The Learned Society is an association of distinguished scholars of the Czech Republic.
Its main goal is to support free conduct of research and furtherance of scientific knowledge.
In 1952, the Czech scientific community lost its freely elected representation - The Royal Bohemian Society of Learning (founded in the end of the 18th century) and the Czech Academy of Sciences and Arts (founded in 1890). Many excellent scientists then became members or corresponding members of the newly established Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences, however, this was a strongly politicised body which was dissolved after 1989. Efforts of distinguished scientists including Professor Otto Wichterle led in 1994 to establishment of the Learned Society as a new organization, which represents Czech science following in its best tradition.
Reaction to the case of Tomáš Hudlický: Members of the Learned Society of the Czech Republic support the freedom of expression
„We believe that free exchange of ideas is a key condition for the pursuit of truth and that the honest opinions should be scrutinized, challenged or rebutted but not censored or suppressed,“ say 45 members of the Learned Society in a statement regarding the retracted opinion paper by Prof. Tomáš Hudlický.
The letter by Jan Konvalinka to the President and Vice-Chancellor of the Brock University regarding the retracted article of Prof. Tomáš Hudlický
“Opinions could and should be challenged, questioned or refuted but never silenced. In order to be able to think, we have to have the right to inquire, question and even offend or be mistaken,” writes Assoc. Prof. Jan Konvalinka, a biochemist at the IOCB Prague and the Vice-Rector of the Charles University, to Gervan Fearon.
Learned Society member, Prof. Mgr. Miroslav Bárta, Dr. (Charles University Faculty of Arts) received the Česká hlava (Czech Head) National Government Award on 25 November 2019. A renowned Czech Egyptologist and archaeologist, Professor Bárta researches the history of ancient civilisations, the human relationship to the natural environment, and also for many years the evolution of complex societies. He leads the Czech Institute of Egyptology for archaeological and environmental research in Egypt and Sudan. His principal research interest is the period of the pyramid builders of the Old Kingdom.
Prof. RNDr. Blanka Říhová, DrSc. appears on the “Fight for Truth” programme
President of the Learned Society, Prof. RNDr. Blanka Říhová, DrSc., appeared alongside Head of the Department of Ethics and Humanity Studies at Charles University’s Third Faculty of Medicine, theologian Mgr. Marek Vácha, Ph.D., in a live broadcast of the monthly FOCUS Václava Moravce programme on the topic “The Fight for Truth”. Also appearing on the programme were President of the Republic of Slovakia, Mrs Zuzana Čaputová, and President of the Constitutional Court, JUDr. Pavel Rychetský. 400 secondary school and higher education students also took part in the broadcast from Bethlehem Chapel, positing questions to the guests.
The programme can be watched here
Prof. RNDr. Jan Trlifaj, DSc. appointed Fellow of the American Mathematical Society
Luboš Perek is celebrating his 100th year
Founding fellow of the Learned Society and its doyen, astronomer doc. RNDr. Luboš Perek, DrSc, is celebrating his 100th birthday on 26 July 2019. He is an indelible part of history as the person who helped define cosmic space, he was the first to point out the issue of cosmic waste and was also a teacher to the most important Czechoslovak astronomers. Let us express our respect and admiration of the extraordinary scientific career of a person who worked tirelessly and continues to work. The Learned Society wishes Mr Perek health, optimism and joy in the oncoming years.
The Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic has appealed to the Hungarian President to support academic freedom
On Friday 19 July the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic and the Learned Society of the Czech Republic sent a letter to Hungarian President János Ánder, in which they state their concerns regarding the situation in respect to management and funding of scientific activities in Hungary. An act, according to which not the Academy of Sciences, but a thirteen-member political committee, will decide on research, funding of scientific activities and establishment or closure of scientific workplaces, will come into force on 1 September.