Serbia-JINR: 8th meeting of Cooperation Committee took place in Belgrade

News, 10 March 2023

On 22 – 24 February, the JINR delegation led by Vice-Director Vladimir Kekelidze worked in Belgrade. The regular, 8th meeting of the Joint Coordination Committee on Cooperation (JCC) was dedicated to the celebration of the 75th anniversary of the Vinča Institute of Nuclear Sciences.

The meeting of the Committee took place on 23 February at the Vinča Institute. Director of the Institute Snežana Pajović and JINR Vice-Director Vladimir Kekelidze welcomed participants.

The Serbian party was headed by representatives of scientific organizations and universities of Belgrade and Novi Sad. Director of the Laboratory of Radiation Biology Aleksandr Bugay, Deputy Director of the Laboratory of Neutron Physics Otilia Culicov represented JINR. They made presentations on the state of cooperation in their laboratories and the prospects for its further development.

The Committee noted that the Laboratory of Neutron Physics currently accounted for almost half of all the existing joint projects. A senior researcher of the Laboratory of Nuclear Reactions Ruslan Rymzhanov participated in the work of the Committee as well. He represented one of the oldest mainline joint projects using the accelerator capabilities of both FLNR and the Vinča Institute for work on materials science with accelerated heavy ions.

The Committee noted the high performance of most of 24 existing projects, despite the break in face-to-face communication during the pandemic and logistical difficulties of the past year. Participants noted the high demand for the possibilities of cooperation between research teams of Serbia and JINR. In connection with it, the possibility of launching new promising joint scientific research was provided, along with the distribution of funds from the regular contribution of Serbia to existing projects. Applications for new projects are being welcomed in a wide range of scientific fields, primarily within the rapidly developing cooperation with the Laboratory of Radiation Biology. Serbian colleagues showed interest in the Baikal Neutrino Telescope as well. New tasks await the FLNR MT-25 Microtron.

The Committee decided to continue the acquaintance of science organizers and natural science education of Serbia with JINR’s capabilities within the JEMS programmes. The JINR University Centre organizes the arrival of a group of students from Serbia for student internships. The MPD Collaboration’s initiative to hold a meeting in Belgrade in the autumn was approved. In general, the Committee was pleased to note the implementation of the Action Plan signed in 2019 and highlighted the efforts of the Serbian Government to support the development of cooperation. The Committee expressed hope for further growth of this support as well.

The cooperation coordinators, Head of the International Cooperation Department Dmitry Kamanin and the representative of the Vinča Institute Ljupčo Hadžievski, moderated the work of the Committee.

On the same day, Vukasin Grozdic, the newly appointed State Secretary, welcomed the JINR delegation at the Ministry of Science, Technological Development, and Innovation. They discussed mutually beneficial cooperation between Serbian scientific organizations and JINR, as well as further steps for its development. Taking the opportunity, on behalf of the Directorate, Vladimir Kekelidze invited representatives of the newly formed Ministry to Dubna for a personal acquaintance with the JINR research infrastructure and educational programmes.

On 24 February, the JINR delegation’s programme continued with a visit to the Astronomical Observatory of Belgrade, which is one of the oldest scientific institutes in Serbia. The Observatory’s Directorate expressed great interest in expanding cooperation with the Joint Institute, which promises to result in a new joint project in the near future. Mutual interest in establishing contacts was recorded in a brief online conversation between the incoming Head of the Observatory Luka Popović and Deputy Director of the Laboratory of Nuclear Problems Dmitry Naumov.

The delegation’s work in Belgrade finished with another significant meeting for bilateral cooperation. The Institute’s delegation was welcomed by Vice-President of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia Zoran Vujovic in his office. He had just returned from Dubna, where he, in his turn, had visited JINR Laboratories and discussed with the Institute’s Directorate steps to enhance cooperation alongside the 133rd session of the Scientific Council. In the presence of Zoran Vujovic, a signing ceremony of Decisions that had been made at the Joint Coordination Committee on Cooperation took place. The co-chairs of the meeting JINR Vice-Director Vladimir Kekelidze and Director of the Vinča Institute Snežana Pajović signed the document. Taking this opportunity, Vladimir Kekelidze once again congratulated the Vinča Institute on its 75th anniversary. He presented a congratulatory address from JINR Director Grigory Trubnikov, which finished the official programme of the delegation’s visit to Belgrade.