chapter  4
22 Pages

Science, Technology, and Higher Educationin the Baltics

The achievement of independence from the Soviet Union by the Bal­ tic states of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania in 1991 marked the culmi­ nation of some fifty years of occupation. But independence brought with it a host of problems. Some of these problems were a function of the process of political and economic liberalization that accompanied, and in some areas even preceded, independence. Others were a func­ tion of the need to reorient and adjust Soviet institutions and systems to better meet national goals. The educational and scientific establish­ ments in the three Baltic nations faced problems from both of these sources. The challenge they now face is how to maintain their science and technology infrastructure while bringing it into line with the new economic and political realities in a manner consistent with national priorities and their newly regained status as independent nation states.