On 29 April, the Director-General of the Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania Prof. Dr. Renaldas Gudauskas participated at an online European Humanities Conference, the theme of which was “Can University subsist without the Humanities? Humanities as founders of the University Project”.
Prof. Dr. Renaldas Gudauskas has been invited to participate at the Conference as a member of the Executive Committee of the International Council for Philosophy and Human Sciences (CPSH, for the 2021–2024 term of which he was elected in December of the previous year.
The European Humanities Conference’s agenda included discussions on what had been done within various academic fields in creating the added value of humanities as well as in contributing to the perspective of the education system, especially in university studies. Even within the concept of a university developed as far back as in the Middle Ages, humanities, which helped to understand the complexity of man, nature and cosmos, played a significant role. As specialisation is gaining momentum and ratings of technical fields is increasing, the significance of humanities at universities is decreasing. In order to remain in line with current social requirements, there have been developed “digital humanities”, which have the purpose to overcome new challenges related to creating progressive knowledge by using the most modern technological resources.
At the conference, Prof. Dr. Renaldas Gudauskas delivered the report “Humanities in the context of strategic integrated science communication“.
To quote Prof. Dr. Renaldas Gudauskas, “Human sciences are essential for understanding the contemporary changes and managing digital complexity and transformation in the 21st century. The strategic direction of universities focuses on the setting of a new agenda for humanities fostering a major epistemological renewal open to diversity, complexity and interaction with other sciences. All science data, information and knowledge are underpinned by research processes. Reliable communication of science and reliable science research are the two sides of the same coin. One without the other will always achieve only mediocre results, if any at all. Such understanding of strategic integrated science communication allows us to create a framework for improving the relationship between science and society. In general, effective communication bridges the gap between humanities and society’s interest. Such approach would assist the assessment of the benefits and risks from an accelerated digitisation.”
The conference was initiated by the University of Alberta (Canada) and Universidade de Madeira (Portugal). Among the conference’s speakers, there were representatives from universities of Coimbra and Minho (Portugal), Pisa (Italy) and Brown University (USA).