Yulia Kukharenko and Michael Leskiv, two employees of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, while on a visit to Ukraine, met with Yurii Bobalo, rector of Lviv Polytechnic, Ivan Demydov, Vice-Rector for Scientific Research, Nataliya Chukhray, Vice-Rector for Education and International Relations, and Nazarii Andrushchak, head of the Project Office The delegation also visited the Tech StartUp School, where they got acquainted with the projects that startuppers are working on.
The meeting was initiated by the American guests – experts in the management of university research funding from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. At the event Lviv Polytechnic presented the main areas of its activity, told about the educational and scientific possibilities of our University, as well as about public activities, in particular, in the direction of cooperation with world Ukrainians, which is conducted by IECDR.
Yulia and Michael, Ukrainians by birth, volunteer their efforts, strategic advice, and practical skills to help Ukraine obtain competitive research grants from the US, the EU, and other international sources. This activity is supported by their colleague from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Rainer Frost (USA).
― The research infrastructure of Ukraine needs both short-term and long-term assistance. Current internal spendings and foreign aid are directed toward urgent war-related needs. Long-term investment in research infrastructure is critical to Ukraine’s post-war economic recovery. For example, EU and US competitive research grants are significant additional sources of external funding, and for many Ukrainian institutions, it becomes useful to know how to apply for and manage research grants according to the standards required by benefactors. There is also a need to adapt certain regulatory acts of the Ukrainian government in order to increase the ability of Ukrainian institutions to compete with their colleagues (research institutions) from the EU and the USA, – explained Michael Leskiv.
This first visit actually became an acquaintance with the representatives of research institutions, institutions of higher education and government organizations and an opportunity to assess the prospects of structural reforms for the development of research and educational institutions.
― Ukraine’s intention to join the EU is important in this cooperation, which becomes the basis for systemic changes, and strengthens the motivation to carry out additional reforms of the post-Soviet heritage, provoked by the war. In order to achieve success, the specified goals must be shared by Ukrainian researchers, government officials, and other stakeholders who are united by such aspirations. That is why the identification of partners and research teams is important for the success of both the first visit and long-term plans, – said the American guests.
Based on the results of the visit, representatives of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology will analyze the information received. They will continue cooperation and maintain relations with partners to determine further steps. In particular, trainings, seminars, brainstorming sessions, selection of researchers, additional trips and other opportunities are planned.