Károli Gáspár University of the Reformed Church and the Mária Kopp Institute for Demography and Families (KINCS) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding

The Károli Gáspár University of the Reformed Church and the Mária Kopp Institute for Demography and Families (KINCS) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding. The primary aim of the agreement is to establish professional cooperation between the two organizations, to coordinate their intellectual resources and capabilities, and to organize and conduct scientific research. The agreement also covers an internship program, as the Mária Kopp Institute will provide internships for students interested in family sciences.

The accelerating world of today is testing the value and role of families, which has developed over the centuries - Prof. Dr. Ágnes Czine highlighted in her greeting. The Vice Rector of the Károli Gáspár University of the Reformed Church stated that one of the most important tasks of education is to raise awareness to the importance of family, marriage and having children. Praising the work of KINCS, she said it is important for family policy issues to be examined by trained experts and to provide scientifically sound answers to them. According to the Vice Rector, it is needed to explore the place and possibilities of the traditionally important institution in modern social and economic life, thus helping to orientate parents and future parents.

Prof. Dr. Ágnes Czine also reported that a family sociology research group is already working at the university. She mentioned as well that the institution strives to create family-friendly conditions: in the building, for example, there is a baby-mama room for students with children.

Speaking about the agreement, the Vice Rector explained that in addition to cooperating in professional research, the goal is to provide students with the opportunity for the KINCS internship program. Prof. Dr. Ágnes Czine expressed the hope that the joint work would stimulate students' intellectual development.

Tünde Fűrész, President of KINCS talked about looking for workshops, universities and partners with whom they can work together for families. As she said, the Károli Gáspár University of the Reformed Church is also committed to the promotion of family sciences and family values, so this cooperation means not only a scientific association, but also a value identity. The President of KINCS recalled that a curriculum of education for family life had been developed at this university, which later became part of the new National Core Curriculum.

Tünde Fűrész announced that next year will be the year of remembrance of Mária Kopp on the occasion of the eightieth anniversary of the birth and the tenth anniversary of her death. In 2009, Mária Kopp created the Roundtable on Population, and she was the greatest researcher of the state of mind of Hungarians, the President said.

She added that next year the results of the Hungarostudy, the survey examining the mental state and mental health of Hungarians, will also be reported. The survey has been conducted five times since 1988, it is the sixth survey this year. Tünde Fűrész also mentioned that a value sociological database will be created in theframework of the cooperation, revealing the values to which the Hungarian people commit themselves.

Róbert Zsigó, Parliamentary Secretary of State Responsible for Families said that the task set in the cooperation is extremely important for all of us, as it is about Hungarian families, thus about being Hungarians. He also spoke about the fact that in 2010 the government had to rethink its previous economic and social policies; Hungary's right to self-determination, self-confidence and self-esteem had to be regained. The rethinking of family policy was also an important part of the set goals - the Secretary of State emphasized - and KINCS has supported this work to a great extent since its establishment, by dealing with researches for the life and future of families as well as with analysis supporting family policy.

With the MoU now concluded, new directions can be realized in the research of family policy exploring possibilities. These are ideas that will increase the valuable and applicable scientific results in the field of sociology dealing with families, he added. Róbert Zsigó stated that the Mária Kopp Institute serves the development of scientific life and the prosperity of Hungary at the same time.

Prof. Dr. Csaba Lentner, Acting Head of the Department of Economics and Management at the University, emphasized that when evaluating the results of family policy, it is important to keep in mind where the process started ten years ago. A member of the professional college of KINCS said that in addition to supporting the launch of scientific research, dissertations and lectures, it is extremely important that students become acquainted with the Christian values supporting families.

Dr. Ágnes Engler, Vice President of Science at KINCS said that the Mária Kopp Institute strives to reach a real result of working together with its partners. She emphasized that the Institute's agreements so far, for example with Eötvös Lóránd University, the University of Debrecen and Semmelweis University, were accompanied by a number of activities and events of great interest.

Prof. Dr. József Mészáros spoke about the fact that there is little family science research in Hungary. In connection with the conclusion of the agreement, the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the István Barankovics Foundation stated that KINCS has much in common with the Károli University, as the institution itself has a family-friendly value system. He added that the university’s knowledge repository worth to be part of this collaboration.

Source: MTI

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