Is the end of Spanish R&D near?

Nieuws | de redactie
31 oktober 2012 | Spanish research is in a state of “cumulative deterioration” states José Molero from the Spanish Confederation of Science. The budget per scientist has halved in the past four years and continues to drop. Perhaps prof. Mariana Mazzucato can give Spain a helping hand to break this disastrous trend?

The Spanish Confederation of Science (Cosce) observed that  Spain has heavily cut on public funding for research, it has halved in four years. From €41.000 per scientist in 2009 to €22.500 in the proposed state budget for 2013. José de No from Cosce’s budget committee explains that Spain’s research spending on the same level as “countries of poor science”.

The Cosce notes that the situation “will not improve”, neither for individual scientists nor for the R&D industry. For the fourth year in a row the budget will decrease, this time with 7.21%. According to José Molero, member of Cosce’s budget committee this will “leave the country and Spanish R&D in a critical condition”.

Cumulative deterioration

Experts state that the only way to correct this downward trend is to start a parliamentary procedure to introduce substantial changes, a measure that the Confederation believes is “unlikely”. Molero has indicated that “the cumulative deterioration is so prominent that the existing system in which research and technology is publicly funded, or at least depends partly on public co-financing, is at a critical stage”.

The report shows the cuts will affect all government’s R&D-programs. Experts have noted that not only programs but even some organizations, like the National Institute for Aerospace Technology might not survive these budget cuts and then “stop boosting the country’s industrial technology”.

Hope

Experts call for “strategy and vision for the long-term future”. Maybe the Cosce  should invite Prof. Mariana Mazzucato to explain the importance of government induced innovation. The four lessons from Mazzucato to boost innovation in the EU, could help Spain to revitalize its economy. 


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