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A general assembly of the members of the Academy of Sciences was held on 22 June 2021. Prof. Jūras Banys, President of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences, opened the event by welcoming the guests from Punsk (Poland), the members of the Young Academy, and the inaugurated foreign members of the Academy. Birthday wishes were extended to academicians Algimantas Fedaravičius, Algimantas Grigelis, Remigijus Leipus, Arvydas Virgilijus Matulionis, and Jonas Mockus, and commemorative medals of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences were awarded to Mečislovas Žalakevičius, Aivaras Kareiva, Vytautas Konstantinas Sirvydis, Gintautas Žintelis, Algirdas Gaižutis, and Virgilijus Matulionis.
As the Academy cooperates with the rural district (Pol., gmina) of Punsk in the Republic of Poland, President Banys launched the signing of the cooperation agreement between the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences, the Lithuanian community of Poland, and the rural district of Punsk. Vytautas Liškauskas, chief of the rural district of Punsk, noted that they had been looking forward to this day and thanked the Academy and the academician Vaidutis Kučinskas in particular for the beautiful initiative. Sigitas Birgelis, chair of the Council of the Lithuanian community of Poland, stressed that they were delighted by all the attention given to the Lithuanians of the ethnic lands and that this agreement would make a tangible contribution to the strengthening of connections with the homeland.
Prof. Jūras Banys, President of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences, and its vice-president Zenonas Dabkevičius awarded badges and certificates of full members of the Academy and Academy Statute to the new full members elected on 13 April 2021: Albinas Kuncevičius, Dainora Pociūtė-Abukevičienė, Dalia Klajumienė, Aušra Maslauskaitė, Gediminas Račiukaitis, Artūras Dubickas, Aurelija Žvirblienė, Arūnas Bukantis, Sigitas Podėnas, Giedrė Samuolienė, Elena Bartkienė, Kęstutis Armolaitis, Mindaugas Malakauskas, Algis Džiugys, and Marijonas Bogdevičius.
Badges and certificates of the Young Academy of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences were awarded to the members elected on 8 December 2020: Vidas Lekavičius, Linas Minkevičius, Vita Lėlė, Viktorija Vaštakaitė-Kairienė, and Vitalijus Novickij.
Prof. Jūras Banys then announced the inauguration of the foreign members of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences, Robert James Shiller (USA) and Jinde Cao (People’s Republic of China), who were elected on 22 September 2020. Unfortunately, an unreliable connection prevented R. J. Schiller from delivering his inaugural address, and the participants of the assembly saw only Prof. Jinde Cao’s video presentation ‘Network Dynamics and Impulse Control’. The director of the Complex Systems and Networks Research Centre at Southeastern University said that complex networks are widespread in nature and society (e.g., bee colonies, flocks of birds). Analysis and understanding of the collective dynamics of these systems or accumulations can be useful in solving a wide range of practical problems in the development of models for controlling complex systems (smart grids in cities, smart transport, etc.), and in the development of artificial neural networks.
Jinde Cao and his colleagues are working on mathematical models of dynamic systems and analyse the networks and control of various coupled systems. He has achieved fundamental results in the mathematical theory and engineering applications of neurodynamic systems and complex dynamic networks. Prof. Cao believes that in the near future, more attention will be paid to such themes as Distributed Artificial Intelligence (DAI) in complex systems, Collective Intelligence Theory and Technology Development, and Dynamic Random Complex Networks.
The assembly proceeded with the election of a full member and foreign members of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences. Prof. Romas Baronas was introduced as the candidate for a full member and Richard G. Compton, Janusz Kacprzyk, and Jan Jankowski as the candidates for foreign members of the Academy. Prof. Gintautas Žintelis introduced professors Romas Baronas and Janusz Kacprzyk, vice-president Zenonas Dabkevičius presented the candidacy of Prof. Jan Jankowski. Prof. Leonas Valkūnas introduced Prof. Richard G. Compton, who is a well-known electrochemist from the University of Oxford. He is a member of the International Advisory Group of the Centre for Physical and Technological Sciences, plays an active part in conferences in Lithuania, and advises researchers. Prof. Dr. habil. Janusz Kacprzyk is a member of the Polish Academy of Sciences. He conducts research in the field of artificial intelligence, numerical intelligence, and data. He is engaged in developing research relations between Lithuania and Poland, participates in dissertation defences in Lithuania, and assists in the organisation of the annual international conference DAMSS (Data analysis methods for Software systems) in Druskininkai. Prof. Jan Jankowski, a candidate for a foreign member of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences, represents agricultural and animal sciences. He is a corresponding member of the Polish Academy of Sciences. He works in the field of poultry farming and is developing environmentally-friendly technologies. Together with the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Prof. Jan Jankowski organises scientific conferences, advises doctoral students, and prepares joint applications to Lithuanian and EU research funding agencies.
All the candidates were placed on the election ballot paper. After the votes had been counted, Prof. Limas Kupčinskas, chair of the electoral commission, announced that all four candidates had been elected to the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences. Resolutions were adopted on the election of Prof. Romas Baronas as a full member and the election of Prof. Richard G. Compton, Prof. Jan Kacprzyk, and Prof. Jan Jankowski as foreign members of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences.
Prof. Jūras Banys informed the assembly about an amendment to the regulations of the Young Academy. As the number of foreign researchers working in Lithuania is rising, it was deemed necessary to add a clause that researchers working at Lithuanian research and higher education institutions could become members of the Young Academy of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences. The amendment was unanimously approved and a corresponding resolution was adopted.
Prof. Banys reminded the participants of the end of the terms of office of the President and the members of the Presidium of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences and of the launch of the election procedures. By 21 September, when the general assembly for nominations is scheduled, the members and the scientific divisions of the Academy are expected to discuss the candidates, and a month later, at the end of October, the general assembly will elect the President of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences. The announcement of the election of the President of the Academy was approved by consensus. The next general assembly of the members of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences is to be held on 21 September 2021. Prof. Jūras Banys closed the assembly by wishing everyone a good summer and expressed his hope that it would be possible to continue the work in the usual contact way in the autumn.
Dr Rolandas Maskoliūnas, chief public relations specialist of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences
Dr Andrius Bernotas, head of the Organising Department of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences
Translated by Diana Barnard