Vladimir Putin has approved Vladimir Fortov as the new president of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
Fortov won the elections for the head of the Academy at the end of May in the first round of voting, having collected 766 votes from the necessary minimum of 658 voices.
At the previous elections of 2008 Vladimir Fortov was a serious competitor to Yury Osipov, having gathered about 40 percent of votes.
In April, 2013 Vladimir Fortov became the winner of the International Energy Award "Global Energy" for his research of material properties in high temperature conditions.
Proposed reforms of the Russian Academy of Science
Shortly before the opening considerations in the State Duma of the first reading of the bill of reforming the Russian Academy of Sciences, Vladimir Fortov stated arguments against these reform to Vladimir Putin. In reply Putin declared that fair arguments have been made by supporters and opponents of the reform, but that a decision needs to be made instead of staying idle.
The proposed reforms aim to merge the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences and the Russian Agricultural Academy into one "superacademy" — the Public and State Russian Academy of Sciences. This would mean these scientific institutions would in turn submit to this new body which is subordinate only to the government. If passed it means that the present Russian Academy of Sciences loses its main privilege — the right at its own discretion to allocate funds from the scientific budget, and gives this right to the new "superacademy" composed of scientists from many different fields under the eye of the government.