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Skolkovo consultative council members see no hurdles to contacts by Russian, US scientists

November 01, 2014, 5:20 UTC+3 STANFORD
“Science is international and it does not depend on political ambitions,” - Alfyorov said
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© ITAR-TASS

STANFORD, California, November 1. /TASS/. Russian and US scientists see no obstructions to the successful development of bilateral relations in science and education, a co-chairman of the Skolkovo Foundation’s consultative scientific council, Russian Academy of Sciences member Zhores Alfyorov, told TASS on Friday. Alfyoerov, a Nobel laureate, is taking part in the consultative council’s session at Stanford University - the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States.

“I was one of those who pressed for the idea of holding the meeting of at Stanford University,” Alfyorov said. “I believe it is essential to demonstrate that relations between the two countries’ researchers have always been normal and that they remain so.”

“Science is international and it does not depend on political ambitions,” he remarked. “We share common tasks with our US counterparts. Our cooperation has never ceased. This is extremely important to us, because it determines the development of civilization. We understand each other very well.”

Consultative council member Vladimir Zelman, chief of the anaesthesiology and reanimatology department at the Keck School of Medicine, South California University, has told TASS nobody has had ever thought that sanctions might prevent scientists from maintaining contacts.

“These days consultative council members are holding the most interesting meetings at various US universities, including those in South California, Stanford and Berkeley,” he said. “We have visited research laboratories and held talks with the universities’ administrations. We were able to see for ourselves that the weather in our relations is not changing.”

“The Americans are open to contacts, they have been looking for partners in Russia to go ahead with joint projects,” Zelman said. “It will not be an exaggeration to say that without Russian science the world science will be unable to move forward, and in this respect the Skolkovo Foundation plays a tremendous role.”

Consultative council member Anton Naumovets, Vice-President of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, has remarked that the modern world is a scene of harsh competition.

“I believe that more than half of Ukraine’s problems these days are a result of a situation in which there has not been a single year of science in our country enjoying proper support,” he said. “Countries must support fundamental science, because new knowledge is the basis of new technologies.”

About cooperation between Ukraine and Russia in science Naumovets said that he was Ukraine’s sole representative in the Skolkovo Foundation’s consultative council and was doing everything in his powers to support Ukraine’s creative contacts with Russian scientists and the scientists of other countries within the Foundation’s framework.

“This is vitally important to us, because without such cooperation Ukraine and other countries will not have a good future,” he said. “This is an important and civilized approach by scientists, particularly important to Ukraine in finding ways to a sensible peace.”

“Our Academy is firm in its conviction we should cooperate with Russians no matter what,” Naumovets said.

Skolkovo Foundation Deputy President Aleksandra Barshchevskaya has said that “science is the bridge that served as a powerful link in all times, and relations can always be built anew on its basis.

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