The link provided in the opening post explains the purpose of the internship quite clearly. This program has nothing to do with acquiring extra professional knowledge or stealing bright Polish scientists by "sneaky Americans". This is all about learning how American scientists deal with the transfer of knowledge and research to the economy
This phrase, highly touted in Poland for decades, remains just at it was at the very beginning - the empty meaningless phrase. It has never worked the way it supposed to work. It was quite often used as a cover up for using industry coffers to earn extra money - either by individual academics or by their academic institutions.
One pathetic university I used to work for a short period of time have been producing generations of pathetic "engineers" in exchange for generous donations from one rich state factory. All candidates were being drawn from workers of that factory - aging between 20 and 55.
The so-called "commissioned works" (prace zlecone) come to mind as extra source of income for scientists of all levels - with almost zero transfer of knowledge to the industry. Most of such projects were routine works - having nothing to do with innovations. The original solutions, benefitting the industry on the long run, were indeed rare.
I took part in many such projects - some, no doubt, interesting and challenging - but only two such projects would qualify as innovative projects ending up in technology transfer to industries - one regarding mechanical design of power hammers used in construction industry and one regarding a controlled aluminum oxidation process of parts produced for aviation industry. But, with few exceptions, none of us was really interested in pursuing further any of those fields, because they lied outside our "real" professional interests.
In terms of the number of obtained patents, Poland is in the second fifty of the world.
... work on new technologies and cooperation with the business would not be possible without the access of young scientists to modern laboratories.
Summarizing: I think, this program is a very good idea. I do not expect that every single internship will be beneficial for both the internee and the Polish industry, but even with the failure rate of 50% this could be considered a success.
hague1cmaeron:Enough time to see of the glitz and glamour and be seduced by American money-and fall into the favorite American process of developing intellectual capital i.e. by importing it from abroad.
This is one of the trumped up charges that have nothing to do with reality. Let us see how it works in practice by examining the list of EECS faculty members at MIT, eecs.mit.edu/faculty/index.html.
If you know anything about modern computer science you will find on this list the familiar names of the CS giants, such as Gerald J. Susman and Hal Abelson (See for example their famous classical textbook "Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs". The real eye opener, which should be a required reading for any young programmer.) Sure, any young Polish scientist would give anything for a chance of working in any project lead by any of the two. But do you think they would even give a second glance to some little unknown intern from Poland? Why, they have thousands of Americans to choose from - all bright and eager to join.
No doubt, the list contains many foreign-sounding names, but how many of those have been born outside USA? Many of such names sound Jewish to me, so they are probably Americans. There are also some Chinese sounding names (Lang, Lu, Li, Lim, Kong, Hu, Han) - actually very few on the list. And how do you know whether they were born outside USA and when they immigrated to USA? But carry on, check each one of them (each is linked to faculty page or personal web page) and I guarantee that you would be disappointed after learning the truth. Same goes with Hindu, Russian or Greek sounding names.
Hey, there is even one that sounds Polish, Leslie A. Kolodziejski. But for what we know she was probably born in USA. Her bio here says (rle.mit.edu/rleatmit/2003february_article02.htm) that she received her PhD from Purdue University in 1986. Nationality aside - her lab is very impressive and it seems exactly to fit the bill for "Top 500 Polish Innovators program".
The Kolodziejski group's new state-of-the-art dual-reactor molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) system, developed collaboratively with Veeco Instruments and currently being assembled at Veeco/Applied Epi in Minnesota, and founded by the generous sponsorship of the Walsin Lihva Corporation
Do you see the pattern in this one sentence? Two industrial companies involved in scientific project!
Oh, wait - there is another Polish name: Wojciech Matusik. Stolen from Poland? But no - he was educated in Berkeley and MIT and works for CSAIL, which cooperates with Disney Research, Zürich. He also used to work for Adobe and Mitsubishi. Do you see another pattern? That's the industrial experience
As someone else said in this forum - if Poland offered decent conditions at its scientific institutions, the foreign scientists would come to Poland in groves. So no need to worry about brains' drain. All scientists follow their own interest in personal development, first of all.
Take for example Scott Aaronson - at the top of the mentioned faculty list. He has moved from Clarkson Uni (G.E.D), to Cornell Uni (B.Sc), to Berkeley (PhD), to Princeton (Fellowship, School of Mathematics), to Waterloo Canada (fellowship, quantum Computing), to MIT. He currently takes care of three PhD students. Do you think he would attempt to steal a Polish internee? I had read enough of his blogs in the past to guarantee you that the answer would be "definitely no". The man thinks so highly of himself that he would not stand any competition. (I am only half joking.)