Bureaucracy hinders hiring process at Romania’s largest research center

The research center in Magurele, which will host a high-power laser, is almost ready, and the equipment has started to arrive. However, bureaucracy hinders the hiring process at the center, with several researchers already dropping the idea of working here.

The experiments should begin at the new center by the end of 2018. By then, up to 200 researchers and specialists should be hired. So far, only 100 got a job here, and some of them had to go through a complicated process that lasted up to a year, reports local Digi24. Part of those who want to work at the research center are foreigners or Romanians who lived abroad, and the difficult part is having their education degrees recognized in Romania.

“We even have to ask them to provide their baccalaureate diploma, but some of them don’t have it or can’t find the transcript from 30-40 years ago. We had cases in which they quit because they were pressured by their financial situation,” said Nicolae Zamfir, director of the ELI-NP (Extreme Light Infrastructure – Nuclear Physics) project at Magurele.

The situation gets even more complicated when the laws in Romania contradict each other sometimes.

“Besides the diploma’s recognition, difficulties also occur in relation to other authorities: the Office of Immigration, the Unemployment Agency. Of course that, with additional staff in the human resources department, we have been trying to help them obtain the diplomas, which they should normally get on their own,” said human resources manager Raluca Stoicea.

American Dan Stutman, who will coordinate the high power laser experiments department, says it took him nine months to get hired at the facility in Magurele. He previously worked at famous universities such as Princeton and John Hopkins in the US. He says that a similar hiring process in the US takes up to three months.

“Nobody comes to cheat in such projects because you can’t do that. If you haven’t finished your PhD, you can’t say anything coherent,” Stutman says, according to Digi24.

However, the local authorities are now trying to reduce the bureaucracy and make it easier for researchers to get hired in Romania. They will no longer be asked to present copies of the doctorate thesis or diplomas for previous studies.

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Irina Popescu, [email protected]


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