The results of the 17 studies in all scientific fields, which were funded in 2012 in the framework of the "Scientific Projects" programme, were presented during a special event held on Friday, June 7th 2013, in the afternoon, at the headquarters of the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation in Athens.
At the same time, the Foundation issued a public call, inviting Greek scientists to submit proposals of studies to be carried out during 2014, thus continuing for the seventh year in a row its initiatives to support the scientific community in Greece, based on the programme for the funding of one-year research projects entitled "Scientific Projects".
In his greeting on behalf of the Foundation, Mr Dimitris Afendoulis, Secretary of the Executive Board, said, among others, that:
“The John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation is firmly oriented towards education, it demonstrates a particular sensitivity with respect to the new generation, and it deeply believes that investing in education is the most important lever for our country’s development. Education, at all levels, can play a crucial role in reshaping our country. That is why the Latsis Foundation, through the funding of scientific research, national scholarship programmes, educational actions at schools, the institution of summer schools and many other similar initiatives, tries to help in the emergence of a new perspective on educational issues. Taking into consideration the need to support, under the current circumstances, the most promising part of the country’s human capital, its scientific workforce, the Foundation has decided to modify the ‘Scientific Projects" programme, by spending in 2014 up to 50% of the budget on teams of young researchers, aged up to 40 years old.”
During the particularly interesting discussion held at the event, in which scientists from various fields participated, the concern of the research community regarding the trend of young Greek scientists to migrate abroad was strongly expressed. Indeed, it was noted that, while Greece achieved its decade-long goal of generating the desired critical mass of scientific workforce, today it is losing this part of its national wealth due to the lack of resources of research organisations. It was also noted that the same funding gap has made it particularly difficult for Greek scientists to access essential scientific publications. The creation of living spaces for young researchers was recommended as an obligation of more experienced scientists in order to reverse the unfavourable situation.
According to the scientists that were present at the event, the programme’s positive results include compliance with the timetable and the absence of bureaucracy. Moreover, it is important to note that, in the past, this funding has made it possible for a new research programme to start or for young researchers to be offered a permanent job position at research organisations.
In the framework of the “Scientific Projects” programme, during the 2008-2013 six-year period, the Foundation received approximately 4,500 proposals, in which 16,500 scientists participated and funded 100 studies, in which 400 researchers were involved from approximately 50 research organisations, mostly in Greece.
The final reports, the film that describes the course followed by each team and its results, as well as the electronic form that briefly presents the 17 studies, are available here.