More resources must be directed towards basic research in universities and a greater emphasis on IT and science training is needed, the state secretary for education said. The education system needs to develop in a way that it can respond to the demands of the market and address a worsening skills shortage, László Palkovics told a meeting at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
It is the responsibility of teachers, science institutions and political decision-makers to prepare young people for future challenges, and it is important that students should be able to put their knowledge to good use, he added. There is a growing demand for graduates in technical fields, natural sciences and information technology, and the education system has failed to match this in the past 15 years. Since 2012, companies have been steadily increasing spending on innovation and research, but the shortage of skilled workforce could hinder this in the future, he said. The natural sciences play a special importance from the point of future developments in the vehicle industry,
“The situation regarding funding for basic research is not good, and even though there has been some progress since last year, we are far from reaching the target of 10% of budget support represented by spending on basic research,” he said. “Government willingness is there,” he added. Among recent government measures, he cited improvements to researchers’ wage structure and a 2 billion forint increase in support for basic research which is available on application. Assessing this year’s figures on university applications, he said trust in the higher education system has improved but no positive progress has been made in technical studies and IT. Some 25% of all students graduate in the areas of technical studies, IT and natural sciences, which fails to match the demands of the economy, he added.
via hungarymatters.hu and MTI