Successful staging of the kick-off meeting of the UaFoodTrade project
10 October 2018 - The official opening of the “Pilot project for the sustainable internationalization of Ukrainian research structures in the context of the globalization of the Ukrainian food sector” (UaFoodTrade) took place at the Kyiv School of Economics (KSE) in Ukraine on 20 September 2018. Numerous representatives of the fields of politics, business and research were present for the project opening and subsequent panel discussion.
The event for the UaFoodTrade pilot project was opened by the Academic Director of the Kyiv School of Economics (KSE), Professor Olesia Verchenko. She thanked the German and Ukrainian project staff for their commitment. IAMO researcher and project leader Dr. Oleksandr Perekhozhuk welcomed the participants at the meeting on behalf of the IAMO Director Professor Thomas Glauben and gave a detailed explanation of the structure and goals of the project. Hermann Intemann, Agricultural Attaché at the German Embassy in Ukraine, gave a welcome address on behalf of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). He noted the good co-operation between the KSE, the IAMO and the Ukrainian agricultural universities in the scope of the pilot project. Ivan Miroshnichenko, a member of the Ukrainian parliament Verkhovna Rada, also welcomed the collaboration between the KSE and the IAMO, emphasising that the Ukrainian government needs to be prepared to support the future work of the project. Vitalii Cherniuk, representing the Ukrainian Ministry of Education and Science, thanked the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) for supporting and promoting the pilot project in Ukraine. The project will undoubtedly contribute to the internationalisation and integration of Ukrainian educational and research establishments into the international research community. Deputy Minister Dr. Olga Trofimtseva of the Ukraine Ministry for Agricultural Policy and Food expressed her great gratitude that the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) had enabled the co-operation between German and Ukrainian research establishments as well as universities in the scope of the project. The welcome meeting was moderated by project co-ordinator Dr. Oleg Nivievskyi.
An avid discussion took place amongst the participants in the scope of the panel discussion on the subject of “Internationalization of Ukrainian research structures in the context of the globalization of the Ukrainian food sector: realities and perspectives”, moderated by project leader Dr. Oleksandr Perekhozhuk. Hermann Intemann summarised the strategy of the German government to internationalise education, science and research and made it clear that Ukrainian agricultural universities and research establishments also face major challenges in the internationalisation of their educational and research structures. Vitalii Cherniuk addressed the development strategy for international co-operation and European integration of the Ukrainian Ministry for Education and Science. In this he also pointed out the state funding programmes of the ministry.
In conclusion, Professor Volodymyr Vakhitov, Vice President of the Kyiv School of Economics (KSE), reported on his experiences in internationalisation and in establishing the international study programme at the KSE. This has given rise to close co-operation with visiting professors as well as academics from western universities. The Dean of the Faculty of Business Sciences, Professor Anatolii Dibrоva, spoke of his many years of experience in international collaboration between the National University of Life and Environmental Sciences and foreign universities and research establishments. Vladimir Osadchuk, Director General of COFCO Agri Resources Ukraine, pointed out that the acute and tangible staff shortages at many Ukrainian companies represent a major problem. As a consequence, companies need to undertake their own targeted personnel development and train more newcomers in the agricultural economics field. The Director General of the all-Ukrainian civic association “Ukrainian Agrarian Confederation”, Pavlo Koval, agreed with this statement and reported on the research and development work underway in large private companies in Ukraine. In his opinion, a major difference exists between education and science. Science is more dynamic and subject to constant change. In contrast, education is conservative and does not fulfil the strict requirements of business. Mykhailo Sokolov, Deputy Director of the civic union “Ukrainian Agrarian Council”, added that Ukrainian companies orientate themselves less towards Ukraine and more abroad in their search for knowledge.