About ELKH

The Eötvös Loránd Research Network (ELKH) Secretariat is an independent, non-profit public budgetary institution. It was established by the Hungarian Parliament on August 1, 2019 with the aim to manage and operate the publicly funded independent research institute network in Hungary, which constitutes a central pillar of the country’s scientific domain. ELKH is led by a 13-member independent Governing Body whose President and most members are academicians.

The ELKH research institute network currently comprises 10 research centers, 5 research institutes, and around 150 additional supported research teams operating at universities and other public institutions, conducting basic and applied research, exploring the most varied disciplines of mathematics and natural sciences, life sciences, social sciences and the humanities.

ELKH was named after Loránd Eötvös, the preeminent Hungarian researcher and scientist who through his diverse scientific work and leadership exemplifies the interconnectedness of the humanities and natural sciences, of research and innovation. ELKH builds on the rich legacy of Eötvös in articulating the multi-faceted character of the collective wealth of knowledge accumulated in the research institute network over more than a century, focusing on the creation, preservation and revitalization of traditions of scientific research, innovation and endeavor in Hungary, with the aim of contributing to Hungary’s long-term success.

Our Mission and Vision

The mission of ELKH is to safeguard academic freedom and to operate Hungary’s publicly funded research institute network more efficiently with continuous emphasis on performance, transparency and excellence.

As part of our mission we support the efforts to translate the results of basic research into solutions that contribute to the resolution of domestic and global social and environmental challenges. We promote collaboration between domestic and international members of the research and development ecosystem that may also strengthen the competitiveness of the Hungarian economy. Furthermore, we support Hungary’s endeavor to be at the forefront of research and development in Europe and the world.

An important strategic dimension of our vision is to initiate challenge-driven research with a social mission and to expand, revitalize and open up Hungary’s social capital to the world, including historical knowledge, culture and natural resources.

Research areas

Research centers

Centre for Agricultural Research (ATK)

The goal of the Centre for Agricultural Research (ATK) is to maintain its leading position among Hungarian agricultural research institutions. This position is due to the Centre’s special profile of performing strong basic research and creating varieties and patents that can be used directly in practice to ensure the biological foundations for a considerable proportion of Hungarian arable land. Consequently, it exercises decisive influence on the agricultural sector. The Centre is a significant agricultural science base even at the European level.

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Centre for Ecological Research (ÖK)

The Centre for Ecological Research was established in 2012 with the merger of the Balaton Limnological Institute, the Danube Research Institute, and the Institute of Ecology and Botany. In the summer of 2019, the Institute of Evolution was founded and became a member of the Centre. The Centre’s staff work hard at integrating the institutes and scientific fields, as it is difficult to address complex environmental challenges in isolation. The researchers do not only conduct research, but they are also devoted to building bridges between science and society, and, in doing so, take part in the elaborating policy both at the EU and global levels.

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Biological Research Centre (BRC)

The internationally recognized Biological Research Centre in Szeged is a prominent Hungarian life science research facility. The four institutes of the Centre founded in 1973, the Institutes of Biophysics, Biochemistry, Genetics and Plant Biology, employ some 260 researchers, whose work is hallmarked by high-ranking international scientific publications and patents. Its research topics include numerous fields in molecular and cell biology, and range from the industrial applications of bacteria, through the controlled improvement of crops, to the problems of human health and environmental protection.

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Research Centre for Natural Sciences (TTK)

The Research Centre for Natural Sciences conducts multidisciplinary research in the field of natural sciences. The Research Centre and its institutes carry out the tasks determined in its statutes with the Centre focusing on basic research tasks, especially including…

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Research Centre for Astronomy and Earth Sciences (CSFK)

The basic task of the Research Centre includes research on astronomy and earth sciences (geography, geology, geochemistry, geodesy, geophysics), the operation of the Hungarian National Seismological Network, conducting basic (exploratory) research, the preparation and publication of research results for application, conducting the theoretical investigations, and carrying out the observatory, laboratory and field measurements necessary for exploratory research, the creation of scientific devices and methods, scientific analysis and publication of data, the maintenance of observatories and establishing new observatories if necessary.

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Centre for Energy Research (EK)

The purpose of the Centre for Energy Research is to conduct international level scientific research in order to enhance Hungarian knowledge in the field of nuclear safety. The Centre focuses on the following topics…

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Wigner Research Centre for Physics

The Wigner Research Centre for Physics is one of the most highly staffed research centers of the ELKH. Its mission is to conduct exploratory research in various fields of physics in Hungarian laboratories, at research sites located both in Hungary and abroad, and to coordinate Hungarian efforts in international projects. Another important aim is to provide theoretical explanations for experimental results, and to discover new phenomena. The Wigner Centre has outstanding results in all these fields.

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Research Centre for the Humanities (BTK)

The Research Centre for the Humanities (BTK) conducts internationally embedded basic research that meets international standards in the following fields: philosophy, literary studies, art history, ethnography, archeology, history, and musicology. The seven institutes constituting the BTK are involved in researching and interpreting the whole of the Hungarian past, in the light of the challenges of our time. The Centre’s basic task is to explore and maintain Hungarian cultural heritage and thus to strengthen Hungarian identity.

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Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies (KRTK)

The Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies coordinates the work of three institutes: the Institute of Economics, the Institute for Regional Studies and the Institute of World Economics. The Centre conducts theoretical and practical research in the following topics: economy, world economy, spatial processes, social sciences.

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Centre for Social Sciences (TK)

The mission of the Centre for Social Sciences includes the analysis of social processes, the collection, processing and publication of up-to-date data, ongoing development and application of methods of analysis, the elaboration and testing of new concepts and theories according to international norms in order to interpret social phenomena.

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Research Institutes

Institute of Experimental Medicine (KOKI)

KOKI focuses on basic research in the field of neuroscience: neurotransmission, learning and memory, behavior, brain damage related to aging and epilepsy, and the regulation of hormone secretion by the central and the peripheral nervous system.

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Alfréd Rényi Institute of Mathematics (RÉNYI, RI)

The Institute was founded in 1950 and was later named after its first director, Alfréd Rényi, who led the Institute for 20 years until his death in 1970. The number of researchers at the Institute is around 120, but many of them work for periods abroad, and the Institute regularly has guest researchers.

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Institute for Computer Science and Control (SZTAKI)

The Institute for Computer Science and Control (SZTAKI) is the largest and most successful research institute in Hungary in the field of information science. SZTAKI is an information science workshop in the broad sense, a national research base for IT, computer science and related fields.

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Institute for Nuclear Research (ATOMKI)

The Institute for Nuclear Research (Atomki) was founded in Debrecen in 1954. The founding director was Sándor Szalay, who even at that time stressed the importance of interdisciplinary research.

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Research Institute for Linguistics (NYTUD)

The basic task of the Research Institute for Linguistics is to conduct research at international standards in the following fields: Hungarian, Uralic, general and applied linguistics, historical linguistics, phonetics and pragmatics, to compile a Comprehensive Dictionary of Hungarian and maintain its archived materials, to investigate Hungarian dialects and minority languages, and to study language policy issues within European integration.

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ELKH university research groups

Office for Supported Research Groups

In addition to research centers and research institutes, the Eötvös Loránd Research Network includes more than 150 independent research groups operating in universities and other public institutions. These groups can receive funding for their research in the form of grants that Supported Research Groups or Lendület Research Groups can apply for. Their leaders are university and public institution employees, and their members are researchers employed by ELKH. From an administrative point of view, the groups are operated by the Office for Supported Research Groups (TKI).

The research groups belonging to TKI carry out their research in various fields of mathematics and natural sciences, life sciences, the humanities and social sciences. They provide an organic link between ELKH and major Hungarian research universities, thus laying the foundations for high-level partnerships of excellence.

The research carried out in the groups contributes significantly to Hungarian scientific output. Due to its many practical applications, this can also be used to the benefit of society. Research by several life sciences groups is contributing, for example, to the conservation of biodiversity, the development of region-wide reconstruction programs, and improvements in public health. In addition to successful basic research activities, the research carried out here in the field of natural sciences also helps solve many practical issues, including the lateral stability of self-driving vehicles, water management issues at Lake Balaton, and the development of new composite materials.

Several groups are carrying out essential research in the field of Hungarian history and language. It is worth highlighting work associated with language technology and the publication of archives from the Anjou and the Sigismund eras, which can be regarded as valuable scientific work. In addition, studies are undertaken into many other popular and important social science issues, such as social and generational differences in behaviors detrimental to public health.