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The updated Law of Ukraine «On scientific and technical activities» is designed to increase economic innovation and stimulate radical reforms of science in Ukraine, the Information-Analytical Bulletin of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine informs.
According to Chairman of the State Agency on Science, Innovations and Informatization of Ukraine Volodymyr Seminozhenko the new revision of the draft law, which is now under public review, provides a strategic guideline for developing legislation applying to science, although, in many instances, the law is an instrument of direct action.
Government experts say that the Law «On scientific and technical activities» was adopted about 22 years ago. It has been 15 years since it was amended, and many of its provisions need to be updated to reflect modern realities. Introducing a new version of the law, the State Agency on Science took the initiative to resolve the current problems in the field of scientific and technological activities, as well as to involve the scientific community to help draft the document.
The new bill will align the current law with modern requirements, as well as, allow creating a legislative framework for commercialization of intellectual property by research organizations.
In addition to changes in almost all the sections, the developers added to the document a number of new provisions. For example, for scientists to access the unique equipment, legislation provides for organization of centers for the collective use of scientific equipment, as well as a legal basis for a new form of scientific activity — the key state laboratories. The bill also provides for establishment of the State Fund of Applied Research, whose goal will be to support applied research and development aimed at creation of new competitive technologies with grants. It is also interesting that the document includes a number of innovations in financing mechanisms and social support of scientific personnel, particularly young scientists.
The bill which has been developed by the State Agency on Science clearly formulates some concepts and terms. For example, international experience shows that current research in such areas as immunobiotechnology, materials science and computer science require big teams, which include specialists of different disciplines. Current domestic legislation does not even have a concept of «scientific and technical» or «scientific and technological systems.» But the problem goes far beyond the scope of science. The business and administrative codes do not cover association of public research institutions and enterprises in clusters or consortia that can effectively coordinate their activities, for example by forming a single board of directors or executive bodies. This situation requires radical change.
Experts say local universities will be able to approve start-ups only provided appropriate changes have been made to Business and Administrative Codes.