Talks on German research pact

Minister holds meeting on a plan to boost competition and produce more scientists

Ned Stafford(scientistnews@yahoo.com)
Feb 22, 2004

Germany's education and research minister Edelgard Bulmahn has met privately with the heads of seven leading German research organizations to discuss proposals for what could be a dramatic shakeup of the country's research system.

Bulmahn's proposed “Pact for Research and Innovation” would modernize and improve the nation's scientific research system, Sabine Baun, chief spokesperson at the ministry, told The Scientist. She described the proposed changes as a “revolution.”

The ministry hopes the changes will provide Germany with “more research and more quality” for money spent on research, a goal that has been something of a theme in recent months. In return for signing and adhering to the pact, research institutes would be guaranteed funding increases each year, possibly around 3%, Baun said.

The pact is part of a broader innovation offensive being waged by the ministry, which includes a controversial elite university competition, under which five institutions...

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