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Universal Value of Fundamental Science
Science is Outside of Boundaries

Minsk (Belarus) January 14, 1999

Meeting of National Academies of sciences and
scientific funds of countries of CIS and Eastern Europe

Address
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The heads of national academies of sciences and scientific funds of Belarus, Georgia, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan and Ukraine who participated in the present meeting address the following message to the World Conference on Science.

Humankind is on the threshold of a new millennium. What outcomes in development will be brought about by humankind at this turning-point? What new achievements of the human spirit and mind and unforeseen social, technological. and ecological cataclysms can our civilization expect next century? Is it possible to avoid these cataclysms? Here are the problems which worry the global public on the eve of a new millennium. The search for the answers to these problems will be promoted by the World Conference on Science.

The efforts of scientists from different countries around the world have led to the accumulation of a huge intellectual potential, especially in the natural and engineering sciences. Rational and systematic use of this potential could solve a lot of problems facing civilization in a relatively short period of time. On the other hand, the imperfection of social organization of community life could become a powerful destructive force.

The participants suppose that the settling of contradictions between high-level technological development and the level of social, political, economic, moral and legal organization of the human community essentially depends on the successes of fundamental science and its implementation in modern life.

Fundamental science is a source of new knowledge and provides an information base for the search for the best ways to overcome the global civilization crisis. It is fundamental science which offers the most comprehensive information about all aspects of life in the modern global society. The results of fundamental research have a direct influence on the life of society as a whole: they create the knowledge base used by specialists working in concrete areas of technologies and various spheres of public life.

The variety of existing organizational forms of fundamental science in the world should be preserved, particularly in countries where national academies serve as a basic form of organization of fundamental science. Preservation and support of such organizational structures by the global community has to be considered advisable. In many countries around the world, the national academies of sciences are the scientific establishments capable of organizing optimally interdisciplinary fundamental research.

In order to make maximum use of all available intellectual potential on the planet to overcome the global civilization crisis, the participants consider necessary broader integration of scientific organizations in developing countries and countries with an economy in transition, including national academies of sciences of countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and Eastern Europe, in a realization system of the main international scientific programmes and projects. The similar full-scale integration will become possible only if scientists from countries of the CIS and Eastern Europe participate in the international scientific programmes and projects and this participation does not depend on non-scientific criteria.

The national academies of sciences and other scientific organizations performing fundamental research are obliged to make the global society acquainted with the newest results of research in every possible way to protect public consciousness worldwide from attempts to fill it with myths and to prevent the spread of occult notions. Many international and military conflicts, public and financial shocks, collective suicides and other negative phenomena in modern society are the consequence of the mythologization of public consciousness. Fundamental science can help the modern community to avoid these negative phenomena.

The World Conference on Science should :

  • Call on mass media to illuminate in a comprehensive and objective manner the work of scientists and its positive influence on the social, scientific and technological development of modem civilization;

  • determine the main legal principles on the basis of which may be elaborated the national legal acts ensuring the intellectual property rights of scientists to results produced by them. It is impossible to ensure free access to scientific information stored in different banks and databases without the development of such legal principles and acts. It is necessary to conduct work prior to the beginning of the World Conference on Science to accelerate formulation of the above-mentioned legal principles;

  • draw the attention of the governments of all countries to the necessity for maximum promotion of the development of fundamental and applied science, bearing in mind that it also represents a reliable basis for the acceptance of optimum state solutions in all spheres of social life. The history of civilization testifies that, without utilization of science, stable achievements in economics, social and technological development, and the rise of culture and well-being is impossible. Therefore, measures to support and stimulate the development of science should become an integral component of state policy of all countries around the world. Scientific establishments and scientists should aim to bring up the results of their research to the attention of government structures in order to use these as rapidly as possible to solve the problems society faces;

  • give a sufficiently universal definition of the status of the scientist. This definition could be based on the scientific legislation developing worldwide and be used to increase the role of science in modern society.

 

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