|STATE AWARD FOR SCIENCE FOR THE YEAR 2010 - Lifetime Achievement Award is conferred to Emeritus Professor BRANIMIR PRPIĆ, PhD pdf HR EN||421|
|STATE AWARD FOR SCIENCE FOR THE YEAR 2010|
Lifetime Achievement Award is conferred to
Emeritus Professor BRANIMIR PRPIĆ, PhD
The State Awards ceremony for the year 2010 was held in the Croatian Parliament on the eve of Croatia’s IndependenceDay. The Lifetime Achievement Award,the State Award for Science in the field of biotechnical sciences,was conferred to Emeritus Professor Branimir Prpić, PhD. The expert commission for biotechnical sciences, adhering to the principle of presentingscience awards only to most distinguished scientists who have achieved outstanding results in their scientific field, based itsproposal for the candidate on the reviewers’reports of individual candidates. The proposal was accepted by the Selection Committee forState Awards in Science. Due to Professor Prpić’s health problems, the award was received on his behalf by ProfessorMilan Oršanić, PhD, Dean of the Faculty of Forestry of the University in Zagreb. After the awards competition had been announced, at the initiative of the Croatian Forestry Society the Scientific Council of the Faculty of Forestry of Zagreb Universityput forward the laureate, the professor at the Faculty of long standing.
A more detailed overview of the teaching, scientific and editorial work of our distinguished professor and longtime editor-in-chiefof Forestry Journalis given in the Awards column of this issue. We shall only briefly comment on several introductorytexts from the Editorial, a column which Professor Prpić as editor-in-chief launched in 1975 as a periodic column,but whichbecame a permanent feature in1994. The choice of topics has been very varied and has almost exclusively focused on the condition ofthe forestry profession at a given moment and on the main problems it faces. In a way, the columnrepresents a historical survey of important events and turning points in the profession. Sometimes, the Editorial has given food for thought toeveryone trying to solve a particular problem, but most often it has actually provided a solution to the problem. The solutionmay sometimes have reflected the editor’s personal belief, but most often, it has been the joint effort of the scientific-specialistprofession, whose port-parole Professor Prpić was and which he openly advocated in his column, regardless of occasional divergent political dictates.
In the first text (FJ 1-3/1975), At the Threshold of Jubilee, the editor announces the forthcoming 100th anniversary of theForestry Journal and highlights its significance for the forestry profession. He urges specialist readership to read and subscribeto the Journal, but first and foremost to participate in its creation by writing contributions. The theme of 1975 dealing withforestry in Dalmatia would be very topical today if the financial means for non-market forest functions were reduced or, Godforbid, revoked. Let us quote the final sentence from the text: “It is even more unrealistic, to say the least, and indeed untenable,that forestry on karst should be perceived as an economic-productive activity, and that it should depend on itself, on the rent forgoat pasture and on small services for tourism, as well as on the understanding or non-understanding shown by municipal executive bodies to forestry organisations”.
A significant topic from 1976 relates to the celebration of the 130thanniversary of the Croatian Forestry Society, an important institution for the forestry profession, where the need for its promotion is particularly stressed in its work programme:“Begin by explaining the role of the forestry profession in the preservation and improvement of forests and by stressing the importance of non-market forest functions, whose value can only be raised by forestry experts. I would also leave it to the profession as a competent institution to deal with important priority relationships “between the raw material basis and timberprocessing industries”. In one of the articles from 1986 he writes: “In a time of crisis, such as today, there is often strong pressure on cheap raw material which cannot cover all the costs of simple and expanded biological reproduction of forests”.In thesame article, in addition to the forest fund encumbered by ever-growing needs for good quality raw material, he warns of forestdecline caused by changed chemical climate. In the last article of that year he concludes:“The timber processing industryshould strive to further improve the precious material from our forests and to do business successfullyin order to be able to alsoacquire raw material from abroad”, because the annual yields of our forests are limited.
In the issue 3–4/1988, Professor Prpić writes about the endangered status and decline of some tree species and points to adifferent attitude towards the forest compared with that of “30, but also 10 years ago”. The relationship between its raw material and energy value and its ecological and social value is constantly changing in favour of the latter. There is a well knownsaying that “man can do without timber, but cannot do without a forest”. Here is another important sentence: “Every attempt toinvest in modernisation of timber processing from the already exhausted forest fund leads to rapid devastation of forests andloss of their ecological, social and direct economic (raw material) functions”.
Space does not allow us to mention all the other topics of high interest, such as changed water relations in the sites, theDunav-Sava canal, organisation of forestry, participation of forestry experts in the planning of infrastructural projects, calculating non-market forest functions, and many others.
We hope that the readers will be encouraged by the above topics and citations, and particularly by a more detailed overviewof Professor Prpić’s work to try and compare problems of the profession in the past and today, and possibly even answer thequestion what, if anything, has changed. The working opus of Professor Prpić will be even more extensively presented in a special book which the Croatian Forestry Society is preparing to mark 40 years of his activity as editor-in-chief of Forestry Journal.
In the end, on behalf of our readers and on our own behalf, we warmly congratulate Professor Prpić on his well deservedaward.
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