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He came up with the topic and co-author, and received 100 points for publication. A professor from AGH exposed the system left by Czarnek

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One hundred points for John Paul II's match collection. These points are true, but this collection is bullshit. One of the scientists decided to show how the scientist evaluation system left by Minister Czarnek works. The effects are both funny and terrible.

A photophysicist from the AGH University of Science and Technology, Professor Konrad Szaciłowski, shed light on Polish science, and more precisely on the system of evaluating scientists.

100 points for publishing made up nonsense

The article presented “a little-known side of the pope's life and his passion for collecting matches.” He thus ignited a discussion because for publishing the made-up nonsense that John Paul II collected unique matches, that each match told the history of a given nation and that he ecumenically expressed understanding for other religions with matches, he theoretically scored 100 points. Half of what you can get by publishing in the world journals “Nature” or “Science”. The co-author of the publication, “musicologist from Turkmenistan” Professor Kapela Pilaka, was also made up.

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– I was embittered, frustrated and despaired by the way the scientific achievements of scientists were assessed. Niche magazines with a very questionable reputation have been equalized in scoring with internationally recognized magazines – comments professor Dr. Hab. Konrad Szaciłowski from the Academic Center for Materials and Nanotechnology of the AGH University of Science and Technology in Kraków.

READ ALSO: Tens of thousands of people could get visas to study in Poland. The government is checking universities

Tens of thousands of people could get visas to study in Poland. The government is checking universitiesAdrianna Otręba/Fakty TVN

Scientists earn points by publishing papers about their achievements in journals. This translates into financing for the university that employs a qualified scientist and the right to award scientific degrees. The scientist himself gains opportunities and gets promoted.

– This mystification, or the exposure of these problems, is an absolute disgrace to Minister Czarnek, who, as the Minister of Science, distributed these points left and right to journals of very low scientific rank, sometimes even to pseudoscientific journals – comments Dr. Łukasz Kierznowski from the Faculty of Law of the University of Białystok.

In this situation, years in laboratories or seeking publications abroad lose their meaning

The system of evaluation by publications existed previously, but during the times of Minister Czarnek, the list of journals was supplemented several times. The last one, in November, included “Przegląd Mleczarski” and “Zapiski Kujawsko-Dobrzyńskie”, and “Pedagogika Katolicka” could award the world's 200 points.

Years in laboratories or archives, trying to obtain publications abroad, lose their meaning when points can be obtained more easily by writing in Polish.

– Creating such a dysfunctional caricature of this system may result in us being pushed to the margins of world science – warns Dr. Dawid Myśliwiec, science popularizer and creator of the “Uwaga! Naukowy Bełkot” channel.

The resort announces changes

The Ministry of Science talks about the new list of journals and changes. – We need to move away from this point system. Universities need to be assessed comprehensively, says Dariusz Wieczorek, Minister of Science from the New Left.

SEE ALSO: Ministry of Education after Czarnek's government. “We found financial shortfalls wherever possible.”

The first changes took place in the magazine, which allowed John Paul's matches to be printed. The editor-in-chief resigned. But the editorial team emphasizes that it has been operating for over twenty years and, in its opinion, the scientist-provocateur broke standards by relying on the authority of his professorial title and the university.

Professor Szaciłowski assures that it is only about being fair and wise. – I wanted to express opposition, maybe in a slightly perverse way – he sums up.

Main photo source: TVN24

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