The Polish Institute for Family and Society Studies Foundation and the Mária Kopp Institute have signed a Memorandum of Agreement
A Memorandum of Agreement has been signed by the Institute for Family and Society Studies Foundation of Poznań and the Mária Kopp Institute for Demography and Families (KINCS). The primary objectives of the agreement are to share knowledge between the two organizations, to organize joint research, especially on families, demography and education for family life, to produce joint publications and educational materials, to provide mutual publication opportunities as well as to organize expert meetings and scientific conferences.
For the second time, KINCS has concluded a Memorandum of Agreement with a foreign institute, the aim of which is to develop active scientific cooperation between the two institutions in the field of family policy and demography.
Attila Beneda, Deputy Secretary of State for Family Policy, stressed in connection with the signing of the agreement that the Hungarian Government is committed to strengthening families and believes that the family is the most important building block of the nation. He called one of the most important challenges for the desired, planned children to be born. The Deputy Secretary of State added that the government is working to remove all obstacles to childbearing and that science has a key role to play in making decisions to support this goal.
Tünde Fűrész, President of the Mária Kopp Institute said that Poland and Hungary have long been natural allies of each other, consulting with governmental and professional organizations on family policy issues for years, and stressed that they learn a lot from each other. She mentioned as an example the personal income tax exemption for young people under the age of 25, which will be introduced in Hungary from January onwards, following the Polish example.
She also emphasized that there are more and more friends of the Hungarian family policy in the world and more and more people are interested in its results. Referring to the latter, she pointed out that according to the data of the Hungarian Central Statistical Office, the total fertility rate rose to 1.79 in September 2021, which is the highest monthly figure since 2010, when it was 1.25.
Analyzing the encouraging demographic data of Hungary, she also pointed out that according to the Max Planck Demographic Institute of Germany, Hungary was the only European country where the number of births increased during the coronavirus epidemic compared to the period between 2016 and 2019, ie before the pandemic. This shows that while fewer children were born in most European countries, in Hungary as a result of the targeted family policy measures, more children were born even despite the epidemic, the President of KINCS said.
Tünde Fűrész also pointed out that the third meeting of the Executive Network on Family Values will be held on Thursday, with half a hundred participants from 17 countries. She added that the Visegrád countries will have a special section at the event, because the "V4 countries, led by Hungary and Poland, have become the power centers of family-friendliness in Europe".
Evaluating the agreement, Michał A. Michalski, President of the Institute for Family and Society Studies Foundation said the collaboration was important not only because it drew attention to different research findings, but also because it allowed them to export their family policies to others. He said that he expects a number of institutions to monitor their joint activities, and he hopes that their best-practice family policy measures would be adopted and implemented in other European countries.
Dr. Krzysztof Szwarc, a senior demographer at the Poznań Institute, also expressed the hope that the cooperation between the two institutions would have a wider positive impact. He added that Hungary is considered an example to follow in his homeland because of his family-friendly policy.
At the end of the press conference, Tünde Fűrész, President of KINCS and Prof. Michał A. Michalski, President of the Polish Institute for Family and Society Studies Foundation, signed the Memorandum of Agreement.