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German move to boost cooperation with Russia

The German research ministry has launched an initiative to boost German-Russian collaboration and improve career prospects for scientists in both countries.

The initiative is a follow-up to the German-Russian Year of Science 2011, under which Germany and Russia held over 150 events for scientists in their respective countries.

The German research ministry has made money available for the next two years to continue projects in which German scientists and small business owners travel to Russia to meet local researchers and set up partnerships.

“We want to continue the impulses created through the German-Russian science year,” said Georg Schütte, the German state secretary for research, at the launch of the initiative in Moscow on 29 March. “We will do this through targeted initiatives together with leading German research organisations.”

The campaign will centre on research in nanotechnology, optometry, energy efficiency, and health. On 30 March Schütte attended a Russian research careers conference, which looked at improving the quality of Russian science education.

The German research ministry said in a statement that over 6,000 German companies have branches in Russia. Existing links should be picked up by regions and local higher education institutions, and extended, it added.