suggestions and comments were the most interesting," adds M. Kšiňan. As with Scientific Section 1, the panel members did not pay much attention to scientometrics and statistics. "I consider this to be extremely positive and, moreover, it is also in line with the latest assessment trends," adds M. Kšiňan.
In particular, the members of the evaluation panel called on the institutes to define their research subject, thanks to which they will be able to better set their research policy. "Local research of specifically Slovak cultural traits is as important as global topics, and therefore making the results of this research available in foreign languages is important. Understandably, this must be done in a high-quality way and look for intersections, parallels or place local research in a wider context," Michal Kšiňan summarized the impressions from the panel's visits to workplaces of Scientific Section 3.
The Metapanel will conclude the final evaluation results on December 13, 2022, at a meeting at the SAS Congress Centre in Smolenice. On December 14, the accreditation commission will discuss these results, and then on December 15, they will be discussed by Presidium of SAS. On Monday, December 19, the evaluations will be distributed to the directors of SAS institutes and centres or their authorized representatives. From December 20, 2022, a period of 21 working days will begin to run, during which they will be able to appeal. Possible appeals will be discussed by the accreditation commission on January 24, and at a special meeting on January 31, 2023, by the Presidium of SAS. The final results will be presented to the public at the beginning of February 2023. They will also include Metapanel's general recommendations for SAS, as well as other persons involved in science and research in Slovakia.
Spracovala: Katarína Gáliková, Andrea Nozdrovická
Foto: Martin Bystriansky, Marek Radvanský