goodtosee #11: Petition: Austria’s Scientific Landscape in Jeopardy

According to the daily newspaper Der Standard 63 Institutes of the Austrian Academy of Sciences should be reduced to 22 in the near future. If you want to express your concern about that and protest to these drastic budget cuts then please sign the petition by Christian Balluch from Vienna. That’s an extract of the petition (more infos here):

The Performance Agreement between the Austrian Federal Ministry for Science and Research and the Austrian Academy of Sciences, which was signed on the 4th November 2011 paves the way for the factual budget reduction of the largest and most eminent non-university research establishment in the country. The annual budget discrepancy of approx. 10–16 Mio. Euro, as part of the total budget of 74 Mio. Euro per year is leading to the threat of loss or closure of internationally acclaimed, and demonstrably excellent research organizations. In the words of the Academy Director of Finances the measures could lead to the loss of at least 300 self-financed, full-time equivalent staff members between 2012 and 2014.

There is even the risk, that up to 300 out of the Academy’s 789 self-financed full-time equivalent scientific employees (905 including admin. staff) are threatened by these financial straits. Such drastic employee cuts are unprecedented in Austrian history since 1945. The current economic climate does not serve to justify this severity, and cuts on this scale have not been made in any other areas. Since third-party funding totaling approx. 22 Mio. Euro was acquired by employees, who now stand to lose their jobs, further negative impacts are foreseeable. When project managers are made redundant and their projects are brought to a close, this will automatically lead to the loss of other project support staff. This amounts to a sustainable destruction of knowledge and infrastructure. The level of scientific excellence and the international competitiveness of Austrian scientific research are endangered.

To sign the petition follow the link below: