Czech Science Foundation signs unique cooperation agreement with US counterpart
The agreement aims to foster long-term collaboration between Czech and American scientists in the fields of artificial intelligence, nanotechnology, astrophysics and social sciences. As such, this is the most important attempt at scientific cooperation to date by the Czech Republic and the United States. For the first time, Czech scientists will be able to work on projects funded by the National Science Foundation, which has in the past sponsored hundreds of Nobel Prize winners and groundbreaking inventions. Luděk Moravec, who is the Scientific and Technological Attaché at the Czech Embassy in Washington DC, explained how the project selection process will work:
“Applications will be evaluated only by the US side. This makes the process very competitive, but also prestigious. If the US agency concludes that a project is worth it, then that team will receive funding from both agencies. “
According to Moravec, the agreement is a great achievement for Czech diplomacy when it comes to scientific cooperation:
“From the Czech point of view, this is very important. There is no comparison with our other agreements and agreements in terms of scope, meaning and the work that our people put into it to prepare various projects which helped to build and create the environment which led to this agreement. . It is incomparably bigger and incomparably more important. “
Czech Ambassador to the United States Hynek Kmoníček said Czech diplomats had been working for two years to promote negotiations between Czech and American science agencies. He believes the deal fits into a broader context of global politics and is part of a joint effort by the United States and Europe to compete technologically with China.
“It is also a strategic step as the Euro-American civilization has been trying to face the challenges of Asia for some time now, and it is naturally also a question of security for us, because it shows a quite a lot of confidence. The American National Science Foundation carries out many projects related to American security. It is therefore not always easy to get so close to their often top secret projects. We are of course very happy because for us it is not only about our superior security framework but also about the presentation of the Czech Republic in the West as a country which has something to offer to world science. This is something that makes us a much more trustworthy and valuable partner than we otherwise would be. “
Scientists will be able to start sending out applications for grants later this year, and the selected projects will be funded proportionately by NSF and its Czech counterpart. It is hoped that the cooperation will lead to discoveries that would not have been made if the Czech and American researchers had not worked together.