has a relatively strong R&D potential but its output quality is well
behind the most developed countries. Thereby the main aim of "Competitiveness
Strategy for Slovakia until 2010" (the National Lisbon Strategy) and the
subsequent "Action Plan for Science, Research and Innovation", approved
by the Slovak Government in July 2005, is to improve research, development
and innovation systems to be comparable to the international standards.
Implementing the Action Plan, the Slovak government was able to increase
the amount of finances aimed at the support of science, research and innovation.
This also enabled the Slovak people to profit from financial means from
the EU funds (European Social Fund, EC Framework programmes for research,
development and demonstrations, financial tools of EEC, European Science
2004 and 2005, human resources development for R&D was a question of
urgency in Slovakia. The year 2005 was marked by specific horizontal themes
of the 6th Framework Programme. The best results were reached in the following
topics: information society technology, nanotechnology and sustainable
development. On the contrary, life science, genomics and biotechnology
and health lagged behind, although these topics were the most successful
in the 5th Framework Programme from the point of Slovak applicants.
directly VET/HRD related projects with Slovak participation are performed
within 6th FP in contrast to two projects within 5th FP. This is caused
predominantly by the change of priorities; the priority of human resource
development has been removed and the only VET relevant priority within
6th FP is the priority “citizens and governance in a knowledge-based society”.
On the other hand the "European Science Education Network 2003" coordinated
by IUVENTA- NAFYM, an organisation managed by the Slovak Ministry of Education
, has a strong VET related impulse due to the focus on young people up
to the age of 18 and the enhancement their interest in science and technology.
initiative within the European Union known as “Researchers in Europe” was
launched in 2005 to improve and promote public understanding of the important
role researcher play in society. The Slovak Government agrees that this
is to be a strategic point of the up-coming period and therefore declares
its support for the mobility of researchers and for the creation of centres
implementation of the EU VET/HRD research initiatives at national level
will release new policy developments in Slovakia, especially a quality
base for networking is a key to success. Nevertheless, the involvement
of Slovak VET/HRD researchers in European activities is insufficient. This
is for instance evident from an overview provided by the Research
Forum Education and Society (WIFO) , where Slovakia is together with Latvia
and Bulgaria among Europe’s worse performing countries (http://www.b.shuttle.de/wifo/vet-pr/CEEC05.pdf).