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Georgian-German Science Bridge at TSU

On September 15, Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University hosted a seminar on a topic “Health as a Global Challenge: Contributions by GGSB and its SMART|Labs”, which was held as part of the Georgian-German Science Bridge (GGSB). Forschungszentrum Jülich (FZJ), Germany, together with the Georgian partner universities (AUG, ISU, GTU and TSU), in close coordination with the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf ((HZDR) and the Helmholtz Centre in Darmstadt (GSI) held the 9th Georgian-German School and Workshop in Basic Science (GGSWBS).

At the meeting, TSU Rector George Sharvashidze spoke about the goals and plans of the project: “A summer school is being held with German scientists within the framework of the Georgian-German Science Bridge. The project has been underway for many years and trainings and summer school are being organized within its framework. Young Georgians will be selected to undergo training at the Julich Research Center. This is a great opportunity for our future generation to master modern research methodology. With the support of the German side, we are going to create another medical laboratory at TSU, which will work on innovative projects.”

The seminar will discuss health issues (in particular, disease (cancer) diagnosis and treatment) and the environment (e.g. pollution as a cause of health problems). In addition, the scientific and technological aspects of the hadron therapy center planned at Kutaisi International University will be discussed.

The aim of the workshop is to bring together worldwide experts from the accelerator groups, medical physicists and physicians, life science and technology from various international partners to summarize achievements in the field and to initiate discussions on further scientific and technological cooperation between the two countries. In addition, lecture courses are planned for BA, MA and PhD students in a wide range of natural and engineering sciences, as well as brainstorming on scientific (ongoing and future) projects and educational (student exchange) programs.

Professor Hans Ströer, former director of the Nuclear Physics Institute at Julich Research Center, spoke about almost 20 years of cooperation with the Georgian side, the significance the Georgian-German Science Bridge, the study of Georgian students in Germany, the so-called smart laboratories, establishment, and development of research centers at different universities of Georgia.  

Forschungszentrum Jülich (FZJ) successfully cooperates with the consortium of Georgian universities (AUG, ISU, GTU and TSU). The cooperation started in the early 1990s with a collaboration between the Nuclear Physics Institute (IKP) of FZJ and a small group of TSU scientists (HEPI TSU), based on a joint research program at the COZY accelerator in Jülich. The international collaboration has been extended later by other FZJ institutes: Energy and Climate Research (IEK), Neuroscience and Medicine (INM), Bio- and Geosciences (IBG) and Electronics and Mechanical Engineering (ZEA). Recently, Kutaisi International University joined this cooperation from the Georgian side.

The Georgian-German Science Bridge (GGSB) comprises 3 pillars: (i) Education: Educational programs for Georgian students are pursued in a form of various internship programs at FZJ and block lectures in Georgia; (ii) Research: Georgian students together with their supervisors are actively involved in the diverse common research for their Master and PhD projects; (iii) Knowledge transfer: Reintegrating young, well trained Georgian scientists into the Georgian university structures by the foundation of so called SMART|Labs. Germany and Georgia attach great importance to this possibility: with the support of the Georgian government (Ministry of Education and Science via the Shota Rustaveli National Science Foundation) two SMART|Labs were established in the fields of Nuclear Physics (SMART|EDM_Lab) and Atmospheric Chemistry & Simulations (SMART|AtmoSim_Lab); Jülich has provided part of the scientific equipment.