Educational, Scientific and Technical Aspects of Ukraine-NATO Cooperation at the Current Stage
Nowadays Ukraine has to fight for its independence in the difficult conditions of the antiterrorist operation. Therefore it is obvious that the fact of cooperation with NATO is relevant and significant more than ever now, especially in the context of common projects in the military-technical, scientific and technical spheres. Actually, close cooperation with NATO has been considered as one of the priorities in foreign policy since the emergence of an independent Ukrainian state, and current conditions have led out a new level of interaction importance of these two laws. If the previous stage of the cooperation was mostly about military trainings, now the range of issues relating to interaction has greatly expanded and enlarged. In modern condition, scientific and technical cooperation between Ukraine and NATO is gathering on special significance, because these practices are intended to strengthen the defensive potential of our country taking into account the real fact of aggression by the Russian Federation. If earlier NATO was focused on educational and informational projects to inform Ukrainian citizens about content and objectives of Euro-Atlantic integration, now when the territory of our country is under the occupation, these projects are extremely limited and inadequate to meet the actual needs of Ukraine in the implementation of the specific measures to improve its defenses.
It is clearly understood by the participants and leadership of the North Atlantic Alliance.
Today Ukraine is on the way of a significant change in the defense industry. For successful reform of the defense sector which should be implemented in a very short time it should be carried weapons modernization, military equipment and military experts training with the assistance of international experience. Therefore, at the current stage, the cooperation between Ukraine and NATO is focused on the search for methods of cooperation in the scientific, technical and educational fields. In 2012 Ukraine joined NATO program the «Defense Education Enhancement Program» (DEEP), the participation has been intensified and undergone a qualitative transformation since the military actions on the territory of our country began. The main purpose of DEEP is establishing contracts between educational specialists between member countries of NATO and partner countries to improve programs and methods of the military men’s training in general and command personnel in particular. Now there are six specialized higher education institutions in Ukraine which are in the implementation of this program: Hetman Petro Sahoidachny National Army University (Lviv), Sergii Korolev Zhytomir National Institute (Zhytomir), Military Academy (Odessa), Kharkiv University of Air Force (Kharkiv), Military Institute of Taras Shevchenko National University (Kyiv), Military Law Faculty of YaroslavMudryi National Law University (Kharkiv) . NATO finances a number of projects to develop the basic infrastructure of basic computer networks Ukrainian research institutions and provide access to the Internet. Thanks to NATO grants, the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine has launched the project «Ukrainian Research & Academic Network» (URAN), in a course of its implementation there are 56 Ukrainian higher educational institutions and research centers gained high-speed access to the global information network . For the last year NATO initiated series of conferences and international seminars which were intended to convey general information about the organization activity at the current stage to a wide audience in Ukraine, its results for Ukraine and also to assist the training of qualified personnel able to professional activity which is connected with the Euro-Atlantic and European integration progress of Ukraine.
Nowadays Ukraine is the first among the partner countries of the North Atlantic Alliance in the number of projects and grants for their implementation within the program framework of NATO «Partnership for Peace and Security». The cooperation with Russia within this program was stopped after the invasion of hostilities to the territory of Ukraine, and the reallocation of funds was made in favor of scientific and technical cooperation with Ukraine. The total budget allocated for projects of cooperation with Ukraine in 2015 was increased by half compared with 2014. Thus, in 2014 Ukraine received € 4.1 million under the «Partnership for Peace and Security» . According to the proposals which were made by Ukrainian scientists, now the cooperation within the framework of NATO «Partnership for Peace and Security» is conducted in 15 new projects which are directly or indirectly related with the possibilities of fast and qualitative impact on the improvement of our country’s defense. First of all, these projects are focused on the development of drones, radiation protection, chemical, biological, nuclear and radiological researches . At the current stage Ukraine is also actively involved in the implementation of the NATO concept «Smart Defense», especially in the «Protection of Harbours and Ports» program. During the twentieth session of Ukraine-NATO working group which was held at the State Concern «UkrOboronProm» the issues about the opportunity of improvement the management system and intercommunication between Armed Forces of Ukraine and NATO’s member countries was studied. As a result of the discussion and the presentation of domestic developments, the need of further improving of the hydroacoustic equipment domestic production which is able to protect the coastal area was drown to the consideration. One of the last scientific projects of NATO, in which Ukraine is also involved, is the «Light Weight and Transparent Ar- mors» project which provides a new generation of material for the manufacture of body armor.According to this project, the material must be heavy-duty, thin, light and created from single-crystal sapphire which Institute of Single Crystals of National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine is able to produced . Also it is a notable project of the unique X- ray generator development based on inverse Compton scattering which is realized at the National Science Center of Kharkov Institute of Physics and Technology of National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine with the support of NATO in the implementation of the «Partnership for Peace and Security» program [1, 4].
Thus, at the present stage, educational, scientific and technical cooperation between Ukraine and NATO is intensifying and considering in the frame of internal and external political situation. The main directions of cooperation are focused on the development of new substances. materials and technologies which can be used to enhance the defensive potential of our country and also to provide practical training of military specialists to perform the protection tasks of the territorial integrity and independence of Ukraine.