Minister Langšádlová visits the Liberec region, calls for closer cooperation between scientists and business

Helena Langšádlová, Minister of Science, Research, and Innovation, paid a visit to the Liberec region on Thursday 3 November. There, at the Regional Development Agency, the leader of the DIH Northeast consortium, she discussed the challenges faced by the Czech Republic and its individual regions, the Liberec region included, with representatives of regional government, headed by Governor Martin Půta, and people from education and research organisations and innovative companies. Among other things, the Minister called for closer cooperation between scientists and business so that the results of Czech science and research do not remain locked away in the drawers of individual organisations.

The recipe for overcoming the succession of crises to affect the Czech economy? Promoting innovation from the very earliest stages of the education system. And making the transfer of knowledge from Czech science and research into practice as effective as possible, thereby increasing the added value of domestic production. These are just a few of the outcomes of discussions that took place at the Regional Development Agency with Helena Langšádlová, Minister for Science, Research, and Innovation, who takes countries such as Finland or Israel as an example and an inspiration.

“I was surprised by the emphasis they place on fostering innovative thinking in Israel. Students are guided towards entrepreneurship at school from an early age, young scientists are automatically provided with mentors from successful businesses. Translating the results of science and research into practice is easier. It is supported by the state and by private capital alike,” says Helena Langšádlová, adding that, “The time when we were seen as a country with a cheap, yet skilled workforce is coming to an end. We need to catch the global trends and base our future prosperity on them. We have the smart minds to do so.”

The fact that the Liberec region is fully aware of the current situation was merely confirmed by Governor of the Liberec Region Martin Půta. “There is no doubt that major changes are afoot in the sphere of industry, which provides a livelihood to the majority of employees in the region. They cannot do without the support of people with innovative ideas and without companies that are at home here and have ties to the place in which they do business,” said Půta, in this context presenting to the Minister the results of the work done by the Liberec business incubator, which has been supporting innovative companies and individuals in the region for five years now.

The meeting in Liberec provided those involved in the discussion with a valuable opportunity to confront the Minister about the obstacles they face today and every day, excessive bureaucracy that discourages companies from investing in science and research being one of them. “I appreciate the openness with which the Minister approached the problems of those involved in the discussion and the fact that she showed great interest in taking them further,” comments Jiří Ulvr, Councillor for Economic and Regional Development, European Projects, Planning, and Rural Development, on the merits of Minister Langšádlová’ visit to the region and its organisation.

The visit then moved on to the iQLANDIA science centre in Liberec, where Minister Langšádlová praised the MathematikUm exhibition and the role that science centres play in informal education. “We agreed on the need to support young people in their studies of science and technology,” said Pavel Coufal, director of iQLANDIA. 

Next up, the CXI TUL research institute showed the Minister around its state-of-the-art workplace and presented the ambitious IDM² project, submitted to Horizon Europe – Teaming for Excellence together with the German Frauenhofer Society. “We want to build a European hub in Liberec that will facilitate open cooperation among research organisations, industrial companies, and technological start-ups focusing on Green Deal green transformation technologies,” said Miroslav Černík, director of CXI TUL, a research institute at the Technical University of Liberec, which is a member of the DIH Northeast consortium.

The final stop of the day was the TOPTEC Centre in Turnov, which has been successfully working with the European Space Agency (ESA) for some time now. “The vision that we have set out to achieve step-by-step in terms of the ESA is to become a supplier of complete and sophisticated equipment with high added value. On top of that, we are trying to open the door to the space industry to other top companies in the region,” said Vít Lédl, director of the TOPTEC Centre, at the end of the visit.

Scroll to Top