The Hungarian Network of Academics is an autonomous organisation of lecturers and researchers active in higher education. Its aim is to preserve the achievements and values of the sphere of Hungarian higher education and research as well as to bring about reforms and renewal. The creation of the Network was due to our conviction that the ongoing transformations are leading to negative consequences.
We agree that there is a need to modify existing regulations in many respects but at the same time we firmly believe that any modification can only be acceptable if it does not restrict the freedom of education and research, neither does it hamper the equality of chances of the students. Any new regulation should ensure a fair distribution of costs of education and should guarantee graduates’ rights for equal chances and freedom of choice when entering the labour market.
We insist that any modifications in the existing regulations should only be introduced after fair consideration, serious analyses of long-term consequences and substantive expert and public consultation.
We consider it our duty to draw up suggestions, so that the Hungarian sphere of higher education and research, smoothly integrated into an international network of scientific collaboration, should be able to produce sound results resting on transparent and calculable financing. These are necessary conditions to ensure equal opportunities to all students wishing to participate in a competitive educational system – independently of their social or financial parentage.
We are convinced that the sphere of higher education and research restructured in this way could be the most successful branch of the Hungarian economy and a necessary condition for the country to become not only a competitive economy but a more democratic society with a strong network of solidarity.
We consider it our duty as citizens and as professionals to speak up against any governmental endeavour that aims against the above goals and values. It is also our obligation to stand up – with all the possible means of the civil sector – against the government’s improvisatory, centralising and dictatorial educational policy and its harmful consequences.