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National Assembly
of the Republic of Bulgaria
Konstantin Penchev elected by Parliament for Ombudsman of Bulgaria
October 7, 2010

The National Assembly elected on October 7, 2010, Konstantin Penchev Ombudsman of the Republic of Bulgaria. He was nominated by PG GERB.

Mr. Penchev was elected by a secret ballot in which he received 137 votes. The candidate of the PG MRF, Sabrie Sapundjieva, received 51 votes. Penchev is currently chairman of the Supreme Administrative Court. He will take oath after his release from the present office. The new public defender had had to be appointed after the mandate of the previous ombudsman Ginyo Ganev expired last April.

The parliament passed at second reading amendments to the Promotion of Scientific Research Act, changing the legal definition of "young scientist". The definition of "young scientist” in the future will apply to everyone who conducts research or who teaches in a higher educational facility or scientific research institution after graduation having a master degree but for no longer than 10 years after graduation. Currently a “young scientist” is considered one who has or is in the process of acquiring a Ph.D. degree not older than 35 years. The amended act regulates the meaning of a PhD student (one who pursues doctoral degree) and introduces the so called level of “post – doc” or someone who has obtained a PhD (Doctor) degree, and is involved in research but for no longer than 5 years after attaining the PhD (Doctor) level. The act envisages an independent evaluation and monitoring by national or international experts of the scientific research held in the country.

The amended act mandates the Minister of Education to issue the regulations of the system for monitoring and evaluation of the scientific research, conducted by universities and scientific organizations as well as regarding the activities of the National Fund for Scientific Research. The monitoring will account for the efficiency of the funds invested in the research, whether its strategic objectives were reached and help the practical application of the results.
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