Historia Universitatis Iassiensis 11, 125–164

Iana Balan | Romanian-Soviet Academic Exchanges during the Cold War

Abstract. The international relations of the University of Iași were dynamic and varied, characterized by academic exchanges, documentation internships, par¬ticipation in scientific events or summer schools. However, the changes in political life at the end of the Second World War imposed radical metamor¬phoses in their direction. Thus, along with changes in the status of the University, through the loss of university autonomy, and control over courses and curricula, the external relations of the University were no longer an independent initiative, but a complex procedure controlled by Bucharest. Regarding the relations with the higher education institutions from the USSR, they were in accordance with the bilateral agreements between the two states, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs monopolizing the evolution of this process. At the end of the 1950s, the University of Iași gradually corresponded with Universities and Institutes in the USSR. In this regard, we notice the collaboration in the field of real sciences (Physics, Chemistry or Mathematics), the relations with JIRN-Dubna being a proof in this respect. The connections with this institute proved to be very fruitful, the exchanges of experience of professors and students were regular during the years ’70-’80. However, the only University in the USSR that had a direct collaboration agreement with the University of Iași was the University of Chisinau. The first collaboration initiatives were initiated from Iași in 1958, with the approval of the Ministry of Education and Culture. However, they would not formally establish until 1965, when the first direct collaboration agreement was signed, later this cooperation became a traditional one, the renewal of the document taking place in 1973, 1976, and in 1981 there were only some nego¬tiations to extend the agreement. The collaboration consisted in exchanges of professors and students, common researching topics or participation in scientific events. The exchanges of experience, of scientific publications but also the visits of various scientific and sports delegations between them were very active. Cooperation was dynamic especially in the 1970s, but in the early 1980s there was a visible decline, with the exchange of experience and reciprocal visits being less numerous.