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Dr. Zoltán Birkner
The NRDI Office is lead by the President, who shall be appointed and dismissed by the Prime Minister. Term of the appointment is 5 years, one can be appointed for no more than two terms. The President represents the NRDI Office in matters of research, development and innovation in front of the Government and the National Assembly and represents the Government in matters of research, development and innovation in international organisations The President is responsible for preparing the annual programme strategy for the NRDI Fund and the high quality implementation of the objectives and tasks defined therein.

Dr. Birkner Zoltan - elnökA Prime Minister's Resolution 101/2018. (VII. 23.), dr. Zoltán Birkner is appointed as the President of the National Research, Development and Innovation Office for a term of 5 years, as from 1 July 2018.  

Dr. Zoltán Birkner’s professional career includes thorough experience in higher education as a lecturer and education organiser, in scientific life as a researcher of innovation management, and in business sector as a manager dealing with organisational and business development and industrial research and development projects.

As head of the Nagykanizsa Campus of the University of Pannonia, his core missions became to build industrial and business relations enabling development, securing sound financial management and providing new market opportunities, as well as to implement joint educational and research programmes in the region. As the person in charge of the “improving innovation capabilities” chapter, he contributed to the strategic programme being decisive for the development of Nagykanizsa. Upon his personal initiative, the Soós Ernő Water Technology Research and Development Centre was established in 2014, representing one of the best practices for successful innovation cooperation between Hungarian middle-sized towns, SMEs and universities.

In 2014, as the head of the preparatory group of the National Smart Specialisation Strategy (S3) in Zala county, he successfully addressed and integrated regional business leaders, the managements of intermediary companies and dominant actors in the public administration and education sector. Due to his efforts, several proposals from Zala county were adopted and incorporated in the national S3 strategy.

Throughout his career, he has been actively involved in international programmes fostering regional cross-border and transborder cooperation in economic, scientific and professional matters, primarily with Croatia, Slovenia and Austria. He has been member of the Innovation Council of the Hungarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry since 2017.

 

Higher education

  • 2010: PhD – Doctoral School of Management Sciences and Business Administration, University of Pannonia – innovation management, assessment and development of the innovation capacity of SMEs
  • 1998: College of Finance and Accountancy, Budapest – economist in finance
  • 1994: Faculty of Humanities, Kossuth Lajos University – teacher of history and geography

Professional experience

  • from 1 July 2018: President – National Research, Development and Innovation Office
  • 2008–2018: Head of Campus – Nagykanizsa Campus, University of Pannonia 
  • 2015–2016: organisational development manager & innovation consultant – Hidrofilt Kft.
  • 2014–2018: Head of Research Centre – Soós Ernő Water Technology Research and Development Centre, University of Pannonia
  • from 2010: Associate Professor – University of Pannonia
  • 2001–2008: Acting Head of Campus – Nagykanizsa Campus, University of Pannonia
  • 1994–2001: secondary school teacher – Batthyány Lajos Grammar School, Nagykanizsa

Public activities, membership in professional organisations

  • from 2017: member of the Innovation Council of the Hungarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry
  • 2014: facilitator of the development of the National Smart Specialisation Strategy (S3)
  • from 2005: board member of the Nagykanizsa local organisation of the Hungarian Economic Association
  • from 2009: secretary of the Communications Working Committee of MTA VEAB

Prizes and awards

  • 2018: Knight's Cross of the Hungarian Order of Merit
  • 2013: Harsányi János Prize – Faculty of Economics, University of Pannonia
  • 2011: Harsányi István PhD Prize – Hungarian Association for Innovation
  • 2009: Hungarian Education Memorial Award – Ministry of Education and Culture
  • 2009: Pro Universitate Pannonica Grand Silver Merit Award – University of Pannonia
  • 2007: VEAB Memorial Award – Veszprém Regional Committee of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (MTA VEAB)
  • 2004: Honourable mention by the Rector – University of Pannonia
  • 1988: Junior Geographer Prize (1st place of the National Secondary School Academic Competition in Geography)

Language skills

  • English – conversational
  • German – conversational

Publications in Hungarian and English, research projects

  • Innovation ability measurements of local tourism organisations / Máhr T.; Birkner Z.; Berkesné Rodek N., 2018
  • Ipar 4.0, az új innovációs környezet / Birkner Z., 2018
  • Industry 4.0 – opportunity or challenge / Birkner Z., 2018
  • Az innováció újra értelmezése: Ipar 4.0 / Birkner Z., 2018
  • Marketingkampány a „fájdalmas hónapok” feledtetéséhez – kríziskommunikáció a turizmusbiztonság visszaállításában / Marton Zs.; Birkner Z.; Keller K., 2017
  • Települések új dimenziói / Máhr T.; Birkner Z.; Berkesné Rodek N., 2017
  • Települések a digitális térben – negyedik dimenzió / Máhr T.; Birkner Z., 2017
  • Green hopes: Spatial and Settlement Development Operative Programs in the Programming Period 2014-2020 / Máhr T.; Birkner Z.; Berkesné Rodek N., 2017
  • The Opportunities of Small and Medium-Sized Cities in the Globalizing World / Birkner Z.; Máhr T.; Berkesné Rodek N., 2017
  • Települési- térségi identitás / Birkner Z., 2017
  • Changes in Responsibilities and Tasks of Universities in Regional Innovation Ecosystems / Birkner Z.; Máhr T.; Berkesné Rodek N., 2017
  • Köldökzsinór: A Pannon Városok Szövetségéhez tartozó városok sikerének és megtartó erejének kulcstényezői / Berkesné Rodek N.; Birkner Z.; Ernszt I., 2017
  • Human capital management as one of the fundamental elements of the CSR concept / Berkené Rodek N.; Birkner Z., 2017
  • CSR activities of the tourism providers / Berkesné Rodek N.; Birkner Z.; Máhr T., 2017
  • Corporate Social Responsibility in the Water Industry Sector / Berkesné Rodek N; Birkner Z.; Máhr T., 2017
  • Let's do it differently!? – Question or warning; Innovation in Tourism / Máhr T.; Birkner Z.; Berkesné Rodek N., 2016
  • The Role of Transferring Knowledge in Case of Non-Business Sector Projects / Kaszás N.; Keller K.; Birkner Z., 2016
  • Hasonlóságok és különbségek a pályázati projektek sikerében – az Ausztria-Magyarország határon átnyúló együttműködési program sikervizsgálata / Kaszás N.; Birkner Z.; Németh K., 2016
  • The relationship between universities and social innovation potential / Birkner z.; Máhr T.; Berkesné Rodek N., 2016
  • Interpreting innovation – in another way / Birkner Z.; Máhr T., 2016
  • The role of local governments and hotels in sustainable tourism / Berkesné Rodek N.; Birkner Z.; Máhr T., 2016
  • On the way towards a sustainable and responsible city – decision support approach for municipalities / Berkesné Rodek N.; Birkner Z.; Máhr T., 2016
  • Alulról felfelé, vagy felülről lefelé? – Innováció a turizmusban / Máhr T.; Birkner Z.; Berkesné Rodek N., 2015
  • A felsőoktatási intézmények előtt álló kihívások a magyar-horvát határ mentén Kaszás K; Keller K; Birkner Z., 2015
  • Cross-border Cooperation between Hungary and Croatia: Connecting People and Traditions / Ernszt I.; Birkner Z.; Keller K., 2015
  • Az intelligens szakosodás, mint az innováció új területi szemlélet / Birkner Z.; Máhr T., Berkesné Rodek N., 2015
  • A társadalmi felelősségvállalás és a térségfejlesztés közötti kapcsolat / Berkesné Rodek N.; Birkner Z.; Máhr T., 2015
  • A Sustainable and responsible operation in tourism / Berkesné Rodek N.; Bikrner Z., Ernszt I., 2015
  • A települési energiaellátás innovációs kihívásai / Németh K.; Péter E., Birkner Z., 2013

Personal data

  • Date of birth: 9 August 1971
  • Marital status: married, father of two children
Last modified: 2018. szeptember 17.
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