The symposium „Evaluation of research activities and perspectives of the Earth Science Institute of the Slovak Academy of Sciences“ was a first joint meeting of the Geological and Geophysical divisions, the descendant research units of formerly two distinct institutions that merged into a single institution in July 2015. This symposium took place on October 18-19 at the Congress Center of the Slovak Academy of Sciences in Smolenice.
Introductory presentations during the first day were devoted to temporal history of both divisions and to an overall evaluation of research activities performed between 2012-2015. They informed about the structure, economical conditions and goals of the Earth Science Institute in 2015-2016 and explained plans for assessment of performance of individual researchers.
Professor Michal Kováč, the chair of the Department of Geology and Paleontology at the Comenius University, was awarded by the Medal of Academician Bohuslav Cambel. This award is given to geoscientists with significant research achevements since 2013. Michal Kováč is an accomplished and influential scholar who significantly advanced the understanding of geodynamic and paleogeographic evolution of Cenozoic basins in the Alps-Carpathians-Pannonian unit, using sedimentologic, sequence stratigraphic, biostratigraphic, paleoecological, structural, and geophysical approaches. He is an outstanding expert on sedimentology, stratigraphy and basin analysis and built original models explaining the evolution of the Vienna, Danube and East Slovakian basins.
In the late afternoon during the first day, the laboratory center in Banska Bystrica explained the present-day state of analytical laboratories and research opportunities. Individual research departments then presented their teams, results, and projects. Finally, managing editors of two journals published by the Earth Science Institute - Geologica Carpathica and Contributions to Geophysics and Geodesy - informed about their history and present-day status relative to other geoscience journals on the basis of journal ranking criteria. Ceremenony dinner was followed by a fire show performance later in the evening.
The second day of the symposium was devoted to presentations of research projects and theses by our ten graduate students, including two presentations by students coming from Hungary.
We think that the whole symposium was highly successful - it enabled new discussions and potential for future interactions, it fostered stronger connectivity among departments, and promoted new collaborations.
Text: Ján Madarás, translated by A. Tomašových
Photo: Tomáš Fuksi, Stanislav Jeleň, Juraj Šurka