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Mission of the Great Plain Research Institute of the CRS of the HAS

    The intellectual predecessor of the Great Plain Research Institute of the Centre for Regional Studies (CRS) of the HAS (Hungarian Academy of Sciences) was established in Szeged, parallel to the creation of the Transdanubian Research Institute. The first unit of the present Institute, the Great Plain Research Group of the Geographical Research Institute of the HAS, was organised in Békéscsaba in 1973. Together with the Settlement Research Group of Kecskemét, established in 1982, the two units were integrated into the research network of the Centre for Regional Studies, founded in 1983. Within the CRS, together with the Szolnok and Debrecen Groups founded in 1992, the four units were re-organised into the Great Plain Research Institute. The primary scientific task of the Institute is the comprehensive regional research of one of the most characteristic Hungarian large regions, the Great Hungarian Plain.

    The special environmental conflicts, the characteristic features of its economy and its agriculture, the genetics of its settlement network which is unique in the world, the landscape and cultural versatility of the society, the spatial aspects of the openness and closedness, development or lagging behind of the micro-regions, the wide range of the forces of modernisation and the specific territorial problems of the Great Plain large region, which is the special target of the researches carried out by the Institute, all offer research topics for the staff.

    The universal, systematic, comparative and regular survey, with interdisciplinary approach, of the Great Plain space and society is the ultimate mission of the Great Plain Research Institute. Within the Centre for Regional Studies, the Institute is responsible for national level researches in the fields of micro-regions and rural areas, and also for the problems of the Great Plain region in connection with its Euro-regional integration (Carpathians and Danube-Körös-Maros-Tisza Euro-region).

    In addition to the many-sided basic researches done in the four research units of the Institute (Békéscsaba, Debrecen, Kecskemét and Szolnok), applied researches are also carried out, providing assistance and a sound basis for the solution of regional development issues, the working out of development concepts, strategies or programmes.

    The research places, which are closely integrated into the intellectual life of their regions, have a significant information basis, which allows the Great Plain Research Institute to operate as a network of scientific workshops, which prepares and co-ordinates the European regional integration. Now this is also assisted by the Regional Scientific Information and Computer Centre, which is connected to the INTERNET and which serves the whole of the Centre for Regional Studies.