Russian researchers are vehemently protesting a bill that would essentially liquidate the venerated Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) and replace it with a newly -formed but as-yet poorly-defined body. The bill was passed its first and second reading on 1 July and 5 July 2013, respectively. It is slated to be signed into law when the Duma resumes session on 10 September. According to Russian law, substantive changes may not be made to a bill after it passes its second reading.
“[RAS] is the main structure of scientific research in the country,” says Alla Valeria Mikhalevich, a protozoologist and micropaleontologist at the Zoological Institute of the Academy in St Petersburg and a member of the St Petersburg Union of Scientists. “This reform will destroy the entire structure of basic science in Russia.”
[Read more at Euroscientist // September 2, 1013]