The International Network for Government Science Advice (INGSA) applauds and fully endorses efforts made by Ukrainian and Russian scientists to condemn the invasion and stress the universality of science as a global public good. Keeping international networks and key research projects going, despite the necessity to pause and take stock in some cases, should remain our overriding objective.
The lessons learned by the international science establishment and all its constituent parts in recent decades is one of being stronger together. Now, more than ever, we need to keep shared science, technology and innovation as the oxygen of democracy and human progress, as we collectively and urgently tackle public health challenges, climate change and biodiversity loss.
While categorically condemning the invasion of Ukraine by Russia and the horrendous impacts it is having on the lives of so many decent and hard-working scientists and their families, INGSA calls upon researchers and policy-makers in both countries to refrain from shredding important, bilateral and, indeed, multilateral collaborations.
In addition, we call upon international bodies and funding agencies to step-in to urgently support grass-roots researchers, practicing scientists, academics, school children and all members of Ukraine’s scientific eco-system.
In particular, refugee scientists now fleeing to the EU and further afield must be afforded a sense of personal and professional well-being that allows them to continue their work and retain their long-standing national and international networks.
To this end, INGSA is prioritising the creation of a new European Chapter within our suite of regional chapters, for all countries of the continent. The aim is to act as a bridge in developing skills and capacity-building towards better science advice and science diplomacy for all. Ukrainian and Russian members will be warmly welcomed.
As a non-governmental organisation, INGSA adopts the ethos to create and share best practices to rise above the perhaps divisions and cultural or procedural differences that might otherwise divide us, to gain consensus on ways and means of promoting open and collaborative science.
Guided by this mandate given by participants from over 130 countries at our Montreal meeting in September 2021, INGSA will now proactively engage its membership to further discuss concrete actions supporting like-minded Ukrainian and Russian researchers and peaceful, science-led organisations on the ground.
We want to hear from you!
Prof. Rémi Quirion
President of INGSA