Slovakia - Country Profile

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Tags: Slovakia

Country Outline

  • GDP: 84,895 mil. euros (Eurostat 2017)
  • GDP per Capita: 15,600 euros (Eurostat 2017)
  • Areas of Marked S&T Specialisations: Materials and nanotechnology, Biomedicine and Biotechnology, Environment and agriculture, Sustainable energy

Contact Information

  • Organisation: Embassy of the Slovak Republic
  • Name / Position: Mr Ondrej Sykora, Head of Economic and Commercial Affairs
  • Phone no. / e-mail: (+82)-2-794-3981 / emb.seoul@mzv.sk

While Slovakia has become for RoK in the past decade a country with one of the most intensive foreign investments in the whole Europe, as well as top 4 export destination in EU, cooperation in S&T  as only started recently. So far, the cooperation between Republic of Korea and Slovakia in the field of S&T has been developing mainly through various mobility programmes, minor individual projects and multilateral research platforms. Based on the Agreement on S&T cooperation between the governments of both countries that entered into force in 2014, the first Joint Committee took place in October 2016. Launching of the Joint Committee has created new windows of opportunity for Korean and Slovak researchers, students and science related capacities to participate in diverse and appealing S&T projects in years to come. Moreover, during the summit of V4+RoK in December 2015, two new MoUs were signed to boost S&T cooperation. One is related to platform V4 and RoK and the other MoU was signed between the Slovak Academy of Science and Korean Institute of Material Science. The year 2018 is expected to be the one when the joint call for mobility projects for researchers between Slovakia and Korea will be launched and the second round of the Joint Committee will take place. Also Slovakia keeps to broader its legal framework for the scientific cooperation with Korea and in April 2018 the Slovak Academy of Sciences signed a MoU with the National Research Foundation of Korea.

As for many developed economies, science and innovation has become one of the focal points of Slovakia for sustainable economic development, employment and future growth. However some challenges still remain, such as the gap in R&D expenditure compared to the rest of EU (1% of GDP), as well as an issue to get more private companies involved in the research and innovation process. The aim is to increase private funds in R&D and achieve ratio at least 2:1 between private and public funds, while the total expenditure in R&D is planned to double in the near future.

1. Policies and Strategies in Science, Technology and Innovation

The main science and innovation objectives of the Slovak Republic are defined in “Research and Innovation Strategy for Smart Specialisation” (RIS3), which was approved by the Slovak Government on 13 November 2013 and respectively in its Implementation plan. It has identified seven thematic areas of scientific research as follows:

In the area of research and development priorities:

  1. Material Sciences and Nanotechnology (e.g. lightweight structural materials and composites, organic materials, steel and special materials, etc.)
  2. Information and Communication Technologies (e.g. technological process management systems, processing of large databases, cloud solutions, etc.)
  3. Biomedicine and Biotechnology (e.g. diagnostics and therapeutic approaches for cancer, heart disease, blood vessels and brain, pharmacological and industrial biotechnologies, etc.)

In the field of technology priorities:

  1. Industrial Technologies (e.g. automation control, robotics, technology for cutting and forming, logistic technologies, processing of polymers, wood, etc.)
  2. Sustainable Power Engineering and Energy (e.g. reduction of energy intensity, emission reduction program ALEGRO, smart grid technology, safety of nuclear plants, etc.)
  3. Agriculture and Environment (focus on advanced technologies and practices in agriculture and food production, better utilisation of the forests, etc.)

In the field of social priorities:

  1. Selected areas of social sciences (e.g. The ageing population and quality of life, Multiethnicity, social inclusion and poverty problems, Employment of young people in the changing conditions, etc.)

The key authority for the implementation of RIS3 is the Government Council for Science, Technology and Innovation with two independent agencies appointed for implementation: Research Agency and Technological Agency, which are undergoing a transformation process.

The main tools of funding of research and development under current legislation
 Slovak Research and Development Agency (SRDA)
– the main agency for distribution of public finances for research and development on the competitive basis in Slovakia. SRDA is responsible for research and development promotion in all research fields, including international research cooperation. In the 2014-2020 period there are planned expenditure on operations and programmes of SRDA in total sum of EUR 316 million, which is supposed to be tripled by 2020 (http://www.apvv.sk/).

Incentives for research and development are provided to entrepreneurs. In the 2014-2020 period, expenditures on R & D incentives in total amount of EUR 108 million are planned and doubles by 2020. It is an essential tool for promoting business sector.

Grants to legal persons and natural persons and Grants for scientific and technical services are available in the 2014-2020 period, with a planned budget of EUR 115 million and of EUR 73 million respectively.

The main executive and self-governing scientific institution in Slovakia is Slovak Academy of Science which comprises of 23 research institutes and 69 organisations (www.sav.sk).

As an example of excellent R&D work can serve one of the latest break-through in R&D projects with worldwide potential called AeroMobil (a flying car) http://www.aeromobil.com.

2. National Programmes and Initiatives

Most of the scientific programmes and international S&T cooperation projects that Slovakia offers or takes part in are co-financed by EU funds, therefore the details and application can be found on official web pages of European Commission or through the major R&Iprogramme of EU - Horizon 2020. Among the programmes that can be chosen are e.g. EURECA, EIT, COST, EUROSTARS, etc.

On the level of national programmes there are regularly mobility initiatives available, such as SASPRO (http://www.saspro.sav.sk/). Please check more for current mobility initiatives at www.sav.sk.

3. Joint Activities with Korea

The main joint activity between RoK and SR for 2018 is launching of the joint call for mobility projects for researchers and the second round of the Joint Committee for S&T cooperation. Apart from joint research projects mentioned below, other activities include mainly individual scholarships/mobility initiatives/exchange programmes.

List of Programmes of Activities with RoK in 2018

Programme Title


Intergovernmental Joint committee meeting

  •    Activity: Joint Committee meeting (2nd round) based on a bilateral Agreement on Scientific and Technological Cooperation between the Government of Republic of Korea and the Slovak Republic ;
  •    Major topic or agenda: Joint call for mobility projects
  •    Target Participants: Government officials and selected universities and research institutes
  •    Relevant Information: Cooperation in the field of S&T , promotion of mobility of experts and scientists;

4. Others

Key Research Organisations and Companies

Organisation Name

Detailed information

University of Zilina


  •    Organisation type: University
  •    Major Research Area/Product: Transportation, construction, new materials, mechanical engineering, smart buildings, renewable energy sources
  •    Major Activities with Korea: project EU-Korea - Student Mobility in Intercultural, Language Skills and ECVET by the EU - ICI Korea SMILES
  •    Contact Information: http://vyskumnecentrum.sk/kontakty
  •    Others: cooperation with Yeungjin College, Daegu

Slovak Technical University Bratislava


  •    Organisation type: University
  •    Major Research Area/Product: architecture, civil engineering, geodesy, cartography, chemical technologies, food processing, machinery, electrical engineering, electronics, informatics, ICT, applied physics, mathematics, economics and social science
  •    Major Activities with Korea: project Eurre-KPS: Estimation of Uncertainty in Rainfall Runoff modelling, Korea, Poland and Slovakia
  •    Contact Information: science@stuba.sk
  •    Others: cooperation with Chungbuk National University

Technical University of Kosice


  •    Organisation type: University
  •    Major Research Area/Product: mining, ecology, metallurgy, geotechnology, mechanical, electrical and civil engineering, economics, ICT, aeronautics
  •    Major Activities with Korea: cooperation with Yeungjin College, Daegu
  •    Contact Information: http://www.tuke.sk/tuke/contact-info
  •    Others: preparation of exchange of students in the field of electrical and mechanical engineering

SAV (Slovak Academy of Science (SAS)


  •    Organisation type: National Science Institute
  •    Major Research Area/Product: 23 research institutes
  •    Major Activities with Korea: various partnership programmes, such as
  •    ALICE experiment at the CERN LHC: a study of strong interacting matter properties at high energy densities.
  •    K2 Mobility - Sustainable Vehicle Technology
  •    Cooperation in FP EU in project KONNECT
  •    JRP Program V4 (SAS) - Korea
  •    The Korea Institute of Materials Science (KIMS) and Slovak Academy of Science (SAS) MoU
  •    Contact Information: barancik@up.upsav.sk; galik@up.upsav.sk
  •    Others: MoU with Korean Institute of Material Science (KIMS), preparation of MoU with National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF)

Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sport of the Slovak Republic


  •    Organisation type: Ministry
  •    Major Research Area/Product: The main ministry overlooking implementation of major policies and programmes in S&T
  •    Major Activities with Korea: Initial phase of implementation of the Agreement on S&T cooperation with MSIP
  •    Contact Information: kami@minedu.sk,  marek.hajduk@minedu.sk

Edited and published by the Delegation of the European Union to the Republic of Korea: https://eeas.europa.eu/delegations/south-korea/50611/node/50611_el