19.07.2011 | Hanover, Germany

German-Russian Government Consultations - science ministers agree on new common activities

The XIII. German-Russian Government Consulations took place on 19 July 2011. Government representatives of both countries came together to discuss bilateral cooperation in education and science.
On 23 May the German Federal Minister of Education and Research, Prof. Dr. Annette Schavan, and her Russian counterpart, Prof. Dr. Andrej Fursenko, had launched the German-Russian Year of Education, Science and Innovation 2011/12 (<- website in Russian and German language). In the frame of the current consultations the ministers agreed upon measures and projects, which will be implemented in the coming months.

Considering the high demand for qualified specialist personnel in Russia, experience with the German dual education system is much sought after (The so called dual education system is practised in several countries, notably Germany, Austria and Switzerland. It combines an apprenticeship in a company with complementary education at a vocational school.). In this context both sides agreed to organise a 'German-Russian Conference on Vocational Education'. In addition a large number of conferences, symposia, workshops and exhibitions will be organised until May 2012 and take place in both Russia and Germany. One of them will be a 'German-Russian Symposium on Knowledge and Technology Transfer as a Key Task for Universities within Society', and an other will be a roadshow on common marine and polar research. Hands-on examples of German-Russian research will be presented to the public of both countries in various cities.

During their meeting the ministers also agreed to jointly take over the patronage for an initiative of the Goethe institute in Moscow: It is titled 'Deutsch unterwegs' and means to trigger and stimulate interest in the German language at more than 200 schools in 18 cities.

Talks also included the implementation of a joint German-Russian promotional programme for state-of-the-art research. Its aim is to optimize support for future projects e.g. concerning the protection and efficient use of natural ressources. Schavan and Fursenko emphasized that these measures should also set an impulse for the exchange of young scientists.

Apart from this the federal minister and her Russian counterpart agreed to extend the cooperation in super computing and aim for a closer collaboration. In this context both ministers signed a Memorandum of Intent.

Source: BMBF website (in German language)