Ivo SVEJKOVSKY, Institute of Physics of the Czech Academy of Sciences, Czechia
The whole world has been struggling with the pandemic caused by COVID-19. The fight against coronavirus has been joined by science and research institutions across the whole world.
The scientific community is characterized by a specific corporate culture and communication and is fundamentally different from the ordinary business world. It is a specific subculture contributing to the creation of environment suitable for independent research leading to applications and innovations with important positive impact on the society. The subject of the research is the Institute of Physics of the Czech Academy of Sciences (FZU), which is a public research institution of significant international recognition.
The aim of the article is first to identify the differences in corporate culture and communication at a public research institution and a typical commercial company. It also aims to describe key factors of culture and communication at the FZU and how they are reflected in the formation of environment, atmosphere and conditions facilitating outstanding scientific results; to present examples of good practice from the area of corporate culture and communication, and a list of the most significant scientific discoveries at the FZU which contributed to the fight against coronavirus. For the research, both primary and secondary sources of data have been used.
The good practice examples and mainly the scientific results produced in an extremely short period of time as a response to the sudden crisis caused by the coronavirus have confirmed that the existing corporate culture and communication at the FZU is highly effective at the time of crisis. The employees actively, spontaneously and selflessly amended their current research in such a way so that the results of their research directly contributed to the mitigation of the negative impact of the pandemic on the society and the inhabitants of the Czech Republic. The individual scientific contributions are ordered on a time line mapping the development of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Czech Republic and the impact of the individual scientific results on the target groups is described. The FZU outcomes with the highest positive effect against the COVID-19 pandemic include highly sensitive, transferable biosensors for the detection of coronavirus, highly effective respirators put into serial production, ionizers for disinfection of particle filters, preparation of a non-invasive sublingual vaccine, production of effective disinfection and its free distribution to key places and more.
It can be concluded that the corporate culture and communication at the FZU create such environment that significantly contributed to effective and economically advantageous suppression of the negative impact of the coronavirus crisis in Czech Republic. The FZU corporate culture will be further cultivated and communication improved so that the institute is even better prepared for potential future crises.