Comment on the letter of M. Belogolovskii “Young Ukrainian Physicists who fled the war took part in DPG spring meetings”

By . Published on 08 August 2017 in:
August 2017, , , , ,

I have read this letter and think that the German Physical Society is doing a noble and right thing for the development of science, rendering concrete assistance to those Ukrainian colleagues who found themselves in a difficult situation because of the war in the Donbass.

In June 2015, I was one of the co-directors of the “School on Anomalous Transport, Superconductivity and Magnetism in Nanosystems”, organized in Ukraine by the International Center for Theoretical Physics (UNESCO) in cooperation with the Bogolyubov Institute for Theoretical Physics (NASU). In October 2016 I took part in the international conference in Kiev devoted to the quantum transport. I have been collaborating with my Ukrainian colleagues in the framework of the European projects. During these visits I met the enthusiastic students, talented young postdocs who have already done their choice in science, and mature scientists. All this allows me to judge that Ukrainian physics is alive, but financially and administratively is in a grave crisis. And the situation of physicists-refugees from the East of Ukraine, being guests, both in everyday life, and in the host institutions, is even worse.

Formally Europe, having accepted Ukraine in the quality of an associate member, gives possibilities for Ukrainian scholars to get various kinds of grants, to integrate with the European science within the Horizon 2020 program. Definitely, there are examples of such cooperation. However, we all understand that competition in obtaining such grants is high, there are teams of consultants in large European centers, who help in writing projects to correspond the standards of Brussels. Our Ukrainian colleagues do not have such privilege. Therefore, such targeted as creation of special scholarships, the allocation of small funds for the implementation of joint projects could be a great assistance to our colleagues affected by the war.

I appeal to the physical societies of other European countries to follow the example of our German colleagues, while the European Physical Society to develop, together with the Ukrainian Physical Society, measures to help our colleagues affected by the military conflict.

Andrey Varlamov
Principal investigator of the Institute of Superconductivity and Innovative Materials and Devices of the Italian National Research Council (SPIN-CNR)

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