Minority issues

Political scientist Miklós Bakk received this year’s Lőrincz-Csaba award

2017. 06. 16.

Miklós Bakk, political scientist and associate professor of the Sapientia Hungarian University of Transylvania received this year’s “Lőrincz Csaba award”. The award was founded by the “For minorities – Pro Minoritate Foundation” and it is granted every year to reward outstanding activity in the field of foreign policy and national policy.


The opening speech of the ceremony was held by Kinga Gál, Member of the European Parliament on behalf of Fidesz-KDNP. She emphasized how much she enjoys participating in events of the foundation, because she believes that the organization contributes to building bridges between the Hungarian communities living throughout the Carpathian-basin and to forming long-standing friendships.

She also mentioned that ever since the award was founded, she welcomes a young professional named by the award-winner to spend a month in her office in Brussels.

She claimed that this could help the scholar to familiarize with the functioning of the European Union. She emphasized that this gesture is owed to the spirit and friendship of Csaba Lőrincz.

Kinga Gál referred to her work in the European Parliament, stating that the protection of the rights of traditional national communities is an ungrateful task in the Union. Even though they regularly turn to the European Commission with exact concerns, they always get a meaningless answer stating that the problem does not belong to the Commissions competences.

According to the Member of the Parliament, along with the practical aspects, it is important to carry out academic scientific research in the field of minority studies. Bakk Miklós is one of the best academics in this field. As the award-winner already mentioned, it is necessary to change strategy in order to raise also the Székely region to the level of centers for modernization also to transform.


The award was granted for the ninth time

In her welcoming speech, Judit Hammerstein, Deputy State Secretary for Foreign Hungarian Institutions and International Educational Relations for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the director of Balassi Institute, stated that the award has a double mission. First, to remember the amazing person, friend, academic and thinker Csaba Lőrincz who had a great effect in forming Fidesz’s national policy ambitions for a long time and second, to recognize the work of those who take on his intellectuality and spirit.

She stated that the award was granted for the ninth time.

Zsolt Németh, President of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the Hungarian National Assembly said that the decision of the board to grant the award to Miklós Bakk is due to his outstanding academic, scientific and educational activity in the field of minority rights and political studies, especially with regard to his firm commitment towards the subject of community autonomies.

He believes that there is a strong resemblance between the award-winner and Lőrincz, regarding their personality and lifestyle. Bakk and Lőrincz were both committed academics regarding the questions of autonomy but not researchers who locked themselves up in the world of pure research. They also took part in the more unpleasant work: they were involved in politics, when it was necessary.


The award-winner took part in public life debates

On the other hand, they could not be captured by either of the Hungarian political sect-sides, they did not become ideologists for either political party.  The seat of Miklós Bakk is still the independent university sphere, as he claimed. He added that the award-winner is creating new pathways and not following the beaten tracks, which allows him to set an example.

Csaba Lőrincz and Miklós Bakk are figures of the autonomy, they are free and European, according to Zsolt Németh, who also mentioned the importance of publications by the award-winner.

The award-winner was also honored by Balázs Vizi, legal academics, associate professor of the National University of Public Service and fellow researcher for the Minority Research Institute of the Social Sciences Center in the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. He emphasized the importance of Bakk’s work with regard to autonomy.

The award-winner was not reluctant to represent his research-based ideas by drafting laws or participating in public debates. Vizi stated that his creative scientific approach and public responsibility makes him a worthy successor of Csaba Lőrincz.


Miklós Bakk considers the award a great honor

He believes that the nation does not mortify, does not cease. It does, however, dramatically transform, but will continue to exist in the 21st century. He came up with three arguments to support this vision.

He claimed that the nation is non-replaceable. Until the governance in the world happens in the framework of statehood, nation cannot be buried either.

Furthermore, the nation is a fellowship in terms of life and values and it mixes these two on the highest level possible. Finally, being part of a nation is the natural way of life.

He stated that, as a matter of fact, nation also means the experience of everyday’s natural existence, therefore it does have a future.