The election took place at the 161st Czech Rectors Conference (CRC) Plenum Meeting held at Brno University of Technology. His 2-year term in office begins in early August 2021 and will last until 31 July 2023. Martin Bareš succeeds Petr Sklenička, rector of the Czech University of Life Sciences Prague.
The newly elected Vice-Presidents of the CRC include Jiří Málek (University of Pardubice), Jitka Němcová (Medical College), Vladimír Sedlařík (Tomas Bata University in Zlín), Pavel Tuleja (Silesian University in Opava) and Jindřich Vybíral (Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague).
“It is a great honour for me to become the President of the Czech Rectors Conference. The CRC must be a confident platform that actively participates in the public debate as a relevant partner for negotiations with governmental and public authorities on issues relating to science, research and education. I will also strive to make universities more involved in the life of society as a whole. This is related to a stronger implementation of research results and outcomes in society,” said Martin Bareš, the new President of the CRC and rector of Masaryk University.
One of the main issues to be addressed by CRC and the individual universities consists in the growth in the number of people aged 18 and 19 years, which (according to the Czech Statistical Office’s data) is set to continue until 2028. Martin Bareš also wants to promote joint study programmes organised by Czech and international universities, improve coordination and collaboration with primary and secondary schools and continue improving the national evaluation of research organisation in accordance with the M17+ methodology.
History of the Czech Rectors Conference
The Czech Rectors Conference (CRC) origins date back to the Czech and Slovak University Rectors Club (RC) officially founded in Žilina, Slovakia, at the Transport and Communication University on 26 April 1990, following a meeting of five Czech rectors held at the Czech Technical University in Prague on 14 March 1990. The first RC President was Professor Milan Jelínek, the first rector of Masaryk University in Brno in the post-communist era. In the planning period, when the administration pool for the RC was being built in Brno – half way between Prague and Bratislava – he managed to find an active collaborator in Professor Martin Černohorský (rector of the Silesian University in Opava), who agreed to take responsibility for this task and whose efforts resulted in the opening of the RC Secretariat in the premises of Masaryk University on 1 March 1992.