Looking East

Welcome to this Special Issue of EuroScientist on: Looking East!

This issue is dedicated to research and innovation in Eastern Europe. It is useful to clarify, here, the definition of this term for the purpose of this special issue. It is defined in the widest possible geographical sense. It encompasses what are commonly referred to as Central and Eastern European countries, the Balkans and the Baltic States as well as the Russian Federation and it former satellite countries. In other words, countries located East of an imaginary line going from Berlin to Rome, all the way to the Urals, who distinguish themselves by their broad diversity and cultural variations, but are located in the same broad geographical region.

In this issue we explore the skills gap of these counties, due to sustained brain drain. An entire generation has left these countries, while only a small proportion has been attracted back. By contrast, we also give examples of sectors, such as clinical trials and IT, where Eastern Europe has proven attractive to the private sector for its highly skilled work force.

In parallel, we take a look at the challenges facing scientists who are currently training in these countries. This shows the need for higher recognition to the status of PhD and for better mentoring during doctoral training.

Other contributions focus on the role of research policy in ensuring that good practice becomes more widespread within the region.

Finally, we dedicate a couple of articles on a case study of Poland . These show of how several public and private initiatives are helping shape up the research and innovation landscape there.

We hope this special issue will give you a better idea about what is happening in Eastern Europe. We welcome your feedback. Feel free to comment using the dialogue box at the end of each article, or to send us a letter to the editor at: editor@euroscientist.com.

If you enjoy this issue, don’t forget to share it widely with your contacts. You can also view here a print edition of the “Looking East” issue.

Thanks for your support.

The EuroScientist team

Tackling the skills gap

Innovation: collaboration creed rather than mobility mantra

By Sabine Louët, EuroScientist editor.

What does it take for brain drain reversal initiatives to be effective?

By Constanze Böttcher, science journalist, Oldenburg, Germany.

PhDs seeking more than just student status

By Slobodan Radičev, Eurodoc president, and PhD candidate, Novi Sad.

Revamping research policy

Eastern European countries snub neighbours’ science policy

By Mićo Tatalović, science journalist and Environment news editor at New Scientist, London, UK.

Russian science oscillating between progress and backlash

By István Palugyai,, science editor at Népszabadság, Budapest, Hungary.

The East, as land of opportunities

Clinical trials Eldorado based on quality, not cost

By Anthony King, science journalist, Dublin, Ireland.

A crowsdourcing approach to innovation

By Emanuele Musa, co-founder of social innovation platform, Babele, Bucharest, Romania.

Case study: Poland

Creating an inspiring environment for scientists in Poland: Maciej Żylicz podcast interview

By Sabine Louët, EuroScientist editor.

Poland: transitioning towards more intensive innovation

By Daria Tataj, CEO Tataj Innovation, Warsaw, Poland.

Finally

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Featured image credit: CC BY-NC 2.0 by Mahmoudreza Shirinsokhan: Sun rising to the East over the Charles Bridge in Prague, Czech Republic

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