Challenges of funding scientific researches during a pandemic in Georgia (სამეცნიერო კვლევების დაფინანსების გამოწვევები პანდემიის დროს საქართველოში)

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Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University Press
The Covid-19 virus has caused the greatest damage not only to healthcare but also to education, economy, tourism and other sectors in the shortest period of time. The pandemic has affected every stage of education system. The long-term development of a country's economy is unimaginable without the promotion of an economy based on scientific advances, modern technologies, knowledge and innovation. However, the shortest path to sustainable development can be presented not as individual elements (university, public sector, industry, etc.), but as a whole system as a combination of education and science economics, clusters necessary for the formation of a cluster ecosystem (Gagnidze, 2018). The pandemic has caused many obstacles for the scientific community, which, first of all, reflected on the funding of scientific research: based on statistics, compared to 2019, in 2020-2021 years, the share of funds allocated from the budget of the Ministry of Education and Science of Georgia to support science and scientific research, has decreased. Given the limited financial resources, it is crucial to implement targeted funding: by funding scientific research and disseminating their positive social effects in society, the government should promote the development of human capital (Polodashvili, 2020, 11). During the pandemic, the state funding of the Shota Rustaveli National Science Foundation of Georgia was also reduced: in fact, the 2020 grant call plan has failed and only 2 grant calls have been announced. In 2021, the foundation announced again all major national science calls, as well as 3 bilateral programs. Unfortunately, participation of Georgian scientists in international scientific programs is quite low. Reasons for low activity can be: the existence of double standards and requirements, double-checking the compliance of registered projects with the competition conditions, cultural and bureaucratic barriers (Polodashvili, 2020, 04) The main problems identified in conducting scientific research during the pandemic are: risk of full or partial non-fulfillment of commitments made by scientists / groups of scientists within the framework of grant funding, problems caused by locking the borders of the country, problems of grant holders / applicants caused by online working and etc. The Covid-19 pandemic in Georgia has caused many obstacles in the field of science. Among them were financial and logistical problems. As a result of the reduction of the budget of the Ministry of Education and Science, the funds allocated for the promotion of science have been reduced. It is necessary to increase the targeted funding of science, as well as to promote science through the formation of state policies. Ultimately, overcoming the scientific obstacles caused by the pandemic will only be possible with a complex approach.
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COVID-19-ის პანდემია, საგრანტო დაფინანსება, შოთა რუსთაველის საქართველოს ეროვნული სამეცნიერო ფონდ
International Scientific Conference Dedicated to the Establishment of the University and the 100th Anniversary of the Faculty of Economics and Business “Covid 19 Pandemic and Economics”, Tbilisi, 2022, pp. 316-321